What were we thinking! promote confidence and reduce distress in parents with a first baby

Why does my baby cry?

By Poppy

Why does my baby cry?

All babies cry, right? I certainly understood they did, but it was always someone else’s kid and it didn’t really worry me. I didn’t have to deal with the fussing, then crying, then outright screaming as someone else’s child became increasingly unsettled.

When it’s your own it’s a whole new ball game. What could possibly be wrong? Why are you even crying? You have been fed, I’ve changed that nappy three times in the last hour, I’ve burped you and now I just want you to sleep. The more I wished for this, the more my darling Penelope would play up.

In the first few weeks after Penelope’s arrival, any crying had me jumping like a jack in the box- to be honest I really didn’t like it. Doesn’t every mum want their child to be happy, all the time? I did, and her crying had me running after her every need.

Family would just say leave her, let her cry. The child maternal health nurses would say don’t leave her for long periods. What’s a long period? 20 seconds sometimes felt like 2 hours.

To say the least I had to get used to knowing that Penelope’s crying was OK and just part of her being a little person, growing up and working out this world.

Expert response from What Were We Thinking! expert, Ann O'Doherty

Infant crying is an uncomfortable experience for parents but it shows that you have a protective attachment to your baby by wanting to comfort them. The What Were We Thinking website has information on understanding babies' crying.

Posted in:  Baby 0-4 weeks  Crying settling sleeping  Every baby is different  Mums