BW Q?: Do I need a stroller? — The Bump
Attachment Parenting

BW Q?: Do I need a stroller?

Hi, I'm a first time mom and in love with the idea of baby wearing: It's cute! It's less bulk! It's snuggly!   So, I'm curious, do I really need a stroller?  Our roads/sidewalks are rough enough that we would "need" a super nice stroller if I was ever to use it for a neighborhood/park walk.  I don't really want to shell out a lot of money for something we aren't going to use.    

If you BW, which, if any, situations do you use a stroller?  If you used one, did it get more use during the infant stage or for squirmy toddlers?  Am I utterly insane for considering skipping this "baby essential"?

TIA! 

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Re: BW Q?: Do I need a stroller?

  • I think it really depends.  A lot of BWers will tell you they never use their stroller.  I love babywearing, but I still get a lot of use out of my stroller.  When we go for walks, that's when I use it the most.  Micah has always liked sitting up in the stroller and looking around at everything.  But we never use it when we go on outings  like the zoo or aquarium.  It's so hard to manage in the crowds!  Sometimes I use it at the mall--but even then it's often to carry my bags!  My only other push for a stroller is that I got pregnant when Micah was 9 months old.  I was able to still wear him for a long time, but sometimes I was just so wiped out from being pregnant (first tri) that it was easier to push him.  And now that I'm huge, I can't comfortably wear him anymore.  Because he's still so young I don't know what I would do if I didn't have my stroller.  A somewhat unique situation, yes, but something to consider if you want more kids.

    Regardless, if you think that you can manage without a stroller than don't get one.  If you find that you're really wanting one then you can always buy one that suits your needs after baby is born (you might find that you don't need an expensive one like you think).

  • We didn't get a stroller until DS1 was about six months old. I'll be honest, we were really excited about being able to have him in the stroller and carry a bunch of stuff at the same time (we would walk to go to the store, etc.). But we bought a Phil & Ted, so he had to be bigger to use it anyway. With DS2, we waited to put him in the stroller until he was six months, also.

    You might as well wait and see if you need it. Look on Craigslist and eBay if you do buy one, most of the major brands can be found for cheaper on there. hth!

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  • Completely depends on your situation.  Not worth a significant amount of $ for us.  We have a snap and go that we have used for the dozen plane trips with DD1 then one with both DDs, it was nice through the airport and used it a few times on that vacation.  But, I have never used it at home, it's never been to a store or a restaurant here.  We rarely bring the infant carrier in to the restaurant with us either - only if she is asleep and I am optimistic she will stay that way.  For walks I wear, for shopping I wear- but I don't shop much other than groceries.

    If you decide you would want one you can always get one later, or maybe consignment or craigslist to save some $$. 

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  • I would buy a cheap snap-and-go and just wait to see what you need and want later on.

    I really got into BW'ing with DS2 and I don't think he actually sat in a stroller until about 6 months. :)

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  • Thanks everyone!  It sounds like the snap'n go might be a good option for us.  We were planning some air travel and I had forgotten about lugging the car seat through the airport.  :)
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  • we have the kolcraft contours.  You can turn the seat around to face you.  I babywore a lot in the beginning but it is nice to have a stroller (my personal view).  We used it intermittently to get him used to it and now he goes in the stroller 100%.  I liked it as an alternative was he was a bit bigger for a different view of the world.  Plus he stopped sleeping in the carriers after a few months and it helped my back not bug me as much.  He would spend the whole time i wore him pushing and twisting to see different things.
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  • I mostly wore DD when she was under six months. I rarely used the stroller then except for my Stroller Strides class.  Now I mostly use the stroller for outings because DD likes it better. The exception is for more crowded places or when we are using public transportation. Then I prefer to wear DD since it takes up less space and I also feel safer with her attached to me.

    ETA: A stroller is definitely one of those items you can take a wait and see approach with. You don't need it the day LO comes home from the hospital. You can always see how you like BWing and go from there. Strollers are always for sale. 

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  • I love bwing, but I love our stroller too. When DD was still in her bucket seat it was so much easier to put her, still sleeping, in the stroller for quick errands vs getting her into a sling/carrier. We just got a $60 one though.
  • No, you don't need a stroller, and I think it's a fine idea to wait if you are not sure if you want one. We didn't get a stroller at first, either.

    When our son was about a month we got a snap and go used and I'm really glad we did. Sometimes my son gets really hot being worn, no matter the carrier or the hold, and will actually wake up crying to get out. So having the stroller means I can take longer walks. It also makes it a lot easier to carry stuff like a diaper bag.

    I also like to walk to the grocery store (about a mile away) to do shopping - I wear him but take the stroller to carry groceries back in. And, if he gets to hot, I can put him in.

    And I also use the stroller a lot if I have to run errands and he is asleep in the carseat. If I'm going on a longer errand I will take him out of the carseat and wear him, but if I have to pop into several places, he doesn't like all the transitions and is much happier if I plop the whole seat in the stroller. If he's sleeping he usually sleeps right through it, which is great bc he's not much of a sleeper in general!

    We also just got a jogging stroller, which I am excited to use even though I know we still have quite a wait!

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  • During the tiny baby phase, the only time I used a stroller (used travel system) was at the mall or the zoo, especially if LO was asleep when we got their in the infant bucket seat. Most of the time we used wraps.

    We would also take the stroller to the farmer's market and use it as a shopping cart while wearing our little one.

    We got rid of that one and got a smaller used one for $10 just in case, and around 16 months I guess DS started really wanting to be pushed in the stroller, and we would use it sometimes for walks. We ended up losing that one during a move.

