26 Jul 8 Tips on Preparing Your Child for a Sibling
Nothing is as exciting as having a new baby on the way. The arrival of a new bundle of joy can bring a lot of excitement, but also a lot of change to the family. While parents will undoubtedly have a lot to do in order to prepare for their little one, it is important to remember that this baby will bring changes for everyone including the big brothers and sisters.
Once a baby arrives, a lot of the attention will need to be on the newborn, and it can mark a lot of change for the older siblings and be a lot for them to handle. It can cause kids to feel jealous, insecure or even to act out. This is why it is so important that parents are taking time during the pregnancy to prepare their child for a new sibling.
- Prepare Your Child During Pregnancy- You need to keep your comfort level and your child’s maturity level in mind during this time. You can read books, visit friends who have infants, talk to your child about baby names or go to the doctor to hear the baby’s heartbeat.
- Consider Sibling Birth Classes- Many hospitals offer these classes to help provide orientation for soon-to-be siblings. These classes can help teach little ones how to hold a baby and can encourage kids to talk about their feelings about having a new sibling.
- Try to Keep Routines as Regular As Possible Around The Baby’s Arrival- Do your best to keep routines the same. If you are planning on switching up rooms, do it before the due date to help prevent children from getting too
- Discuss Due Date Plans With Your Child Ahead of Time- Once you have made arrangements for your child during the birth, make sure that your child knows. It can be something like “Nana is coming to visit us” or “you are going to stay with Uncle Andy.” The more prepared your child feels, the better.
- Include Kids As Much as Possible in Daily Activities- This will help your children feel more involved and will make sure that they don’t feel left out. Whether it’s helping to make lunch, helping with bath time or reading books with the baby, little things can help.
- Don’t Force An Interest in the Baby- Some older siblings will be very interested in a new baby, others will not. If your child shows no interest in the baby, don’t be alarmed and don’t force it.
- Make One-on-One Time with Older Kids- Make sure that you are spending time together with your older kids whenever you can. This can be on a special “date night” or simply when the baby is sleeping. Either way, do your best to make sure your child has one-on-one time with one parent at least once a day, even if it is just on the ride to school.
- Continue to Send Your Child to Activities- You may feel guilty about sending your child to daycare, camps or school while you’re home with the new baby, but keeping routines normal is helpful for siblings. They may also be overwhelmed by the new changes at home and enjoy getting out of the house and back to their normal schedule to spend time with their peers.
It is important that the entire family is ready for a new addition when there is a baby on the way. Here at Continuum Pediatrics, we can help you learn more about preparing your children for a new sibling in a fun, healthy and effective manner. You can schedule an appointment with us by calling 817-617-8600 to learn more and to help make sure the entire family is ready for this new addition.