Monday 22 August 2011

The toddler and baby relationship

Before Mia arrived we were naturally anxious as to what Harry would make of her. He can be a touch possessive and demanding, he doesn't like it when I talk to anyone else when he is around - "No Mummy, talk to meeeee!" 

Toddler and his baby sister

I was expecting either indifference or jealousy. I wasn't expecting smothering affection.

Toddler and his baby sister

Even now, as Mia approaches 3 months old the novelty hasn't worn off. It's no longer Mummy that he demands first thing in the morning, it's Mia. When he comes in with Dad from a trip out, his first question is always "Where's Mia?" as he runs in to find her. He gets upset if he can't see her anywhere. If she's asleep he puts his face to hers and says "Wakey wakey!", if she's awake he'll announce happily "She's awake!". 

He talks to her, he tells her about how she came from the hospital, he tells her when Mummy does something funny, when she cries he says "It's okay Mia, there there". He can't stop himself exclaiming "She's so tiny!" at any opportunity. He pushes his face right into hers and makes baby cooing noises. He tries to put toys into her hands, and waves them in her face. He is absolutely delighted if she smiles at him, and any noise that she makes is hilarious, regardless of which orifice it came from. He triumphantly announces "She said hello!" with every grunt or whimper, and "She said thank you!" if he gives her something. 

If I'm holding her he'll say "Put Mia in the chair" or "Put Mia on the mat". At first I thought it was because he was jealous that I wasn't cuddling him. Then I realised it was so that he could have easier access to her.

Toddler and his baby sister

I didn't expect to be able to leave them alone in the room together, but that was because I thought he might try and hit her with a piece of train track, not because I thought that he would knee her in the stomach when climbing on top of her trying to cuddle her.

I wish I had some advice to offer on how to deal with an over affectionate older sibling. Obviously, it's much better than the alternative, but sometimes I do catch an anxious expression on her face which disappears when I take her away alone, and sometimes feeding her can be a bit of a pain while trying to fend him off. 

Toddler and his baby sister

But I'm so pleased that he is so taken with her. It will be very interesting to see how he reacts when she begins to move around and go for his toys, so for the moment long may it continue!


  1. That is ADORABLE. I can see how it would be annoying at times, but it is just lovely as well. Laura was so indifferent to Emily for so long and it made me a bit sad (she is much fonder of her now).

  2. I do hope their bond is still as adorable - look at her gorgeous jet black hair! Thanks for linking to #oldiesbutgoodies :)


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