'Breastfeed for 5 minutes' 'Look at your baby twice a day' Newborn baby instructions from 1968 are UNBELIEVABLE!

This manual from 50 years ago could not be more different to today!

April 02 2019

A set of parenting instructions for a newborn from 50 years ago has gone viral – and they make hilarious and bizarre reading!

The post-partum instructions from an un-named hospital presumably in America, are titled INSTRUCTIONS FOR MOTHERS and there are a list of Dos and Don’t for you and your baby covering everything from feeding times to when you can see your own baby ‘on display’ in the hospital nursery.

Oh, and in 1968, while you were allowed to smoke cigarettes in the hospital, you just couldn’t smoke while your baby was in the room with you!




Clearly babies were NOT allowed to be in the same room as you, so you could LOOK at your child in the nursery just TWICE a day but at any other time the baby was brought to you feeding.

The how-to reads... 



  1. Babies are on display at Nursery window from 2.30 to 3.30pm and 7.00 to 7.45pm. Please do not ask to see baby at any other time.
  2. Baby will come to mother for feeding 9-10AM 1-2PM, 5.30-6.30PM, 9-10PM (No visitors is allowed on floor or in room during nursing periods, including father).
  3. Do not smoke while baby is in the room.
  4. Do not allow visitors to sit on your bed. (The bed linen must be clean for the baby).
  5. Do not cover your baby with your linen.


Mad Men

Mad Men


And when it comes to feeding you were only allowed to feed your baby for just FIVE minutes in its first 24 hours after birth!

That's increased to 7 minutes and by the fourth and fifth days, you were allowed to feed to your baby up to 10 to 15 minutes – ONLY.

And check out what you can and can’t eat!




  1. During first twenty-four hours, allow baby to nurse 5 minutes only.
  2. On second and thirds days allow baby to nurse approximately 7 minutes
  3. On fourth and fifth days allow baby to nurse approximately 10 to 15 minutes.

If Baby Nurses Longer It May Cause The Nipple To Become Sore.




And if you’re bottle feeding – the nurse will provide you with a bottle all ready to go.

The list reads...


  1. Nurse will bring prepared formula ready to give.
  2. After removing nipple cap, please see thatnipple cap does not touch bed linen or anything else. It should remain clean and not become contaminated (contamination of nipple may cause thrush).


The guidelines in this document couldn’t be more different to the ways mums give birth in 2019 – where we’re encouraged to feed on demand, stay with our baby at all times and NOT smoke at all.

“It’s a real eye opener,” says midwife Cath Johnstone. “It just shows how far we have come in life. We would never be this dictatorial in our approach with new mums but back in those days, it was all about a smooth running of the hospital and not the welfare of the mother as much."

"My own mum was told not to breastfeed because it was unhygienic. It's just part of that era."





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