The Baby Owner's Manual: Operating Instructions, Trouble-Shooting Tips, and Advice on First-Year Maintenance

Category: Humor
Author: Louis Borgenicht, Joe Borgenicht
All Reddit 90
This Month Reddit 2


by ninkendo   2022-01-07
Sounds like somebody hasn't read the documentation:
by marz0   2020-12-13
I just bought the book The Baby Owner's Manual [0] since I'll be in your position in ~6 months. I haven't read it yet but it got decent reviews. Curious to hear input from others.


by wkearney99   2020-07-24
This was a fun read. We still joke about "keeping the unit fed/clean", and he's twelve now.

Is it the best? No, but it's not just a joke either. Lots of simple things, covered in a lighthearted 'like a car manual' kind of way.

With a newborn, sleep is your challenge. We discovered my wife needs 8 hours, but can be interrupted. I need 5 and CANNOT be interrupted. So I handled things until 12:30am and then Mom took over until 6-ish.

And on that note, during the first few months, if one getting out of bed wakes the other, consider the couch or a guest bed. You do not want to let notions about marital sleeping together turn into being sleep-deprived and hostile toward each other.

If breastfeeding doesn't 'take' right away, get on the phone and have a lactation aid come help. Every kid/nipple situation is different. Trying to figure it out on your own, while sleep deprived (see above) is maddeningly difficult. Hire a guide to get it sorted.

Bear in mind, some kids are slow feeders, so that 4-hour feeding interval might be closer to 3 hours.

As the kid gets older I found it's best to not ask the open-ended "what do you want to do?" Because that leads to tears when the impossible can't happen. Rather have 3-4 plans YOU want to see happen and present it like THEY get to choose. You help them learn agency without setting the situation up for failure.

And it's not until they're about 2.5 years old that they won't accidentally kill themselves. It's up to you to make sure they don't walk into traffic/off ledges, eat/drink something bad, pull furniture/stove pots over on themselves, etc. But at about 2.5 they start to realize they've got some skin in the game and start exercising a little care. I emphasize START, you're still on duty to keep an eye on them.

I was fortunate to be able to handle being Dad at home. It was fascinating witnessing the bias. As in, when we were out and about, people (often women) assuming that it was just a single "Day out with Dad"... oh no, dearie, EVERYDAY was Dad day. And during kiddie gym/exercise/music classes it wasn't until they realized I clearly knew more about strollers/diapers/formula than they did that mothers started to come around.

Pro-tip, babies don't understand words. They do understand emotions. It seems obvious, but yelling at them or telling them not to do something in a drawn-out sentences is as useless as yelling at the goldfish.

Help them, guide them, let them see you as someone they can trust and that loves them. Don't set them up to see you as angry/stressed/disinterested.

by jmbenesh   2019-08-24

Haven’t dug into this yet but I bought it specifically because it is structured like an owner’s manual:

The Baby Owner's Manual: Operating Instructions, Trouble-Shooting Tips, and Advice on First-Year Maintenance (Owner's and Instruction Manual)

by TheGripper   2019-08-24

What to expect when you're expecting?

Also, Baby Owner's Manual

by flamebroiledhodor   2019-07-21

Not being sarcastic, and even though the book is funny I highly recommend you pick up the Baby Owners Manual.

It helps the analytical person have a pocket reference for topics they can't rightly plan for. They have a toddler version to buy i can't speak to it.

by DanBetweenJobs   2019-07-21

Dad of 2 here (4 and 2)


1) Breathe. You cannot comprehend what its like to be a dad yet so frankly don't burn too much energy trying. Just prepare the best you can and accept that there will be things you aren't ready for. But it will be ok, you and your wife will get through this into parenthood just fine.

2) The best baby book I've ever read as a dad is the Baby Owner's Manual. I give it to all my buds who are soon to be dads.

3) Take care of your wife and be prepared to be patient. She is literally growing a being inside of her. Shit is gonna get stressful and downright traumatic for her and you need to be her anchor to reality and calm the whole time.

4) Don't hesitate to ask for advice from other parents the entire time. It really takes a village, digital or otherwise, to make it work and you are not alone.


Good luck, man. Congratulations!

by bossmaser   2019-07-21

There is one book I would recommend:

It has everything you need to know

by EyeshadowWithGlasses   2019-07-21

The Baby Owner's Manual: Operating Instructions, Trouble-Shooting Tips, and Advice on First-Year Maintenance (Owner's and Instruction Manual)

by CouncillorBirdy   2019-07-21

I got my husband this book and I think it helped a lot. We also took a new parents class at the hospital. But we had so many of these dumb conversations: sleeping on their backs, no blankets, all kinds of stuff I thought was obvious at this point. If he'll trust that you know what you're doing and he's willing to learn, I think you'll be good!

by sewmanybees   2018-11-10

My husband is not much of a reader and likes things straight-forward. So i got him this: and he loves it.

by monkeydave   2018-11-10

Do you mean books on how to be a dad? Books to read to your baby? Books on how to teach your kid science?

Edit: For the first category, start with this

by heylooknewpillows   2017-08-19

Self-professed nerd dad here. I loved this when I was dealing with the panic of an infant. It's fun and contains some useful info too.

The Baby Owner's Manual: Operating Instructions, Trouble-Shooting Tips, and Advice on First-Year Maintenance

by Helen-B   2017-08-19

Pick up a book or two to fill you in on the basics. My husband really got a lot out of these two:

This one for the nuts & bolts mechanics:

And this one for more the emotional/what to expect:

I was also a fan of the pregnancy app from "What to Expect when You're Expecting" because it gave week by week updates about what was happening with Baby and tips to deal with the physical and psychological changes.

Then start talking about what you want things to look like. If you're wanting to get married before Baby arrives, sooner is better because you're going to have a lot more on your plate coming up very soon.

Scheduling an appointment with a doctor to find out how far along, etc. will also give you an opportunity to ask questions from someone who will be with you every step of the way.

by MeanaDC   2017-08-19

My husband really liked this one. It's not specifically for dads but it's funny and written in that matter of fact way that he likes.