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Hospital Instructions for New Mothers in 1968 Are Hilariously Outdated

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People have always given advice to young moms (whether they like it or not), but we’ve sure come a long way with what is considered the norm for new parents. Take a look at these laughable hospital instructions Micala Gabrielle Henson discovered while looking through her mom’s things — and found so amusing she posted to her Facebook page. 

While some aspects of childbirth haven’t changed much since the late ‘60s — “Do not smoke while baby is in room” — other rules just wouldn’t fly today. Good luck dads if you wanted to be with your wife while she’s nursing. “No visitor is allowed on floor or in room during nursing period, including father,” the handout stipulates. Other family members could only see the newborns at specific times. “Please do not ask to see baby at any other time [outside the 2:30 to 3:30 p.m. and 7:00 to 7:45 p.m. time slots],” the hospital asks.

The hospital even dictates how long a new mom can breastfeed her child. During the first 24 hours after birth, she can only breastfeed for five minutes at most. That limit is extended to seven minutes maximum on day two and three. By day four and five, she must stop breastfeeding after 10 to 15 minutes. All these rules are to keep nipple soreness at bay — not that it matters if breastmilk is beneficial for the baby or not.

On a lighter, yet still very odd note, the hospital includes a list of foods mothers should absolutely avoid at all costs after giving birth. Chocolate candy, raw apples, cabbage, nuts, strawberries, cherries, onions, and green cocoanut cake are all off limits. Sure, chocolate isn’t the most nutritious and it may contain theobromine, a diuretic that has a similar effect on the body as caffeine, but any woman who just carried and delivered a baby can darn well have some chocolate (or green cocoanut cake!) if she chooses. 

The note continues with guidelines for bottle-feeding, since they at least realize that babies who are breastfeed for just five minutes a day, still need to eat. Finally, the hospital has one last, simple request: “PLEASE CO-OPERATE.”

These may have been the rules when our parents had us, and yes, we turned out just fine, but thank goodness times have changed! 

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