You're pregnant and your life is about to be turned upside down once again! Are you wondering how to prepare your little one for the arrival of a newborn? We don't have a miracle recipe, but we do have a few tips to share, so that it goes smoothly for everyone!

When and how to tell your child about the arrival of a new baby?

Announcing your pregnancy is an important moment for expectant mothers. For your partner, family and friends, you may concoct some funny, moving or quirky revelations. But for your eldest child, keep it simple!

At what stage of pregnancy should I tell him?

Depending on his age, your child will have a different sense of time, and a different ability to imagine the arrival of a little brother or sister. If your eldest child is under two years old, it's best to wait until the belly is well rounded, around 5 or 6 months, so that he or she can observe a concrete change. Before the age of 5, wait until your child is 3 or 4 months pregnant, so that she's well established and time doesn't take so long. After the age of 5, it's up to you to decide, depending on your child's maturity. If your child can tell you're pregnant, it's time to take the plunge!

The moment of the announcement

  • Another idea for a support: leaf through your child's birth album together. This can help him to visualize the changes to come.

Then, whether he talks about it often or almost never, make yourself available to answer his questions when they arise.

Preparing your child for the arrival of a new baby: what to do in practical terms

Once the announcement has been made, there's still time for your eldest child to get used to the idea, and you'll have plenty of opportunities to get him or her involved. Here are a few suggestions (not exhaustive!).

Get him involved

  • Take him shopping for baby clothes.
  • Offer to draw or make small crafts to decorate the baby's room.
  • If you like the risk, you can give him the choice of a 2nd or 3rd name! Be careful, he may opt for "Quasimodo" (the true story of a child born at the time of the film "The Hunchback of Notre-Dame" 😅).
  • If he agrees, have him select a gift to give to the baby when he meets him.
  • You could give your eldest child a doll carrier like the one mom and dad!

Getting her used to the changes ahead

  • Explain in concrete terms how daily life will change after pregnancy (bedroom organization, maternity leave, postponed activities, etc.).
  • Do you have newborns in your family? Take your child on a visit to visualize these strange little creatures. 😅
  • If your eldest child is not used to being looked after or sleeping away from home, doing a few trials before the day of delivery can be reassuring for everyone.

Anticipate your stay in the maternity ward

Except in the case of a planned birth, you won't know when the delivery will take place. Faced with this great unknown, it's best to plan ahead!

Before the birth

  • Explain to your eldest child where he or she will be, and with whom, on the day of the baby's arrival.
  • When you pack your maternity maternity suitcaseWhen you pack your maternity suitcase, make sure your child's bag is packed and ready if he or she is going to a relative's house. You can do the same with him/her, and slip in a few extras that he/she will discover when the time comes.

After the birth

When the time comes for your child to meet the baby, try to be totally available for your eldest child. This means avoiding a feeding or diaper-changing situation (even if it means delaying your child's arrival by a few minutes). A word of advice: film the meeting! It's a magical moment, full of emotions that you and your children will enjoy seeing again (and again!).

In the end, you'll find that your eldest has giant hands and feet!

Has this article helped you to better apprehend the arrival of a new baby? We hope so. We can't wait to discover your own tips for getting ready, and especially your children's best punchlines!

We wish you magical encounters 🤩