Guest Blog: Baby Registry Inventors are Evil Geniuses
When she’s not managing canine-toddler relations between their son and rescue mutt, Sarah Nau spends her time thinking about other people’s kids as a manager at the American Academy of Pediatrics. Despite her involvement with the AAP (and her husband’s insistence to stay off the internet), she still finds herself regularly googling things like, “baby rash + too many raspberries” and writing about such experiences on her blog, Let’s Not Eat That.
The folks who created baby registries are evil geniuses. Seriously. I imagine the initial conversation went something like this, over a steak lunch, and maybe a few martinis:
“So, you know wedding registries?”
“What if we do the same thing, but instead of women and men selecting things like blenders and towels, we target hormonal, emotional, pregnant women and provide them with a zillion choices of seemingly benign products, like pacifiers, so that they feel completely overwhelmed and opt to just register for every variation?”
“Let’s do it.”
Well played, sirs, well played. (I’m assuming this ruse was concocted by a male— feel free to correct me if I’m wrong.) Maybe it was just me, but I confess that I had a total breakdown in front of that never-ending pacifier wall in Babies ‘R Us. Is silicone safer than latex? They all should be BPA-free, though, right? Should I get ones that mimic a nipple, or go for the orthodontic ones? Do brand names matter? What about pacifier straps? Cases? Wipes? Should I even consider a pacifier if I’m planning to breastfeed? What if the baby rejects me because of a pacifier? What if the baby never sleeps because I chose the wrong pacifier?! Aaaaand cue breakdown.
The kindly teen-aged salesgirl who stood next to me wide-eyed, quietly and intermittently saying things like, “These are popular” and “Do you need a tissue?” finally offered me a piece of advice that got through—“I’m sure whatever you’ll choose will be fine.”
I backed up off the ledge of that pacifier cliff, selected just two different options, and went on my way, vowing two things: first, to try to keep it in better check next time, and second, to talk with a few of my new mom friends about their recommendations and experiences.
Emails were exchanged, phone calls were made, and coffee dates were had with the express purpose of not reinventing the wheel when it came to baby product purchases. Almost immediately I felt better prepared to tackle more important baby purchases, like the car seat, and as a result of those chats, I would estimate that nearly everything we registered for or purchased were products that were highly recommended by my friends. Once our son was born and we started getting into our own groove with what did and didn’t work for us, I began keeping my own recommendation “cheat sheet,” and would send it out to new or expectant parents who were curious about our experiences.
is the new genius on the block—collecting and distributing all of your friends’ recommendations—so you don’t have to be like me, sniveling at your local Babies ‘R Us while Justin Beiber sings, “Baby, baby, baby, oh!!!” disturbingly in the background.
And as to my pacifier dilemma, our little guy ended up liking the ones he was “gifted” from the hospital, but quickly discovered that he much preferred his thumb. Seventy-five percent of the pacifiers I fretted over, bought, and sterilized ended up in a Ziploc baggie, stored away in a bin in our basement, potentially to be used by any future sibling. And should we decide to grow our family, I’m excited to check out WeeSpring and catch up on all the latest “Love” reviews.