You have exciting news! You are growing your family from three members to four. It’s an exhilarating and busy time preparing for your next little one. One thing that parents worry about is how the first born will react to a second child, have no fear the 5 ways to prepare are here!
Start early preparing them early: It doesn’t matter the age of your first born when it comes time to telling them a second child is on the way, it’s going to be difficult. First things first, once you have the okay from your doctor to make the announcement public, tell your child. Sit down with your first born and share the news by telling them that they are going to be a big brother or sister. Remain positive and excited, your child will sense any uneasiness if you have any.
Encourage participation: During your pregnancy have your first born participate in helping and planning for the new babies arrival. Ask them to help pick out baby names or find things for the baby’s room. You want to make your first child feel like they are going to be important in their sibling’s life, so give them ‘responsibilities’.
Always remind: Throughout the pregnancy give gentle reminders of the baby’s arrival and what that means at home. They need to understand that things will be different but okay. Talk about the baby a lot, the more you do, the more they will be prepared.
Bring around other children: You may have some relatives or close friends with other small children; work with them in preparing your first born. Schedule many play dates or long visits. Allow your first born to help ‘hold’ the baby, play and learn things about the baby. It is a difficult concept for a child to comprehend, the more they are around a baby, they will understand.
Make the time: Once your second child arrives, no matter how difficult or tired you may be, be sure that you make time for your first born. You want an easy and smooth transition into your time sharing. Schedule daily one-on-one’s with your first born, this will help them feel loved and not replaced.
This is an exciting and scary time for your family! You are growing and that means a lot more diapers, toys, tears, hugs and kisses. As long as you remain positive and understanding with your first born your family should have no problem when your second arrives. Congratulations!
Amanda Carlson, a blogger as well as a former newborn care nurse contributed this post. To stay connected to her previous career and share the knowledge she gained, she began writing for www.newborncare.com. You can reach her at amanda.newborncare @ gmail.com.