Children. Some people love them unconditionally. Some people although not a fan of other people's kids will love their own. But then there are the rest of us who have no idea what to do with them or are scared of them. Here are five tips.
1. Babies are scary because you don't understand the noises they make.
Rumor has it, I wouldn't know, mothers are able understand a baby's different crys. If holding a red-faced screaming baby that does not belong to you is one of your top five fears in life, you are in good company. Two experts, aka grandmothers, said the key to finding what bothers a baby is just check everything. It's generally one of four things: need a new diaper, needs food, needs to burp or needs sleep. If it's not one of those, then be concerned. Also, fun fact, parents don't wake up one delivery morning and know everything about babies. So, you don't need to feel bad for the lack of maternal or paternal instinct that does not overwhelm the moment a baby is thrust into your nervous hands.
2. What if it falls?
Another expert, a mom, told me babies and toddlers are more durable than they look. So if they fall, if you smile and laugh like it is normal, children won't immediately burst into tears. Basically if you freak out, the child freaks out. I've done the journalistic duty of confirming with multiple sources (mothers) that this is in fact best use practice and you will not look like a heartless manic if you laugh when a toddler lands firmly their diaper-clad derrière. And even if you drop the child, I witnessed my friend dropped his two-year-old nephew on his head from a seven-foot-drop. The kid is still alive and well. But that is definitely not best use practice. Try to avoid dropping people's kids on their heads, especially if you can't avoid them for a minimum of two years.
3. Stop referring to people's kids as "it."
Apparently, that is "rude."
4. Temper tantrums.
Occasionally, children throw temper tantrums. There are three options. Run from the fire. Two, stand and stare. But that's is rude, too. Or wait until the child calms himself. Either you can soothingly get him there your self or just wait. Children are small—eventually the will run out of tears, energy and lung capacity. Don't laugh. Kids just get madder then the parents don't appreciate it.
5. Entertaining them.
A different grandmother reminded me that I was once a child, too. She encouraged me to think about how I wanted to be treated. Another mother told me kids like adults who play with them. So forts?
Best part of other people's kids is you can return them promptly with no further obligations.