Change that new sibling brings to everyone’s life can be very hard to accept. Specially for toddlers who have been center of mom’s and dad’s attention for TODDLER’S WHOLE LIFE! Let’s see how we, as parents, can help them cope with the change in their life.
Some toddlers will be happy to welcome a new baby sister or brother, some not so much. Here we are sharing several ideas how to prepare your toddler for coming of a new baby in your family.
How can parents help toddlers with accepting a new sibling?
Toddlers love to be useful (ahem, not sure if useful is the right word!) When baby arrives, it’s a great idea to get them to ‘help’ with the baby, passing cotton wool balls, or clothes, something small that gives them a sense that they are contributing. That you’re doing things together. When my twins were big enough to sit in the bath I used to get their older brother to ‘help’ them (even though they didn’t need it.) He felt very grown up!
Shared by Dr.Orlena Kerek, mother to 3 boys (6, 4 and 2 year olds) and girl (2 year old), author at Snotty Noses.
Before our second appeared we spent lots of time reading stories about being a big sister and talking about the baby. Pook picked out a toy mouse at the shop for the baby because “babies need a Mummy, a Daddy and a mouse.” She then got to give this to the new baby and the new baby gave her a big girl present. When Pook saw the baby for the first she proudly told her she was her big sister.
Shared by Gemma, Early Years Teacher and mother to 2 (3 years and 9 months),
author at The Adventures of Meemoo and Pook.
We did a lot of talking about the new baby …beforehand…and covered everything from how babies grow in utero and how they are born to what baby would be doing on a daily basis. We also read lots of baby books (positive ones), and got my toddler excited about his sleepover at the grandparents’ house while we were at the hospital. Also, I prepared some “big brother” busy bags for if he got lonely. Once we were home with baby, there were lots of ways for my son to be a big helper. He could get diapers, fetch/empty the potty (we do EC), find books for us to read all together. Whenever I was nursing baby, I invited my toddler to join us for a snuggle or a story. Also, we tried to keep positive about warnings to be gentle and the like.
Shared by Betsy, mother to 2 boys (3 years and 3 months), author at Betsy’s Photography.
We have tried to “divide” our time and my husband has spent a lot more time with older daughter, taking her to the movies, hiking, on the pool, etc. We tried to not set limitations for her because little sister couldn’t do it. I have also tried to spend some alone time with her each day, making sure she doesn’t feel like she’s less important now for me, as a mother. Still, allowing older kids to help with their little siblings helps a lot, as other mothers have mentioned.
Shared by Mihaela, mother to 2 girls (7 and 2,5 years old), author on Best Toys for Toddlers.
Advice from an Expert
Having a second baby is a very different experience from having your first, yet there is little recognition of the wide range of issues that need to be considered when bringing a second child into the family. In this incredibly helpful book, Sarah Ockwell-Smith helps parents feel more positive and prepared for life with two children. Find the book here: United States | Canada | United Kingdom
Gift for Super Big Bro and Super Big Sis!
For a future superhero! Comes in Super Big Bro (blue) and Super Big Sis (pink) versions and set includes a cape, a mask and lovely certificate to brag about! It will surely inspire older brother or sister to do their best for their new little sibling. You can choose the option between 2 colors here: United States | Canada (only blue) | United Kingdom.
What to Read Next?
- tips for raising an indepedent toddler
- how to deal with moody toddler
- ways to keep toddlers active and happy
- ideas how to improve communication with your toddler