Bringing home a newborn for the second time is a little different from your first experience. While the only thing you focus on in the first is how to take care of a baby, in the second, it is among your duties to follow the changes in the needs of the older sibling with the birth of the baby. However, it should not be forgotten that you are now more experienced in baby care.
It is very important to prepare the child before the baby is born, but there are a few situations that you should pay attention to while doing this. For example, it’s a good idea not to tell the preschooler about pregnancy before your tummy becomes clear. Since the concept of time is not fully formed, pre-school children receive the news early, which can make them excited and impatient in this process. In fact, 9 months seems like a long time for them. However, after your tummy becomes clear, you should definitely share it with your child.
In this process, it is useful to be planned. As the due date approaches, inform your child about the process you will be going through. You should provide information about going to the hospital and how long you will be staying there (if you are going to stay overnight) and who will take care of him during this time. So children know what awaits them when that day comes.
It is of course important to prepare the older sibling before the birth takes place. Receiving information from the most trusted person, his parents, will erase the question marks in the child’s mind over time and reduce the level of anxiety. However, while doing this, the age and developmental characteristics of the older child will guide you in managing the process.
children under 2 years old They may not understand what it means to have a new sibling. But together, you can look at picture books and talk about a new addition to your family and talk about the concept of ‘sibling’.
Children aged 2-5 years they are still very attached to their parents and may be jealous of their parents sharing their attention with their newborn. In this case, you can explain that the baby is very small and needs attention because he cannot meet his own needs.
When you go shopping for the baby, you can get the older sibling’s ideas and encourage him to choose and say that he can help if he wants to help. (However, if the child does not want, he should not force it.)
In the process, the older child may wonder if he or she received the same attention as a baby. Together you can talk about your child’s birth story and look at baby pictures.
Also, make sure your older child receives individual attention when the new baby arrives, no matter what age. If you’re taking photos or videos, include your older child, and don’t let the newborn baby be on the agenda when relatives or guests come to visit. During the chat, you can talk about your big brother’s support in this process. During these visits, your guests can bring gifts for the baby. The older sibling may feel worthless in such situations. As parents, having 1-2 gifts at home can be a savior for this process.
Try to keep routines as organized as possible in the first days and weeks when baby comes home. This is because your child may link their changing routines to the baby’s arrival at home.
For example, it may not be a good idea to start the older child in school immediately after birth and go through the orientation process. The child may think that he is exiled when the new baby comes home.
If you are planning to make a room change for the baby, plan it at least 1-2 weeks before the birth with the opinion of the older sibling.
If you’re considering toilet training your child, or if you’re at an important milestone, such as planning the transition from crib to bed in the bedroom, I recommend making such changes sometime before birth or some time after the baby comes home.
Children want to help care for a baby, and often this responsibility gives them great pleasure. You can see this as an opportunity. This process can create a chance to interact positively between siblings. However, if your child does not show / ignore the baby at all, do not worry and do not force it. It may take time.
Take care to spend time with your older child while the baby is sleeping. Knowing that you have a special time just for her can help ease any resentment or anger about the new baby.
Children may find it difficult to cope with the involvement of a new family member. Encourage older children to talk about their feelings. Despite all these considerations, children wonder how far they can go and may want to try their limits. If they make a move that will endanger the baby; you shouldn’t loosen your boundaries and say, ‘It can hurt when you treat someone like that.’ You should warn. But also try to understand what emotions motivate this behavior. If you think that there is an increase in behaviors that may harm the baby and that these attempts are becoming more frequent, it may be a signal that your child needs more one-on-one time with you. In this case, you can talk about the fact that his feelings are important, but he needs to express it appropriately.
If you think that despite all these measures you are not in control and you can no longer cope, you should definitely seek support from a specialist.