Monday, 2 October 2017

When Is A Baby Not A Baby?

Toddler is decidedly not a baby anymore. He can walk. He can talk (a bit). He's well on his way to figuring out the TV remote. Objectively speaking, he is very much a toddler. I wrote a whole blog post about this, months ago.

So why do I still call him 'baby' all the time?

As he gets older and acquires new skills, I keep mentally shifting the goalposts of when a baby stops being a baby. So here are my ways of deciding whether your baby is, in fact, a toddler.

1. They've taken their first steps

Ah yes, such a milestone. Except it doesn't feel like it, does it? The first steps are often a bit stumbly, and could easily be baby just stopping themselves falling over. No, that doesn't work as a definition of toddler. How about ...

2. They can do 10 steps in a row

This is more like it. Anything less than that is basically falling forwards with style. Yep, 10 steps is the mark of the toddler. But wait, how do you decide that they really can do 10 steps? What if they're actually doing two sets of 5? Too vague.

3. They can walk across a room

OK, this is really starting to look not-babyish now. But still, define a room. Some rooms are pretty small, what size room counts? I'm beginning to think using walking to define a toddler is just too problematic. (Yes I know that's the literal definition of 'toddler', ssshhhh, stay with me.)

So maybe it's talking instead?

4. They say their first word

No, no, that won't work. Because, really, how can you tell if their 'mama' actually means 'mummy' or whether it's just a noise? Really most first words are us deciding they sound like a word. We need something more concrete.

5. They can talk in sentences

This is my current definition, because Ezra's speech is developing so slowly that it buys me at least another six months of babyhood, I reckon. But what shall I say is the definition of a toddler when he does start talking in sentences?

6. They tell you they're not a baby

This really is the final straw. When your kid is old enough to say, "I'm not a baby, I'm a toddler," you really have to let go. Or at least stop calling them 'baby' in earshot.

This is my #Blogtober17 post for Day 2 - Babies.



  1. I still call my girls my babies and they are 10 & 15. They hate it. hahaha

    1. Haha, I can hear the eye-rolling from here!

  2. My older two hate it when I call them babies! My you gesticulating now 18 months and is definitely a toddler now 😢

    1. Oh yes, my 5 year old always corrects me when I call her my baby or little, even though she calls me 'little mummy'!

  3. I have two babies, one is 30 and the other 35 haha! My grandson (who is nearly 3) tells me off "I'm not a baby! I'm a big boy" oh well #blogtober17

    1. Haha, yep, my eldest wasn't even two when she started saying, "not a baby, toddo!"

  4. I've been wondering about this too, lately! My little girl is 18 months old and I can still shop in the 'baby' section of Next. When I have to go into the 'younger girls' category, maybe that's when she is no longer my baby! Wahhhh! ������ #blogtober17

    1. Ahh but there's an overlap between the two sections, so maybe they're still babies even when they need the next clothes section up!!