How to Deal with Sibling Rivalry from the Start

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Congratulations! You’re welcoming another baby to the family! You have a bunch on your plate, you’re nesting again, and you’re researching all the latest nursery styles. You’ve likely broken the news to your firstborn, and you’re daydreaming about the moment when they meet for the first time. As amazing as it is to have a sibling, for those of us who have a brother and sister, we know it’s not all laughs and smiles 24/7.  So how do you deal with sibling rivalry before and after your second child arrives? Here are some of my tips to tackling this tough issue with your little ones.

 

Before your newest addition to the family arrives, educate your oldest about being a big brother or sister


Go to your local library and get some books about being an older brother or sister. This is a fun and interactive way to make sure your child understands what being an older sibling is all about (plus, they get some of those bonus reading benefits!). Additionally, some hospitals offer new sibling classes or programs on how older children can interact with the new addition to the family when arriving home. It also is helpful to have honest conversations about how things will be a little different at home when the new baby comes. This way, you can start preparing them little by little and give them an idea of what to expect before the baby arrives.

 

Play helper


Let big sister/brother help do things for little sister/brother. For example, let your oldest help get the diapers ready for a diaper change, pick out an outfit for the baby, assist during the baby’s bath time, or help feed the baby during mealtime. Encouraging your child to help with their little sibling will give them a role and responsibility they’ll feel proud of.

 

Do activities together


Encourage your children to go for walks together, have a dance party, read books together, participate in silly activities like tickling each other’s tummies, etc. They will realize that it is possible for them to be able to play together and have fun. This can also apply for children who are older and possibly more competitive with one another.

 

 

 

Fair share


Make sure each child gets an equal amount of attention whether it’s during conversations at dinner time or even the number of hugs and kisses they get a day.

 

One-on-one


As a mom, you know how hard it is to get some free or spare time after a busy day or week. But planning some one-on-one time with each child can help prevent resentment, jealousy and meltdowns later on.  Try to schedule a few hours where you two can spend some alone time. You can go to lunch together, go to the movies or for ice cream, or even take an arts and crafts class.  Dedicating some time to them individually will help prevent them from feeling they aren’t getting enough attention or feeling jealous of their sibling. Quality time will reassure them that although things have changed a little at home, they are still special to you, and you will always have a special place for them in your heart.  They will see that no matter how busy you are, you will always make time for them.

 


These tips should make the experience of raising siblings easier! What are some techniques you’ve tried with your little ones as they adjusted to new younger siblings?


 

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About the Author


Christina Lagos

Christina has been with BEABA for over 2 year now. She has three children, a 9 year old, 3 year old and a 1 year old. Aligned with BEABA's beliefs in providing your children with healthy foods, Christina practices an organic, healthy, non-toxic, and holistic lifestyle at home. In 2012 she began changing her eating habits and learning about the benefits of wholesome foods. She began buying and consuming organic foods and produce, choosing minimally processed or foods containing very few ingredients, as well as buying allergen alternative foods such as dairy free, soy free, and gluten free. This later turned into her taking on a completely brand new lifestyle. Excited and passionate about the change she made for herself, she then began making the same changes at home for her family. Christina is constantly discovering different types of benefits from wholesome foods as well as new brands that have the same health beliefs and whom take these beliefs into consideration when creating their products.

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