The arrival of a new baby into the family is a joyous occasion. For older siblings, it can also be a highly difficult period.
Bringing home your newborn baby is a little different the second time around. When you have your first child, you are preoccupied with learning how to care for a baby. When you have a second child, you’ll not only need to care for your baby but also help older siblings adjust to the new addition.
Help keep your big kids at ease as they welcome the family’s newest addition and learn to be big brothers and big sisters with these expert tips
There are numerous books about bringing a new baby into the family (The New Baby, I’m a Big Brother/Sister, and Waiting for Baby, to name a few) that you can read to your children before your newborn’s arrival. After you’ve finished reading, allow your children to ask any questions or express any concerns they may have about the new baby and how their lives will change after he or she arrives.
Make it a cause for joy
Coming home from the hospital is a great moment, and you want your other children to be a part of it. Allow daddy to carry the baby when you arrive so you may greet the older child/children with enthusiasm, advises Dr Lisa Noll, a child psychologist. “You might also have a gift exchange between the newborn and the older child(ren). Allow your older child to choose a special present for the new baby ahead of time.”
Spread the love
Remind guests that it isn’t all about the baby. When visitors arrive to view the new arrival, ask them to welcome the older child/children first. Remind them that the child/children may wish to talk about something other than the new baby.
Spend time with each child individually
Having a newborn in the house will throw everyone off their routine, but don’t forget to schedule some one-on-one time for each of your children. Remember that quality trumps quantity (especially when you’re really busy). However, taking time out to read a book, solve a puzzle, or simply listen to a tale about what occurred at school that day will remind your children that their parents are still there for them.