going from one to two

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jperry5683's picture
Joined: 02/13/10
Posts: 525
going from one to two

We might have already talked about this before but I was wondering about everyone's experience in going from one child to two.

I think that I have already done everything possible to try to get N's two year old little mind to at least attempt to grasp the idea that he has a brother on the way. N is well behaved but can sometimes be a little rough. I don't know if it is a toddler thing or a boy thing but like when he's petting the dog he gets over aggressive and will pull her fur too hard. Even with me and DH he will be showing affection and sometimes end up being rough. Not too crazy but enough to know that we definitely have to get the point of being gentle across when it comes to new baby.

i have heard of people getting a gift to big sibling from new baby... anyone do this? Any other transitions tips?

AnnaRO's picture
Joined: 07/06/08
Posts: 7033

I personally don't think a gift would have done anything helpful for us. Lyla is the same way with starting off gentle and then getting too rough, so we have to monitor her closely with the baby. Overall it was easier than I thought, but expect some jealousy when the baby requires your attention and you have to focus on him and can't solely focus on N. Lyla has what DH calls 'boob envy'. When I sit down to nurse Kole, she sometimes gets upset or starts to act out to get attention. It's better when DH is here to pay attention to her, but just be aware that you can't make up for every instance of caring for the baby where your attention will be away from N.

It went better than I thought, though, overall. Lyla loves the baby and it's been very busy but not in a bad way.

BuckeyeK's picture
Joined: 10/23/06
Posts: 3087

Well, we had a different experience because DD1 was 3 y 3 mo old when DD2 was born, and she very much understood that a baby was on the way, and was very excited about it. This time around, I'm hoping that DD1's enthusiasm will transfer to Lainey, and while she may not understand fully, I know she is looking forward to a new baby.

We had DD1 pick out a small gift to give the baby. She also got a gift from the baby. And she had a special 'Big Sister' shirt to wear when she came to meet the baby. We'll do all the same things again.

Does he have a baby doll? I'd suggest getting him one so he can care for his baby while you care for baby brother. This was one of DD1's favorite things to do and kept her busy when I was otherwise occupied. Also, give him jobs to do to help you - send him to get the diaper, let him choose what outfit the baby will wear (give him two options to choose between), etc.

cactuswren's picture
Joined: 10/19/09
Posts: 4658

Obviously I don't have personal experience with this, but one of the best-sounding tips I ever heard to help with the initial jealousy is to ask people coming to visit the new baby to greet the older kid first and have the kid show off their new sibling, so they feel included and proud, not passed over. I think any other little things in that vein that you can do would be great!

I don't really know that a kid this age would understand a gift "from" the baby, but getting one FOR the baby seems like a good idea.

Adair is obsessed with this book: What Can Our New Baby Do?: Joan Holub: 9780689850615: Amazon.com: Books

tink9702's picture
Joined: 09/28/08
Posts: 2977

Ethan was not quite 18 months old when Olivia arrived. A gift either way (to or from) we didn't bother with. We did make sure to have a couple new small toys just for entertainment purposes. Having them help is really good advice. DS enjoyed getting the diaper for us or bringing over the blanket etc.

Gentle was NOT something he understood. We pretty much told him he could give kisses and supervised AT ALL TIMES. There was no way in Hell I was letting him hold the baby at that age, he would have thrown her off his lap. So just play things by ear with what you think the older one can handle! Don't feel bad about restricting your older one for safety reasons!

I would let your DH know that he's going to be primary for your older one when he's home. Having special time to play with both daddy and mommy will definitely help!

alwayssmile's picture
Joined: 08/26/07
Posts: 14483

Aiden doesn't have a single clue that a baby is coming. He doesn't seem to understand anything that I'm talking about. I don't even think he's ever felt Zoe kick and wondered what was going on. About the only thing he understands is that he has a big boy room and there's this other room we call "Zoe's room" but he doesn't understand the point behind it. We've read books, talked about it, and showed him all of Zoe's things (he "helped" me do the nursery). And nothing registers. lol. His poor little world is going to go upside down soon!
He does have his own cabbage patch doll from his 1st birthday. He's getting his doll carrier to use back. I also have a "new" toy (new to him - it was my sister's), a doctor's kit, as a gift. It's more of a new baby distractor/I haven't forgotten about you gift.
My plan is to just take things as they come. He could surprise me and do well or it could be a nightmare.

KittyRN's picture
Joined: 02/03/09
Posts: 1260

Simon is awesomely gentle with animals and babies! He loves both so much so I hope it will be the same with this baby. I tell him all the time that there's a baby in my belly and he'll point to it if I ask where the baby is. He'll even come up and hug or pet my belly lovingly, but I still dont know how much he reallly get its. I think he just likes my big belly now. LOL!!

We've just always emphasized gentle with animals and babies and he is. Just lucky I guess. I dont really have advice except to just keep with it telling him to be gentle.

I'm more worried about when toys go flying!!! He likes to randomly through his ball at my head when I'm not expecting it (to play catch). He's not purposely being malicious. A little warning would be nice though. Lol

jperry5683's picture
Joined: 02/13/10
Posts: 525

yeah N will point to my belly and say baby. He asked me the other night if he can see baby now so I think he gets it at least a little bit.

We have the whole balls flying at random thing too. He loves all his sports balls and will randomly want to play catch. I forgot to think about that too.

rubber_da_glove's picture
Joined: 12/31/07
Posts: 1527

I have heard this advice and followed it...always put the older child's needs first (unless there is an emergency) as the baby will never remember it and the older one won't feel pushed out. So I always made a fuss of DS1 first and asked visitors to do the same. Although DS1 was really proud of "his" baby and when ever anyone came round he would take them over to look Lol He took no interest in the care of him so getting him a doll to play with was useless lol

Obviously now they are bigger they have to take it in turns in they want me unless one has an emergency Smile

Vstarr's picture
Joined: 04/08/08
Posts: 895

Lily was 23 months when I had Lucas, but I don't know if it is just different b/c she is a girl. She has always been pretty gentle w/ the cats, so it wasn't hard to get her to be gentle w/ her brother. I did buy her a baby doll that I gave her at the hospital when she came to visit Lucas for the first time, and she absolutely loved that. Then after we got home she would take care of her baby while I took care of my baby. I also let her help me as much as possible w/ him. As long as she felt like she was included and not being ignored or pushed aside, I never really saw any jealousy out of her.

Also, this may not be an option for you, but I did have Lily stay at Grandma & Grandpa's for about 3 days after I got home with Lucas, just so I could concentrate on just him for the 1st few days. Those days were a blur anyways, but I felt like I got some good bonding time with him before taking on the full responsibilities of 2. And Lily got to be spoiled for a few days, b/c that's what grandparents do. Smile