Some babies seem born content and able to entertain themselves. Others seem they constantly need to be held, walked, played with, and entertained every moment of the day or else they put up a fuss. Does your baby sound like the latter of the two? You just may have a high-maintenance baby.
I personally know the frustration of having a very demanding little one. My 5 month-old son loves to be held and walked around almost every waking minute and will put up a fuss shortly after being set down to play. At this age babies are very aware of their surroundings. They should be able to keep themselves entertained for part of the day as they are beginning to sharpen certain skills such as grabbing objects, chewing, and rolling over. Although my son is reaching these milestones, he is happiest being toted around everywhere I go. This can be very frustrating as it makes it difficult to accomplish simple tasks, housework, or even just getting a few minutes to relax during the day. Does this sound similar to your situation? I have found a few simple tips can help survive the high-maintenance baby. Some may require an investment, but it will make your job much easier and your attention-loving baby happier.
My first tip to those of you with high-maintenance babies, particular those which like to be held everywhere you go, is to invest in a Moby Wrap. I bought mine on a whim before having my son and it has been extremely useful. The Moby Wrap is a long sheet of material that can be wrapped around your torso to serve as a baby carrier. What I love about the moby is that it can be used many different ways to carry your baby in different positions. It is just as useful for carrying a newborn as it is a toddler, making it one of the most versatile carriers on the market. My Moby has been a lifesaver as it allows my baby to be wrapped closely to my body and free up both my hands. I am able to do all types of housework and keep him contently carried with me at all times. Yes, it is an investment, but if you have a “walk-me baby” you won’t regret the money spent. If you’d like to read a more in-depth review on the Moby Wrap, check out my Moby Wrap Review.
Let’s face it. You can’t carry around your baby 24/7. You’re going to need some other forms of entertainment. However, your high-maintenance baby may seen to get bored with different activities quickly. It is a good idea to have a few different options for play and entertainment available. For younger infants, a baby bouncer with built in toys or a baby gym are very appropriate. The Fisher-Price Rainforest bouncer worked great to hold and entertain my son during his newborn stage. Now that he is older, he is usually content playing in his Fisher-Price Rainforest baby gym for some time. When he gets tired of that, I will try putting him in his exersaucer, which is great for babies old enough to stand with assistance and support their heads. A great buy is the Baby Einstein Discovery activity center. It contains many bright and interesting activities of different colors, textures, and sounds which helps entertain babies for a longer period of time. A swing may also be a great investment, but not all babies are fond of them, so it may be wise to either purchase a used one at a garage sale or try a hand-me-down to see if you baby take to it. We opted to buy a cheaper, smaller swing to see if our son liked it. We went for the Fisher Price Take Along swing. In my situation, my son is usually content playing several minutes at each separate activity. When he gets bored with one, I move him to the next. It may be a lot of moving around, but the minutes I have free in between are valuable. By no means am I suggesting that fussy babies need all of these activities. I am just making suggestions of what has worked in my situation and that you may find it works for you.
So far most of the things I mentioned require one to make an investment. However, if you want to keep costs low or reduce clutter from toys in the house, you may be able to get by with a simpler solution. Instead of buying a baby gym, just trying lying your baby on a blanket with some small toys on the floor. Try placing them on their back, then side, then tummy. Get creative when working in different areas of the house. Set your baby in the middle of your bed when straightening the bedroom, or place them on a blanket in the clothes basket when working in the laundry room. Many times talking to them while you’re working as well as them being able to watch your movements will keep them entertained. Many babies labeled high-maintenance just want you to be in their sight. Instead of using objects that are already in your house, such as a bed or clothes basket, you may feel more comfortable trying something like the Bumbo chair. It is little molded seat that comfortably seats your baby in a sitting position even if they are unable to sit unassisted. It is very portable and is great for bringing room-to-room. One more low-cost option is to place your baby within view of the television. Yes, some recommend that small children do not watch television at all, but the combination of movement and colors for babies can be captivating for some time. And when you have a demanding baby those few minutes of being content are much needed.
It’s true, high-maintenance babies can be challenging. The key is to use the resources that are available to you to make it easiest to function, and keep your attention-loving baby happy at the same time. Despite what people say, a baby can’t be spoiled. Feel privileged to have a baby that loves to be by your side as much as possible and desires your attention.
Do you have a high-maintenance baby? How do you deal with it?
Some of the links in the post above may be “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers.