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Etiquette when visiting new baby at home

YadaYadaYada

Ideal_Rock
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Feb 2, 2016
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Just looking to get thoughts on this scenario. Have a friend who had a baby last week, she has had visitors regularly so I wasn't going to visit right away. The other day she said I could come in the evening this week and she also wants me to come next week so our sons can play together, they are both two. I asked her when is a good time, she said really anytime, okay how about 6:30? That would be great was her response. Okay. I asked her what she could use for the baby and she said a Sun hat would be great, went out and found one! It was on sale too, I get excited about these things lol!

So, on to the visit. I get there and greet everyone, give her the gift which the two year old rips open, he is excited to see what his sister got, I was thinking I probably should have gotten him a book or something. Oops. She hands me the baby and I sit with her for a bit. Her husband is doing something in the adjacent kitchen but not obvious that it's dinner. They kind of bicker back and forth about the food processor and he leaves for the gym. Or she thinks he left but she's not sure, he could be upstairs. Okay.

It's about 45 minutes at this point and she turns to me and says "You need to leave now, I need to make dinner". She kind of laughs nervously and asks if that is rude and feels awkward about it. She asked me directly if it was rude and I said, well I don't have people over my house generally so I never have to worry about asking them to leave when I've had enough. Which is true, only a handful of people come over but I'm happy to meet people out or go to their house, maybe part of being introverted.

Then her son reminds her that I didn't see the baby's room which at this point I just want to go since I know she needs to do stuff but she insists we see the room so we all run upstairs and see the room, really cute and I tell her how nice it looks and then run back downstairs and out the door.

You know, I was surprised she didn't mention they normally eat dinner late or casually just say that visits will be short (totally understand that) I do live 20 minutes away so I probably would have just skipped this visit and waited until next week. Honestly I would have left at the hour mark but I was surprised when she just turns and told me to leave.

Did I overstay the welcome here? Help a socially awkward girl out.
 

CJ2008

Ideal_Rock
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You didn't overstay your welcome in the sense that there was no way for you to know you were overstaying.

She may be feeling like all these people want to visit and she has to yes even though she'd rather have said no. There's no way for you to know that either.

And people find it hard to say no especially when people want to do a nice thing (see the new baby, bring a gift, etc.)

It would have been better if she had warned you that it wouldn't be too long a visit because at that time she needs to make dinner, or she's just feeling exhausted, or whatever. She may just not have realized to say it at the time or again, she feels like she "can't" so she didn't.

It does sound like was a little curt in how she asked you to leave - did it feel that way? She may not have meant it that way, like you said she was laughing nervously, she probably didn't know how else to say it.

It's also possible this person doesn't want any long visits right now, nothing to do with dinner...but again doesn't really know how to come out and say it.

Next time, I would just simply ask a little more questions - like "I want to visit you only if you're up for it - I know you have all sorts of people stopping by, feel free to tell me it's not a good time for a while if it's not. I understand. Or if you're OK with me coming by but want to keep it short I understand that too." (and then if she says yes to that but you want to visit for a longer time you can decide whether you'll just wait until she's more relaxed.)

You did a nice thing, wanting to go visit her and see the baby - so don't feel bad or like you did anything wrong. Just take more control if you're going to go visit her again so there are no "surprises." And forgive her - if she's nice otherwise - for coming off a little uncaring knowing that you live 20 minutes away and then sending you off like if you were staying too long...

(I find it so exasperating when people say come by "anytime" :mad: - makes no sense. Those are always the people that when you do go by then they think to tell you 1. oh, I have a concert I'm going to in an hour or 2. my whole family is here from Denver (when you were planning on just having an intimate visit and be able to catch up) I'm exaggerating, but you get the point.)
 