    Before we went on a trip across country, I wanted a stroller for the airports. DS was almost 2 and he hasn't been ok with babywearing for a while. The last time I tried was when he was 19 months and it was kinda a nightmare. This one was ~$50 new and has been really useful. I go to the zoo every few weeks and I always bring the stroller. We also use it sometimes to go for neighborhood walks now, especially since I'm pregnant and my back is killing me.

    So anyway, I would say that especially for the first year, you can babywear a lot, but a stroller comes in handy sometimes. After that, it depends on the kid and your back. ;) Also, I've never used a stroller enough to buy an expensive one. I've bought 4 total (one I resold again immediately) and between all of them I've spent about $98. :)

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  • With my first, I got a few different carriers, but my son never really liked babywearing. He runs warm--you know the whole saying that you dress baby in a layer warmer than you like--we did the reverse. He always had to be in less clothes and would get uncomfy in the carrier after a short period. He much preferred the stroller. I wouldn't have survived without one with him.

    With my 2nd she loved being in the carrier from birth and still does. However, even with her it's still nice to have the stroller as an option. When it's over 70 degrees out and you're walking for a few hours at an outdoor place like the zoo, it's nice to have a place to put baby to cool off. As comfy as the ergo is, she's 20+lbs now and sometimes my back needs a break if we're somewhere we're doing a lot of walking! With my 2nd I wouldn't say the stroller is a must-have item, but I can say it's made my life easier.

    I agree with the other poster's advice to get one when you have LO here and you know what works for you. I would also advise you to get an item like that on craigslist used. People are selling them all the time and you'll save a ton that way.

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  • I never used a stroller with DD2 when she was little. She hated it, and I had a toddler and it was easier just to wear her all the time. Now that she's older, I do use my stroller more often (We have a Bob and I love it).
    "Hello, babies. Welcome to Earth. It's hot in the summer and cold in the winter. It's round and wet and crowded. At the outside, babies, you've got about a hundred years here. There's only one rule that I know of, babies. God damn it, you've got to be kind." - Kurt Vonnegut
  • We used the snap and go for the infant seat for awhile, but that was mostly at the mall if she was sleeping. I was never a "hardcore" BWer because LO never slept that way after a few weeks old.

     I would at least look into something like that or a second hand stroller- you never know how your baby's temperament will be.

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  • When he was little, I loved the snap n go. He fell asleep in the car a lot, and that way I didn't have to wake him up.

    Now, I do have a stroller (Chicco Liteway) and a wagon. I use both. I use my carriers.

    The thing is: you can change your mind when ever you want. The day comes where you're totally frustrated without a stroller, go buy one. You don't actually have to decide that before you have a baby.

  • A friend gave me a used snap and go and I think it got used once.  She hated the car and hated the stroller.

    Now we have a BOB Revolution (used on CL) and I love it.  DD, not so much.  We end up having to carry her more than half the time.  But I think as she gets older, it will get better.  If you're at all considering a jogging stroller, the BOB has an infant car seat adapter.

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    When he was little, I loved the snap n go. He fell asleep in the car a lot, and that way I didn't have to wake him up.

    Now, I do have a stroller (Chicco Liteway) and a wagon. I use both. I use my carriers.

    The thing is: you can change your mind when ever you want. The day comes where you're totally frustrated without a stroller, go buy one. You don't actually have to decide that before you have a baby.

    This is 100% my advice.  I have never used the stroller we bought pre-baby.  I loved the snap n go for when he was asleep, and then for when I would "walk the mall" with my mommies group when he was tiny...the snap n go would hold our bags and stuff while he hung out in the Ergo.

    But our travel system stroller??  TOTAL WASTE.

    I also have a Bob Ironman that I use for running, and then yesterday we walked up to the grocery store and it was great for that.  But literally yesterday was the only non-run time we've used the stroller.  And I got our Bob on Craigslist.

    I think the important thing to remember is how easily you can buy a stroller later on IF you decide you need it.  I LOVE baby wearing, but it is a little harder now that he is getting so big (and with 1st trimester fatigue setting in, sad :( )...we're not planning to buy a double stroller though...my plan is for one LO to either ride along with dad in the Beco or Ergo while I carry the other, or one in the single stroller while I baby wear the other.  If/when a time comes when I really wish we had a double, I'll scour CL for the perfect deal.  There is really no reason to have an expensive stroller before the baby comes.

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  • Agree with everyone else - totally depends.  We don't use our stroller often at all, but I do love having it to take to the mall to carry the packages!
  • While trying to figure out what to register for, I had the same question.  I plan to bw, but at some point, unfortunately sooner than later, I will need to go back to work.  Right now I think our plan is to have someone come here rather than send baby to daycare.  We decided to register for the stroller based on the fact that I don't expect our child care provider to wear our baby, nor would I expect them to sit in our tiny apartment all day long.
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  • Ditto everyone, it's definitely something you can wait and buy after LO arrives/gets older.

    Another thing to think about, even if you/H wear LO all the time, at some point someone else will probably watch LO. Either returning to work, or just to get out of the house for a few hours. They may want the stroller for a walk to the park, etc.

    We didn't start using the stroller until LO was ~6m but we've gotten good use out of it in these past 3m. Trip to the zoo, long day shopping at the mall, walks to the park, etc. I wouldn't say I need a stroller but it sure comes in handy at times.



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  • I only skimmed the responses.  I did the "wait and see" plan with the snap n go.  Now I have a city mini that I got a good deal on and LOVE.  I wish I had the car seat adaptor.  I've thought about selling the snap n go to get the adaptor, but I don't know how much longer we will even use the infant car seat so I am on the fence.

    I would say that if there is a nice stroller you are really wanting and it comes with an adaptor, do that.  If you are not sure what stroller you want do the snap n go. I am grateful for the stroller and my many carriers.

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