Adding to your family can be exciting, but if you already have a little one at home, there can be a lot to consider. UW Health Midwife Phoebe Sullivan from our DeForest-Windsor Clinic shares 6 top tips to keep in mind when you're considering adding a new member to your family.
Childcare, finances, space at home, work demands—how will these be impacted by adding another child to your family? Can you fit two or more car seats in your car? Many parents worry if they will have enough love for a second or third, or feel the same love for the next child. Our hearts are large and easily accommodate loving more children.
2. Your Existing Child
Talk with your child during your pregnancy about the new baby and what changes they might see in you and to the family. There are plenty of great books and toys that can help your child get ready to be a big sibling. Make sure you make plans during your pregnancy and during your postpartum period to spend special one-on-one time with your older child. Prepare a few small special toys the big sibling can play with only while you are feeding the baby. Be ready with snacks for you and your older child during this time. Giving your child a sibling is a wonderful gift!
3. Life and Family Changes
Is a family member about to change jobs? Are you in the middle of toilet training? Try to get as much completed during your pregnancy as you can before your family gets bigger and busier.
4. Be Mindful of Your Pregnancy Expectations
Every pregnancy, just like every baby, is different. Pregnant folks often feel more pregnancy symptoms and discomforts than they did the first time. For some people, their pregnancies are exactly the same.
5. Prepare Your Home
Do rooms need to be reconfigured? Where will the nursery go? Does your child need to transition into a kid bed and out of the crib to make room for baby? Make sure your house is child-proofed, as it can be harder to keep an eye on an older child 100% of the time.
While every pregnancy, birth and child is different, you've gone through this all before! For many people the information they learned the first time (soothing baby, tricks of breastfeeding, what does that cry mean?) is so important the second time and makes it easier to be more relaxed.
Are you ready to grow your family? We are proud to offer obstetrics care at our Monona and DeForest-Windsor clinics in partnership with UW Health, including the options of midwifery services at our DeForest-Windsor location.
Baby already on the way? We’re proud to offer you a Birthing Center tour option specially designed for older siblings to come along. Tours fill up early, so register in advance.