Shortly after learning that I was pregnant with twins (at 17 weeks) one of my first disappointments was the thought that I would not be able to wear them. Babywearing was such a huge part of getting out the house and shopping when Zadey was a baby that I wasn’t sure how I would survive twins without this wonderful thing.
It wasn’t long before I begun doing research about babywearing twins. And from there the research grew and grew. It didn’t take long for babywearing to become a passionate topic or me as I learned more and more about wearing singltons and twins.
A wealth of information has been shown to me by friends, family members, and believe it or not, Facebook groups. There is so much research I have discovered about why you should wear your baby, how to wear your baby, and information about wraps and carriers galore.
The information can become exciting and a little overwhelming.
Recently I partnered with Boba as a Boba Ambassador and in the short amount of time with them, I have learned even more about safe babywearing and have reinforced things I already knew.
I Had Unsafe Babywearing Techniques
I know, it sounds crazy. But I didn’t know, when I bought it, that I had purchased a carrier that was not only not good for me but not good for my boys, either.
It was February and I was headed to the zoo with my three kids, my sister, and my two nieces. And just as we were getting ready to leave I discovered that my HUGE tandem stroller did not fit in my car or my sister’s car. How was I going to walk around the zoo all day carrying two babies?Wearing them.
And wear them I did, for more than four hours I had a baby in a carrier on my back and a baby wrapped on the front. With help my sister, I continually changed their positions, wrapped and re-wrapped the baby in the front.
The baby in the back kept being moved to face out and then in. From time to time, we’d switch which baby was in the front and which baby was in the back.
As we were preparing to leave the zoo, we got lost on our way out. I remember walking up a hill thinking my feet hurt so bad. My back was aching. I didn’t want to take another step and began to feel desperate. You know, that panic feeling that sets in where something has to change and I mean RIGHT NOW.
What I didn’t know then, but know now, is that I probably wouldn’t have had my mini-panic attack if I had been wearing my babies correctly and safely. And most certainly would not have spent the next few days with an aching back, leaving me feel like the days of tandem babywearing were over.
To be honest, I don’t know how I survived as long as I did at the zoo. Even more so, I can’t understand why I didn’t have my sister wear one of the boys, at least for a little while, to help take some of the pressure (literally) off.
What I understand now is that babywearing does not have to hurt. It should be comfortable and safe for both you and baby.
What Is Safe Babywearing?
When wearing you baby, with a wrap or a carrier, there are two things that can make the entire thing significantly more comfortable for you and safe for baby.
1. Use a carrier that supports baby knee to knee.
Your baby’s butt should sit lower than his knees. And your wrap or carrier should go from knee to knee to keep his legs up and his entire seat comfortable. Wearing your baby this way also helps prevent hip dysplasia.
2. Always face your baby inward.
Think about this one for a moment. The most natural and normal way we carry our babies is inward. Allowing them to wrap around our bodies. If you’re breastfeeding, this again, is helpful. When a baby is facing out, the baby and parent cannot work together to cradle and get a comfortable fit.
When I first heard this, I disagreed and continued to use a baby carrier I shouldn’t have. Then, as Joanne was wearing Oliver one day facing out on her back, I looked at him and had an aha! moment. Here’s Oliver and I, and though I’m wearing him on the front, this time… do you think he’s comfortable?
Look at where the carrier hits between his legs. He is not supported in his seat, at all. And though may not be able to see it well, my back is arched to support his awkward weight on my front.
I wore Oliver, like this, for about 10 minutes to take pictures, just for this post. I wore Henry, in the Boba carrier for the same amount of time for the same purposes
I hurt, after taking Oliver off, while I didn’t with my heavier Henry in my Boba Carrier.
This is Henry and I, in our Boba 4G.
Without facts, information, or research… do you see how wearing your baby using this type of carrier could be uncomfortable, if nothing else, for both you and your baby? Just look at the difference and to me, the answer becomes common sense.
In our unsupported carriers, it becomes difficult to wear the boys for a long period of time. They become heavy fast, and our bodies begin to ache.
That’s not the case when using our Boba 4G carrier though. Quite the opposite and even Henry, who weighs 35 lbs, I can wear for much longer than I could actually hold him because of the support we receive and the even distribution of his weight.
Need more information? Boba has a great article titled Nine Reasons Not to Carry Your Baby Out, and they’ve provided this awesome infographic:
I have truly come to love babywearing, I love the bond it fosters between my kids and me. I love that they actually want to be worn and get excited to see a carrier going on. And, I love that life can continue on while I’m holding my boys so that I can keep moving, working, and getting things done.
Have you had unsafe babywearing techniques?