Our child care facility in Kenosha often hears from expecting parents that managing a third child will be just like managing a first or second child. In fact, they think that it is easier because, at that point, one is used to raising children and know what to expect. What they don’t know is that a third child brings a different dynamic to the family. Here is how you can manage a third child:
Think of Each Child as a Gift
Having a third child is not easy, and some things are not easy to do, and one of them is holding the hands of your three children. Well, it’s more like holding the hands of two and pushing a stroller. However, this is the part where you decide to count your blessings. Be grateful for the gift of another child. This will help you not think of him or her as a burden. A third child is not only a gift to you but to his siblings too. One day, they’ll need each other more.
Teach Them All to Work Together
Your first and second born should continue doing what they love like going outside to play without feeling like the youngest child is in their way. You can ensure this by avoiding having them wait for you to attend to the baby so you can allow them to play. However, an alliance amongst them is an excellent idea. For example, let the older two kids push each other on the swing or let the firstborn read to the second born. This will encourage a strong sibling connection, and it will be easy for them to do the same with the third born when he is old enough join them in their activities.
Give Every Child Equal Attention
I know it is not easy, but you should make time for each child. For example, you can focus on the third baby, and when he is asleep, you go and spend time with his siblings. It is not possible to provide all your children with your full attention whenever they want it, and this is especially for the two older ones. However, you can try your best and reward them when they are patient. One way of doing this is by reading them an extra story at bedtime. When your first born and second born feel like the third born has taken all your attention, they will resent him. That is why you need to make them feel special too.
Be Ready for Tough Decisions
Things will not always fall in line when you get a third baby. Sometimes, you’ll be doing something for the first and the second born, and that’s when the baby will decide to cry. You will not be able to make everyone happy at the same time, and this is where the tough decision making comes in. If the baby is safe, you can let him cry for another minute as you finish up with your older two, then you can attend to him. You can also give the older two your attention and then at night you’ll snuggle up with the third born. If you always rush to the third born, then the other two will feel neglected. So, you need to make the hard decisions.