Toddlers: 12 - 24 Months

How to prevent jealousy in an older toddler

I have a 23 month old, who will be a big sister very soon and she is very attached to me and daddy. I am so afraid she will feel left out or jealous of her little brother, especially when she sees me breastfeeding him. Any tips on helping prevent this or making the transition smooth for the older sibling?
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Re: How to prevent jealousy in an older toddler

  •  I think it has a lot more to do w/the personality of the child.  My oldest was always sweet to her sister (born when she was 2.5) but her 'jealousy' manifested itself in multiple daily meltdowns that stayed for months.  Add that to her going on 3 yrs old (which is a heck of a lot harder than age 2, according to a lot of moms, including myself) and it was tough for us.  But I know people whose transitions were much easier- their older child was more easygoing than mine.  My oldest has always been high maintenance, bless her heart :)

    So you can do things like get her a gift from the baby, let her pick out a gift for the baby, try to give her one on one time, etc.  But you just never know how they'll react until the baby is here!  

  • My oldest was almost 3 when the baby was born.  I tried to include her in everything and started with a big sibling class that the hospital offered.  I also had her help as much as she could.  When company came I always had them address Olivia before the baby and would spend a lot of cuddle time whenever Abigail was sleeping.  Good luck!
  • DD was super independent and low maintenance until we brought DS home.  it has been a very challenging 3 weeks--DD is very emotional and has been acting out and not listening when i am BFing.  i knew it would be an adjustment for her but i never thought she would act like she has been--i am just hoping it gets better.

    so i don't have any tips, i have been trying everything--extra cuddle time with her, reading to her while BFing,  making her mommy's helper, etc.

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  • She may surprise you.  I had the same worries as you.  And DS1 shocked me on how well he transitioned.  I tried to include him on a lot, but breastfeeding was a challenge becausre he couldn't really help.  I put a box of newer/his favorite toys away in a box and only got them out when I was breastfeeding the baby.  This kept him busy and entertained while I could concentrate on baby.  I also made lots of little "dates" (to the grocery store normally) where it was his job to help get dinner for that night. 
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  • There are no magic tips. It is a major adjustment and it just takes time.

    My son was 2 years and 8 months old when DD was born.  His behavior for the first six months was horrendous, to say the least. He would be loving and affectionate to the new baby one minute, then hit her or bite her the next. He did it just to get a reaction out of both her and me because he never ever acted aggressively towards any other child ever (or adult for that matter). Also, he would not listen to me and acted out in every way he could. 

    As DD grew and started doing more stuff like smiling and laughing and could sit up and play with a toy, eat in the highchair with the family, etc,  DS started to see her as someone to help take care of and as a part of our family, not the inanimate object that invaded his space.  Now they are the very best of friends and play together and hug and kiss eachother all day.

  • My DD didint care at first that the baby was there (she was 16mo) but as time went on she got jealous and whiney. Then she was in love with the baby (kissing hugging etc.) now she's back to being semi-jealous. I guess everyday is different and you never know how they will act in a certain situation (like bf) you just do your best and try to split attention between both. GL!!!
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