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Helping Siblings Welcome Baby

Welcoming a new baby to the family is an exciting time for everyone. A new baby joining the family also means many changes for everyone, including big brothers, big sisters, and even pets.

Although this is an adjustment period, with a little planning, patience, and grace for yourself and your entire family, you can help make this transition better for everyone. Every family is unique and depending on your children’s personalities and ages you may already have ideas of what will work best for you and your family.

Here are just a few ideas for you to consider when planning to help siblings adjust as they welcome the newest member of the family:

Include older siblings in your pregnancy and planning

If you have a baby shower

If you are planning to decorate a nursery space for the new baby or move the older sibling to a new room, spend time making their room special and include them in decorating their space

Plan and allow for an adjustment phase

Although being flexible is important and your newborn will not be on a schedule, attempt to maintain the older sibling’s daily routines when possible

Make a plan for when siblings meet the new baby

Make a plan for introducing baby to your pets too

If you have a toddler or young child, having a small basket, box, or bag of special quiet activities that are reserved for times that you are feeding or putting the baby to sleep can help.

A few things that may interest and occupy siblings during this time are

With a little planning, time, attention, grace, and love, welcoming your newest family member will be a special and memorable time for everyone.

Leanne Shelton, RN, BSN, Labor & Delivery Nurse, Doula
Leanne lives in Virginia with her husband and two children. She earned a Bachelor of Science in Nursing at the University of Texas Arlington and a Master of Science in Education at Old Dominion University. She is a labor and delivery nurse supporting moms and families throughout labor, delivery, and postpartum.