The Rules for Visiting a New Mom


You know the scene: A close girlfriend has her long-awaited new baby and you feel the need to hightail it to her house to hold that little bundle of joy. In fact, it takes all of your self-control to not show up at the hospital and interrupt the precious few hours that she’ll have staff doting on her around the clock. Either it’s because you love that new baby smell or you think Mama is going to have hurt feelings if you don’t show interest in her newest family member, but regardless, you are going to hold that baby. This is what we do as women, yes?

Au contraire, mon amie. I distinctly remember being two months into motherhood and realizing that I didn’t need or want any more girlfriends stopping by and over-stimulating my colicky, sensitive child with their scary foreign faces, inappropriately loud voices, or refusal to stop bouncing him for even a few minutes. Give the baby a break from the bouncing, ladies. Do you think I want him to get used to that?  No, I don’t, because I’m tired and I don’t want to have to bounce him myself.

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I assure you that I would not have been hurt had no one come to visit me at all. Do you think I made this baby by myself?  In fact, I did not. There is a man who lives here to keep me company in the evenings. During the day I was too tired, overwhelmed, and covered in spit-up to care about loneliness, and having company just meant that I’d have to squeeze my fat ass into something that didn’t fit and vacuum the dog hair off the floor.

Before I became a mother I was one of those girlfriends who showed up just to hold your baby. I hereby publicly apologize to all of the new mommies that I did this to. No mother I know was sitting around, desperately waiting for me to appear at her house empty-handed and hold her baby. I am no Baby Whisperer, believe me.

There was one instance that I arrived at a girlfriend’s house for no other reason than to hold her new baby and then I sat down and ate the dinner that her husband had been preparing for them. Me! I did not just have a baby! Why was I eating her food?  Shameful.

Now I’m a mother and realize that if you want to hold that babe in the first four months before the yummy new baby smell wears off, then there are some rules governing that situation…

• Bring food that you know they’ll like. This means a take-out lunch from a higher-end restaurant and bring enough food so that Daddy has something to eat when he gets home. Chicken, fish, steak, or something that fits their special diet.  Don’t be stingy; buy enough for leftovers. Don’t make something on your own unless it actually tastes good. It’s best to spend a little money and treat them to something nice since it’s going to be a long, long time before they go to a restaurant again. I hate to say it, but if you can’t afford to buy her a decent lunch, then you need to consider whether you can really afford to hold this baby.

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• Don’t eat her food. Does Mama have some pulled pork or a rack of short ribs simmering in the crock-pot when you arrive? Don’t you dare accept any of it if she offers. She is being polite and you are not actually a guest. You are an intruder. Remember:  Everything that you don’t eat is leftovers for them tomorrow, so don’t eat anything at all. You can have some water if you get it yourself. You need to be on high alert to recognize fake offers of food/gifts/favors and so on from this woman; she is likely out of her mind from sleep deprivation and doesn’t know what she’s saying, but she will still remember your greediness years later.

One of my friends left a homemade chicken casserole and fresh chocolate chip cookies at our front door and didn’t even need to come inside. The hallmark of a truly excellent friend is one who will knock quietly, put the food on the front porch, then get in the car and drive away.

• Bring a gift, even if you already gave a baby shower gift. Ask Mama what she needs or check her registry for lingering purchases. Don’t get your panties in a bunch about this one; it can be something as simple as a case of pacifiers or replacement pump pieces–  things that only cost a few bucks. Nobody ever said that a gift had to be a surprise in order to be good. When in doubt, ask what diapers they use and bring those. If you buy the cheapest diapers you can find that are imported from Mexico, she’ll be dealing with scratchy leaky diapers and cursing your name at 4am.

• Snap Away. If you’re a semi-pro photographer, bring your camera and your most flattering lens. Don’t try to sell her the portraits later. Send them for free.

• No summer dresses in winter. Don’t bring size-inappropriate-for-the-season clothing that suits your taste and not theirs. Babies grow fast. Use your brain.

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• Don’t bring decorative kick-knacks. As much fun as you might think it is, no mother wants you to decorate her new baby nursery. Decorating the nursery is strictly relegated to mom and dad and you can keep your over-sized stuffed animals, picture frames, and inspirational quotes out of it. Nobody wants something extra to dust around when they have a new baby. Don’t make Mama waste a stamp graciously thanking you for some random thing you dug up at Tuesday Morning that she never wanted in the first place.

• Make yourself useful. Is your new-mother friend one of those controlling types who doesn’t want anyone helping with her housework?  Your friend needs to get over it because in about 8 months that baby is going to be mobile and her days of being in control of her surroundings are officially a thing of the past.

Do the dishes. If the kitchen sink is full of dishes, turn on the water, rinse them off, and start loading them up in the dishwasher. Load them smart because you know how much we hate it when the dishwasher is loaded wrong. Don’t halfheartedly ask Mama if maybe you can help out in some way because she’s going to say no even though she means “God, yes, please someone help me for once.” Just do it.

• Or the laundry. Look around and spy a pile of clean clothes that needs to be folded? Do you have two working hands?  Fold the laundry, even the underwear.

• Be that friend. One of my friends not only brought food and a gift, but she called from the drugstore to see if I needed anything (indeed, I did need nursing pads for those leaky boobs no one warned me about) and started putting away all of the odds and ends that belonged in the baby’s closet that I couldn’t reach because of my c-section. When she asked what she could do it wasn’t really a question as much as it was a statement and request for orders.

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Another girlfriend came over with her husband for an afternoon. He sat in a chair and rocked the baby while she cleaned my kitchen spotless, including shining up the stainless steel of the refrigerator. What did I do?  I took a bath and washed and dried my hair for the first time in a week. You know when your hair gets so dirty that the roots hurt? That was my hair.  I had an entire hour to myself where I wasn’t listening for the baby to cry for the first time since becoming a mother two months prior. When I tried to check on the baby in the living room she whispered, “Get out of here. He can smell your milk.”

