Childrearing

It’s Okay To Be Bored By Your Baby, Because Babies Are Totally Boring

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boring-babyBabies are boring. There, I said it. I put it out there so you don’t have to. Now go on and watch some guilt-free marathons of American Horror Story, new parents.

There is a lot of advice out there about bonding with your new baby. This advice does nothing but convince moms there’s some magical bonding ritual they should be partaking in, and if they don’t they may never really bond. Bullshit.

Here’s some of this advice I’m talking about, from everyone’s favorite attachment parenting guru, Dr. Sears:

The first few weeks of your baby’s life help set the stage for your relationship. I recommend that parents spend as much time in skin-to-skin and eye-to-eye contact as possible — what I call birth bonding — after all, cuddling with your brand-new baby is one of the richest rewards of parenthood.

Skin-to-skin and eye-to-eye contact? Now we have to stare at our boring babies all day in order to bond? No.

This advice is pretty benign, and may actually be pleasurable for people who have fallen into the new-baby-love-haze. But the whole idea of “bonding” with your new baby can be a very stressful one. All of the “love at first sight” anecdotes can actually be pretty damaging for those of us who weren’t hit with the thunderbolt of maternal love everyone says strikes you as soon as you give birth. I think the best thing you can do to bond with your baby, is just be a happier mom in general. So I’m telling you that you have every right to be bored by your new baby and have no interest in staring into her eyes all day.

All of those months of anticipation leading up to the birth of your first child may culminate in a feeling of utter disappointment when the baby arrives and you are at a loss for what you are supposed to be doing with yourself during those times when you aren’t feeding her or changing her diaper. There really isn’t much more to do for your newborn. So get your cuddle on as much as possible, but don’t be hard on yourself if you find yourself wanting to watch marathon sessions of bad TV or something equally as indulgent.

Babies are boring. It’s time we all admitted it. If you find yourself at a loss for what to do to entertain your newborn, might I suggest holding her while you eat pizza and catch up on Skype with your friends? Or sticking her in a bouncer so you can give yourself a pedicure? Babies are immobile — it’s okay to not be totally entertained/entertaining them at all times. Set her down and do something for yourself.

(photo: Oksana Kuzmina/ Shutterstock)