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Effective Tips to Deal With When Baby Only Wants Mom

Having a new baby is an exciting and nerve-wracking time for parents and everyone involved. Babies can be demanding, hard to read, and cranky at times, making it more stressful for parents. It can be significantly harder on the dads when babies only prefer their moms. It is quite normal for them to do so as the mother is their biological source of nourishment. While it’s a common occurrence in breastfed babies, bottle-fed babies would also prefer their mothers most of the time. So why does this happen, and how to deal with it? Continue reading to find out.

Video : Effective Tips to Deal With When Baby Only Wants Mom

Why Do Babies Only Want Mom?

Regardless of how good either of the parents is in parenting, babies are biologically inclined to be more attached to the mothers. The main reason is that nourishment-only mothers can feed the babies, and it is critical for the babies to stick around their mothers when they feel like feeding. Babies are also more familiar with their mothers as they are used to hearing their voices from the stage of being a fetus. Babies are also quite good at recognizing their mothers from other women through smell. It is thought that a preference for mothers in infancy is essential as a matter of survival. 

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At What Age Do Babies Want Their Moms Only?

It is commonly seen that breastfed baby only wants a mom during the early months of infancy. This is when babies need all the nourishment they can get and hence spend most if not all the time with their moms. Even bottle-fed babies have a higher preference for mom over dads. 

Valuable Tips to Deal With the Situation When Baby Only Wants Mom

It can be difficult for many dads to not get their baby-time, especially during early infancy. Here are some valuable tips for dealing with such a situation: 

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1. Understand That It Is Completely Normal

Most parents experience this phase during infancy. Because of the familiarity, the baby will need time to let go of their clinginess to their mother. As they grow, they begin to explore the world around them and get accustomed to the scent of the father and the rest of the family members. The baby’s reluctance has nothing to do with ‘not taking a liking towards the father’; it is only a survival instinct to stick to the mother, and it is entirely normal. Some babies are also more comfortable being in the arms of their fathers at an early age. 

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2. Be Patient

The baby is not going to stay clingy to the mother forever. As their world starts to expand, the first person they will be interested in is the only other person they are most familiar with- dad. Until that happens, it is essential that both the parents stay patient and take it at a slow pace. The dads will have to resist the urge to scoop the baby out of the mom’s arms and take it one step at a time. They can start holding the baby when they are fast asleep to get them used to the ‘feel’ of dad over the first few months. 

3. Start the Transition

It’s normal if the baby only wants a mom for three months as they still spend most of their time sleeping and feeding; this is when they need their moms the most. As they grow older and start interacting with other people, it’s time to get them accustomed to being held by dad. This also means that the mother should resist running to the baby every time they are uncomfortable being held by the dad. Allow them to cry, and self soothe or give the dad a chance to soothe the baby and bond. 

4. Get the Timing Right

Babies are naturally happy during certain times of the day- for some babies, it maybe it the morning after a good night’s sleep and some right after a meal. Dads need to take advantage of these good times to pick up their babies and bond with them. Cranky hours such as evenings or late nights when tired and exhausted should be avoided as they are more likely to get upset. Have a ‘daddy hour’ during weekends where the dad gets to hold and play or take the baby to the park accompanied by the mom. 

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5. Involve Dads Into Activities the Baby Likes

As babies get older, they would love to go outside to see all the curious things around them. Even the fussiest babies will have an activity that calms them down or distracts them from crying. Allow the dad to take the baby for a stroll and continue even if they are annoyed the first time. Another routine activity, such as feeding, can also become a good time for the dad to bond. Express some breastmilk into a bottle to allow him to bottle-feed the baby. This can be an important message that feeding is not exclusive to the mom to the baby. 

6. Hold Baby With Mom’s Shirt

Babies are comforted by the scent of their mothers, along with the sound of their voice and their touch. During one of the bonding exercises, let the dad hold the baby swaddled in one of the mom’s shirts. Since clothes absorb the scent of our bodies and the sweat, mom’s scent can keep the baby calm as dad gets his bonding time. 

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7. Make the Baby Laugh

Bonding requires spending a lot of time together and generating positive emotions. Therefore the more the dad is around when the baby is happy, the better they can bond. One of the best ways to generate positive emotions is to make the baby laugh at every opportunity. Luckily it is easy to make babies laugh as they respond positively to a number of visual stimuli such as toys and games such as peek-a-boo. 

8. Utilize Sleep Time

It’s understandable that the baby only wants to sleep with the mom; however, dads can sneak in once the baby is in a deep sleep and have them by their side. Babies will eventually get used to the dad’s scent and do not fuss when held at other times. Dads can also participate in the sleep time routine to build familiarity with the baby. The dad must be present at these times, along with the mom.

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9. Stay Persistent

Parents often get discouraged when the baby cries too much or shrieks every time the dad holds them. The secret to winning the infant over his persistence. Dads will have to find their opportunity to bond, and moms will have to give up the baby and fight the instinct to run to them every time they cry. Babies are naturally inclined to stay with mom the longest, and they need to learn how to bond with others. By staying patient and persistent, dads can build trust with the baby. 

10. Have Mom Run Errands With Dad at the Helm

As the baby gets accustomed to dad, practice alone time by having mom away for some time. This exercise is great for the dads, but moms also get alone away from home. Start by staying away from the baby in the next room and slowly expand the radius every day. The mission is accomplished once the baby can spend a few hours with dad! 

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It is usual for the baby to want to spend time with their mom. Dads will have to be patient and work their way into the baby’s comfort zone to build a bond. By being patient and persistent in their efforts over the months’ dads can successfully bond with the baby.

Also Read:

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Parent and Baby Bonding
Common Baby Related Concerns of a New Mom
Differences in The Way an Infant Feels About His Mom and Dad

This post was last modified on March 10, 2022 6:56 pm

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