But not THAT friend. I can honestly say that there were a few visitors during that time of my life who had me thinking, “I’m being held hostage by this tiny person who just threw up in my eyes and you didn’t even bring me anything?” Don’t be that friend. Learn from me, the reformed do-nothing baby holder. Last summer when a friend had a new baby, I brought a small gift and lunch whenever I went to see her because I knew she felt so overwhelmed. These days I don’t even give birthday presents without asking Mama what the little one needs, or if my gift idea is alright with her.

If you’ve been a blatant do-nothing baby holder in the past, fear not. Make a mental note to buy the child a special gift for their next birthday party and rest easy knowing that at some point, your day of having vomit in your eyes will come and you will find yourself wondering what the hell these baby-holding friends are doing in your house.

Related: 10 Tips on How to be a Good Friend

About the writer

Robyn divides her time between wondering where those 30 points of IQ snuck off to after the birth of her first child and silently judging parents who let their kids eat red dye #40.


Dakota 4 weeks ago

Thank you for the laugh and for making me pause and remember when I had mine. Don’t take the stupid comments too seriously. People need to be rotten because they have nothing in their life to be happy about. It was a funny read and too true at times. You don’t have to have a child to appreciate this piece.

DINK 2 months ago

This is why you breeders don’t have friends. Demanding much? Enjoy your soulless “mommy” life consoling yourself with ridiculous social media posts about how being a mom is a “job” and you should be earning a crazy salary for being a doctor, dentist, housekeeper, secretary, accountant, book keeper, chauffeur, etc. for doing all the basic adult things we ALL do EVERY day. You don’t get to whine about your life being SO HARD because you chose to create spawn. You made the decision, you live with it…. gracefully or not.

Childfree By Choice 2 months ago

Wow, I’m surprised you even have any friends left with this level of rudeness. The word “tyrant” came to mind, among a few others and this is the nicest of all. I couldn’t be happier that I do not know you. I feel bad for people in your proximity, though. Watch your attitude, missy.

Childless 2 months ago

Good thing most new mums are actually nice, see friendship as a two-way thing, and see their friends as real people, not arbitrary vanity-feeders! Otherwise I wouldn’t have been able to cook for my sister when she had her new baby, because I didn’t bring a very good gift. My sister sees me as a person though, *and invited me*, so I’m glad it’s her in my life and not this person!

Working mom 2 months ago

With that attitude I’m surprised anyone visited you at all.
I’ve read a few “how to visit a new mom” posts and this is by far the most self entitled, demanding one.
Plenty of moms would be happy if people came to visit just to have an adult to talk to. Would be more than appreciative of any food they didn’t have to cook. And I surely wasn’t expecting a gift from every person walking through my front door.

Melissa 2 months ago

Wait, now that I’m thinking about it, this has happened to me more than twice. Once – the worst – was when we got stuck making a day trip to “meet” my husband’s new niece. I was actually begging his brother and sister-in-law to let me do their laundry or something – anything to end the sitting and staring at the baby. Unfortunately, their apartment was clean, they were clean, their clothes were clean, their dishes were clean and they had just been to the market and made us lunch. And dinner. Groaaaaaaaaaaaaaaan. So. Painful.

Melissa 2 months ago

I have had sort of the opposite experience. My friends all had babies and wanted me to go “meet” them. I pretty much did everything I could think of to avoid going to their house to stare at their progeny and talk for hours about said progeny’s wonderful points. For the most part, I managed to dodge the bullet but there are always a few who won’t give up. I showed up to these meetings empty-handed and hoping to keep the interview as short as possible. In both cases they made a big show out of having me hold the baby and then they both served me lunch! Believe me, I tried to get out of it but how do you say no to a good friend who is imploring you to sit down to lunch with her??? Anyway, I am super glad that my own natural tendencies have meant that I have avoided the sort of unpleasant person like the author, who for some reason thinks her baby is a bargaining chip to be used to obtain goods and services.

GsR 2 months ago

My favorite story to share from my son’s newborn days is when my MIL came over to ‘make’ us dinner. My husband ended up cooking the meal because she ‘wanted to spend time with him.’ She then took half of the leftovers home with her and left the dishes (that included a pan with burnt rice that took three days to get off) for us to do. Thanks grandma…

CC 3 months ago

If you want to be a true friend to a family with people who are new parents, the best gift you can give that baby is a well-fed, well-rested mum and dad. The baby is not going to miss any toys or new clothes you don’t bring. But they do need parents who aren’taren’t constantly sleep-deprived, or eating erratically. That’s all this author is saying. Essentially, do not make your visit something that makes things even harder for new parents; and maybe you could be so kind as to make your visit something that makes things easier for them instead, please and thank you.

Steph 3 months ago

I really doubt all moms of newborns expect this. A gift, expensive food, and cleaning service upon every visit?

Cat 6 months ago

You don’t need a friend you need a maid and a personal assistant. As an auntie to multiple kids I do my best to be helpful. I’m not paying for expensive meals and running all the errands. I also want to hold the snuggly baby that the parents are going to want me to care for in the future. Finally, if you need help you ask for it just like everyone else. Especially if a person doesn’t have a lot of experience with children.

Stephanie 6 months ago

I wish I had the chance to say goodbye to my best friend. :(

Faye 6 months ago

My cousin visited when my youngest as to weeks old…and brought her gaggle of FOUR small children whom all had runny noses and wanted to kiss the baby. As much as I adored her children, I had to ask her to leave until the kids were all well. Unfortunately, (well maybe not), she never visited or spoke to me again.
Newborns my not have immunity to children with possibly unwashed hands or sniffles. Leave them with Grandma for your visit to welcome the baby.

