13 Jun 5 Fun Ways to Help a Big Sibling Adjust to a New Baby
How are you going to handle the change?
When you have a new baby on the way, so many questions go through your mind. Am I going to be a good parent? Will my baby be healthy? Will s/he sleep through the night? What do I do when…?
When you have a second, third, fourth, etc. baby on the way, the biggest question most parents who have already had at least one child ask is, “How is my older child going to adjust to a new baby?
You’ve probably heard some of the classic ways the big sibling can adjust to the new baby in the house: have the big kid be the helper, read books about being a big sibling, get big sibling gifts to make the older child feel included, etc. Here are 5 non-traditional, fun ways to help a big sibling adjust to a new baby.
Taking care of big sister/big brother’s needs:
- Have your older child write (or dictate) or draw about what it’s like to live in your family. In addition to helping the big sibling adjust to the new baby, this will “teach” the baby all about Mom, Dad, big siblings, and even pets and you’ll have a great keepsake for years to come.
- Make a special BIG SIBLING BOX filled with activities that can be used when the baby is sleeping or when you need to attend to the baby’s needs. This can help your child look forward to times when you need to attend to the baby, rather than resenting those times.
- Reminisce with your older child about when she was a baby to help her relate to the new one. “See? Your baby brother is doing what you used to do!”
- Have special Mommy and Big Kid time (or Daddy and Big Kid time) at least once a week and put it on the calendar. This should be about spending time, not money.
- Say yes instead of no. When your older child asks you to play and you’re changing the baby’s diaper, instead of “I can’t right now”, say “yes, I can play with you- as soon as I am finished.”
Dori has provided therapeutic services to children, adolescents, adults, and families since 1994 in several areas of social work including foster care, schools, hospitals, and private practice. She earned her Master of Social Work from The University of Illinois at Chicago’s Jane Addams College of Social Work in 1997 and her Bachelor of Science in psychology from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
She is an Amazon best-selling author and a professional speaker who has been interviewed on ABC, NBC, various podcasts, and radio shows as an expert discussing therapeutic topics and her published works.
Dori offers speaking presentations on various therapy-related topics including, but not limited to anxiety, depression, ADHD, executive functioning, life transitions, effective communication, parenting strategies, work/life integration, and even staying sane while staying informed. She also speaks to businesses and business owners about the importance of hiring for company cultural fit, networking, leadership, and business growth. As a multi-location private therapy practice owner, she provides a culture of accountability, compassion, and creativity, emphasizing the importance of collaboration (with client consent) with parents, teachers, and other professionals to provide the most beneficial services to achieve maximum results for all clients to translate to every aspect of their lives.
As a mother of three, she knows the excitement and challenges of navigating parenting, behavioral and emotional distress, social pressures and rejection, academic successes and struggles, and identity formation. Dori is passionate about providing clients with the tools they need to navigate the challenges they face now to improve their quality of life long after therapy ends.