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How to hold your mates’ babies without looking like a complete idiot

Techly's How To Adult Series

It’s an annual ritual as old as time itself.

Every Christmas your relatives come over with their new “little bundles of joy” (*vomits*), your nosy aunty asks if “you’ll be next”, you explain to them that you’re hopelessly, eternally alone, and then the recent baby-haver catches your eye and asks, “do you wanna hold her?”

The answer, of course, is no.

No, I don’t want to hold that tiny human because:

A) I’ve never had to hold someone, because most of the people I socialise with are capable of holding up their own bodyweight.


B) I will definitely drop it and kill it and future Christmas’s will be ~very uncomfortable~

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But you can’t say any of this, obviously, because you don’t want to seem like a sociopath.

So you fake a smile, say “oh sure”, and proceed to nurse it in the most awkward way possible.

They cry because apparently they don’t like being held by the head and dangled precariously above hardwood floors, and then the parent swiftly grabs him/her back from you and makes a mental note to never let you near their child again.

To avoid this avoidable catastrophe, we’ve put together a handy guide to make you less-bad at holding babies.

Method 1: The Cradle

Hey everyone! Come look at this guy, he’s holding the crap out of this baby! Way to go, guy! (Credit: Autumn Burke Photography)

This is your basic, no-frills, entry-level hold. Probs start with this.

Step 1: Slide one hand under their head, the other under their butt

Step 2: Cradle the baby in close to your body

Step 3: Ease the head-holding hand down the back so their head and neck are supported by the inside of your elbow.

BOOM. Done. Easy.

Method 2: The Snuggle Hold aka ‘Mum/Dad Of The Year’ Hold

This baby is bloody loving life because he isn’t being held by some dickhead who doesn’t know what he’s doing. (Credit: NYU Langone Health)

This one is guaranteed to make you look like a baby-holding-pro and not the weird-cousin-who-needs-to-sort-their-life-out-and-who-everyone-is-secretly-concerned-about.

Step 1: Scoop up the baby’s butt with your dominant hand and support its head with your other hand

Step 2: Make sure their head is turned to one side so they can…you know…breathe

Step 3: Bring them up close to your chest so their head is rested on your shoulder

And there you have it, two easy ways to hold a damn baby without looking like a spud.

You’re welcome.

About the author

Riordan is Techly’s News and Social Editor. He promises to tweet more at @riordanl

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