Marie 7 months ago

Hated having visitors! I just wanted to be alone with my new baby and husband ! Everyone came and expected me to be ready to party and I just wasn’t. Also- do not bring your dirty four year old to the hospital !!! Germs germs germs and I don’t want to see you either . Next time I will say my piece. No visitors at least in the beginning.

Octavia 7 months ago

I always appreciated when people stopped by to see my babies, just keep it short and sweet and don’t expect the new mom to serve you! I was so lonely with my first baby in the beginning, none of my family was near by when I gave birth and it was a complicated delivery. I was newer to the area. My MiL did by me groceries so that was nice. And I did get flowers sent to me too :)

When people did (eventually) visit most brought something special for the baby or me, nothing big, just heartfelt. It was nice. Some interesting points in this article. People are so different, it is hard to know what to do sometimes. I will definitely keep this in mind for the future.

Sarah 7 months ago

While humourous, I really don’t agree with most of what was written in this post.

I especially dislike the statement that reads, “if you can’t afford to buy her a decent lunch, then you need to consider whether you can really afford to hold this baby.” First, I’m not quite sure why someone’s financial status would have an impact over whether or not a friend should want to see the new baby.

Second, it’s not a friend’s job to buy food, gifts, or presents for a new mom.

I am a new mom, and I DO NOT expect my friends to be my maids or spend money on me, regardless of the situation – new mom, stressful job, death in the family, etc. It’s a kind gesture, yes…. but it’s not necessary. Telling people that they need to bring food and gifts and clean is pretty ridiculous.

New moms need to appreciate that their friends want to meet her new family member. I love that people want to meet my son! The only major thing that a new mom needs to make clear to friends is that SHE and her partner decide when you can come over to see the baby. Friends should not just drop by unannounced. If they do, tell them it’s not a good time for you, and they should understand.

This post really peeves me. Yes, being a new mom is hard, but remember – we chose this path. There are many things I’ve done in life that have been difficult also, and as a new mom, I don’t use this as an excuse to have friends pamper me with presents and house cleanings and food.

    Sarah 7 months ago

    Also, just to add…
    True friends will probably know all of these things anyway. True friends can come over without you worrying about what your house will look like. True friends are people you can tell, “hey, I’m exhausted and haven’t had a chance to do X, Y, and Z… as you can see by the dishes piled high and the mountain of dog hair.” Realistically, it won’t matter to that friend. They’ve come to see you and your baby, not to clean your house. Not to pamper you.

      Monica Palconio 7 months ago

      I TOTALLY agree.

      I also HATE that this blog author propels the stereotype that all women swoon over babies. “This is what we do as women, yes?” – No, not all women have to love babies. There is nothing wrong with women who don’t have babies, don’t want babies, or don’t enjoy the company of babies.

      This stereotype harms women as a whole, and it alienates women who don’t have these feeling towards babies and children. It causes people to look at you like an alien when you tell them you don’t have children, or don’t want children. There shouldn’t be anything wrong with that! And there isn’t! And making comments like “women all swoon over babies because that’s what we do” doesn’t help the case.

Ashley 7 months ago

PS – Glad to see so many awesome normal moms on this thread that agree!

Ashley 7 months ago

This article is a joke. You had a baby, not cancer. Bring “high end food” and “do the dishes or the laundry”….”bring a gift even if you already brought one.” New moms should be happy to have their friends come see their baby, not leverage them to do things or bring things. People treat motherhood like it’s the hardest thing in the world these days. In fact, it is not. Sure, it’s challenging but not to the point where you need your friends to clean your house or bring you special food. Buck up New Moms! Articles like this should be for people who truly need assistance – like those who are sick.

Lily 9 months ago

I’m in the trepidatious period; my close friend who I’ve know for over 15 years will not accept any visitors or help. I poured my heart out and begged her to tell me what she needed inc. leaving her alone & shopping/cleaning. Two days later she said ‘she is really cute, we’re all gaga. Want a girls day out soon and pedicures’ This is 2 weeks in. I realise there is no normal, it is now almost a month and she will have no visitors. She is isolated with no neighbours and no car, am I being paranoid? Is the food & essentials at the doorstep the right idea? I think I just need permission to butt out but I’m worried she isn’t coping. Thank you! Lily

Ultimate Hampers 9 months ago

Bring me wine, cause its been so dam long I need it, sushi, seafood and ham – anything I wasn’t allowed to eat for 9months BRING IT ON. Oh and my ankles who went MIA mid way through my pregnancy!

The best gift I received was a meal delivery voucher thing for those nights I didnt have time or the energy to cook.

Dr. D. 10 months ago


I’m sure the visitors were really lined up to enjoy such pleasant company.

Tilly 10 months ago

I HATE this article. It makes me so angry. Please don’t listen to this mean and bitter woman. I LOVED having friends visit me and my new babe, and can’t wait for my next one to arrive in the next few days so everyone can visit again :-) I absolutely don’t expect anybody to cook or clean for me and don’t need any gifts, especially if they’ve already given me something at the baby shower. The only advise I give to friends is to just send a quick text message before popping over, mum will let you know if it’s not good timing. So for all my wonderful friends, please come over for cuddles!

tia 10 months ago

Oh how I wish my in-laws would read this.. The insist on coming over everyday just to hold our new born twins. And some how they always wait until I’m breasting on of the babies to try to hand me back the other because they need a diaper changed.. I want to post a sign that says you can only hold the baby if you are willing to change a shitty diaper. Otherwise let the baby sleep.

Anon 10 months ago

How about… NO!!! I’m not here to be your personal slave, to be barked orders by someone I thought was my friend. Funny how none of my friends who had babies gave me a list like this. I guess I just have friends how are not arrogant and don’t feel like the world owes them a favour for having babies!

“if you can’t afford to buy her a decent lunch, then you need to consider whether you can really afford to hold this baby”… are you actually fucking serious?? My financial situation is now a barrier to me having anything to do with your baby?? Well y’know what, you self-righteous moron…? If you write out a list like this for your friends, you need to consider if you really deserve any friends! And hopefully you have none left!

