How did your child react when you added a new baby to your family?
Actress Laura Prepon is promoting her new book, You & I, as Mothers and boy, does she have some stories about motherhood.
During a recent interview on Live with Kelly and Ryan, Prepon explained how her 2-year-old daughter Ella reacted when her parents brought her new little brother home four months ago.
"We brought him in to introduce him to our daughter and in her bedroom, we have this pretty cloth tepee—there's a bunch of blankets in it and stuffed animals, where she plays—and we brought the baby in and introduced them," said the new mother of two. "And it was the craziest thing—she ran into the tepee, took off all of her clothes, stared at us and just peed on everything."
It hasn't happened since, says Prepon: "She was just proving a point. But it's great."
That point was that this is a big transition for a toddler.
According to the Mayo Clinic, "children at this age are still quite attached to their parents and might feel jealous sharing your attention with a newborn."
The professionals at the Mayo Clinic recommend parens "explain that the baby will need lots of attention and encourage your older child's involvement by taking him or her shopping for baby supplies. Read to your older child about babies, brothers and sisters. Give your older child a doll so that he or she can be a caregiver, too. Look at your older child's baby pictures together and tell the story of his or her birth."
As Dr. Tovah Klein previously wrote for Motherly, it is normal for toddlers to regress when a new baby comes into the picture.
"Toddlers regress. This can be before the baby comes or after (or both!). It's their way of communicating that they're not sure what is going on. More clinging, toileting setbacks, increased whining or tantrums and sleep disruptions are common," she writes.
Klein tells parents to "do your best to remember how little your older one is and avoid control battles as best you can. Instead, bring them closer—they need you more. Extra hugs, cuddles and "babying" them can go a long way in helping them move through this major change in your family."
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