A mother on Reddit has been branded “monumentally stupid” after posting a photo of a homemade contraption she uses to help her baby fall asleep.
The DIY method, which saw a thick elastic band securing a KitchenAid to the mobile attached to her child’s bouncer chair, attracted all kinds of brutal criticism from those concerned for the babies welfare.
It’s likely the contraption was created as a joke, but that didn’t stop enraged commenters questioning the safety of the method with many arguing the elastic band would eventually break having serious repercussions for the little baby.
“Not to be a downer but someone should tell these people how f*cking dangerous that is. When (not if) that piece of cloth catches, it will dump the baby into the mixing paddle where an arm or leg will likely catch, spinning the baby around in the mixer until baby dies or someone stops the mixer, whichever happens first,” one wrote.
Another concurred about the dangers but refuted the idea the contraption would lead to death.
“I think death is unlikely but a badly broken arm or leg is definitely possible, even if it is unlikely. I’d warn the parent of the danger and show them some gross pics to drive the point home.”
A few more questioned the thought process behind the creation of the contraption.
“I can’t believe someone would be stupid enough to use this on an actual baby,” one wrote.
“This is monumentally stupid because the baby will likely get hurt given a long enough time,” another agreed.
The legitimacy of the post aside, the image itself sparks interesting debate about whether bouncing contraptions are good for babies in a safety and development sense.
In Mamamia’s pregnancy podcast Hello Bump, Midwife Cath explains that parents shouldn’t rely on the apparatus to keep the baby occupied.
For example, if a mother was to take a shower and needed her baby in a place safe from harm, Cath says a bouncing contraption may not be the answer.
Midwife Cath explains to Bec Judd and Monique Bowley why bouncing contraptions aren’t always the safest choice. Post continues…
“It’s actually safer for the baby to be on the floor than in one of those container or one of those bouncing contraptions. They can roll, they can fall, they can get caught. They’re better on the floor, on a towel, in the shower room with you,” she told the podcast.
She added that there are, of course, exceptions to the rule.
If a baby has reflux, it can sometimes be the only way to keep them still when the mum cannot give the baby with her full attention.
However, it’s important the baby is not always sitting in the apparatus, regardless of how much they appear to be enjoying it.
“The kids like it and that’s what’s tempting [about it], because they seem happy and so they stay there. But that’s the problem, they just stay there and they don’t move and make any progress.”