Angela 10 months ago

what the f***? should I pay for your stupid bad decisions? FO! stop having babies dumb women, I don’t have money for paying for your stupid mistakes………. can I do a shower for another projects? NO because a baby is suposed to be the greatest thing in this world and IS NOT.

A_Catk 10 months ago

I will never to this day forget the first time my mother-in-law and father-in-law visited our house after our son was born. I had had a C-section 3 days ago. My husband was busy upstairs with the baby, and my father-in-law walked into the house, sat on the couch, looked at me and said, “[My name], I’ll take a cappuccino.” I hadn’t even offered anyone a drink!! My mother-in-law just sat there and didn’t offer to make it for him. I am not very tall (barely 5 feet), and had to get on a stool and reach up high to get a mug down. I’m lucky I didn’t rip my stitches open! The best part was, less than a year later he had major surgery and I was sooooo very tempted to go to their house a few days after he got home from the hospital and ask him to make me a cappuccino!! My husband wouldn’t let me… LOL

mamaof2 10 months ago

wow, this is really self absorbed… i get that new mamas need space and time and calm and quiet. and i do many of these things for my friends/family who have kids… i bring food/take out, i offer to walk their dogs, take siblings out to play, keep visits short/sweet, don’t ask to hold baby, don’t bring my own kids, etc… i try to bring things that might help mama out (snacks are super helpful)… but i don’t think shaming women who don’t do these things is helpful. and i appreciated visitors… not all in a day. but i wanted to share my child with my friends – i wanted them to meet and love my children.. i could only handle 1 visit a day, or every two days, and i was very honest with friends who wanted to come over… i was also blessed with friends/family who brought over food for me, a neighbour i had never met before cooked me an amazing dinner (for myself and my 2 year old) after my daughter was born and brought it over ready to eat… i will never forget that… i think we need to be grateful for what we have in our lives, the love and friendships we have, and not alienate people without kids by having crazy unreasonable and really rude expectations (clean my bathroom?! really?! i don’t even like my mom or sister trying to do that let alone a friend)…

Victoria 10 months ago

That’s horrible and selfish! I love being with my friends and I HATE that they try to clean my house or bring me food… that’s the most stupid thing I’ve ever read about being a new mum. I’m so sorry for your kids

Ashley 11 months ago

Love this! So true. It really hurt that I didn’t have any friends or family offer to help with chores around the house after my emergency c-section. Not one. They wanted to come hold the baby so I could do the chores my doctor specifically told me I couldn’t do. It was really nice to have several people offer to bring meals however, but they would show up at 7:30pm and then want to hang out with the baby for an hour. This made me go through the roof during week 3 when our daughter went through her growth spurt and had day/reversal. She’d nap from about 7-9pm then she’d be up ALL NIGHT LONG. (I’m not kidding, I stayed on the couch and watched tv and drank decaf coffee to make it through each night). And friends would sit there holding her while she slept during that two hour evening time telling me I should sleep when she did. Ha! I guess I was the only one that truly saw the irony in that…

Cara 11 months ago

This is an absolute joke. I’ve never heard of a more ungrateful person than the one who wrote this article. You just had a baby–you’re not handicapped. People may bring you meals for the first week or so, but in no way should you expect people to bring you meals for the remainder of your maternity leave. There isn’t a cost or “fee” that should be paid in the form of food to visit your family member’s baby. Family comes first. Period. Second, “you’re not a guest, you’re an intruder”. Are you serious? The people who love and care about you and love your new offspring are now categorized as intruders? Get off your self-entitled pedestal and step back down into reality. You’re not a celebrity and neither is your baby. You don’t have the right to treat your dear loved ones and close friends as if they’re suddenly below you or as if your baby is made of gold and they should “only be so lucky” to see your precious child. This is an insult to every single one of your friends and family, and to be honest, would be no surprise at all if after reading this article your friends list significantly decreased. Try being appreciative of your newborn child and the people that love and supported you through this whole process. Some people aren’t so lucky when it comes to procreation and would kill to be in your shoes, and here you are writing a self-important, ungrateful, insulting and down-right bitchy article about something that is supposed to be the most beautiful time in your life. Check yourself and try counting your blessings for once.

Cara 11 months ago

This is an absolute joke. I’ve never heard of a more ungrateful person that the one who wrote this article. You just had a baby–you’re not handicapped. People may bring you meals for the first week or so, but in no way should you expect people to bring you meals for the remainder of your maternity leave. There isn’t a cost or “fee” that should be paid in the form of food to visit your family member’s baby. Family comes first. Period. Second, “you’re not a guest, you’re an intruder”. Are you serious? The people who love and care about you and love your new offspring are now categorized as intruders? Get off your self-entitled pedestal and step back down into reality. You’re not a celebrity and neither is your baby. You don’t have the right to treat your dear loved ones and close friends as if they’re suddenly below you or as if your baby is made of gold and they should “only be so lucky” to see your precious child. This is an insult to every single one of your friends and family, and to be honest, would be no surprise at all if after reading this article your friends list significantly decreased. Try being appreciative of your newborn child and the people that love and supported you through this whole process. Some people aren’t so lucky when it comes to procreation and would kill to be in your shoes, and here you are writing a self-important, ungrateful, insulting and down-right bitchy article about something that is supposed to be the most beautiful time in your life. Check yourself and try counting your blessings for once.

