Only child turns into Big sister

Joanie - posted on 03/12/2010 ( 22 moms have responded )

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My daughter wants a sibling. Would it be difficult on her to adjust to not being the only child? Not being the center of attention and not being able to do everything we normally do?

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Michelle - posted on 03/24/2010

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My daughter is turning 12 this year and she got a new baby sister in december. I also stressed about her being the only child for so long, but she is so fond of her little sister. She gets a little jealous some times and then I just try to make an extra effort to spent some time with her, but generally you will be amazed at how quickly children adjust to not being the only child anymore. I also think its more healthy for them to learn that the world does not resolve around them.

Leah - posted on 03/24/2010

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My daughter was 8 years old when she found out I was pregnant. She had been talking about wanting a baby brother for a while, but when push came to shove she did find it hard for a while. I shared everything that I could with her in the pregnancy, ie ultrasounds and the baby kicking and I would give her lots of snuggles, but I think what helped her most, was I started changing a few things while I was pregnant and tried to answer all her questions honestly. She is fairly young for her age and we would still have conversations about how the baby was going to take up a fair bit of time and that Mummy wouldn't be able to do everything that I could do before, but then I would tell her how great it was going to be and how when he was a little bit older how much fun he would be to play with etc. maddie copped the good with the " bad" well in advance. She is an insecure child anyway, so she did struggle a little. I did however talk to all my friends and family and ask them that when the baby came, could we please make a big fuss over Madison as well, and they did they were fantastic. When he was born, my friends actually bought Maddie a gift and mum took her out for a cup of hot chocolate.
If others around you can help out by making her feel important too, then she should be just fine, a very proud big sister I am sure. After bub arrived, although I was really tired, I tried to do something every single day where it was just me and Maddie, play with her while she was in the bath, or she would help me make tea, or just a story before bed, that way she had me too, even if my son did get alot of attention. She wasd really wonderful and she is a VERY proud big sister and very protective of her brother.

I wish you every luck with this pregnancy and you know your eldest better then anybody else. Trust your own instincts and just be honest. I hope something I have mentioned gives you a few ideas or helps in some way.
Goodluck

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Tena - posted on 03/29/2010

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With this last pregnancy my youngest boy - 5, was excited the whole pregnancy and told everyone he saw. (even people I didn't want to tell yet) Now that his sister is here he actually can be very helpful and really hasn't been too envious. My oldest son was embarrassed when his brother told him after the shock wore off - he's 17.

They both love and spoil their little sister.

Melissa - posted on 03/29/2010

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My daughter just turned 6 when my son was born last year. She had a hard time in the beginning. She had just started kindergarten, gotten chicken pox, and we announced the news that she was going to be a big sister. We included her in picking things out for the baby. We also took her to the ultrasound. She was okay with it until she realized we were having a boy. She had her heart set on a little sister. We even had her help pick out his name. Including her was very important to let her know we still love her just as much. Now, she does really well with her little brother. Sometimes I swear she acts like the mom.

Becky - posted on 03/29/2010

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My Son turned 8 in January and then in Fabuary he became a big brother. He has adjusted well and is very excited at having a baby brother.

Jennifer - posted on 03/25/2010

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Kids can usually adjust pretty well to change, even if it takes awhile. My daughter was 2 and a half when I had my son, and she always wanted to help. I used to let her carry a diaper, or a bottle, or towel or whatever the baby was going to need, and she loved it. Make sure your daughter gets to be a part of what's going on, so she doesn't feel like she's left out and I'm sure she'll be fine-remember to tell her what a great big sister she is whenever she helps too!

Amber - posted on 03/25/2010

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My daughter was almost 6 when my son was born. We included her into everything while I was pregnant and after her brother came home. I made sure to have special "mommy and me time" when Christian was laying down so that she would feel wanted and loved. It is important for them to be incorporated as much as possible or they begin to thing you spend all your time with the baby. It is a wonderful thing for a child to become an older sibling and they usually enjoy helping out like feeding the baby or getting a diaper and wipes ready for you.

