Older sibling adjustment? Let's discuss.

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indianajones's picture
Joined: 01/21/07
Posts: 1486
Older sibling adjustment? Let's discuss.

I'd love to hear other people's experiences with how big brothers/sisters are adjusting to a new baby! (Please share previous experiences as well!)

My DD just turned four, so she is old enough to have a bit of a grasp of what's going on, and was pretty involved throughout the pregnancy.

She loves to hold baby, give kisses, and marvel at her toes/hair/belly button/etc.

But holy cow. The jealousy. I expected it, but it still breaks my heart. She has always been a momma's girl, and it is hard for her to share me. When I'm nursing baby (all.the.time), she climbs up next to me and snuggles. When I'm carrying baby, she wants to be carried (not.possible). When I suggested we go for a walk after I finished feeding baby, she got whiney and annoyed that baby was "taking so long" (even when it had only been 10 seconds).

I am trying as much as I can to spend one-on-one time with her, hand baby off to DH when I can, and I try not to revolve all our conversations around the baby. Not sure what else I can do!

Tips? Advice? Experiences?

lamonsgrl's picture
Joined: 09/18/04
Posts: 1023

Coby has done fantastic. I never imagined that he would do so well. He has to give him kisses and hugs before he goes to school or to bed. I just try to let him help when he asks. Like the other day, he wanted to help give Carter a bath. He tickled him that I let him pour a little bit of water on Carter's belly. He runs and grabs things for me if I don't have them and I can't go get them. The only advice I have is to be patient with her. It will take a while to adjust. Hope it happens fast for you though. Sorry I couldn't be more help.

MandyMommyto1's picture
Joined: 06/27/09
Posts: 534

Eep! I have no advice, but I'm super worried about this too! My DD is a total mama's girl, and has been super clingy lately.

ekcanada's picture
Joined: 05/06/09
Posts: 1707

DD is 2 and a total mama's girl. She has been amazing. The baby gets more I love yous than I do. She is so affectionate and gentle. She told me Kyla was her baby and asked when mine was coming Smile

We have seen an increase in tantrums at mealtimes which have never been good. Yesterday's lunch tantrum lasted 40 minutes.

Overall, I am blessed with how well DD is adapting!

Amanda - DD as really clingy right before she came as well!

mandi04's picture
Joined: 08/10/03
Posts: 2272

It's been different everytime.
After DD2 was born DD1 flat out ignored that there was a baby in the house and turned into a little devil child Lol mainly directed at me. The first time she came to the hospital to see me after I gave birth she would NOT hug me or even come near me, and DD2 was in the NICU so she wasn't even in my room with me. She was almost 21 months at the time.
The girls were older when DS arrived (5.5 and 3.5), they did great. They loved the baby and helping with the baby.
This time around the girls are similar, they absolutely love the baby and love 'helping'. Though DD2 has been a bit overemotional but honestly that didn't start until after school started and she's way overtired so I think it's just adjusting to all-day school. DS1 has been much better than I expected, I kind of figured it'd be similar to the first time around since he's at a similar age as DD1 was but luckily it's been much better. He really was always more of a daddy's boy to begin with and I do make sure to hold him at the same time as the baby if he wants me to. He actually seems to really like the baby, he likes pointing to all his little parts and naming the ones he knows. He gets concerned when the baby is crying and if we're not careful tries to pick the baby up. He really isn't too bad as far as behavior either, at least nothing unusual for his age. The only time I see the jealousy is when someone else is holding the baby. He's fine when it's me holding him now but when it's dh or one of our parents he wants them to hold him or pay attention to him too.

Nell4Him's picture
Joined: 10/25/06
Posts: 2455

"indianajones" wrote:

When I suggested we go for a walk after I finished feeding baby, she got whiney and annoyed that baby was "taking so long" (even when it had only been 10 seconds).