Rivka 11 months ago

My Parents- (Yes MY Parents- not my husbands…) Came to us in Israel in time for our sons circumcision- (8 days after birth). I was really excited and hoping to have a helping hand and some understanding that I JUST had a baby….
Well Long story short, it was my mothers first time in Israel, she wanted to see the sites, an couldn’t understand why I didn’t want to come with them on a hike 10 days after birth…and why I was understandably upset that they didn’t want to stay in the house with us when I haven’t seen them in months…
Aside for the fact that the left us more dishs and laundry instead of doing ours we did theirs…

Oksana 11 months ago

You’re the one who has no emotional maturity to ask for help outright, to tell people they’re not welcome or to let them know when they outstay their welcome. With this behaviour, you’ve collected a bunch of trash in your pre-baby life that you call friends (though there’s appears to be one or two decent ones). You are a person who cannot protect her personal space and is angry with herself for it. I am a person who has no problem with letting people know that I cannot spare any time – right there on the doorstep – or with not offering them my food when I don’t want their company for dinner, don’t have enough food or both. Expecting them to guess your thoughts or second-guess your falsity when you offer them stuff you really don’t mean to offer is a typical energy vampire behaviour: you create unfavourable circumstances around yourself and then indulge in pure attention seeking by playing a victim, the “poor me” card. I will not even go into your demands that visitors pay to see the baby by bringing top notch offerings and doing stuff for you except saying that you get out of friendships what you put into them so that might possibly show what kind of a friend you’d been herself. You should have spent some time maturing and growing up before you had that baby because it seems you’re still a baby yourself.

Rudeness 11 months ago

You should be ashamed of yourself! Expecting gifts and judging those who didn’t bring any? Get over yourself.

Blakely 11 months ago

Entitled. Disgusting.

Frustrated 11 months ago

What happened to being grateful for having friends that were supportive and kind? Why keep people in your life that wouldn’t know basics of visiting? Be grateful for gifts, even if u have to regift. Thank people for bringing food even if it’s not your favorite? Being a new mom doesn’t mean you get everything the way you want it. This is rude!!

Courtney 11 months ago

It is helpful to know what is useful to new moms, however, I feel like this list is really entitled and presumptiuous. When friends come to welcome your new bundle they are taking time out of their hectic busy schedules to show they care. If they find time to bring a meal and you don’t like it, do not take it to be a personal slight but appreciate the time someone took to prepare a meal. As for expecting a gift with the visit, I feel that this is so rude and just puts so much pressure on people in a day when money is tight and you could be buying a gift each week if you allowed yourself to get caught up in it all. As far as expecting your guests to do your housework, this depends on how comfortable you feel to allow visitors to do work for you. Remember people are carving out time from their days to celebrate with you and having expectations and rules like the ones stated above only creates an atmosphere of judgement and discontentment. Please stop making black and white lists that people will most likely fall short of.
Enjoy those who come to celebrate with you, even if they bring a meal you hate and just hold your baby the whole time.

Jerusha 11 months ago

this list is absolutely crazy. You’re a new mom, not the center of the universe. No one should expect these things. I have two kids and would never expect all of this from anyone. Don’t be a psycho just because you gave birth, billions of people have done it, you’re not special.

Steve 11 months ago

you are awful, terrible people. Never read a more selfish blog. Disgusting

Nicole 11 months ago

This is great. I haven’t had any close friends who have had kids (yet), but my reaction to my acquaintances and distant friends having a baby has been to drop all contact and wait for them to contact me. If they don’t, then I know that I was probably on the list of people they can’t make time for with their extremely busy schedule. I don’t mean that sarcastically, either, I legitimately understand that there are going to be people that you don’t see or contact anymore once you have a baby. That baby is now the single most important thing in your life, and since it takes up so much of your time and energy it’s simply not possible to have everything (and everyone) in your life that you had before.

I’m not sure I’d do any of these things with anyone to whom I wasn’t particularly close (I’m still the stay away until they give the okay type of person, there) but now I know what to do if I ever have a close friend who has a baby. Now, are these things legitimately helpful? Or are they just things that you need to do to make up for the fact that you felt like barging in on another person’s home without being invited? Do new parents ultimately prefer everyone else to just leave them alone for the first four to six months, regardless of how close of a friend you were, before? If that’s the case, I have no problem controlling myself from contacting them for that time period – I simply want to do whatever is best for the new parents.

Holly 11 months ago

Awe I had a well meaning family member tell EVERYONE to not visit and leave me alone. I was sooooo lonely and thought noone cared. My next three babies i made sure people knew to come share the joy of a new baby with us! It was so much fun and babies benefit from all that love people have to give. Everyone was happy to wash their hands and if they were sick were cosiderate not to
come. Not to mention noone came empty handed! I did not have to cook for weeks and my baby was more fashionable than me!

homepage 12 months ago

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Judy Parsons 12 months ago

The best hint I ever got was at a La Leche League meeting: Wear a nightgown for the first 2-3 weeks (or longer). When someone stops over, you can either say “oh, I was just going to bed” OR “I was just getting up, let me throw something on” depending on how you feel. Somewhere I read if you are the “live-in help” after a baby is born, let the momma take care of the baby; YOU take care of everything else.

Julie 1 year ago

This is the snottinest thing I have ever read. Don’t worry – I don’t want to hold anyone else’s baby, let alone if it means seeing someone like you. I somehow kept hoping this was satire. While I appreciate ettiquette, this is the opposite – you are being rude to friends. Get over yourself.

erica 1 year ago

This is the most arrogant thing I have ever read in my entire life. Grow up.

Kris 1 year ago

You could be thankful anyone cares enough to come see you instead of demanding gifts from them…. WOW.

Jessica 1 year ago

This is the most entitled and ignorant thing I have ever read. Thank god I don’t have friends like this.

    Not a Mommy 12 months ago

    Amen to that!

laura 1 year ago

I was always bad at bringing stuff. However, I wasn’t a total failure. I was more the friend that showed up empty handed, took the baby, and demanded that mama shower/nap/eat. What ever she needed to do. I wasn’t a stranger to diapers and crying….I didn’t mind.

