Welcoming a new baby to your family is a wonderful thing but it can create problems for their (now) older siblings. The transition from only or youngest child to older sibling is tricky for a lot of little ones who are used to having all or more of their parents’ attention. This can be a difficult time for young families to navigate, but a little toy or gift is a tangible way to remind a new brother or sister that they are still just as special as they ever were. We have rounded up our top picks to show new siblings that you are always thinking of them.
A new soft toy can play a variety of important roles when it comes to transitioning a little one into their new position ‘big sibling’. A soft doll or bear gives them something to love like they will the new baby, an animal soft toy gives them a new friend to play with while you’re busy with feeds and nappies and a worry monster can provide an outlet for any anxieties they might have about this big change. The best part is that with a new personalised toy, your tot will always have something all of their own to cuddle and talk to, which will help them to feel more supported and independent as they adjust to their new role.
Before baby arrives, start to show a little one what they can expect life to look like with a newborn using their own toys as props. Just like their parents, a toddler can push along their favourite toy in a doll’s pram or rock them to sleep in a toy cradle. After baby arrives, you can even set up the cradle alongside their new sibling’s crib and to help your toddler to feel empowered and involved in their baby sibling’s new little life.
If you think your little one might have a hard time adjusting to no longer being the baby of the family, then give them something to help them feel more grown up. Choose a backpack in their favourite pattern so that they can carry all of their own snacks and toys with them wherever they go or personalise a new pair of shoes to wear on all of your walks with baby to help them to feel excited to get out and explore the world with their new sibling. Whatever you decide, make sure to emphasise how grown up this new gift is and remind them every time they use it how different (in a good way!) it is to the gifts that they had as a baby.
Sharing is caring, but it doesn’t always come easily to toddlers – especially if they feel at all threatened by the arrival of their new sibling. To help foster that all important bond, wrap them up warm in a special set of sibling dressing gowns that they can wear together for bathtime, bedtime or just relaxed at-home time. Let them cuddle up together in these new robes, they look especially cute in photos! Give your toddler some added responsibility for the new baby with a personalised book for bedtime. Even if your little one isn’t old enough to read on their own just yet, you can all sit together as a family and enjoy tales of pioneering scientists and intrepid explorers and make some precious memories altogether.
Growing your family is a wonderful thing and there is nothing sweeter than the bond between siblings. If you are having trouble with your little one’s reaction to their new brother or sister, read our guide to introducing a toddler to a new baby to help this transition run smoothly. If the new year is bringing a new addition to your family, remember to tag us on Instagram and use #My1stYears so we can see and celebrate with you!
My 1st Years x