Baby number two is on the way and your happiness levels are just through the roof, but is baby number one on equal footing with you?
You want your older child to see the arrival of your bun in the oven as a delightful new gift as oppose to a looming buzz kill.
Some parents wait too long before they start making changes that would alter their firstborn’s way of life. You don’t want to do this. In fact, you should start preparing your child for his or her sibling long before you even get pregnant if you’ve already decided on having baby number #2 in the future.
Getting Your Child Accustomed To Siblings
Parents should start implementing behaviors such as sharing, playing nicely, and camaraderie as soon as possible. This could mean taking your child to events where plenty of
other children or large families are present so that your little one can get used to the sibling dynamic. Remember, your child has never had a sibling and probably has no idea
how to treat one unless they witness this interaction for themselves. Reading books or watching movies that show brothers and sisters having positive interactions with each other will also help your child get excited about having a new sidekick with whom he or she can play.
Once you know baby number two is on the way you want to start easing your child into the sibling way of life. If you plan on moving your child from one bedroom to another or placing the newborn in the room with them, you want to introduce these changes prior to the baby’s arrival. This will help prevent your child from feeling as if the baby has caused him or her to get pushed aside. Also, implementing a baby doll into the mix would help, too. You want to treat the doll as if it were the sibling. Ask your child to help you with the doll and to include the doll in activities you do together. Your child will get used to including the doll and therefore be more welcoming about the new baby’s presence when he or she arrives.
Breaking The News
Telling your child about your baby’s impending arrival can be tricky, especially if your child is too young for the “Where Do Babies Come From” talk. Doctors recommend not breaking the news to the child until after the first trimester, this is the most delicate time for the baby and breaking that time frame will make things more concrete for you and your child. You want to avoid breaking the news in an intimidating way like, “Listen, things are going to change around here.” Tell your child that something wonderful is happening and that you love your child so much that you decided to give him or her a baby brother or sister. Get your child excited about the baby by saying things like, “When your brother or sister gets here you guys can do THIS together.” Also, include your child in the preparation process like having your child pick out clothing for themselves and for the baby. As your belly grows you want to tell your child “This is your little brother or sister inside mommy,” help him or her understand there is a life inside you and soon they will be able to meet them. This will get your child excited about his or her sibling’s arrival.
Avoid Making It All About The Baby All The Time
The eagerness of the new baby can cause parents to change the way they interact with their first born. You want to keep the normalcy and only allow the baby preparation to trickle in — this will prevent your child from feeling as if he or she is getting replaced or that the baby is more important than he or she is in your life. When you are around friends and family you don’t want to make the baby the only topic of conversation. This can get complicated especially if they insist on asking a million questions about the baby. If your child is around, bring up his or her accomplishments in conversation so he or she knows that they are still a superstar in your eyes even with the new baby being a big deal to everyone else.
Preparing for a new member in family can prove to be a challenging task, but it is also a marvelous opportunity for your first born to begin loving their brother or sister before they have even arrived. Every child is different and consulting a professional about preparations is always a good idea. Remember it’s never too early to start preparing. Contact the experts at Contemporary Women’s Care in Orlando to get started!