Updated: Mar 9, 2022
Okay so you are pregnant with baby number two and wondering how to introduce the idea to your Toddler. How to include your toddler in the pregnancy and how to prepare your toddler for baby number two coming home.
A fun way to introduce the idea of a new baby to your toddler is by putting together a little gift for them to open. I decided to include the books My New Baby, I Am a Big Sister and Waiting for baby. These books explain the concept of pregnancy and what it's like to have a new sibling at home. The images are simple which help to spark open conversations between you and your child such as explaining the time of year baby will arrive, that mom and dad will go to the hospital to have baby, explain who they will be with during this time and that you will be so excited to see them the day you get home. In the gift I also included a special Big Sister t-shirt and a baby doll.
To help her continue to prepare for baby number two once a week or so we would look at the bump app and ovia pregnancy app together. This was a way for her to ask about babies, talk to my belly and help her feel connected to her sibling. This was usually followed by us looking at little video clips of her as a baby so she could have a better grasp of typical infant movements and sounds to expect. Using her doll we talk about basic infant safety such as we only touch baby gentle, we do not put things in baby's mouth and we make sure baby doesn't have anything on their face (i.e blanket).
Around the 20 week mark we started putting together the room for baby and collecting our baby gear back from friends and family who were borrowing them. We showed her all the baby items and showed her with her doll how baby would use the items. At this same time we started a slow transition for my daughter to move to a twin bed and made it fun by letting her pick out a few things for her room like a duvet cover, wall decals and a fun star projector. We moved the dresser out of her room and together we set up a twin bed with bed rails on the wall opposite to her crib. For a few weeks we let her choose which bed she wanted to sleep in until one day she told me she was all done with her crib. Giving her the control and independence to choose helped make the transition extremely smooth.
The next step after preparing your toddler for baby number two is the actual meet and greet and helping your child feel connected and loved during the transition which I will talk about in another post.