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How To Deal With Sibling Rivalry

Bringing your new baby home is an exciting prospect, unless you already have a toddler at home. It can be extremely tough for a toddler to welcome a baby into their domain, and this could lead to temper tantrums, acting out and even regressing.

As siblings get older they often show their jealousy by arguing, teasing and even hitting each other. The good news is that this is completely normal! Here a few top tips to help you to prevent sibling rivalry once your baby comes home.

Ensure you involve your toddler in looking after the new baby

Giving your toddler little jobs to do can help prevent sibling rivalry from rearing its ugly head. Try asking your toddler to help you by holding towels at bathtime, fetching diapers and even helping to calm a fussing baby by singing or talking to her. Allow your toddler to hold the new baby, but make sure you are nearby. This will help them to bond and create their own relationship as well as preventing any sibling rivalry.

Remember to prioritise your toddler

It is easy to overlook your toddler when there is a baby to look after – they are demanding and require a lot of attention! Try to make sure that you spend some time with your toddler alone. Set some time aside every day to do something with him, whether that be drawing, playing or just reading them a story. Putting your toddler first can help to lessen their jealousy.

Ask your toddler for advice

Try inviting your toddler to help you with deciding what your baby should wear, or ask them how to cheer the baby up if they are crying. This can help make them feel involved and not ignored. Your toddler may also like bringing a smile on their younger sibling’s face, so encourage them and point out how much the baby likes them. If your toddler doesn’t want to help with the baby, then don’t force it, they will come around when they are ready but you could cause extra resentment if you push them too soon.

Discourage your toddler from telling tales

When a toddler is jealous, they often try to tell tales on their younger siblings. If they begin to tell tales about what their sibling is doing, make a point of saying that you are not interested in what their sibling is doing, but if they wish to tell you what they are doing, you are all ears. This will make it clear that you won’t listen to your children attempting to get each other in trouble, as well as making it clear that they can ask you for help when they need it.

Sibling rivalry is a natural and normal part of growing up. By using these tips, you should be able to prevent it from becoming a major problem in your household. Just remember that they won’t stay that young forever and this will be something they will grow out of!

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