A little kick here, and a little kick there.
The excitement is just too much to bear.
Baby No. 2 is on its way!
But before you can say “hurray”, there’s one thing you’ve got to put to bay.
Those nagging questions in your mind that feel like a plague…
How will my toddler react to the new baby?
Will they be jealous, resentful and insecure?
How do I broach the topic in a constructive manner?
Not to worry, we’ve got your back.
In this blog post, Greendigo gives you the tools to prepare your toddler to become a big sibling.
Honesty can be fun
So, consider breaking the news to your child as soon as you begin to show. This way, they will have enough time to get used to the idea of a baby brother or sister. The manner in which you reveal the news, however, will depend on your firstborn’s maturity level. Try something enjoyable and original like a treasure hunt around the house.
Any and all feelings matter
Expect a mixed bag of emotions. Your little one could be cheerful, ecstatic, confused, or even, overwhelmed, after the big reveal. No matter how they react, it’s your job to remain calm and collected. In case they don’t express emotion at once, be patient. Don’t panic. They may need some additional time to process the change.
Involvement equals security
Did you know, your child is likely to feel more secure if you involve them in the baby prep? Whether it’s shopping for organic clothes, setting up the nursery, or going for an ultrasound, let the tiny tot tag along. You could even gift them a life-sized doll to practice their big sibling duties on!
Q&A is important
As your body changes, and your moods begin to sway, your child will take notice. And, naturally, get more curious. So, use this as a teaching moment. Tackle all those questions (big and small) in an age-friendly manner, so that he/she isn’t startled by something as normal as a baby bump.
Knowledge is power
Let them know what to expect. And if they aren’t old enough to understand the concept of a new sibling, show them pictures instead! Picture books are a great avenue to explore. They’re both fun and informative. You can even visit friends who’ve recently had a baby.
Regression is natural
It’s possible that your child will begin to regress in behaviour, despite all your careful planning and consideration. For instance, insisting on drinking from a bottle. Or, wanting to be carried. And even, sucking the thumb. This is their way of acting out. So, don’t react. Rather, let them revert back to normalcy at their own pace.
While each child is unique, they all have certain underlying traits.
Like the need to be understood and cared for, unconditionally.
So, navigate this phase with patience and understanding.
Take support from your partner.
Learn from your mistakes and grow.