I absolutely love watching my oldest daughter, Harlan, build a relationship with her new little sister. Harlan was very involved during my pregnancy. I took her to every single doctor appointment that I had and she loved watching her little sister “on TV.” We did this hoping that it would help ease the transition once Avery got here.
I’m not sure if it was our openness or the fact that Harlan is a very nurturing little girl, but she has been absolutely in love with her “baby sister” since day one. Although she has her moments of “I need attention,” she has made this transition a lot easier than I ever expected. She loves helping me with the baby and is very affectionate with her. Almost a little too much.
Harlan loves giving Avery hugs and kisses. So much so that she is constantly touching her to show her affection. She’s even gone as far as attempting to pick her up so that she can hold her or give her a hug and kiss. I know her intentions are good, but I’m having a hard time getting through to her that Avery is fragile and that we need to be gentle with her.
Much of it has to do with her age, but there are times when Harlan wants to be a little too involved with Avery. She wants Avery to do everything that she is doing. While I absolutely love that she is wants to include her in everything, she doesn’t quite understand that she’s just not old enough yet.
I try to explain to her that there will be a day when Avery can run around with her and even interact with her more, but she just isn’t getting it. I’ve even tried telling her that she is a big girl and can do big girl things, but Avery is a baby and can’t do them just yet. None of it seems to be working.
She’s not malicious at all and all of this is out of the immense love that she has for her sister, but I just want to teach her that she needs to be careful when she is around the baby.
Moms, I need your help. How did you teach an older sibling to be more gentle with the new baby?