When you’re pregnant with your subsequent children, it can be an unsettling time for the whole family. Life is pretty simple with one child, you have your routines and have enough time to give everything to your little one. However, when number two arrives it can be hard on your first child. So how do you make the transition to include babies and siblings? We all know that babies are hard work, the constant feeding and nappy changing can take hours. This part is extremely hard for new parents and can leave siblings feeling out of the loop. There are many ways to involve babies and siblings:
Talk to your older child and let them know in advance what will happen. Children understand a lot more than you think and just need things communicating to them. Children love to feel helpful, so get them to pass you things and give them verbal praise on how helpful they are being. Also, involve them in the name choice, this will make them feel so important in the family.
Before baby arrives, get them to pick out a present for the baby, this will help them connect with the baby. Also, pick out a present for the older child from the baby. If you have a girl, then a doll is great as they can feed alongside you. For boys, anything to keep them occupied, Lego or a transformer works well.
This is a harder one, as we don’t want them to break the newborn. With gentle guidance and time they will learn how to hold baby and give the baby reassurance. Let them know where they can touch baby and that they can’t pick baby up whilst you’re not there.
When baby is sleeping, set aside some quality time with your older child. Make a big fuss of this special time so that they feel cherished. It can be hard when you’re exhausted, but in the long run it will be a blessing as it will fill up there attention buckets.
Even if you are exhausted and just want to get the kids to bed, just give the older child another 15 minutes. This gives them the big kid role and will make them feel special. Use this time for some one on one and read books, chat or ask them about their day.
It is so important to stick to the same routine as much as physically possible with your older child. They will need some normality in their life and by sticking to routines, they will know what’s happening.
There is a great free webinar on positive parenting at www.positiveparentingsolutions.com You will have bumps along the road and the webinar shows you lots of tricks to use along the way. Life with babies and siblings is amazing, but it is also a big adjustment for everyone. I can promise you that your older child will feel it more than anyone. As much as possible, use this time to let them know how important they are to you and that both children have a piece of your heart. Give it time, patience and a lot of cuddles.
If you feel that you would benefit from having a maternity nurse to help with your new baby, whilst you spend quality time with your older children, please get in touch. We have many experienced maternity nurses, some are from a medical background, such as midwives and paediatric nurses. Others are from a child educational background, such as nursery nurse teachers and many of our maternity nurses have many years of nanny experience. We also have new starter maternity nurses. All of our professional maternity nurses have an enhanced DBS, an up to date paediatric first aid and relevant qualifications. By providing us with the requested information below, we can best find you a suitable maternity nurse for you requested dates.
For more informative pregnancy, birth and baby articles, read our Maternity Mum blog.