How to tell a toddler about a new baby
How do you tell a toddler about a new baby? There isn’t a great track record of older siblings welcoming new babies into my family. When I was born, my big brother went into such a state of denial that he used to paint pictures that consisted of solid lines of black paint. To be fair, I think this only lasted a few weeks, as he quickly realised the playing / fighting potential of a younger sister.
As I’m now pregnant with our second child, we’ve been telling our toddler that she will become a big sister soon. Here’s how we did it.
Here’s how to tell a toddler about a new baby:
Eliza’s only two, but I think toddlers understand an awful lot more than you’d think. So as it was a topic we’d all be talking about a lot, we wanted the new baby to be something that she was always aware of, and not a big “Surprise! Look what this is in your old cot” nine months later.
Here’s some ideas that we used to tell a toddler about a new baby:
1) We were honest all along and didn’t hide it.
Pretty early on we just told her there was a baby growing in Mummy’s tummy – sorry, anatomy purists – and she seemed quite interested in this idea.
Great, we thought. Until two minutes later she started prodding at her own and saying ‘look Mummy, there’s a baby in MY tummy!’
PS – also be warned that they are likely to tell everyone, so make sure you are ready to have the news shared.
2) Books are a brilliant idea for telling toddlers about a new baby.
There are lots of great books for telling a toddler about a new baby. We turned to our trusty Miffy box set as handily, there is a Miffy book about this.
There’s a Miffy book about everything, from the cradle to – literally – the grave. We don’t talk about Dear Grandma Bunny though, I’m still in shock.
3) We made sure our toddler was involved in the pregnancy.
Every morning when she came into our bed, she kissed my stomach and said “Hi, baby.” Something that we incredibly cute that we encouraged!
4) We also took her along to appointments and scans
This was often a necessity, but it helped to have her involved. She also came along to a scan, and she loved seeing her sister on the screen and it helped it feel real for her.
5) We made her nursery aware, and they helped:
Early on they said she never stopped talking about the baby, so they talked about it with her, as well as reading all the relevant books with her.