When a baby comes into the world, the older brother can feel in different ways. You can feel excitement, hope and even fear when the parents come home with their little brother, but what they feel the most is inside him is that his world, the one he knew until then, crumbles. He falls apart because he will no longer be anything the same, because his parents’ attention will no longer be exclusive to him.
But just because the little boy’s world falls apart doesn’t mean it’s all bad…sometimes the older brother begins to mature. Maturity is acquired throughout the growth of a person depending on the experiences and circumstances lived by him. In some children, their maturity comes earlier, depending on their genetic predisposition or personality, but we will focus when the baby comes home.
The world falls apart
Yes, the world is falling apart for the older brother but it will also begin to have other positive aspects over time: he will think more and better because he is now the oldest, he will be more independent, he will do some tasks more maturely than others children their age… But it is essential that parents keep in mind that now is a critical time for their older child.
It is a critical time because they may feel isolated or misunderstood . When the older brother realizes that the baby gets more attention than he does, then jealousy can set in. Jealousy will make him behave in a different way, perhaps sometimes it seems as if he were younger than his age inside the house to receive attention… An older brother can process this situation in different ways, we will tell you!
How an older brother accepts the arrival of his younger brother
When a baby is born, the older brother can take different positions before this event that has changed his life him and his whole family. For example:
- You can be happy and mature earlier. You can mature thanks to the treatment you receive from your parents, since they continue to be by your side and also, they give him more responsibilities because he is now the older brother.
- He may reject the brother because he sees him as the family intruder or as a direct competitor for his parents’ love and attention . In this case, jealousy will appear and instead of maturing there will be an obvious evolutionary setback. He’ll desperately want his parents’ lost attention back.
How to avoid jealousy
It is necessary for parents to take all this into account to avoid jealousy in the eldest child towards the youngest and instead of this, they can stimulate a positive maturity. To achieve this, follow these strategies:
- No matter how old your child is, he is still your little one and it is necessary that you do not demand more from him than he can give according to his age. So if you make mistakes, be flexible and understanding. Do not expect him to mature suddenly just because he is an older brother, respect his rhythm. He will continue to have tantrums and do childish things… don’t force him to “grow up” early.
- Do things with the older brother without the younger brother present from time to time. It’s good that he has individual time with dad and mom. This will make him see that he is still just as important to you.
- Involve your child in chores and do them as a game. Try to make those responsibilities you want to give him fun and attractive to him. These responsibilities have to be positive, don’t look at the faults they may have and turn these situations into opportunities to show your trust towards them.
- Do not lose communication with your child and talk about the emotions, of the things he likes… do things as a family and only with him. It is necessary for him to feel cared for at all times.
- Do not impose emotions or empathy. Respect his rhythm and his feelings, so do not impose empathy on his social skills. It may be difficult for him to put himself in the shoes of the younger brother because of jealousy, but what is necessary is for him to be able to identify, express and manage emotions and later, he will also do it with others. Do not pressure him to understand others, especially if he is not able to understand himself.