Does she like to read books or have you read to her? One tip I've heard is that if your older child is jealous of you having to sit and nurse instead of play with them, that you should have your older child get their favorite book for you to read to them while baby is eating. I wish I could apply this, but Daniel won't sit still long enough for a book... so we play video games together instead (bad, I know) or I turn on this little Leap Frog blackberry thing that plays music and I tell him to dance, or we play with the letters and numbers on it.

My biggest problem is Daniel doesn't want his baby sister to cry. If she starts crying and she's not already in my arms, he calls out "baby didter crying... oh my gawsh" and then he runs to her side and tries to climb in the crib with her (or where ever she is) and gets right up in her face and says "awww don't cry!!".

When we are in the car going somewhere, he insists I get her out of the car before I unbuckle him from his seat. Young chivalry? Who knows, but it's darn cute.

LizzyLaw06's picture
Joined: 05/20/07
Posts: 497

sorry, no advice to give you. for i am still very surprise and pleased with how well Jocelyn(3.5) has adjusted to Addisyn being around. I think sometimes if it is possible for J to love her baby sister too much. If Addisyn makes a single peep DD1 is right there tying to offer her some sort of toy, kisses, pets(on her head, belly...)to make her happy. then she'll yell mommy addi is crying. Or she'll tell me "i think she's hungry mommy, you need to feed her" or "check her diaper". at first she would cover her ears whenever she cried, but she's over that now. she has not once said anything negative about her new sister. Even getting her to school, which she loooves, has been a slight chanllenge because she says"she will miss her baby sister too much" or getting her to bed she keeps asking if A can sleep with her or she wants to stay up with her baby sister. and asks why A always has to stay with us cuz she wants her to be with her at bedtime. she didn't want to go the the sitters cuz she will miss her sister. i try to tell her that she can't really play with her sister now so she doesn't she want to go play with her friends?

i really couldn't have asked for this to be better. though at times her whining about leaving her sister gets annoying, but I could have the other extreme so i am thankful.
sorry really, that big sister is having a hard time with it. and i hope it gets better soon

heatherliz2002's picture
Joined: 02/02/08
Posts: 2273

We're having a weird combination of Catie doing really well, and really struggling. As far as the baby goes, she's completely in love with him. She's really gentle, wants to hug and kiss him, help take care of him, tells him she loves him, etc. BUT, she's been really disobedient and throwing the most ridiculous temper tantrums I have ever experienced (and I was a preschool teacher before I had her, so that's really saying something). She has always been strong-willed, but this is just insane. But, she's also getting over being sick, and sleep deprived from that (she got the croup one day after the baby and I came home from the hospital... shoot me). So I don't know how much of it is due to illness/lack of sleep, and how much is due to the baby. She is a child who REALLY needs her sleep, so I'm hoping once she's able to get caught up, things will get better. I'm thankful that she's so sweet to the baby, but otherwise I'm ready to beat my head against a wall.

Danifo's picture
Joined: 09/07/10
Posts: 1377

DD1 is very helpful and adoring of her sister. She is not doing anything that screams jealousy with her sister (although she is jealous of me pumping). Knowing DD2 is coming somewhere with us makes DD1 more willing to go. We only have a single stroller and DD1 is very good about knowing it is not for her anymore.

However... the problems
1. DD1 only wants me. The idea of someone other than me helping her, reading her stories, getting her dressed, bathing her (and so on) is cause for a major fit. I am trying to give her extra attention and not make it seem like it is all her sister's fault she isn't getting more.

2. The reason why she is great and adoring with the baby is because she thinks the baby is hers to cuddle. We have had a few instances where she is a little too rough so that makes us more paranoid now. Whenever we say to stop doing something to the baby, DD1 freaks out because she thinks she is helping, even when she might be hurting Sad I can't wait until DD2 is a little more sturdy Smile

indianajones's picture
Joined: 01/21/07
Posts: 1486

"Danifo" wrote:

I can't wait until DD2 is a little more sturdy Smile

Agreed! I will be a lot less nervous then!

Re:reading- we do that quite a bit. That has helped some.