Ask Someone Else's Mom by Susan Writer

Hand-Me-Down Baby Clothes Cause Problems

DEAR SOMEONE ELSE’S MOM: My sister-in-law and I couldn’t have more different tastes. She goes for everything very traditional, and I have more modern tastes.

When I was pregnant, she loaned me some maternity clothes that I wouldn’t wear around the house, much less to work. Her taste runs the same in baby/kids’ clothing, and since her daughter is two years older than our newborn baby girl, she was so excited to be able to pass along some of what I consider the most hideous outfits, which I would definitely not put our daughter in.

I appreciate her generosity in giving me the clothes, but how do I tell her I really don’t want them? --- NOT THE TRADITIONAL TYPE

DEAR NOT THE TRADITIONAL TYPE: You could tell her politely, “Thanks, but no thanks,” and leave it at that. Or, you could do what parents through the ages have done — keep one or two of the pieces that are the least outside your style and have your daughter dressed in them occasionally, but not all the time, when your sister-in-law is around. This way you’ll be less likely to offend, and also give her an idea of how you prefer to dress your baby.

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