Scandinavian

Ideal_Rock
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You didn't do anything wrong, I think she just had a bad day and is really tired. She wanted to see you, but her day didn't go as planned, and they are probably both sleep deprived so they argued about something stupid just before you got there. No worries. Just give her a hug and ask how she is doing the next time you see her :)
 

baby monster

Ideal_Rock
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Honestly, I don't know how any mom can have visitors a week after baby is born. There's so much sleep deprivation combined with pp hormone imbalance that any coherent conversation with another adult is highly suspect. I would just forget this whole thing happened and move on without thinking you did anything wrong.
 

the_mother_thing

Ideal_Rock
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Scandinavian|1471456474|4066953 said:
You didn't do anything wrong, I think she just had a bad day and is really tired. She wanted to see you, but her day didn't go as planned, and they are probably both sleep deprived so they argued about something stupid just before you got there. No worries. Just give her a hug and ask how she is doing the next time you see her :)
Ditto! There's no telling what may have transpired between them before you got there, so try not to take it personally, as it probably had absolutely NOTHING to do with you or your visit.
 

telephone89

Ideal_Rock
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I would not take it personally. She's likely generally stressed, and if they were bickering maybe something happened beforehand. Babies are stressful!
 

PierreBear

Brilliant_Rock
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Agree with others that you didn't do anything wrong. It's hard to know people's expectations and you didn't deliberately upset her with your timing. It just wasn't expressed how long to stay.

This is a side comment but I thought it was rather bold of her to say "ok you have to leave now." Of course perhaps it could have been said more gently such as "I need to make dinner, would you like to stay or do you mind allowing me some time to focus..." Anyhow, in a way I admired her for being able to just say what she needed to perhaps prevent a future argument from happening with her husband/family etc. Sometimes it is difficult to say what you really need to say at the risk of being rude.

I hope ya'll continue to build a great friendship with each other. So nice of you to visit her!
 

YadaYadaYada

Ideal_Rock
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Thanks for the feedback everyone. Yes, she said it just as I wrote but I get it, she has a lot going on so I can understand that she might not realize how curt it was or it just kind of came flying out and maybe she realized after. No biggie, I have two of my own so I get it.

I think her and her husband have an old fashioned marriage where there are certain expectations and he might have expected a quiet house with dinner on the table when he got home from the gym.

Just glad to hear that I wasn't overstepping any boundaries, that was my only concern here.
 

momhappy

Ideal_Rock
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I agree that it doesn't sound like you did anything wrong.
Maybe she was secretly hoping that if they had company (you) over at 6:30, that her husband might take the hint and have an alternate plan for dinner so that she wouldn't have to make it that night? Not that they necessarily did anything wrong either, but it would have been nice if the husband had realized that she was busy (with you) and started dinner on his own (or ordered something, etc.).
 

anne_h

Brilliant_Rock
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baby monster|1471457630|4066961 said:
Honestly, I don't know how any mom can have visitors a week after baby is born. There's so much sleep deprivation combined with pp hormone imbalance that any coherent conversation with another adult is highly suspect. I would just forget this whole thing happened and move on without thinking you did anything wrong.
THIS
 

azstonie

Ideal_Rock
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For me, it's not rude to be helped to the door but it was rude saying it that way. I'd give her a complete pass for the graceless delivery of the message for all the reasons everyone mentioned above.

That said, I do my best to keep such visits very short, 10-15 minutes is plenty of time in this situation. Gift to the big brother, casserole for mom to serve at her convenience to her family, and handoff of baby gift. Attention to big brother (poor kud lol). Out the door. Honestly, I don't enjoy these kinds of visits---the chaos usually going on---but if the friend really wants a visit, I do it.
 

amc80

Ideal_Rock
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I think the time was probably a bad choice and she didn't realize it when agreeing to it. I'm all of 4 days PP right now and also have an 18m old and 4yo. It wouldn't occur to me to have someone over at 6:30 unless they specifically said they were bringing dinner. That's a really rough time of the evening even without the newborn/PP factor. But I definitely don't think you did anything wrong, nor do I think she was being rude. I actually give her props for speaking up since a lot of people wouldn't do that.
 

missy

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Stephanie, you did absolutely nothing wrong. Your friend handled this in not the best way possible that is for sure. But she is sleep deprived and has many stressors in her life right now. So don't feel badly OK and just know it is her and not you. And next time you can schedule your visits at a more convenient time for everyone involved and know you most likely will keep it on the shorter side at least while she is dealing with so much. You are a good friend and did nothing wrong at all. (((HUGS))).
 

Marquise_Madness

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I don't think you did at all! Maybe she thought by inviting you at 6:30 you'd surprise her by taking her out to dinner, cooking, or bringing food? And then she panicked? Her son sure seems sweet. Definitely bring him a book next time. I think you were polite. Maybe she is just stressed out from the baby.


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