You’ve finished the books. You bought a t-shirt that said, “I’m a big brother.” While you’re nursing, you have a basket full of entertaining activities for him to do.
When you get home from the hospital, you’re ready to make the transition from singleton to a sibling as painless as possible.
However, after a few weeks, you might be frustrated.
Wasn’t it in the books that this would be a difficult transition? Your elder child appears to be completely ignorant to the fact that there is now another child in the family, and life for him hasn’t changed much.
You’ve got a good feeling about the whole sibling situation.
Then your baby reaches the age of eight months. Crawling, scooting, and dragging myself up to the coffee table where the older children keep their crafts and snack cups…
Everything changes all of a sudden.
Your elder child, who was formerly ignorant to their younger sibling’s skills, is now well aware of them, and he doesn’t like it.
If you have older kids and are struggling with sibling conflict, check out this resource: Genius Ways To Minimize Sibling Rivalry At Home.
Signs Your Toddler Is Jealous Of The Baby
Your toddler might be jealous of the new baby you just brought home and there will be some signs to watch out for so you can try to minimize the jealousy and promote a healthy relationship between the children.
Some signs of a jealous toddler could include:
- Showing frustration
- Demanding attention
- Regressing in behaviors such as wetting the bed or sucking the thumb
- Tattling on the baby
By the way, toddlers have a tough time sharing as it is, read Putting An End To Kids Fighting Over Toys here to learn more about sharing!
6 Things You Can do To Help Older Siblings Accept a New Baby
For an older sibling, a newborn on a blanket clutching a rattle is a relatively non-threatening setting. They can play in the vicinity without being interrupted or having their things taken away.
When your kid gets mobile, he or she faces a new set of social and problem-solving problems that your child may not be prepared to face. Your toddler for example might be thinking the baby is wanting to keep getting into trouble.
To help your children prepare for this period, follow these suggestions:
Discuss what’s to come
Use the first few months to begin a discussion about how newborns learn and grow. Expect your child to be a novice when it comes to developmental phases. Give them knowledge ahead of time so they aren’t startled when they learn that sitting leads to an army crawl, which leads to standing, and then walking.
Also, talk to your child about the failure that your baby will experience when falling and bumping head into the furniture so your older sibling can look after the baby a little bit too! Gives them a sense of responsibility and purpose.
Discuss what is usual for babies
Continue the discussion by explaining how to communicate with their siblings, how to connect with them, and what a baby can and cannot understand. Make a point of emphasizing how your older child can assist their younger sister in learning language and social skills.
Make a safe location for your older child to put valuable toys, art projects, and anything else he wishes to keep out of the reach of the newborn by planning ahead. Discuss where the ideal location to build block towers is, as well as where he can go if the baby is invading his space or he wants some alone time.
Demonstrate how to deal with conflict
During those months of change, your presence is critical. Rather than expecting they’ll “figure it out,” get down on the floor with them and go over their options: giving a comparable toy, offering a BETTER item, sharing toys, going to a safe location, asking a parent for help, and so on. Here are some great books for kids about having siblings: Most Epic Kids Books About Sibling Rivalry.
Allow both children to speak (Speak For The Baby)
It’s easy to favour one child over the other – “come on, she’s just a baby!” “You should know better.” Despite the fact that the infant is yet unable to speak, she is gaining knowledge. As a result, it’s critical to bring her worries or needs to her sibling’s notice. It’s also crucial to discuss the thoughts and wants of the older sibling.
Encourage collaboration by allowing each kid to assist and support the other
This will help to build a strong sibling relationship. To build a firm foundation, have them pick up toys together, console one other when they are unhappy, grab a band-aid when the other is hurt, or develop a “bedtime” routine.
Keep in mind that depending on your older children’s age, these talks and interactions will appear different. The simple language will be required for very young siblings, while older children could be able to comprehend and solve problems on a more complicated level.
Ways The Birth Of A Sibling Can Affect A Child Emotionally
According to Family Lives Matter, many children experience feelings of envy toward their new brother or sister, and they may express these sentiments by engaging in more ‘babyish’ behaviour, such as tantrums or refusing to use the potty after having been potty-trained for some time. This is very normal, and it’s their way of expressing their dissatisfaction and bewilderment about their role in your life and in the family. See also: Surviving The Dreaded Potty Training Regression.
How to Avoid Sibling Rivalry with a New Baby bottom Line
Having a sibling isn’t easy. Most children’s find it difficult to share toys, time, and attention. Put yourself in your children’s position and let them know that you understand why having a younger sister around isn’t always enjoyable. If they have strong sentiments towards their sibling, be prepared to listen to them without passing judgement.
Take a deep breath, though. This is a step-by-step procedure.
Your older kid will then get down with his little brother the next day and construct an intricate block fortress together. And you’ll be happy. There is reason to be optimistic. See also: How To Teach Siblings To Be Best Friends.
You might also enjoy this article on Preventing Sibling Rivalry In Young Families.