I have a 4.5 yr old DS and am currently 34 wks pregnant with #2. DS has been very excited about becoming a big brother, talks to my belly regularly, loves his 'becoming a big brother' story books etc that relatives have given us.
Background - He's always been a happy kid, sleeps really well in his own bed, both DH and I are working parents and he loves his kindy and going to his grandparents and has no problem spending a night away from us (he even packs his own bag in anticipation of a sleepover!). DH works away a bit but always FaceTime/calls every night and is usually only a way for a few nights at a time.
Over Christmas I noticed DS becoming suddenly very clingy to me, wanting me to do everything with him even stay with him whilst he is on the toilet etc (has been going on his own for over a year now). He's also been super emotional, cries at the drop of a hat, and has started having 'bad dreams'. He told me rather articulately that he dreamt daddy forgot to do up his seatbelt and drive off and he fell out of the car!! Extremely detailed description and rather disturbing that he's having such vivid dreams at 4?!
I'm worried he is anxious about being left out with the new sibling arriving soon (even though he hasn't said that to us) and thus might be causing his behaviour change. He's still otherwise happy but there's definitely something going on, and when I try to ask what's wrong he says he doesn't want to say.
Has anyone had similar experiences with siblings arriving etc, is there anything I can do? I have tried spending more quality time with him etc but worried I am making it worse?
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17-01-2016 11:11 #1
DS suddenly clingy and whingy - possibly linked to impending sibling arrival?
17-01-2016 11:27 #2
DD1 was pretty much a clingy toddler, hated me picking up other babies, when DD2 was born, my DD1 was quite a lot younger than your son, she was 2 and 2 months, but when she was brought to the hospital to see me and DD2, she wouldn't come near me. It broke my heart. What I did though, was include her in everything, gave her presents from the baby (like big sister presents I guess) and just make more of a fuss of her.
I felt guilty that I had turned her little world upside down, but they do adapt. My girls are now 8 and 11 and are the best of mates (though they dare not admit it). All I can suggest is include your little man in as much as possible, and just reassure him that everything is going to be fine. His world is going to be very different soon.
When this baby arrives, I want my girls to be the first ones to meet her before anyone else, except for DP's mum who is watching the kids. He will adapt, give him little jobs maybe, like getting nappies for you.
Last edited by Marchbundle; 17-01-2016 at 11:30.
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17-01-2016 11:37 #3Senior Member
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I have not come throught the other side of this and my DS is not quite 3 but a lot of what you are saying is happening here. He has always been jealous of me talking to his childcare friends. But right now he is so much clingier, emotional (although he is 2 so I get that provably has a lot to do with it) but is so excited about the new baby and being a big brother.
So no advice as I have no idea what to do except hug him, involve him as much as I can and hope it will pass.
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17-01-2016 13:15 #4
We are going through this now. Ds1 is 2.5, ds2 is nearly 4 months.
Ds1 is very emotional. He always loved daycare but gets upset when i drop him off. He's fine once I'm gone though.
Ds1 recently decided he cannot sleep in his own room, he can only sleep with us. Not sure if it's because of ds2 being in our room or if he's spooked. It started 2 weeks ago when he did get spooked by a possum fight right outside his window. But now there are nights when he'll go into his room on his own and sleep there. Most times he will only sleep next to me. He's also not sleeping great at night so hes tired quicker in the day and that also makes him emotional and sensitive. He's also super clingy, gets jealous when i have the baby too. At first i was fighting to try to get him to stay in his room but he just seemed so scared and upset so i let him stay with us. Unfortunately it seems he's gotten used to it. I'm hoping once we move ds2 into his room next month ds1 will go back to his own room.
I'm not going to push the issue with him, i want him to feel safe and loved and included. I just hope he's back in his own room before i start back at work in 5 weeks 😯
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17-01-2016 13:24 #5
My DD1 (turned 4 about 7 weeks prior to DD2 arriving) got really clingy & a bit emotional the closer we got to bub arriving. She would constantly tell us that she loved us & asked us if we loved her. Wanted someone to play with her all the time, started to wake & come into our room in the middle of the night. Told us that she had nightmares (some fairly detailed).
We have been reassuring her etc & explaining about what was happening all the way through.
One thing that has been really good is having a book that is about a new baby arriving. DD1 will now go through the book & identifies with what happens in it, e.g. Grandma came to look after her, dad took mum to hospital, baby arrives, mum&dad more tired/busy & can't always play but that baby is fun too & although you might have to wait a bit, you still get cuddles/stories etc.
In retrospect we should have talked to DD1 more about what would happen when baby arrived. She was very upset that I had to stay in hospital overnight with DD2.
Things have settled down alot now (DD2 is 9wks old) & DD1 loves her little sister. Still gets easily frustrated about things & is a bit jealous about all the attention DD2 needs but is improving
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17-01-2016 13:35 #6
Sounds exactly like what my almost 4 DD is going through, but my youngest is 16 months.
Unsure if it's sibling related or age related, nor how to overcome it but wanted to offer you sympathy and hugs.
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17-01-2016 13:48 #7
Thanks ladies it does sound normal and I did expect some reaction but probably not just yet, the dreams had me freaked out a bit.
We've got a couple of baby arrival/big brother story books and I am trying to include him as much as possible in getting things ready so he feels part of it. I feel like I've spent way more time with him lately (and he got super super spoilt this xmas, probably because we knew it would be his last one as an only child). I just feel like I can't make him happy, no matter how much time I spend with him it's not enough.
17-01-2016 13:59 #8
DS hasn't been whingy or out of the ordinary, but he is suddenly very much a mummy's boy and if we are on the couch or something he has to be RIGHT on top of me!
17-01-2016 17:43 #9
My advice it to try to keep as much unchanged day to day as you can. My son was much younger then yours when my second was born so we couldn't have the same verbal communication that you can but I think that my son was most stressed by all the little day to day changes more then the new sibling thing. Having mummy off work, stopping our normal play dates (too exhausting), relaxing some rules/boundaries because I was exhausted and feeling guilty about all the changes. Then when bub was born, having daddy off work, heaps of visitors, different food (not cooked by me).... The list goes on. I think all this stuff really caused my son to feel unsettled and not so much the jealousy or upset about a new sibling.
Good luck. It will settle down in time. X
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18-01-2016 09:16 #10
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