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....the good, the bad, everything!!
As you probably know, i am expecting my 2nd in 5 weeks, and my daughter is almost 3 (august).
I cant help worrying about everything - how to cope with 2, will dd be jealous? how do i entertain her whilst attending to the needs of a newborn?........
what were your experiences like? the good bits, the bad bits, the downright awful bits, dont hold back!!
I think having only 17 months between mine i was terrified about wat it would be like with effectively 2 babies, i took a number of precautions pre-birth to make my life easier, for example in our living room we went over it with fine tooth comb checking for anything that my ds might do while i was sitting feeding, eg fitted high up locks on all the cupboards, put a bolt on the top of the door leading to upstairs, stairgate on the kitchen doorway etc etc etc!!! just to make sure i could easily sit and feed without having to panic about what he was doing - probably sounds like common sense but i hadnt had to before as i was always a step behind him.
I also put up a travel cot in the living room which i used as a play pen for ds1 when i had to go the loo or anything, so i could leave the baby on the floor without worrying about what would happen. I sound like an ultra cautious maniac reading that but i dont suppose a lot of this will apply to you as you dd is older.
On the whole i found it tiring and quite challenging but really lovely, and rewarding having two and while i have found them harder as they get older, its lovely to watch them together sometimes (when they are not fighting!) and see how much a part of each other they are iykwim? they have grown up together from such a young age.
I do think since having my second you cant believe how easy it was with one until you have two!! we used to think it was such hard work until no.2 came along and then we were like 'what were we making so much fuss about!' !
Best of luck, i'm sure you will adapt fine to the new arrival
Hi- 2 is fine!- I have reminded myself that at some time in their childhoods they will hate each other/ do horrible things to each other, etc- but, so far- thay have been lovely. there is 2 years between them and they have just started to play together and properly interract which is so cute, Tomas (nearly 2) this morning found one of Emilys hair clips and was very concerned and went off to give it too her.
I was worried about the jealousy thing but fortunatly, as tiny ones sleep so much, his impact was more gradual on her (IYKWIM)- once he got mobile then he bacame more of a threat to her toys, etc. We also spent a lot of time telling her what it might be like and got her involved with as much as possible- choosing clothes/ bedding etc, so it felt more like her baby brother rather than a new baby which would take mummy away from her.
For time spent feeding, I read her stories but also had a "Booby box" (thanks DH ::)) which had some really cool toys which she was only allowed to play with while I was feeding him- she actually looked forward to his next feed!
The hardest bit at the moment is Tomas being more mobile so eg at the park when they both run off in different directions you have to choose which one to catch first!
I guess the hardest part is feeling i have not put as much time into raising Tomas- For 2 years I spent all day talking to Emily, doing puzzles, reading her books, etc and poor Tomas was just taken allong for the ride to all Emilys things and spent a lot of time watching me doing things (for example, Emily knew all the farm animal noises really early, but Tomas didn't have a clue - then I realised that I hadn't actually told him what the noises were so obviously he wouldn't know)
The strange one is, when you have your first one you think it is the hardest job in the world and wonder how people cope with 2 or more- and when your second arrives you wander what you were complaining about with only one- all they do is sleep and eat!
I really put myself through it whilst I was pregnant with DS2. Doubting myself, as to why was I doing this, would it spoil my relationship with DS1, could I love another child as much as I did DS1 etc. Once DS2 arrived I realised that it was all positive, and my worries amounted to nothing. He was nearly 3 when DS2 was born, and therefore able to be reasoned with to some extent.
The one thing that shocked me though, was the change in my feelings to DS1. He had suddenly changed from being my little baby to a big threat to DS2. I hated feeling like this, and confided in some friends who had also recently had their second children, and they all admitted to feeling the same way. Once I overcame that, we were fine.
Kate - I'm in the same boat as you, with almost the same age gap. I have enjoyed reading "Three Shoes, One Sock and No Hairbrush" by Rebecca Adams, which someone recommended on this forum some time ago (thanks, whoever that was). This is all about having a second child and covers a wide range of scenarios that you might encounter and the kind of things that are useful to think about before hand, including what behaviour you might get from your first and how you might handle it; how to minimise sibling rivalry; how to cope etc. It is very un-didactic and simply sets our the range of different experiences other people have had, making clear that every family is different. I have found it a useful starting point….whether I will say it was useful after number 2 has arrived is a different matter!
