Preparing Your Child for a New Baby

You're about to bring a baby into the family. You want to get your child ready for the new arrival. Here are some tips to help your child adjust to the new dynamic.

Talk to your child

First, talk to your child in terms they understand. Tell them they'll soon have a new sibling. Let them know the baby won't be able to play with them right away. The baby will sleep and cry a lot, and will need time to grow. Explain that you'll need their help while this happens.

Preparing your home

As you make changes in your home to prepare for the arrival, talk to your child about what's happening. If they're old enough, ask them to help you set up the nursery. It's good to do this early so your child will have time to adjust to these changes.

Sibling class

Finally, see if there's a sibling class at your local hospital or birthing center. This is a class you take with your child. It helps them learn what it's like to be a new sibling. Ask if you can take your child on a tour of the hospital or birthing center, too. Let them know you'll have to go there for a brief time to have the baby. Taking away the mystery can ease their anxiety about the process. For more tips, talk to your doctor.