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Does toddler's behaviour change when birth of sibling is imminent?

(11 Posts)
morningpaper Tue 16-Aug-05 08:55:37

DD1 (nearly 3) is expecting a sibling in 6 weeks or so.

She has started being uncharacteristically clingy at night and last night she came into our bed - which she has simply refused to do since she was 8 months old (!) and started cuddling me and her father (she is NOT a cuddly child).

She hasn't given any explanation for her behaviour and said she doesn't really know why she didn't want to sleep in her bed last night, although she said she will tonight. (Hmm!)

Is it common for toddler's behaviour to change before the birth of a sibling? Is this anxiety about change, or a worry about leaving me 'alone' in case the baby arrives? In general she seems quite excited about the new arrival (although obviously her understanding is limited).

TinyGang Tue 16-Aug-05 09:38:11

My dd was three when the twins were born. She was very understanding about the whole thing but obviously had lots of questions.

I was worried how she'd take it; when I was in hospital that the realisation really kicked in (for us all I think!)

I spent some time reading this book with her and it helped a lot.

Godd luck with the new baby!

TinyGang Tue 16-Aug-05 09:40:28

Godd luck?? That should be 'good' but God can send some too for good measure

purpleturtle Tue 16-Aug-05 09:40:38

morningpaper, I think it does happen. Somehow they pick up that all is about to change, and they react to that realisation.

tex111 Tue 16-Aug-05 09:50:47

Going through this with DS now who's 3. Second baby due in 11 weeks and DS has become very clingy to me. Will only let me put him down at night (much to DH's sadness), ends up in our bed most nights, constantly saying 'Mommy, watch! Mommy, watch!'. I'm just trying to spend as much time with him as possible in the hope that it'll reassure him but we talk about the fact that babies take a lot of work and I'll be very tired after the baby comes but we'll still be able to do fun things together, etc, etc.

My parents are coming over to help out so we're talking about all the fun DS will have with Papa and Nana while I'm in the hospital and how he can show them his school, his toys, his friends. I think it gives him something to look forward to.

mummyhill Tue 16-Aug-05 15:54:42

DD is 3.5 and has suddenly become very demanding and has started to wet the bed again, we have put it down to the fact that we are expecting our little bundles to arrive in three weeks time. It is a very trying time as i am exhausted and find it difficult to cope with this demanding little creature that she has turned into. I am trying to be as understanding as possible and to reassure her that we will allways love her no matter what but some days I find impossible as all I want to do is sleep. I am hoping it will all get better after the birth but am quite sure we will have a green eyed monster in the house.

JiminyCricket Tue 16-Aug-05 19:00:32

dd1 kept asking for 'duddles' (cuddles) and was much clingier than normal for two weeks before dd2 born last week...i put it down to her picking up on our anticipation/anxiety, and also her being worried about me being so tired. a bit of jealousy the first few days with new baby sister but now (fingers crossed) much more settled again, and we've introduced 'group hugs' when individual 'duddles' not possible (ie when baby attached to boob). hope it goes well for you

babster Tue 16-Aug-05 19:10:37

Dd2 started taking all her clothes off at playgroup as a sure-fire way to get attention. When I was very heavily pg, she also went through a phase of running away as she knew I wasn't up for chasing her. Thankfully she stopped once the baby arrived and she realised that life went on as usual.

trefusis Tue 16-Aug-05 19:12:51

Message withdrawn

mumxfour Tue 16-Aug-05 19:57:07

Hi MP I had this with my youngest when I was due as she did not understand what was happening but when baby came she has had her moments but loves her little ds so much and is always interested and trying to help. Good luck

henshake Tue 16-Aug-05 20:33:22

Hi morningpaper, my DD was 2.5 when DS was born.
B4 birth we also used books to describe what was going on. The first is Waiting for baby - Frank Endersby and the second is I'm a big sister - Joanna Cole. Both are cheap and available on amazon. Waiting for baby has pictures and no words - you make up the story. I'm a big sister has the baby as already born & was a bit american, but a couple of changes to the words and the jobs a guddon. DD kept asking for them both to be read.

DD was a bit clingy but kept talking about mummy having to go into hospital. Also took a picture of both DD and I for her to have by bedside for when I went into hosp.

DD & I went shopping to buy a pressie for new babe which she gave him on his birth. DS had bought her a soft dolly & a toy baby bag with nappies & food set in. She loves it & is still changing baby's bum 9 mths on.

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