Shannon - posted on 03/24/2010

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It's always going to be hard, even if the child claims to want a sibling, it's a big adjustment. I think the best thing we did with my six year old boy after his sister was born (he did want a sibling too) was plan a special day with just me and a special day with just his father after she was born and we have had several of those through the first year. It's his opportunity to have the kind of attention he always used to get. I let him pick the activity, a movie, ice cream, the zoo, whatever. It's actually only 2-3 hours that we're gone but it's special for him and he loves it. The other thing I did while I was pregnant was subscribed to baby centers weekly update and shared how she was growing and developing with him every week. He found it fascinating and I think it helped him connect, once they said she could hear, we started talking to her together and it was the sweetest thing to hear him talk to her. The other thing I thought was important is that we prepared him for how hard it would be the first few months, new babies take up every ounce of energy and we needed him to understand it would be hard for a while. We also gave him extra time with his grandparents, more undivided attention for him. All in all it has worked really well for us. They adore each other. Good luck!

Carrie - posted on 03/24/2010

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If ya ask me I would do it while they are younger! I am 27 and my sister is 19 and out brother is 11. It was hard growing up with them cause they were young and we never got along. They wanted to be with me and I just wanted to do my own thing. But now my sister and I are closer than we have ever been. And because of the big age differences between my siblings and me, I had decided I would have my kids somewhat close in age. My daughter is 8 and my son is 5.

Debi - posted on 03/24/2010

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my 10 yr old son became a big brother for the first time 2 yrs ago and has since became one again. He was over the moon with excitement and still is. If she is ASKING for a sibling ( mine was as well) it is a good sign she is prepared for it. I helped my son adjust by including him in "getting ready" activities like painting the nursery and arranging the nursery, I let him pick out baby toys and clothes that were special gifts to his baby brother from him, when I had ultrasounds done he was able to go as well and see the baby ( which by the way he LOVED).
Granted there were things we were as able to readily do with a new baby that we had always done ( sporting events and such), but I made sure he understood that the baby would grow and we would be able to do them again soon. It also helped that my husband was more than willing to do some of these activities as "Just us guys" and there were times it was Just me and him.

Jennifer - posted on 03/23/2010

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My daughter Kylie turned 4 while I was pregnant with my youngest daughter (Kenzie). She was very used to getting her way! She was not only the only child but the only grandchild! We made sure she was involved the whole way, she went to my check ups to hear the heartbeat went to sonograms.. everything. (That may be a little harder for you since your daughter is probably in school but there are many other ways to help her feel like it's her baby to.) Kylie was very excited about her baby sissy... except for the times when she was hoping she would turn into a boy lol. She even had a name picked out for her. We ended up giving it to the baby as her middle name and that made her feel even more like it was her baby to. Anyway for a little while before the baby was born she started acting out a little but when the baby came she was very happy. She would get jealous... but not because the baby got the attention. She was jealous because she wanted to hold the baby! Now that her sister is 16 months they play together all the time. Sometimes they fight over toys but that's to be expected lol. I believe since your daughter is so mature she would be a great big sister.. she would probably love to have a little playmate. I was 10 when my baby brother was born and I thought he was the best baby doll ever! :) I felt so special that I was allowed to hold him and play with him lol. I wish you all the best with your pregnancy and I hope everything goes perfectly with both of your babies!

By the way... my husband is an only child and hated it. He still says that he wishes he had a brother or sister.

Jennifer - posted on 03/23/2010

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There are almost 7 years between my boys!! It's wonderful. My oldest has always been a big help. What we did was involve him in everything...took him to sonograms let him help pick out his name. There was a bit of jealousy from time to time, but he likes to skate so when he goes skating his brother didn't get to go and he realized he still got to do things by himself. i also still take one day a month just for me and my oldest to do something together. They are now 11 and 4 and they have a wonderful relationship!!

Charlene - posted on 03/23/2010

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My daughter was just under 3 yrs old when our son was born. We had lots of talks about what the baby was going to be able to do, how it would grow and what she could do "as the big sister" for her baby brother. We found "I'm A Big Sister" by Joanna Cole which reinforced a lot of our discussions. Since your daugher is older, maybe you can include her in helping to prepare the nursery. There are great kits available to tie fleece blankets which would be great for keeping baby warm...or maybe she can create some art for the walls.

Goodluck!

Jessica - posted on 03/23/2010

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My kids are 6 years apart and it works great for us. I didn't want to have my kids close in age. My feeling is that if they are a little farther apart, we, as parents, can enjoy them more. I can enjoy the new baby and play with her all day while my son is in school. I can sit and read with him or play games with him in the evening. My son is 6 and he is busy with hockey and his friends and is growing a little more independent every year. We haven't had an jealousy issues yet, tho I'm sure we will!
He adjusted very well from only child for 5 years to a big brother.

