Passing a baby
30 April, 2006
I was wondering if there was any maikel opinion to rely on regarding passing the new born baby during the weeks of Yoledet. When the couple already has 2 older children and the new baby will be 14 months after the last child. Keeping in mind the mental health status of the mother.
Thank you very much
Passing the baby directly from hand to hand is prohibited (until the baby attains independent mobility), whether or not you have older children present. When you, BeSha'ah Tovah, have another baby, you can put him or her down on a bouncer, an infant seat, on the couch (with you holding on till a moment before your husband does), etc. Your oldest child might also be able to hold the baby as an intermediary. With cooperation, creativity, and practice you will maximize the amount of time that you can fully comply with this halachah with minimum toll on the mother's mental health. Of course, common sense must prevail. It would be a distortion of halachah to endanger the baby in any way. Where there is no safe alternative, the baby may be passed directly, with great care taken not to touch.
When a child reaches an age at which he or she can propel him or herself, there is room to allow passing directly when the infant reaches out and motions toward the other parent. Infants can also be manipulated to reach out to a spouse.
We would also like to direct you to a longer answer we have drafted on the issues of handling the laws of niddah after childbirth.
This internet service does not preclude, override or replace the psak of any rabbinical authority. It is the responsibility of the questioner to inform us of any previous consultation or ruling. As even slight variation in circumstances may have Halachic consequences, views expressed concerning one case may not be applied to other, seemingly similar cases. All health and health-related information contained within Nishmat's Women's Health & Halacha Web site is intended to be general in nature and should not be used as a substitute for consulting with your health care professional. The advice is intended to offer a basis for individuals to discuss their medical condition with their health care provider but not individual advice. Although every effort is made to ensure that the material within Nishmat's Women's Health & Halacha Web site is accurate and timely, it is provided for the convenience of the Web site user but should not be considered official. Advice for actual medical practice should be obtained from a licensed health care professional.
For further questions or comments:
The Nishmat Women's Health and Halacha Site is a public service of Nishmat, The Jeanie Schottenstein Center for Advanced Torah Study for Women. This project and others like it are made possible by contributions from people like you. If you have benefited from the service, and wish to enable us to help others, click here to donate.
Users of Internet filtering services: This site discusses sensitive subjects that some services filter without visual indication. A page that appears 100% complete might actually be missing critical Jewish-law or medical information. To ensure that you view the pages accurately, ask the filtering service to whitelist all pages under yoatzot.org.