6 ways to involve older siblings in your newborn's life

Including your older child in your baby’s life won’t just keep them occupied, it’ll also strengthen their bond!

6 ways to involve older siblings in your newborn's life1

Welcoming a new addition to your family is always a happy occasion. However, it often also rocks the world of an older sibling ― and always not in a good way.

Getting used to new family dynamics is hard, and if you are already used to a certain kind of routine (and undivided attention), you’d want it to stay that way.

Tantrums, meltdowns, feelings of jealousy and resentment will all rear their ugly heads at some point after a new baby comes along. And it doesn’t matter if your children are only one year apart or five years apart.

Parents have plenty of ways to ease the transition for the older siblings after baby arrives. One easy ― and very effective ― tip is to get the older kids involved with their new sibling’s life as soon as possible. This means giving them little responsibilities that will help take care of bubba.

Not only will it instil a sense of responsibility in the young ones, but getting involved with the baby will also help a big brother or sister feel valued. Over time, it will strengthen the love and bond between the siblings ― a connection they will have for the rest of their lives.

Here are six babycare areas to involve your tyke in, starting today…

Not only will it instil a sense of responsibility in the young ones, but getting involved with the baby will also help a big brother or sister feel valued.

Scenario #1: Feeding time

Older siblings can hold bubba’s bottle when he’s drinking milk and spoon purées or pass out finger food when he’s on solids. By the way, don’t forget to enlist your trusty little helper to clean up the mess baby leaves behind after a meal. Young ones get unbelievably excited whenever get a chance to wash dishes. To minimise accidents, just make sure someone is supervising them and the dishes are made from plastic.

Scenario #2: Diaper changes

Your older kiddo is probably well on the way in his toilet-training journey by now. But since he still remembers the ins and outs of all things diaper-related, he will be more than happy to be your diaper-changing aide. A simple way to start is to get him to stand next to you at the changing table, so that he can hand you the wet wipes, diaper rash cream and a fresh diaper when you need them. “My toddler was even willing to go the extra mile and open the bin for me to throw away the dirty diaper and when we were out, he would hold the trash bag for me,” remembers mum-of-two Suganthi Subramaniam.

Scenario #3: When you’re out and about

It can surely be nerve-racking to juggle a baby and a toddler when you’re out in public ― imagine if both had a meltdown at the same time! Still, there will be times when you’ll have to head out with the brood. If so, enlist the older kids’ help with small tasks to ease the way for everyone, especially you. Junior can push the baby stroller, with you at the helm of course, and retrieve items that you need from the diaper bag. Who knows, your tot may even have a trick or two up his sleeve as he helps you distract a fussy baby who will not stop wailing.