Watch the video explaining the signs below.
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One mother has just had it with strangers touching newborns. On the one hand, you don’t want someone you don’t know touching your baby because who knows what germs they may bring? But on the other hand, these strangers are often well-meaning so it’s an awkward situation and it may be hard to tell them off without sounding offensive.
Forty-year-old Helen Baker, from Southampton, came up with a classy solution: she created with her own signage brand named “don’t touch the baby” which is simple and direct to the point without being overbearing.
Helen had to contend with infertility for six years and IVF worked on her 9th try in 2011. Her first-born was Hugo, now eight, and she used the same batch of eggs for her two miracle twins Coco and Monty, who are both now 10 months.
She suffered from post-natal depression but that, along with her initial experience with Hugo, helped her come up with the idea for the signage brand to help other mothers who are worried about strangers touching their newborns.
Helen said: “When I was pregnant with the twins last summer in 2018, I was thinking back to when Hugo was a new-born and I hated it when people would grab his cheeks.
“It isn’t acceptable to go up to an adult and randomly touch them so why should it be any different with babies?
“I have been through so much to get my children here; my mental health went from bad to worse during my infertility struggle.
“I had two miscarriages, both Fallopian tubes removed, ectopic pregnancy and ten cycles of IVF and only two were successful.
“My husband, Oliver, 38 and I sold our house, car and used our wedding funds to pay for the treatment.
“It was a dream come true when I was finally pregnant with Hugo and now I have the twins our dream family is complete.
“I used to get anxiety when people would touch Hugo and invade my personal space and I wasn’t willing to go through this again with the twins.
“I very vividly remember returning home from a shopping trip in floods of tears after a stranger had lent into his pram and touched his face.
“I felt bad as I know she had meant no harm, nevertheless the situation left me feeling out of control and slightly violated.
“While I was pregnant with the twins, I vowed I would design a polite sign made to hang on their pram.
“I created these child-friendly tags for the moms out there who were suffering like me and for the premature or sick babies who can’t be exposed to germs.”
“Don’t touch the baby” launched in February 2019 and the products come in blue, pink, and gray.
She adds: “The polite signs are to put parents at ease, it is within every parent’s right to say ‘don’t touch the baby’ – but sometimes it’s awkward to do so and at least this way, the signs do the talking.
“I am now never put in an awful situation where someone who may not have washed their hands is touching my new precious babies.
“I have received mixed reviews; some moms have thanked me as they now have the confidence to go out with their babies without the fear of having an awkward conversation with a stranger.
“Others have said ‘it is over the top’ as everybody needs germs but I have explained that not some babies, especially premature could do without.
“I feel empowered with the tags on the pram and I want other moms to feel the same too.”
You can check out www.donttouchthebaby.co.uk if you’re interested in getting some or gifting them.