Justine - posted on 03/23/2010

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My oldest is 12 and I have another who is 5, both boys. I got pregnant when my oldest was 7 and we explained everything to him. We made him feel very involved with the "new" baby. We had him help us out a lot and really made him feel like he was making a difference and it worked out. For 7 yrs. my child was the only child and it took him a bit of adjusting but he wouldn't have it any other way now. I don't think it matters how long they have been an only child but just that you let them know what is going on and you make them apart of it.

Just think, you can tell your daughter she can play mommy! :-) Have you tried talking to her about it and see what she has to say? Good luck with it.

Alison - posted on 03/23/2010

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How old is your dautgther ? my girl asks me all the time. I really would love another child, I don't no if I would be doing it for me or her, if your life is happy and money wise you can cope,I say go for it. Alison.

Michelle - posted on 03/22/2010

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My son bugged us forever to give him a baby brother or sister, but since my new husband and I already each had children and they were both older we figured we were done then last year I found out I was pregnant my son at 7 year old all of a sudden was going to be a big brother.....She was born 4 months after his 8th birthday and he was absolutely thrilled, we made sure that both my husband and I spent the same amount of quality time with him as we always did but it is now done individually or his sister comes along.....He adjusted really easily loves his little sister and did not feel left out so I think it depends on the kid. My son loves having a sister he told me he hated being an only child.....hope this helps

Ricki - posted on 03/22/2010

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My girls are 4 years apart and my oldest adores her little sister. There was, of course, some adjusting because she was the only one for so long but now they're always together. The first few months (until baby started crawling, for us) Zoe (the oldest) was always asking "When can I play with her??" but she understood why she couldn't. And there are starting to be "EVA DON"T TAKE MY TOY!!" episodes but they mostly get along really well.

Kat - posted on 03/22/2010

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My daughter could not wait for her little brother to arrive (she was 5). But, when he got here, it was a different story. He's a handful, and she resents the amount of attention he gets. We had a talk, and she is getting better with it, but her excitement wore off as soon as he could walk and touch her toys! We hope she will learn to enjoy the companionship once he's old enough to respect boundaries-and her things!

Rebecca - posted on 03/14/2010

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well, i would think you just need to do everything you can to prepare her for it ... another thing i forgot to mention is that we got lots of stories from the library from our daughter where the various characters got a new sibling and shows a range of responses. (i can't remember all the names, but i know one was an Angelina Ballerina story.)

she is a bit older, but there probably are age appropriate books that also prepare for that. you should be prepared for both negative and positive reactions, and talk through any negative reactions by finding out what is at the root of them and reassure her of your continued love.

BUT she sounds quite mature and she might well enjoy helping you with a baby ... even my older daughter when 3 liked to help do things for baby even if it was just fetching a blanket, or rocking the pram...

Joanie - posted on 03/13/2010

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She is six years old. She is very mature for her age, been with my grandmother when she was sick and dying, and she helps look after my ill brother. She has been a big help through my two misscarriages. She is wanting a baby more than I am. I just found out I am pregnant and I have not told her yet just in case somrthing happens with this one. I just don't know if she is really ready for this?

Rebecca - posted on 03/13/2010

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how old is she?? my oldest is 6 and she acquired her sibling when she was 3y3m ... she adjusted fairly well to it ... when i found out i was pregnant, i did lots to help her bond even while baba was still in the womb... she would sing to the baby and talk to the baby thru my tummy, and kiss my tummy to say goodnight ... she was even more excited when she heard she was having a sister.



she was a bit disappointed (even tho i tried to prepare her for this) when baby actually came, because of course you can't play with a small baby, and she was a bit frustrated, but once the baby grew enough to start responding and playing a bit, never looked back .



she did go thru a phase of playing up after her sister was born ... but we realised it was probably insecurity so we just made an extra effort to give her lots of reassurance and i still make sure that i give them both lots of attention and love .... i also find that she was a huge handful on her own (some people thought she was adhd) but she chilled out once she had a sister ... i think she just has someone else to give her attention so her demands on us are less.



they do squabble, sometimes they are really mean to each other, but in general they get on really well and are quite affectionate, and sometimes even love to dress the same.

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