29 Weeks – Hand me Downs

What is it about becoming pregnant that everyone wants to instantly unload all of their used baby gear and clothing on you?

Don’t get me wrong, baby’s are expensive and so is all the gear that they seem to need.  They grow out of clothing in two seconds and require a new wardrobe.  It all adds up.  The second they grow out of all that gear you are left with gently used items, taking up space in the house and needing somewhere to unload them, if you are not planning on another kiddo soon.  A friend who is expecting seems to be the best option because then you know it will go to good use.  You are then saving them money! It is a win-win all around.

Except here is where I am running into issues and trying to not come off as rude to them.  I want to purchase my own, new things for my baby.  Things that I have researched.  Things that aren’t used.  Things that I have picked out the pattern on.  Things that I can return to the store if they don’t work for our baby or lifestyle.  Things that can safely be used for a second baby if we have one.  I want the option to go purchase my own tiny girl clothes.  You know, the things that we have been dreaming of purchasing for over two years.  I fully appreciate my friends thinking of me but am I rude to say no, thanks?

Then there are the friends that are down right rude.  A friend with 4 boys, whose youngest is 4, and who I have done several garage sales with over the past few years, offered me all her old maternity clothes and baby items.  Basically the shit that she couldn’t even get rid of in garage sales because it just needed to go in the trash.  Stuff that isn’t “gently used” but abused from years of 4 babies.  Maternity clothes that aren’t even close to in-style, as she purchased them 8 years ago with her first pregnancy.  She isn’t the only one that has offered me items like this.  Items, that they have been dredged up from a basement or garage, and are more likely expired or completely unsafe for a newborn.  I can see the look in their eyes, the attachment to the object, and then I realize that is all it is.  An attachment to a time that has passed.

I get it.  When we moved into our new home, almost two years ago, I went through a few totes that held Rebecca’s baby stuff.  I was able to take a lot of it to Goodwill, wondering why I ever held on to some of it.  Clearly, in the moment, it was something I had an attachment to, something that I wasn’t ready to let go of.  But there in my garage that day, as I was clearing things out, I couldn’t decipher exactly what that “attachment” was any longer.  Sure, there were blankets that I held on to, a few outfits, shoes, picture frames and other pieces that perhaps she will like to have one day.

For me, I’m not a Duggar, we won’t be buying used and saving the difference, nor do I want gear, unloaded by friends, on my doorstep.  While I appreciate the thought, I want to start my own weird attachments to things.


22 thoughts on “29 Weeks – Hand me Downs

  1. I totally get this, but I’ll just say that for the things you might want multiples of hand me downs are nice. Like we have multiple bouncy seats through out the house, and two swings. One of each was bought new and the others were hand me downs. Those items add up and it’s nice not having to carry them around the house. Just thought I’d throw that out there.

  2. I get this. We had a few friends message to off load a bunch of their clothes on us. I accepted all donations, but then went through the bags and separated things into “keep” piles and “goodwill” piles. Because…let’s face it…baby clothes don’t stay cute and perfect for long, and the thought of putting g something already stained onto my child just weirds me out. We want the fun part of picking new clothes for our boy and ooo-Ing and ahh-ing at the store. But I will tell you one thing, when it comes to clothes, once all the tags are off and they are washed and put into a drawer with the other cleaner second hand clothes, you likely won’t remember every item you bought vs. which were donated.

    In regards to the actual large items, I’m sure your friends won’t mind you giving a polite rejection on them by saying you have items researched and picked out already. Every new parent knows how fun it is to get to buy those new things! The maternity clothes thing I find weird though. I would never offer up my clothes to a friend. I’m not sure why, but I just find it odd. I guess because everyone has their own style and just because my clothes worked for me, they might not be someone else’s cup of tea. It’s funny how when it comes to babies and pregnancy how sometimes, what should be a nice gesture, actually feels more pushy than it should.

    1. I have had a few bags of clothes we have gone through from baby’s born last year at around the same time from friends. We ended up not keeping much due to the stains and general wear of some of it. The maternity clothes just plain weird me out beyond belief. Just no.

      1. ty! This is my third little girl, and as a single mom I guess its a little different. I totally see your side to it though as I went through ALL of that with my first. Congratulations btw!

      2. Congrats to you on your third! Yea, my friend went for #2 and had twins instead and had no shaming begging for the extras she needed. Nothing wrong with that at all!

  3. Im 50-50 lolll! I like donations but Im always sorting between what I keep and what I will gave away to second-hand stores… I never keep maternity clothes cause 1-Im so picky with my wardrobe when pregnant and 2-they never fit lolll! Hubby and I love to shop for our baby girl so even with donated stuff we always hit the stores to also pick our own oooooohhhh-aaaaaaaaaah little tiny things 😉
    But its our 7th child so…

  4. I’ve never been a “hand me down” type of person. but the hand me downs I’ve received for this baby have been beyond incredible! I’ll have to blog about my experience!

  5. I feel like I’m the opposite–I have such a hard time with spending on new things for baby when I know they outgrow them so quickly and are only used for a few months before moving on to the next thing they need. I’m happy enough with the baby shower items we’ll be getting new, but am perfectly ok with taking a used stroller and clothes, which I’ve already gotten. We even bought our crib used (and did our research on it beforehand to check for safety) because I couldn’t pass up a $900 pottery barn crib for $200 in really good condition. Granted though I live in a very affluent area so these OC moms practically give some of this stuff away.

    1. I can only imagine what those OC mamma’s pass along! I can assure you there is nothing of the type here. I do keep an eye open on a lot of our swap sites and there is quit a bit of stuff I wouldn’t touch with a 10 ft pole. Certainly nothing that came from Pottery Barn or I would be all over that!!!

  6. I totally get the sentiment and was the same way when I was pregnant! I’m also OCD and thinking about my son wearing some other kid’s clothes was weird. BUT, I will say that now he is here and growing ridiculously fast and wearing AT LEAST two outfits plus PJs a day, I am so open to good condition hand me downs. We absolutely go through them and discard what we don’t want, but I at least take them and keep it moving. Offering large items that are heavily used seems somewhat weird to me, though. And, no offense to anyone else, but I like my bumbo, high chair, car seat, etc to match AND be gender neutral for future kids, so I totally understand your sentiment there!

    Congratulations by the way! You are so close!

    1. I completely understand what you are saying on the clothing! I have gone through some clothing bags people have given to us. It is more the larger items and maternity clothes (Just ew) that I can’t do. They do grow so fast and destroy so many clothes quickly that hand me downs in that aspect are worth it!

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