Julie 1 year ago

I guess I was the weirdo who welcomed company. I was lonely and happy to have friends or family there to hold my kids so I could shower, eat a sandwich, or just sit there. Of course, my friends were all great about bringing food and wine and gifts and helping throw in a load of laundry or dishes. And when I invitd my friends to stay and eat whatever was in the crock pot, I meant it. I wouldn’t ask them if I didn’t. I also would tell them Ihad enough if I wanted them to leave. Friends understand.

Jetix 1 year ago

I’m glad I’m not your friend and pray I never turn into your ungreatful and mean self.

Greg 1 year ago

Gonna let you in on a little secret: Most people don’t really give a shit about your baby, and fawn over it only because we love you and feel like that’s the sort of attention you’d like for the baby. This whole article smacks ingratitude.

kiki 1 year ago

Am I the only one that thinks this list is a bit over the top? I would never have dreamed of being annoyed if a friend (who already bought my child a present) to keep bringing gifts whenever they come over :/ Also someone mentioned don’t bring their kids when you visit, so what they pay for a sitter just to visit a friend? I also wouldn’t be cheeky enough to think my friends visiting my child should do my housework or bring me food all the time.

Nyssa 1 year ago

This is the most entitled piece of garbage I have ever read in my life. 1. I have no desire to hold your screaming child, the only reason I bother to visit is out of obligation. 2. That “new baby smell” is crotch, and I’m not interested in that either. 3. If I already had to suffer through the nightmare that is a baby shower, I am not spending more of my money on a kid I didn’t want or plan for. 4. I am not cleaning up after said kid, anymore than I’m wasting more of my money on it. 5. Didn’t you have your whole pregnancy to be a self righteous, greedy attention whore? 6. Who the hell is coming over unannounced? Sounds like shitty friends to me.
Lastly, your “fake” friends didn’t leave when you had a kid, your self respecting ones did because they decided that being a slave to a self satisfied brat wasn’t worth their time, and I have to agree.

    Jessica 1 year ago


Ellie 1 year ago

“I hate to say it, but if you can’t afford to buy her a decent lunch, then you need to consider whether you can really afford to hold this baby.”

Entitled bitches like this are the reason I avoid people with kids like the plague. You made the choice to shove a human out of your vagina. I’ve already had to buy you a shower present. No way in hell I’m buying you food that’s better than what I eat just so I can see your new poop machine. The entitlement level of most mothers is insane. I’ll hang out with my other friends without kids who only expect me to be good company (and maybe bring them beer if I’m feeling nice, but they certainly don’t feel entitled to it).

    Nyssa 1 year ago

    Is there a way to upvote this? Anyway, cheers!

    Nicole 11 months ago

    I don’t think she’ll have a problem with this. If you don’t want to see her baby, then don’t go over to her house, and everyone is happy. I think her point is that if you absolutely must see the baby in the first few months after it was born, without being invited, then do something nice and helpful in return. If you don’t have an urge to see the baby, then don’t. She’s ranting against people who insist on visiting without being helpful, not people who don’t visit at all.

C. F. 1 year ago

This article was written by the most immature, nasty, entitled bitch. And you people wonder why you lose friends after popping out a baby. Maybe shit like this us why!

Snowy 1 year ago

Holy entitlement, Batman.

Tom Leykis 1 year ago

How can I politely say “fuck you” and impart to you how little I care about your shit/piss factory of crotch fruit?

Dena 1 year ago

Wow, you all certainly have a lot of rules for your friends and family, and the way in which its “appropriate” for them to show love and caring towards your new family! And everyone should buy your baby a shower gift, a birthing gift, AND gifts for the older siblings? Plus food (don’t forget, enough for leftovers!) from a fancy restaurant when they come to say hello? Wow, I didn’t realize that’s what friendship and support was all about. Best of luck to you!

Mary 1 year ago

Does anyone think this is a little over the top? Come over, you’re welcome to whatever food we have, but it the house is a wreck and i fall asleep while talking, no hard feelings. And I would die of shame before i asked a friend – maybe even my mom – to clean my house.

No Kids 1 year ago

Once again I’m reminded how less important my life is because I wasn’t blessed with children. If you feel this way, then I’ll just stay home, Facebook you, and say how cute your child is and leave it at that. Clearly your life is now far too important and busy to need a visit from a childless person.

I can only guess that nobody else in the world is doing anything as important or as time-consuming as you. Otherwise, I can imagine how someone could be so demanding in needing specialized food, gifts, or for me to do housework. All of which I would gladly do for a friend anyway. However, after reading this, I think I’ll just stay home instead. Enjoy mommy-hood and go gripe about how all your childless friends “just cannot possibly understand” to all the other bobble-headed sycophantic self-involved mommies.

But to those moms who are NOT like this – I thank you. I love you, and your kids… and I’ll be over in a heartbeat with a casserole. I’ll take care of the baby while you go soak in the tub, even though you didn’t ask me to. And why? Because that’s what real friends do.

Sara 1 year ago

in my country it is not for anyone besides the parents to enter the maternity wards in the hospital. If u have guests, u will have to use the common cafe-area usually close by. I felt it was wonderful, no unexpected visitors at hospital!:)

Jen 1 year ago

I have one friend that totally fits the bill for being the perfect friend for a new mom. When I gave birth to my first child and was having difficulties with latching, she emailed my husband all the materials she could find that would help me. Then she and her husband asked to visit and, to our surprise, when they arrived they had grocery bags with them and cooked Thai food for our dinner. They helped us with cleaning up too before they left. Needless to say, we chose her to be godmother to our daughter :)

Callie Ge 1 year ago

A new friend from down the road was the only visitor I had the day i got out of hospital ,but what a joy she was, she came in, saw the look on my face and got to work, she folded enough nappies to last me all night, made me a cup of coffee and a sandwich, did the dishes, vacuumed the lounge room, fed the dogs, gave me a hug and a kiss then left,

Emily 1 year ago

A couple of days after my daughter was born, my sister came by to sit with me for an hour or so while my husband ran some errands – I was too nervous to be alone with the baby and wanted company. I don’t remember much about that day except that I hadn’t eaten all day and was exhausted. My sister left her own four-month-old at home, told me to sit down as soon as she got to my house, put two slices of pizza in front of me and ordered me to eat, and cleaned my kitchen while I ate. When my husband got home, she taught both of us how to give our baby a sponge bath before going home to her own baby. Best sister ever.

