How to Create a New Sibling Chart – VIDEO
There is a lot of anticipation about the first few weeks of bringing home a new baby when you have an older kid (or more) at home already. Big changes to the family can affect the littlest people the most. Acutely aware that my only child was going to be a sibling (and having gone through the same transition myself with no warning from my parents) I steadfastly prepared my daughter for her new role. For months before the big date, we talked, read, and charted out what her role would be like. We worked hard to paint a realistic picture of how things might change. She learned the word “conflicted” so that she could accept that feeling two opposing emotions at once – excited and scared or love and resentment – were normal and accepted.
One of the best tools we used to ease the transition was what I call the “New Siblings Chart” – that documented how she could participate in helping out with the baby — and set some limits to protect him as well. By making it together and making it visual for her repeated reference, I think she really felt like an integral, involved part of this enormous moment in our family, and it clarified some of the questions that were making her anxious about this new situation. Thankfully, it worked! Our daughter fell in love with her new baby brother and her new role as big sister instantly and without any upheaval. If you are expecting a new bundle in your home, I hope this might prove helpful to you, too. Let me know in the comments below!
–Abbie Schiller, Founder and CEO-The Mother Company
** For other helpful tips to help ease this monumental transition, check out our expert article, “Bringing Home a New Baby.”
The Mother Company aims to support parents and their children, providing thought-provoking web content and products based in social and emotional learning for children ages 3-6. Check out episodes of our “Ruby’s Studio” children’s video series, along with our beautiful children’s books, apps, music, handmade dolls, and more.