If you are preparing your toddler for a newborn then you have come to the right place!
Preparing toddlers for a newborn may not seem as straight-forward as it seems.
One of the most rewarding times in a parent’s life can also be a traumatic experience for toddlers.
While you are super excited about the arrival of the new baby, a toddler has no idea what is going on.
Toddlers can often feel displaced and confused
Imagine if you were once the main love of someone’s life and another person stepped in to steal the spotlight?
Or you had to share the spotlight that once upon a time had ALL TO YOURSELF.
Can you see how this could potentially be a massive deal for most toddlers?
It’s important to help your toddler understand the changes and know what to expect.
Let’s take a look at how to help your toddler cope with a new sibling.
1-It all begins with the preparation.
Lucky you! You have had nine months to plan for and adapt to the coming of a new child.
Your toddler has probably only had a few months.
On top of that, they really don’t understand what a new baby means to their life.
I mean, chances are you also don’t know how this is going to work for the first few months.
One of the best ways to help your toddler cope with a new sibling is to help them understand what’s going to change.
People don’t like change and toddlers like it even less.
Helping your child know what to expect will ease the transition.
Try to keep your conversations light while at the same time honest and open.
For example, you can tell your child that the new baby is going to be a part of the family and that means a little extra work for everyone.
But it also means another person to love.
You can let your child know that they’ll have extra responsibilities as the big brother or sister and may have to share.
Also let them know that they’ll still have time with just mommy or daddy.
This is super important that they know they will still have your attention and time!
You can also make your life easier by preparing a snack box so your toddler can get some snacks if you are busy breastfeeding.
Or you could create a special drawing or craft corner where they can do special projects and activities if you are having a rest.
Try to make your life easier by thinking ahead of some challenges you may face and being prepared.
2-Get them involved in the process of caring for their new sibling.
Toddlers can do a lot to help.
They can fetch items you need to care for the baby.
They can play with the baby and they can help you around the house.
When your toddler gets to help with the care of their new sibling, they feel like they’re making a contribution and they’re a valuable member of the family.
You will need to make sure the whole process seems like FUN, and not like a burden to your child.
3 -Give your toddler some one on one time.
Your toddler is used to having 100% of your attention.
When a new sibling arrives, they’re going to feel slighted.
Make sure to spend one on one time with your toddler as often as possible.
During the baby’s naps is a good time.
Also in the evening before bed is also a good time.
You can add a few minutes to your toddler’s bedtime routine, read a story or just talk about their day.
Because there will be times when you are exhausted and distracted, you need to remind them how special they are to you.
And not just SAY it but SHOW it to your toddler.
Finally, it’s important to let your toddler know how proud you are of them when they help and what a great brother or sister they are.
Make room for your toddler to grow and keep them busy with new activities.
They’ll soon forget all about their jealousy or confusion, and they’ll settle into the new family changes without too many issues.
Organize a gift for the newborn from the sibling
I know, I know, maybe I’m a sucker for falling for this idea but as soon as I heard about sibling gifts I knew that my daughter would LOVE it.
Why is this such a great idea?
Well you may not realize it but kids ABSOLUTELY LOVE presents.
Okay that was a pretty obvious observation right? It’s exactly the reason why kids love their birthdays and Christmas so much.
When your newborn arrives, the first thing your toddler will notice is the sheer amount of gifts that are given to the baby after his or her birth.
Now sometimes the gift-giver is mindful and they may also purchase a small gift for the older siblings.
Yet for the most part the bigger siblings tend to be forgotten * HEY BECAUSE EVERYONE IS SO EXCITED ABOUT THE NEW BABY REMEMBER? *
Have no fear. Here is the perfect way to make a sibling feel special!
Have the new baby "gift" their big brother or sister with a present.
Yep, it is that simple!
We all tend to like people who give us presents, right?
I did that for my two year old daughter when her little baby brother arrived and she treasured her gift for years and years to come.
Here is my top best pick for a new big sister or brother gift:
An anatomically correct newborn doll
SEE BOY DOLL > HERE <
SEE GIRL DOLL > HERE <
WHY IS THIS SUCH A GREAT GIFT?
Because your toddler will want to do everything you are doing!
When you feed the baby, they will want to feed THEIR baby.
When you change a diaper, they will want to change a diaper.
When you give the baby a bath, they will also want to give the baby a bath.
It is honestly so much easier for your toddler to do what you are doing with a life-like anatomically-correct baby, rather than having them always want to do it with the real thing.
(Sure some days having a helper is great; other than you will need to be super quick if the baby is crying!)
Give yourself a new mommy gift too such as the course below!