How to Help Your Child Adjust To A Newborn

How to Help Your Child Adjust To A Newborn

One crying newborn and a cranky firstborn all at the same time can be extremely tough to handle.  The newborn, although unaware of the emotional values, has a lot of requirements that need to be met.  Coping with your elder child’s emotional state on the arrival of a new sibling is an added complexity best dealt with and not ignored.

Being new to being an elder sibling can be a rough experience for your child.  It will take time for them to get the hang of it.  Until then, they will demand your undivided attention and will possibly want mommy and daddy all to themselves.  Helping your child adjust to the new baby comes down to you and your spouse.  You have to deal the situation with a lot of patience and affection.

What’s Going On In Baby#1’s Head?

While the new addition might be younger, your elder one will always be your baby too.  It is possible that your kid goes through an emotional setback.  Some kids do not really understand the changes.  Some are even fine with and excited about the new member.  Most kids build a slight jealousy towards their baby sibling.  Previously, mummy and daddy would let baby#1 snuggle with them and pay attention to them all the time.  Now when baby#1 walks up to mom to talk, baby#2 (the newborn) begins to cry and mum needs to check up on them.  Such situations can occur in your house, and it can provoke jealous or grieving behavior in your child.  Some kids lash out towards the newborn, others just get cranky.

What Can You Do About It?

You are extremely lucky if you aren’t faced by such a situation.  Otherwise, you need to direct most of your attention to your child. The younger one obviously isn’t mature enough to understand your behavior, but your elder one can draw comparisons and feel upset about it.  Even when extremely tired, try to find some time to spend with your baby#1 and give them a 100% of your attention.  Talk to them about their day or read to them.  Watch their favorite show with them.  Even if you are tired, smile towards your elder child; you are never too tired to smile at your baby.  Teach your child that snuggling with mum and dad along with the newborn is ok and they are always welcome.   If your child still insists on you not holding the baby, you should have a conversation with them very lovingly and gently.  Even though young, kids can understand things very well if taught nicely.

Although it might take some work to help your child adjust to the newborn, it is very much worth it.  Deal with your child patiently and you will be good to go.


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