Is your oldest child jealous of the new baby?

September 17, 2013 12:00 AM by

When a first child comes into your life, it can be an uplifting and overwhelming experience that changes the way your family approaches everything on a day-to-day basis. While becoming a first-time mother can be at alternate points challenging, frustrating and confusing, it will also be one of the most transformative and seminal experiences you undergo in your life.

Yet for many women, becoming a mother for the second or third time around is a whole new experience. The uncertainty and feelings of doubt or nervousness that may be common during a first pregnancy can give way to newfound confidence and assuredness.

Already having one child can make women more adept at tackling the challenges that can emerge once a baby is born. However, for other children in the family, welcoming a new addition can be harder than you may expect.

If you have a child already and you're pregnant with another little one, consider these few tips below to keep your eldest from feeling jealous or neglected as you get ready for another baby in the house.

Stick with a routine
Bringing a new child into the world can create stress not just for you and your partner, but also on those around you. An older child can feel a sense of unease when a baby enters the picture, because your oldest child may feel like he or she needs to compete for your affections in ways that never existed before.

By sticking to your eldest child's schedule and routine as much as possible, you can reduce his or her feelings of uneasiness about the baby and show that your older child's life won't be upended extremely by the new sibling.

Involve your eldest in planning
If you're getting ready for baby with your spouse, it's likely your house is a flurry of activity on most days!

From preparing your nursery for the newest family arrival to collecting all the clothing, diapers and supplies you'll need to care for your baby after the birth, you're probably spending most of your days running around at this point.

If you want to make your eldest child feel as important as the new baby and help show him or her how essential being a big brother or sister will be, consider involving your little one in the preparations. This can also be a sweet way to help your eldest child leave his or her mark on the baby planning experience and feel like they have a personal stake in your pregnancy.

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