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Should I Add Things for ME to My Baby Registry?
January 24, 2024

Should I Add Things for ME to My Baby Registry?

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Should I Add Things for ME to My Baby Registry?.
Should I Add Things for ME to My Baby Registry?

You’re not alone if you’ve spent more time than you care to admit researching baby gear and adding items to your baby registry. Bassinets, bottles, carriers, cribs…most parents-to-be build baby registries filled with all the things to help them welcome a new addition.

But what about YOU? Whether you’re pregnant, adopting or welcoming a baby via surrogacy, some big-time changes are coming your way soon. And while most expecting parents don’t think twice about adding baby items to a registry, many pause at the thought of adding things for themselves.

Will gift-givers think you’re rude to ask for a DoorDash gift card? Is your mother-in-law going to be horrified at the thought of all of her friends being privy to your nipple cream brand of choice? Is there a way to add personal stuff that no one else can see—but so you’ll still score that registry discount if you buy it? We’re talking to other new parents (and tapping our own expertise) to help you figure it all out.

Why to consider adding personal items to your baby registry

“I registered for a few nursing supplies and we had a doula fund. But I wish I had added more!,” said Michele, a mom of one from New York City. Other new parents echoed this sentiment: they all wished they had added at least some items for themselves to their baby registries.

Amanda, a mom of two, didn’t add postpartum items to her registry and regretted it. “I ended up placing many late-night orders for all the items I needed during recovery,” she said. Even parents who did add personal items wanted more. “Some people bought me additional postpartum stuff that I didn’t ask for. It was much appreciated, more so than the million pieces of clothing if I’m being honest,” said Erica, a parent from New Jersey.

“It can feel awkward, but I think it’s important to help new parents (and their community of friends and family) get into the mindset, especially in a country where we don’t give any [you-know-whats] about supporting new parents societally,” said Kit, a birth doula and a parent. “Parents deserve help and it’s okay to ask for it. Prenatal massage, food delivery, grocery gift cards, funds for birth and postpartum doulas, night nurses, etc. are all helpful.”

“I’m worried about what people might think.”

“I had added a select few personal items (nursing bra, nipple cream, nursing pads) to my registry and my mother was HORRIFIED. She initially said she wasn’t comfortable with sending my registry link to her friends with those “inappropriate” items on it. I was shocked. I ended up building a separate registry for her network which was a huge pain because I had to manage duplicate items across both,” said Liz, a mom of two in LA.

It’s easy to laugh at situations like this one (and thankfully this isn’t the norm), but the basic idea behind the hesitation to add personal stuff to your baby registry holds true—expecting parents are worried about what others might think if they stray from the norm.

It’s personal

Spoiler alert: there’s no right or wrong answer as to whether or not you should add things for you to your baby registry. It all comes down to your comfort level and your personal preferences.

If you simply don’t feel comfortable adding personal items to your baby registry, then don’t. Many expecting parents choose to buy these types of items themselves, and that’s totally fine. But if you do want to explore the idea of adding a few (or a lot) of non-traditional things to your list, you’ve got a few options.

  • Skip the personal stuff—but not the rest. Don’t want Kyle from accounting to know which nursing bras you prefer? We get it. Skip the more intimate adds to your baby registry, but don’t leave off other types of things that may help you post-baby. Items like comfy pajamas, self-care products or a water bottle are all useful additions. You can also add all types of cash funds to your Babylist registry including things like diaper funds, meal funds, parental leave funds and even a college fund, as well as help and favors (think things like preloved baby clothes, home-cooked meals and babysitting), all sorts of gift cards and even things like birthing or infant care classes.
  • Create private categories. Creating categories (groupings of similar items) within your Babylist registry is a great way to stay organized, both for yourself and for gift-givers. But you can also mark categories as private, meaning the only person to see them will be you. A private category is a good spot to include things that you may not want to be broadcast far and wide, like nursing or postpartum supplies. You’ll still be able to keep track of these items and purchase them yourself, but folks viewing your registry won’t be able to see them. Bonus: you can still use your registry discount on items within private categories if you choose to purchase them yourself.
  • Don’t be afraid to ask. “My sister made me a basket to take to the hospital that had all kinds of stuff: a hairbrush, travel-size toiletries, snacks, hair ties, etc. It was one of the best things I got at my baby shower,” said Rebecca, a mom from New Jersey. While it’s fine to skip these types of items on your baby registry, there’s no harm in telling close friends or family that this is something you might appreciate, especially if they ask for gift suggestions. New parents especially might be up for this type of gift. “I’ve noticed a pattern at baby showers,” said Cathleya, a mom of one from Minnesota. “Grandparents, aunts, people without kids want to give the “cute baby stuff” and people that are newish parents want to give some stuff to/for mom postpartum because they recently went through it and remember how important it is to also think about the new mom’s needs.”

The Best Things to Add to Your Baby Registry for YOU

If the “taking care of baby also means taking care of me” approach feels right for you, there are a lot of products to consider adding to your baby registry. Here are some of the most popular categories and parent-favorite picks to inspire you.

Help, Favors and Gift Cards

Self-Care and Home Care

This information is provided for educational and entertainment purposes only. We do not accept any responsibility for any liability, loss or risk, personal or otherwise, incurred as a consequence, directly or indirectly, from any information or advice contained here. Babylist may earn compensation from affiliate links in this content. Learn more about how we write Babylist content and review products, as well as the Babylist Health Advisory Board.