After three babies, I’ve learned little tricks to burping that work for us, like:

  • Sitting baby upright on our lap. Not the “slouchy-lazy baby upright” method my grandma uses. The “ready to ride a bull for eight seconds” method my husband uses.
  • Burping every one to two ounces. Because if spit up is coming up that throat like a freight train, I want to clean things up in small amounts.
  • Wearing a hazmat suit.
  • Not worrying about the carpet for somewhere between four more months to nine more years.

I honestly have no idea how cave people did it. How did they know to burp a baby? Or did they? Was it an era of free burping? Like the sixties were an era of free love. Were there babies being toted around in wooly mammoth baby carriers, projectile vomiting all over the uni-continent that was home?

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In an effort to help make it easier to know what to expect with burping, I’ve created the following guide to ten of the most common newborn burping types:

1 | The burp that never was

This is when baby simply doesn’t burp. Your denial is so strong that you continue to burp baby until he decides he simply doesn’t want to eat anymore if it means you’ll leave him alone.

2 | The cough burp

When baby coughs and burps at the same time creating seismic activity so strong it registers all the way in Finland

3 | The frat house special burp

A burp so loud it wins a belching trophy in four different fraternities. 

4 | The silent burp

The one that skips out but you don’t notice it, so you keep burping baby until he’s nine.

5 | The dry burp

This burp is so loud and coarse baby sounds like a goat.

6 | The after burp

This one almost always comes up after the dry burp. It carries with it an ounce of spit up that’s one part milk, two parts actual spit, and a cup of slime. 

7 | The liquid burp

The burp that’s so watery you’ll think baby coughed up an entire glass of water, but nothing’s there when you check.

8 | The return on investment burp

When you feed baby the entire bottle and baby, in turn, regurgitates a percentage of that bottle onto your lap and the floor.

9 | The wrong burp

When you pat baby’s back, and they fart instead. Then look around like they have no idea what just happened.

10 | The forever burp

When you pat baby’s back for four hours waiting for the burp you know is in there. You’re ultimately forced to choose between continuing this nonsense for twenty more minutes or, hoping for the best and putting baby back to bed in a rain jacket.

In the end, burping is an art you master right around the time your baby doesn’t need to be burped anymore. Even the best burping baby eventually learns to sit up and their stomach flappy-thing develops. They then move on to slobbering on everything and putting the cat’s tail in their mouth. While you congratulate yourself on getting through another insane milestone, your child introduces you to stomach illnesses and the real meaning of projectile vomit. There isn’t a wooly mammoth baby carrier that can help with this.