When a second baby comes along, the older sibling may have a rough time transitioning. Often they feel left behind or abandoned as everyone coos over the new tiny baby.
While this is perfectly natural and normal, it is hard on parents to try to balance everything in such a way that both children are getting the attention they need. Try as they might, the parents are often stuck jumping from task to task and never really giving either child their full attention.
There are a few ways to address this issue, and a combination of these methods is usually the best way to go. If both parents are home, it can be helpful for one parent to care for and play with the older child while the other parent holds the new baby.
Another solution is for the parent-in-charge to wear the baby, thereby freeing their hands to play with the older child. As a third option, getting the older child to help in caring for the baby is sometimes a good way to make them feel involved and important. The final solution is to make sure to spend time together as a family doing things everyone can enjoy together. This last option is what we are going to focus on today.
Trying to find things to do that the whole family will enjoy can really leave you feeling stumped. After all, a baby's abilities and interests are so very different from those of a two-, three-, or four-year-old. However, there are things you can do as a family that will keep everyone calm and happy.
Visiting a local children's or science museum is the perfect family activity. Your oldest will have fun exploring everything and learning along the way, and your youngest will enjoy being worn or riding along in the stroller.
Stopping for nursing sessions while the big kid plays with something particularly interesting is no problem, and diaper-changing stations are almost always available in the restrooms.
Park Day (or Zoo Day)
Babies and kids of all ages enjoy being outside. The next time you have beautiful weather in your area, consider heading to the park, or better yet, the zoo. The older child will have a blast playing on the playground or checking out cool animals, and the littlest one will be happy spending time outdoors, so you can focus on giving your big kid a bit of extra attention.
Everyone loves to relax. The next time your family needs to chill out, consider putting on a family-friendly movie and settling in on the couch. The baby will enjoy having some tummy time on a nearby playmat or nursing while you hang out on the couch. The older kid will be entertained by the movie and can get in some snuggle time with mommy while she gets in some much-needed rest. It's a win-win for everyone.
These are just a few of the ways you can spend time as a family. Keep an open mind and keep your eyes peeled for other great ways to spend time with your entire crew.
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