A new sibling means some major changes for your toddler. From the toddler’s perspective, once the ruler of the roost, they now have to share you with a tiny, crying, pooping machine. Not fair, right?!
You may have heard that it’s going to be a bumpy road as you adjust to your newest addition, but planning ahead can help! There are things you can do now before baby arrives to help settle the transition for your toddler, and who knows? They may even be ready to welcome baby right along with you!
What’s the deal with babies anyway?
When you told your toddler that they were going to be a big brother, they likely formed an idea in their mind about what it would be like. Their vision probably included a walking, talking playmate to go on fun adventures with. One way you can help them form a more realistic picture is by spending some time around others with babies. Especially if your toddler hasn’t spent much time around other babies, it will be helpful to get in some baby time before their sibling arrives. Do you have friends or family with babies? Plan some special visits where you can point out how baby is taken care of.
It could also be helpful for your toddler to see you hold the baby. Seeing their mom or dad holding their sibling can stir up a lot of emotions: confusion, jealousy, or resentment. In small doses, give your toddler a chance to see you in this new role.
The ABCs of babies
A few months before baby arrives, select some age-appropriate books for you and your toddler to read together that introduce the concepts of siblings, caring for babies, etc. Some great titles include:
For more tips and to read the complete article, visit lanekids.org.
This article is brought to you by Parenting Now! Parenting Educators and authors Amanda Bedortha, Claire Davis and Lynne Swartz and consultant Jay Thompson (andupdatemywebsite.com). Parenting Now! is passionate about happy, healthy families. For more information about Parenting Now! please visit their website (https://parentingnow.org/) or contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org