July 02, 2015

Q: My baby cries every time my husband holds him. My husband thinks he hates him and I keep reassuring him that he doesn't, but he is very hurt by it. Any suggestions?

A: I would encourage your husband to spend more time with the baby.  Be sure that there are parts in your everyday routine that are special for them, just daddy and the baby. It could be bath time, rocking before bed, or if your breastfeeding is well established now may be a good time for daddy to introduce the baby to a bottle for a feeding once a day. When it is daddy time, try to make yourself scarce or leave the house altogether so your baby will not want back into your arms as soon as he/she sees you. If the baby is 9-12 months it is a natural time for stranger anxiety and a preference for just a few caregivers so it may be harder to help dad become the desired care provider.  Stick with it through the tears for a few days and daddy will find that although he may not be the favorite he will at least be tolerated without tears.

Answered by Dr. Carrie M. Brown