Does how you carry your baby affect his confidence?

Posted Tuesday 29th January 2013   By Ericka Waller

So apparently, the big question right now is “Does how you carry your baby affect his confidence?“ According to Pulitzer Prize-winning author Jared Diamond, carrying a baby upright and facing outwards rather than in a pram can lead to them being “emotionally secure”, “self-confident” and “curious”.

I hope not. I mostly carry my baby rugby-style under one arm, while I chase after my two-year-old in the playground, all the while screaming “STOP RUNNING!” at my eldest.

What will this do for her confidence?

When I was a baby, Maxi-Cosis were not in existence. It was not even compulsory to wear a seatbelt. Newborn, and my newborn-brothers before me, we were driven home from hospital sliding up and down the leather seat of my dad’s Cortina in a wicker moses basket.

Did this affect my confidence? It did take me ten goes to pass my driving test, but that’s mostly because I was crap at driving, not because I was scared of the leather seats.

I know my mother never wore me strapped to her chest in a sling. I can’t say it’s left me too emotionally insecure. In fact, I think I’d be more insecure after years of being pressed to her bosom for too long. She moved to France when I was 18, how would I have coped if she’d only just stopped wearing me?

As for being curious – the fact I keep having to pull toast out of the DVD player, and putting the giant snails back in their tank, suggests my baby is curious and keen to explore.

Has anyone done studies on baby-wearing inducing claustrophobia?

I think this poll is just another reason to make mums feel like failures. Not everyone wants to wear their baby all day. I was so relieved to give birth and get the 9lb bowling ball squashing my bladder out of me – the last thing I felt like doing was strapping it back on again and hiking about all over the place.

Does this make me a bad mother? If, when they are older, they are too shy to go on dates, will they say “It’s your fault mum. I did not spend enough time nestled between your breasts?”

If so I’d suggest they had more than a lack of confidence hindering them.

Will you be changing the way you carry your baby based on this research?

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