Our children are both two now, and she just hosted a little sleepover for them so that my husband and I could have a night out together before our second baby is born in a few weeks. She also has a seven-month-old, but happily volunteered to wrangle an extra kid for a night. I hope I’m half as good a sister to her as she is to me.

Emily 1 year ago

All of the advice here is good, but I would add: If you do nothing else, just call before visiting a new mom to make sure it’s a good time to come. Most of our friends and family did this, and we were happy to see them, both in the hospital and at home. But I will never, never forget the people who showed up unannounced, ALWAYS while I was trying to nurse the baby, and just sat there while I either struggled to get her to latch under a nursing cover (because I didn’t know these people well enough to feel comfortable nursing without it), or ignored me while I said, “I’m so sorry she’s screaming, I really think she needs to eat.” My husband even tried to stop one of his cousins at the door to our hospital room – I could hear him outside saying, “Emily’s trying to feed the baby right now” – and she plowed right through him, insisting that I needed her moral support while I tried to breastfeed for maybe the second time ever. I really, really did not – what I needed was silence and an empty room.

My second baby is due in a few weeks and I’m feeling a little anxious about this happening again. Honestly, folks, just a quick phone call or text to see if now is a good time is all it takes. If you bring food or offer to clean, even better.

David 1 year ago

Same thing when you get a new car! Don’t ask me to drive over so you can see my new car, drive over to my house. Also, don’t ask if you can go for a ride in it. I bought a sports car, not a taxi. And if you’re coming over, bring some high-octane gas, enough for my sports car and my wife’s Toyota. And while you’re looking at it, why not grab a sponge and help me wash it. It doesn’t keep that showroom shine by itself you know. Don’t forget to stop by the auto parts store on the way in case I need anything (no one told me windshield washer fluid doesn’t refill itself!).

Susan Binghamton 1 year ago

I am a 50-year-old mother of four…All grown or in college. What I see with this generation is unappreciation, self-centeredness, and other wise totally ME ME ME. For goodness sake. Count your freaking blessings that someone cared enough to stop by!! Do you think they have nothing else to do except worship you and your baby?? I see so many “entitled ” mothers pushing their huge strollers around acting as if they are the only ones that ever gave birth…to the most beautiful, smartest baby of course. Yo! Grow up.

Natalie 1 year ago

I would add this: Thank you very much for the gift, truly, I deeply appreciate that you thought of me and my baby and went to the store to pick something out and used your hard-earned money to buy it. But FOR THE LOVE OF GOD if you must go off the registry, please include a receipt! I only need so many sets of 6 month pajamas, so I might have to return your gift. I don’t care that you got it off the clearance rack for 75% off. The outfit you bought for $10 is now only worth $3 without a receipt so you just donated $7 to the store and I can’t buy anything I can actually use. Receipts, people, receipts.

Kari 1 year ago

I have 2 friends, amazing friends, who didn’t come over until we asked them to! And when they did come, they helped me put groceries away (they know our house like it’s theirs), held the baby while I peed and watched tv. I couldn’t sleep, Ive got a 2 year old, but they offered! Their husbands also took my husband out for drinks. He needed it, he was just as stressed as I was. When one of us isn’t stressed out, it helps a lot. God bless these amazing peoole;

gkjgk 1 year ago

wow. i dont think the author has any more friends.

Sanuri 1 year ago

Wow. Thank God I come from a culture that welcomes guests, empty handed or not, at all times. And thank God those guests come from the same culture that doesn’t require them to be entertained. In some cultures, what is good enough for one is more than enough for two, and what is enough for two is enough for four.

    Susan Binghamton 1 year ago

    AMEN!!! Thank God!

    (sorry this post made me so VERY sad for this blogger) I am going a little crazy with my comments. I’ll stop now lol

dee 1 year ago

That’s a very honest insight as a mum and galfren! My bff who is also my bubba’s godma, tagged me in this link not because she wanted to warn me, but because she felt bad that she didn’t get to do what she was “supposed to”. She had to leave the country for good and it was just too sad enough, but we still love her to bits! Drea, if u happen to see this, we connect on a different level and we understand! Baby V will love you as much too! :)

Ashley 1 year ago

Here’s a big one for me. I don’t mind company as long as you call or text first. Some (most) days, if I’m not going out, I’m not putting on a bra or anything other than sweatpants. Please don’t just show up at my door and then tell me how rough I look. And please don’t bring food in containers you need back quickly. I barely have time to do my own dishes let alone yours! The best thing anyone brought us was a gift card for a good delivery service so we could get what we wanted, when we wanted it. They also brought plastic silverware and paper plates. Big help!!

Jennifer 1 year ago

No one came to see me. :(

    Susan Binghamton 1 year ago

    Exactly my point!! All these comments are shallow and self-centered. I am BLESSED when friends “interrupt” my day. btw–raised four kids..

Chris 1 year ago

What a bunch of condescending, angry, arrogant mothers. The article was bad enough, but the comments are even worse. What makes you the expert on how to treat people just because you’ve had a baby? Lighten up, people.

Sarah 1 year ago

Bring a meal
Clean my house
Bring a gift
Go away

I’m sorry of someone you have had to deal with serious baby-grabbers, but this article is out of freaking control!

We have to sit through your 500 ultrasound pictures on Facebook, get you a gift for your over-the-top “gender reveal party”, plan your baby shower, but another gift for your baby shower, attend your baby shower, hear you complain for 9 months about how awful being pregnant is, pop and ahh over pictures of your wrinkly bundle of “joy” (though this article makes motherhood like like a horrible nightmare). Then when the kid is here, either become your slave or ignore you?

I think it would be easier if the new mom had a backbone and told people “no” or “Hey we just need some space” or “once we are settled”. Maybe ask a close friend to set up a meal-train and be the “bad guy”
That let’s everyone know that you will not be taking visitors for a while. Enlist close friends to help. If they aren’t allowed to hold your baby, don’t invite them to your baby shower! It makes you look super gift-hungry!

People have been becoming mothers forever. It’s no easy job, sure, but these kinds of lists are so sanctimonious. Seriously though, if someone gives you a gift or brings you a meal, say “thank-you” and throw it away if you don’t like it. Your kid, your responsibility, your life, your choice. Having a baby doesn’t make it okay to act like a spoiled brat. Expecting gifts is freaking rude.

I always bring new moms meals, and never ask to hold their babies, but if any of my new-mom friends gave me a BS list like this they would get nothing. I don’t have to do anything just like you for have to let people hold your babies.

Woman the hell up and tell people no– don’t sell your freaking kid to the highest bidder, or in this case the person that brings you the most expensive sandwich from Panera…

Adriana 1 year ago

This is the rudest most highmaintnece thing I’ve ever read! I’ve had 3 babies & have never thought anyone of these things & was grateful to anyone who spent their time/money on me or my baby. Wow. Unbelievable.

Meg 1 year ago

I hope that article is a joke, because if not it is obviously not well received by many, including me. I understand having restrictions when it comes to the safety of the child, however there should not be restrictions on the generosity of others. It could be considered a significant sacrifice for some to offer such generosity. The author must be either naïve or misunderstood. You might benefit from instruction on proper social etiquette in regard to accepting gifts.

Shoogarbooger 1 year ago

I’d like to add that after reading a bunch of the comments a visitor could really do well by thinking about the individual they want to visit. is the mom an introvert? Does she never like to go out, chat on the phone, etc.? If so, then she might not appreciate visitors for at least a month after the baby is born. If she’s social, loves to chat on the phone, goes out with friends, then maybe she would like visitors. We’re all different. I’m of the former lot and I have lots of anxiety issues and get extremely overwhelmed when I’m around people who aren’t my husband, brothers, or mom. It has nothing to do with being selfish or ungrateful (to be fair, no one but Mom offered to help when they visited me, so there was nothing to be grateful for…except Mom). Don’t bash someone because their personality isn’t want you want it to be.

    Nicole 11 months ago

    This. So much this. I think many of the people commenting negatively are extroverts and/or social people. I’m not a parent, but I am an introvert so I totally get why a new mom would want to be alone/want people who insist on being around her to at least help decrease her energy output in some other way. This article was obviously presented in a funny and sarcastic manner, and I’m sure she would never actually hand this list to any of her friends or actually say these things to them. It’s just general “keep in mind” advice (that can be picked around the sarcasm and snark) that is particularly helpful for non-parents (such as myself).

Shoogarbooger 1 year ago

I love this so much. I do get freaked out at the idea of someone else cleaning my house, though. And, I don’t find it helpful to hold my baby. I don’t like people coming to my home (or the hospital) and thinking they should be able to sit around for hours holding my newly born child that I’ve been waiting for 9 long, awful months to see and hold. Otherwise, yes, stay away unless you’re going to not be a PITA. Bring food, strongly encourage my husband to help me, get me something to drink and/or snack on, and just be another adult to chat with. A lady I’ve known the majority of my life came over bearing food. Lots of food. It was all in disposable containers with heating instructions. It was hands down the greatest, most thoughtful thing anyone did when my first was born. 6 years later I still thank her and tell her that she’s one of the best people I know.

I’ve had people who didn’t even like me come to the hospital and insist on holding my child, keeping him from others who genuinely cared to see me and the baby. My MIL and her SIL literally played tug-of-war with my baby. People trying to take the baby from me and getting mad at me for not handing him over while I was breastfeeding him. Some people can be so obnoxious. I don’t want to have to entertain you or clean up for you. Don’t treat my child like a 6-paper joint. I’m tired and I want to bond with my new baby and family and I don’t want my baby to get sick or broken.

Decan 1 year ago

This whole article is very pretentious! Seems like the best thing to do is just drop your friends that start having babies!

Maggie 1 year ago

This article is stupid. You make it seem like a mom does not want to have her friend over for her own benefit. I’d be surprised if you had any friends left after this judgmental, unappreciative, “mommies only club” post.

    Nicole 11 months ago

    After having a baby, she probably doesn’t want her friends around just for the “benefit”. Being around another person takes a *ton* of energy, and I’m sure when you’re already sleep deprived and exhausted from both labor and the work of taking care of a baby you don’t have any more energy to expend on anything else. I’m not a parent, but I know that even after just working a hard day and feeling physically or emotionally drained the last thing I want is having someone else around – unless they are wiling to just sit quietly with me and don’t expect me to feed them, entertain them, or keep up a quality conversation. It’s not that I necessarily dislike that person, I just don’t want to be around anyone at all. The only way for some people to re-energize is by being alone, so if people are constantly around a new mother when all her other energy is already being sapped, she’s going to lose it pretty quickly.

Em 1 year ago

I have to say, as someone who has never been a mother to a new baby. It’s always helpful for the mom friend to be honest with what she needs. Every mother is different and some don’t want people over, some do. I found it never safe to just assume what a new mom needs. If you want the help, please be honest with your close friends and let them know!! For those that have never been there but care enough about you new mothers to take time and money, please do communicate. It’s silly to think people that haven’t been in your shoes just know.

    Shoogarbooger 1 year ago

    I have made it known and many of my friends and family still either ignore it or tell me to get over it. It’s selfish for others to not take the baby’s parents and siblings into account. I personally don’t want help. I want privacy and quiet.


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