Best wishes Tamsin
For me some days are good some are bad!
Housework expectations drop as do other jobs. Just when you think you are getting there you will hit a growth spurt and assuming you are a BF on demand girl then prepare to be setback and wonder what the heck is going on, surely you should be up of the sofa by now lol
We've just started to hit a bit of jealousy (2 yrs 5mths and 2 months) and I'm not sure how to deal with it TBH, it's hard.
I agree with Blackhobbescat, for me DS2 has become my number one priority and DS1 has moved down a place in the pack, it's a new baby/mother/hormone/protectress thing. This is hard on everyone, I had been told about it possibly happening but it still was a shock to realise my first baby wasn't a baby anymore IYSWIM.
One thing I would recommend is to buy number 1 child a fabulous really wanted item as a gft form the new baby, worked a treat for us
You can read stories while BF if you get the balancing act right! and (if you have one) the TV/DVD is a tool to be used if desperate! We also get DS1 to do things like put the nappy in the bucket/help choose a new one etc, he loves helping and gets upset if not asked!
Yesterday I had a BAD day, I was totally disconnected from DS1, he was being tired and 2 I was being tired and a new mum, today however was a new day and not so bad at all ;D
There are 2 years between my 2 and I really worried during my pregnancy with DS if I'd be able to love another child as much as DD, but the reality was actually easier than I'd feared. For DD things actually got better once he arrived because I'd been so sick throughout my pregnancy that now I could start to play with her and go out do things again. Also, because I had an indpendent midwife for the last part of my antental care and birth, they'd really made an effort to involve DD. We had a home birth so DD was there throughout and saw her little brother born. We all co-sleep in a family bed so he just became another addition to what she saw as her bed. DD had self-weaned during my pregnancy but when DS started feeding, I offered her a couple of times but she said no, so she was fine with that too. Right from the beginning she pretty much felt that he was 'hers'. The only danger is that she'd trya nd pick him up if he cried, before I could get to him. She loved the marathon feeding sessions as she'd snuggle up with us on the sofa and I'd read and read and read to her for hours.
As others have said, it was only really once he was mobile that we had any jealousy as he encroached on her territory and could snaffle her toys. I found the hardest ages were when DS was mobile but not actually walking until the point whe he was able to walk properly and for a good way - so when he was 7 or 8 months to when he was 18 months was a nightmare for some reason, but since then it's gradually got easier as they start to play together more, though also bicker more, but that's pretty average I suspect.
Don't know if that's helped!
Druid, boat-dwelling, home educating mum of DD1 (11), Aspie DS (9) and baby DD2 (2), & part-time step-mum to 2 stepdaughters, 9 and 7.
I worried about 2nd, will I love her enough, how will I cope? (worry about everything, me!). But for me there was nothing (much)to worry about. it is joyful, little one loves having A big sister and big one (mostly) loves having a li'l sister. having said that she is SHOOUTING at her now to tell her to stop crawling after her. But dd2 is very lucky having a big sister, all dd1 had was boring old mummy. Won't say there aren't problems but no more thjan before, just different, but nothing insurmountable. hardest things i found were dd1's transfer of affection from me to dd2, its not me who gets first smiles and kisses in the morning anymore!!! And even less time with DH!!! Even less time for me! And when they are both up in the night crying and they both want their mum, feeling torn in two, but all mananageable. You'll do it! Probly alot depends on thier personality too, mine both very laidback.
DD1 - Nov 04
DD2 - Aug 07
Thanks ladies, I'm due number 2 in about 11/12weeks, and its been informative.
I've spent a good portion of today, leafing through old photo albums and in particular, the photos of when I only had two children. It was lovely, there were only 18 months between them, I never had a jealousy problem, there was lots of time to read stories to my eldest while I was feeding the baby and you just talk to the older child, tell them that you are tired and isn't the baby loud today, that sort of thing, involve them. If they want to regress back to a beaker or a cot, let them, it won't last. Bring the eldest onto your side and let them know what a huge help they are and how lucky the new baby is to have such a lovely brother/sister.
