AP-friendly tips for toddlers and the birth of #2 - Mothering Forums

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Old 06-03-2010, 09:00 AM - Thread Starter
 
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What are your suggestions for the birth of a second child when the older sibling is a toddler?

How do you balance meeting the needs of both? How do you deal with a toddler who was used to being the only child and now has to share his/her parents with a sibling? What do you do when they both need something at once and there is only one parent at home?

What works and what doesn't?
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Old 06-03-2010, 09:34 AM
 
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Hi, I have two sets of two (16 & 14 and 2 and 9 weeks) so twice I have brought home a new baby to a formerly front and center 2 year old. Let them explore each other, time will sort everything out. My LO needed a few days before he/she was even interested in the new baby. Before I knew it all I heard was "hold,hold". Your new babe is custom made to fit into your family.
You will be busy! It has been my experience, that as long as playing and reading with my toddler has been on the top of the list of important things to be done while baby sleeps, all is well. Best wishes.

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Old 06-03-2010, 07:36 PM
 
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I need to know this, too!

Amy (34): mommy to DD1 (11/07) and DD2 (7/10), wife, wohm, and wannabe suburban homesteader.
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Old 06-04-2010, 02:56 AM
 
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It went really well when DS came home when DD was 22 months old, but she has a nurturing personality and was really into babies at the time, so that I am sure helped.

I read a lot of books about babies. We have a baby by Cathryn Falwell is a really good one for toddlers.

We let DD explore the baby stuff and we set up baby stuff a month or so before DS was born, so she got used to it.

We did a lot of positive talk about "our family" and the baby being a new person in "our family". When DS was born he was "our baby".

DD was already used to waiting for things. We have two dogs that she would have to wait for help if I was letting them out, or she would need to come on a walk so they got excercise even if she didn't want to... I guess I just mean that the world didn't revolve around DD before DS was born, so it wasn't a terrible shift when he was born. I know she gets less one-on-one time, and that it was a bit of a balance for a while there (well, and now that they are both very verbal it is another type of balance), but it really worked fine.

Also, don't look for trouble, look for the good. When you see good, be happy about it. When you see trouble, try to re-frame it. Try to expect that there won't be jealousy problems and I think that half the battle is done. Kids are pretty good at living up to or down to our expectations.

But like I said, my DD also had a great personality for it all. We didn't even consider having a newborn as soon after DS, partially because we aren't sure of another and partially because it really would not have meshed well with his personality.

Tjej
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Old 06-04-2010, 08:45 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you Tjej! What other books do you recommend?

I have been talking to my daughter about what babies are like, but she doesn't like the sound of them much. When I told her that babies nurse a lot, she got very upset and said that she did not want the baby to nurse because nursing was for her. I hope to tandem nurse, and when I told her that she could nurse lots too, that did not seem to make it any better in her opinion. From what I can gather, I think she doesn't want to share nursing, or me, or her dad, with the new baby.....
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Old 06-04-2010, 02:44 PM
 
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Well, it turns out one of my favorites - a wordless book by Annie Kubler - no longer exists? and has been re-done... It could still be just as good, or I have no idea. The illustrations are totally different. My New Baby is the book, but now it is by someone else and looks totally different (and I know that I sound crazy and that this is just a different book, but it isn't - that was the title and the cover art was of the same thing, just a different style).

On Mother's Lap is a good one.

Hello Baby is for older kids but does show the baby developing inside, which is neat.

We have a baby is the one I mentioned before, it's probably my toddler favorite.

On the off chance you speak a nordic language, Hej, Lillebror! is a totally AP great book in Swedish. Bokus.com is where I got it.

This book just looks really cute, but I just stumbled upon it when getting the amazon links for you, so I can't recommend it or not.

Tjej

ETA: I thought of another thing we did before DS arrived that I think made a big difference - we switched things around so DD's bedtime routine was with DH. That way she didn't feel gypped at bedtime when I was nursing and settling the baby - it was already what she expected so it wasn't the baby's fault at all.

Oh, and speaking of fault, I was careful not to "blame" the baby for anything - like I wouldn't say "I can't help you now because I'm nursing the baby". I'd either help her or I'd say "I'll help you in a minute or two with that, would you like to read this book with me now?"
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