How Can I Help My Child Understand That Another Baby Is Coming Into Our Household?
Adding a new baby to the family is an exciting time! It can also be a complex time. Mom may be glowing with all of those mommy hormones; she may be surging with emotions, having sleep and appetite changes and may even be preoccupied with nesting, finances, time management and even work! Meanwhile, if there is a first child in the family, this adorable, teeny tiny person becomes all too aware that mommy’s world is changing.
Mom’s instinctively know this. Many might sit down and explain about the “new brother or sister” and include the first child in tummy talks and more but sometimes words are not enough. This is because children live in a concrete world and have not yet developed many of the words to make sense of the world. What they do see is mommy is not “playing with me as much. Everyone is talking about something other than me. Am I still important?” Tantrums may increase, hitting and biting might happen.
As an art therapist, I work with children and get into their world in a concrete way. Together we represent emotions, thoughts, experiences using tangible art materials. This process of making the world of feelings concrete and touchable helps make feelings safe, acceptable, understandable, and manageable. I teach parents how to use creativity to decrease tantrums, make children feel included, and enhance relationships. If you want to learn a calming method that can decrease the severity of tantrums, while giving parents and their first child or children a way to do something fun, make sure to contact me on ihelpmoms.com!
Amanda Alders Pike, PhD, ATR-BC