The Gift of Siblings (on National Siblings Day)
When My twins arrived they were babies #3 and #4 in our home. Their brothers Jimmy and Jack were 5 and 3 years of age. For any child, a new sibling coming into the household can be challenging. Multiples add an additional element to the dynamic. Twins bring about even more attention from relatives and friends. They also take more time away from Mom and Dad. Parents are preoccupied and find it difficult to give the sibling the same level of attention they had before. Below are some of my tips to help ease the transitions.
Prepare them and get them excited about the "special" additions to the family. Children's books can help start the conversations. The book "My Twins are Coming Home" by Paris Morris, explores the issues of premature twin siblings, and the wait for them to arrive home.
Each parent should spend special one on one time with the sibling. It could be a trip to the supermarket, or special game night. Emphasize this is special mommy/daddy-child time just for them.
Try not to alter routines too much. If daddy always gives a bath, or mommy reads bedtime story, don't skip it. Find a way to work the child's old routines into your new life.
Give special privlidges to the sibling and emphasize them. "The babies don't get to go on the swings like you do, you are such a big boy".
Remind them of their new job as big brother and
sister. Make them feel important and that they have a role in the family. You can give them a "Big Brother Job" like getting the clean diapers, or picking out the babies clothes.
The first year with twins can be a real adjustment for older brothers or sisters. Their world has changed just as yours has. Always remember, you may not be able to give them all of the attention they want, you just gave them a gift of siblings!! Friends for life
Hope this helps you feel like you could Win at Twinning!