Two is lovely ...............and three, and four, and five!!
Home educating Mammy to DD aged 13, DS aged 12, DS aged 10, DD aged 7, DD aged 3 and DS aged 2 weeks!!
MY ETSY SHOP!
Queenie's post just reminded me of something. When DS3 was born, my Mum bought DS1 and DS2 to see me in hospital. DS2's reaction was to throw himself on the ground, and refuse to look at me or DS3. He was not happy at all. One BIG motivation to get discharged as quickly as possible! It took him two weeks to bring himself to kiss DS3, and really had very little to do with him when he was tiny. (more his coping mechanism for when he doesn't like/understand something, than anything else)
However, they are now the best of buddies. When DS2 comes out of school they rush to each other and have an enormous hug. They miss each other when apart, and simpy spend every waking hour in each others company having a whale of a time.
So what I am trying to say is, even if initially things don't go as you would have wished, there is a plenty of scope for improvement, and your new baby will enrich everyone's lives.
My mum told me that having two children as opposed to one isn't doubling everything, it's squaring it!
Druid, boat-dwelling, home educating mum of DD1 (11), Aspie DS (9) and baby DD2 (2), & part-time step-mum to 2 stepdaughters, 9 and 7.
When I had my second I felt something that I thought was awful, until I mentioned it to some other mums and they admitted they'd felt the same - I wished that my second was actually my first so I could enjoy all the baby bits without having the other one around. I didnt mean that I wished I hadnt had my first or anything like that, but the feeling of having your first is so lovely and you dont get it with subsequent ones obviously.
And I'm always amazed a how big the older one seems when you've held your tiny new baby, lol
I can't remember too much about having #2 any more as my second was born nearly 13 years ago, but I survived and carried on having them, so it cant have been that bad, lol
SAHM to B, R, E, M, S, J, A and A
Thanks for reminding me about 'three shoes, one sock and a hairbrush'- I think it may have been me who mentioned it previously- but it had got pushed to the back of the book shelf. I probably need to brush it off and read it again before no3 arrives!
I can certainly agree with the odd wishing number2 was number 1 moments- not because I wanted rid of number 1- but because I was aware that number 2 would never get the 1on1 experiences that the oldest did. I also remember being in tears at 'how unfair' I had been to the oldest- in taking away his 100% attention. Now, two years down the line- as I watch them playing together and telling each other that they love each other and climbing into bed together I know that we did the right thing (by my family anyway).
It is hard work and I kbnow that I did say that I would never have two in nappies again (says she doing the exact same gap again and about to have two in nappies again!!!) but I wouldn't change anything
Starring members of the Cast:
Sebastian (2004), Felicity (2006), Tristan (2008)
Home educating, thought provoking parenting, healthy eating trying to be locavores- but following our own way
AND finally admitting to having a blog http://owngrown.blogspot.com
I've just read this post for the first time and it has REALLY reassured me.
I'm expecting my second on Nov 3rd and DD will be 22 months, and I've been having all these weird feelings of guilt. DD has had my full attention since the moment she was born, I read to her, sing songs to her, play with her, basically we are joined at the hip, no-one does anything as good as Mamma, even Daddy sometimes doesn't get a look in. And this is quite hard for me as I tend not to get a break until she's in bed. So I've been panicking about how she'll react when baby arrives, but all you lovely people on here have been so honest and although a lot of you say it's hard work, you also say it's worth it and there are ways and means around the problems, so thank you all.
I also have horrible feelings about not feeling the same way about DD once the baby is born because I loved her so much from the moment she was born, and what if there isn't enough love to go around. But I've also been reassured in that area too. I'm one of 4 children and my Mum says your love just grows and grows, no matter how many children you have.
All I get from the inlaws is that it will be a total nightmare, and how will I cope, DD will be so upset and jealous… you should have had a bigger age gap blah blah blah >:(