Managing a Toddler while caring for a New Baby
Welcoming a new baby to the family is an exciting time for parents, as well as for a new sibling but caring for two young children can also cause some anxiety.
Ask the Expert
Debbie Fazio - Baby Parenting Coach, Newborn Care Specialist, Happiest Baby instructor and a Board-Certified Sleep Consultant in Canada and the Founder and CEO of Precious Moments Babeez
For parents who have two little ones, managing a toddler while caring for an infant can be a bit of a handful at times and an adjustment that may even cause some anxiety for everyone. Having a plan to ease the process of introducing a newborn to a sibling may be enrolling your toddler in preschool.
Toddler in a Preschool Program
Enrolling your toddler in a preschool even if its only a part-time program, gives parents one-on-one time with the new baby and also gives your toddler something special that is for big kids only.
Its good to be ready for the separating anxiety that often goes along with the first few days of school. Don't minimize the importance of easing your fears as well as your child's. If you feel guilty or worried about leaving them at school, your child will probably sense that. The calmer and more assured you are, the more confident your child will be.
Preparing your child for school can greatly reduce any separation anxiety your child may feel when you leave. Make a big deal during pick up, ask questions about the day, and hang up works of art to show your toddler how special preschool is.
Introduce your child ahead of time to school activities, such as drawing pictures or storytelling. You can make it a bonding time with new baby and have the toddler draw a picture for the baby or read a story. If your arms are filled with your newborn, picking up a book to read with a toddler may not be realistic. Instead of reading a story, tell one. You can make up a tale about anything OR you can tell the story about when they were a baby. Toddlers get a kick about hearing about what they did when they were babies. You can also try narrating what you are doing to care for the baby and then compare it to how you cared for the toddler.
Sleep and Nap Times
It’s easier said than done but coordinating nap time so that both your infant and your toddler are asleep at the same time can go a long way toward helping save parents sanity during the day. Your toddler’s naps are likely more stable and predictable, so work to get one of your infant’s naps to happen at the same time. Precious Moments Babeez Sleep consultants can guide and support you with toddler to preschool sleep solutions.
Accept and Ask for Help
Sometimes admitting you need help is tough, but it’s so important when you are juggling an infant and a toddler. Get your toddler involved and ask them for their help by getting a diaper or blanket.
Helping with baby
Say “yes” if a friend, parent or family member offers to watch your toddler so you can spend one-on-one time with your baby.
Don't be afraid to ask for help from an expert.
Precious Moments Babeez has the experts on all things baby, toddler, and family, to help with any stress or anxiety moving through the stages of parenthood.