Preparing Your Toddlers For A New Baby

Bringing a new person home can be traumatic. Learn how to best prepare your toddlers for the arrival of a new baby.

Existing children need to be given a good amount of warning when a baby brother or sister is on the way. Young children may not even notice when you've gained weight or even that you've been gone a couple days to give birth. But by golly they'll notice if you come back with another kid! And it won't be fun.

The best way to handle this situation is to prepare your toddlers for the presence of another child in the house. You need to sit down and explain to your toddler that there will be a new baby in the house and that it will be a lot of fun. Explain to the toddler that you'll need his or her help in raising the child and that the child will be able to act as a big brother or a big sister.

Allow your existing child to ask any questions they might have and be sure to answer all the questions. You need to let your child feel as comfortable about this transition as you possibly can. It's when your child isn't comfortable with the situation that it becomes bad.

Involve your child in as many of the exciting processes of having a baby as you can. If you don't know the gender of your new child, be sure to tell her that. That can be exciting. Be sure to talk about what the differences may be if there's one or another but don't build up any false hope that there may be one gender (in case it turns out to be the other one)... so your child isn't disappointed if that's not how it turns out to be. Also be sure to tell your child how there's nothing certain and that you need to eat certain things throughout your pregnancy. This can help with your child's ongoing education about life.

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