sanctimommy watch

From an eagle-eyed reader in the Big Apple, a link to this post, on

Before you decide whether the parent writing this note was reasonable or not, consider that it was posted in the LOBBY OF AN APARTMENT BUILDING, where a “meet and greet” was being held for said baby. I was never a germaphobe when my babies were little, but I also didn’t host parties for them in public thoroughfares.

It does seem to me like the sterilize everything around a newborn thing has been increasing in intensity. Recently, I visited some friends who just had their first- they greeted me in the mudroom/foyer of their home, which was plastered with laminated signs listing the baby’s “rules,” such as taking one’s shoes off before entering. Gladly would I have, had I ever actually been invited inside. Our whole meeting took place in the vestibule, since apparently they preferred visitors not enter the actual home in the first place. I did understand their horror: I was holding Maddie on my hip, who kept lurching at their newborn with her fat, dirty fingers, saying “Bayy beee… BAAYYY BEEE…” (and yes, I managed to keep her away).

I do think the writer of this note deserves some credit, for not writing it in the voice of the baby: “Hey, there! I’d love to meetcha, but Mommy says you have to Purell first! Ga ga goo goo!” Then, they really would deserve the public ridiculing they are receiving courtesy of the internet.

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Roxane B. Salonen April 19, 2009 at 6:09 am

Oh my. They need to come to my house of five children. 🙂


Julie April 20, 2009 at 4:36 pm

I love the crumpled piece of paper and wad of something dirty looking on the floor behind it. Doctor heal thyself.


Stanley April 30, 2009 at 4:36 pm

I played in dirt as a kid and survived. My kids are clean, but not shielded from every little bit of grime that might fall their way. Based on my own experiences I subscribe to the theory that today’s germ-o-phobia creates more trouble than it solves. Immune systems grow and mature by exposure to relatively benign threats.

On the other hand, if you’re dealing with a newborn, some common sense suggests you might not want to invite dozens or hundreds of strangers to get up close and personal.


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