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Preparing Your Child for A New Sibling

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You are all excited about your new bundle of love, but you don’t want your other child(ren) to feel left behind when the new baby arrives. A few tips to helping your child(ren) feel included in the arrival of your new baby.

  1. Tell your child that the baby is a new person in your family who you are going to love & who will love you back.
  2. Explain how the baby will eat and sleep giving your child an idea of what babies can and cannot do. Let them know they have to be gentle with baby. This will help set expectations of baby.
  3. Take your child on a tour of the hospital so they know where mommy and baby will be for a few days.
  4. Buy a gift for your child from baby that he or she will receive from baby when they first meet.
  5. Have your child help with baby by bringing you a diaper when it’s time to change, kissing baby goodnight, picking out clothes for baby to wear, etc.
  6. After baby is born find special activities you can do with your child so he or she doesn’t feel left out. It can be as simple as sharing a special snack or going for a walk.

What tips do you have for preparing your child to meet a new sibling?

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16 Responses to “Preparing Your Child for A New Sibling”

  1. Jen Green March 29, 2011 at 10:45 am #

    Great tips! Thanks so much for sharing them. I would also add that you might ask the older sibling to make a present (a drawing, or painting, or donating a favorite toy) to the new baby. That way they will feel an active participant in welcoming the child. Thanks!

  2. Anna March 29, 2011 at 12:16 pm #

    The introduction of a new sibling was a lot harder on my 2 1/2 year old than I thought it would be. We bought him a big “big sibling” gift, read lots of children’s books on becoming a big brother, talked about the hospital and what the new baby would be like and it was still a rough road. The only thing that helped was time, he eventually got used to the baby. Good luck to all the pregnant moms out there!

    • MichelleH March 30, 2011 at 8:34 am #

      Thanks for sharing your story Anna & for the added tip of reading books about becoming a big brother or sister!

  3. Francie March 29, 2011 at 1:09 pm #

    I wish I’d read some of this stuff before my baby was born 10 weeks ago. My 2 1/2 yr old has been pretty good about it, but I know he’s felt a little left behind because the baby requires so much of my attention. I know it’ll get easier, though, as his brother gets older and more fun to play with.

    • MichelleH March 30, 2011 at 8:33 am #

      Francie,
      You have a great attitude! Hopefully things will get better

  4. Mrs. Smitty March 29, 2011 at 3:26 pm #

    My daughter is 2 1/2 and I’m 8 mo pregnant with #2.. she knows something is up and is upset by the changes going on in our lives but I’m out of ideas with helping her balance it all out!

    • MichelleH March 30, 2011 at 8:32 am #

      Mrs. Smitty,
      We hope these ideas & those of our fans help a little. Congrats on your new baby!

  5. Whitney March 29, 2011 at 5:03 pm #

    These are all great tips. We made sure to say “our” baby, so my son knew he was a part of everything going on too. The transition was easy for us and my son adores our daughter. You definitely have to make sure to give your first child extra attention the first few weeks too.

    • MichelleH March 30, 2011 at 8:31 am #

      Great tip Whitney! Thanks for sharing it!

  6. Tara V March 30, 2011 at 12:01 pm #

    We read a lot of books when we were getting the kids ready for the baby. We also let them help out with selecting things for the new baby to keep them excited.

    • MichelleH March 31, 2011 at 11:27 am #

      Tara,
      Those are great ideas. Thanks for sharing them!

  7. Ordinary Sarah March 30, 2011 at 4:42 pm #

    I think the most important thing to do is to build excitement and always talk about the baby’s arrival in a positive way.

    • MichelleH March 31, 2011 at 11:29 am #

      Ordinary Sarah,
      Great advice! Thank you for sharing!

  8. Rachel D. March 31, 2011 at 12:32 am #

    Great tips! I think other great tips are to give your child a doll so they can take care of their baby while you take care of the new baby. Also reading your child books about being a big brother and sister can help to prepare them as well.

    • MichelleH March 31, 2011 at 11:30 am #

      Wonderful idea Rachel! Thank you for sharing it with us.

  9. ShellieAnd Brutus April 10, 2011 at 10:07 pm #

    I also like the idea of the doll!

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