A New Baby Brother.. Does He Understand?

Naturally, there's been quite a bit of excited baby talk going on in our house lately. And as we get closer and closer to my second little guys due date, the baby talk has been increasing! 

It's hard to know if Ethan understands that he's going to become a big brother next month. He's only two years old himself and as he doesn't really communicate with words yet, it's even harder to know what he does and doesn't understand. I'm fairly sure he's aware that somethings going on. He's very aware of my growing stomach and will often pay it a lot of attention, be it through kissing it, stroking it, pressing his ear against it when I ask him if he can hear anything, or on a bad day - attempting to hit it (yeeep, my toddler is a normal toddler too!). 

He gets excited every week when I stand in my usual spot in our bedroom whilst my Husband takes a photo of me for my weekly bump update for my blog. He often wants to be involved and will hold his arms up to me until I pick him up so he can get in on the photo. He's become quite funny with having his photo taken generally, so him wanting to get in front of the camera is, asides from these times, quite the rarity!

We call our baby by the name we've chosen for him when we're at home, I hope this has helped Ethan get used to us his little bro's name and so hopefully he'll understand who he is when he comes home from the hospital with us!

We've been doing some new-baby related activities too, just to keep the idea of a new baby present in Ethans mind, so that it's not too overwhelming for him when we go from a family of three to a family four. Any parent who has a child who is a Peppa Pig fan, will probably have seen the 'Baby Alexander' episode.. (yeah, THAT one.. we've seen it a billion times too!).. We spotted the book based on the episode when we were at Paultons Park on Ethan's birthday last month and being that we have a bit of a book-worm on our hands and one who's soon to be living with a new baby, we thought it'd be a nice addition to his book shelf.  He loves us reading it to him and giggles at the things 'Baby Alexander' does. It's this book here on Amazon (a lot cheaper that at Peppa Pig World!!) if you're interested.

We've also been playing an Orchard Toys game for 2+ year olds called New Baby Lotto. We play it slightly differently to how the instructions say we should because it's a fairly new game to us and Ethan is literally only just over the recommended age of play, but he has so much fun matching the pictures up to the one's on the board. It's pretty good because whilst keeping the idea of a new baby present in his mind, we've also been learning new words associated with having a baby as I've been explaining to him what everything is as we pick each picture up. This is the game if you're interested in having a look at it.

Like I said before, it is difficult to know what Ethan does and doesn't understand about his soon-to-be new baby brother, but the most important thing is, is that we are hopefully taking the right approach with preparing him and will hopefully get it right with letting him get involved and such when baby does arrive. I want Ethan to feel very much apart of taking care of the new baby and I'm hoping that he'll feel a great deal of affection and responsibility in his new big brother role. 

What did you do to prepare your little one for a new arrival? Do you have any tips you can share?



  1. Awww, I think he's going to be a fab big brother. And it sounds like you're doing all that you can to prepare him.
    We didn't really do anything to prepare our little man when I was expecting his sister, because he was really just too little to understand. We talked about the baby in my tummy but I think it meant very little to him. When she arrived he was interested in her, but on his own terms (so for very short periods) and we just never pushed it. He was so cute and polite to her, but also a little bit scared of her too I think. I was desperate to get that first photo of him holding her on his lap, but we didn't push it, and I think she was probably getting on for a month before he asked for a cuddle. The rest, as they say, is history... because the pair of them have been cuddling ever since.
    All you can really do is keep talking to him, keep him in the picture, and take every opportunity in the early days to include him in what he wants to be included in, and give him some space and one-to-one time when he needs that too.
    You will be absolutely fine... in no time at all, you'll wonder what you were worried about. x

  2. Our eldest was just a 3 weeks from turning 2 when his little brother arrived. I was really nervous about how he would react to a new baby, as for most of the time it was just him and me. We tried to prepare him by keeping him involved as much as possible. We spoke to him all the time telling him he would soon have a brother, let him pick out things for the baby and he even went shopping and brought his new brother a present for when he was born. (we got them both a little something from each other).
    Its natural to worry, but children have a funny of surprising us I'm sure Ethan will love having a little brother xx

  3. It's so wonderful that you're getting Ethan used to the idea of having a little brother before he arrives! That game sounds like such a good idea, I will keep things like this in mind if we have another baby in the future xx

  4. As Darcie is (almost) three she has a very good understanding of what's happening. When we first found out we got a book for her too, which goes through what to expect (mummy's tummy getting bigger, scans, and eventually a new baby) which I think really helped her. When we went for my scans she new exactly what to expect and was even telling me what would happen at the scan! She was been wanting to help a lot more around the house too which is nice, so I think once baby is here she will want to play a big part in looking after him! I think they know a lot more than they let on. I'm sure there will be challenges as well, it's such a huge change for them!! Sounds like your doing all the right things, I guess you can never fully prepare them!!

    Kay xxx

  5. I think he'll be a fab big brother. My son was almost 2 when his sister arrived and to be honest I don't think he had any real concept of me being pregnant. We would let him touch my belly and kiss my belly obviously but until she came along he wasn't too fussed. I think you'll find he'll be fascinated when his brother arrives especially with the baby toys and stuff. All you can do is keep doing what you are doing and when baby arrives let him decide how involved he wants to be. We bought Z a present from his sister when she was born which he thought was quite good!

  6. honestly I haven't done anything to prefer Matthew on the arrival of Chloe. He knew there was a baby in my belly and kissed it and all but once she was out and here laying on the bed in the morning it was a Shock to him. lol

  7. It sounds like you're doing just the right things to help prepare him but how much they take in is anyone's guess! When Elma arrived we'd talked to Kitty about the new baby but she was only just two and I'm not sure she was very aware what was going on but she was very excited by the new baby when she met her! And again when Pip was born Elma was just too little to understand and wasn't very interested but Kitty (3 at the time) thought it was all very wonderful - she came some of my scans and the midwife appointments and was very clear that her brother had been her 'Baby Pinky' - though it took her by surprise that he was a boy! I'm sure Ethan is going to be a great big brother and he'll take it in his stride!

  8. There is exactly 2 years and 5 days between my two girls (Agnes is now 12 weeks) and I was terrified about how my eldest would react, we too read all the books and talked about there being a baby in my tummy a lot!! But I am pleased to say that after all my apprehension the transition to big sister from only child had gone pretty smoothly!! Now, don't get me wrong there have been times when Eliza has asked me to put her baby sister down while I've been feeding her so she can have a cuddle too but the two of them are slowly becoming best friends. No one makes Agnes smile like her big sister does, it brings a tear to my eye! Your two with be as thick as thieves before you know it!
    Em xx

  9. such a cute post! Ethan will be the perfect big brother to your new little boy! :) Im sure youve done a perfect job at preparing him for the new arrival in June!

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  10. Ah this is lovely Alex, Ethan will be the best big brother I just know it, I was worried about all these things too and from the second LL arrived Mads has truly been the absolute best. x