If you don’t know, I’m pregnant with a baby boy due in January. J is an only child at this point and I’m pretty sure that the new baby is going to rock his world a bit. We’ve talked a bit about baby brother, but not much.
A new sibling is really difficult to explain to a toddler. It’s such a huge concept that’s really hard to understand until it happens. However, there are some things you can do to help ease the transition and prepare a young child for a new sibling. I’ve come up with some ways to begin the discussion of a younger sibling, and I’ve put together a series of posts about how to prepare for a new baby.
My first idea to introduce J to the concept of a new baby was to go buy a baby doll just for him. I know many of you, especially if you have little girls, already have baby dolls in your home, but we didn’t. So, I took him to the store and let him pick out any baby that he wanted.
We took the baby home and J spent most of the day taking care of it. It was great to see how nurturing he was towards the baby without any guidance from me.
He immediately got the baby undressed,
gave it a bath in his kitchen sink,
and changed it’s diaper.
We talked about how baby brother was going to need to be changed, bathed, and have his diaper changed.
The doll is now in J’s playroom and he can play with it whenever he wants to. I suggest now and again that J play with his baby. He still really likes it and does play with it every once in a while.
I think that the doll will really help when the baby is here too. Children process big changes and stresses through their play. It helps them make sense of the things happening in their world. Adult talk things through…children play them out. I hope that having his own baby doll will help him deal with the big changes a new sibling will cause in his life.
So you tell me….how have you helped your children prepare for a new sibling?