Dealing W/ an Older Sibling When You Go into Labor

Updated on November 28, 2012
E.L. asks from Lyons, IL
14 answers

I'm currently 38 weeks pregnant w/ my 2nd, DD is 3 1/2, I'm a SAHM. Yesterday I had contractions ALL day & thought it could quite possibly be the real thing but they never got strong enough & went away when I had the chance to lay down. DD saw to it that that could NOT happen while she was awake! I was exhausted by the end of the day. Now I'm worried because more than likely I will be alone w/ her for a while, at least until I can determine whether it "time" or not & then it will be a bit before I can get any body to my house to get her. What did you or what do you plan to do when you went/go into labor??? I've gotten some art supplies but we're gong through those fairly quickly just because I'm tired pretty much all the time now & even at that she wants me to do them WITH her. Shows help, but she's never been one to maintain interest in one so she still comes & hops in & out of bed w/ me numerous times, usually crawling one my head! If I protest, it becomes a tantrum & my only escape ois to lock myself in the bathroom! HELP!!

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answers from Norfolk on

This might be a time when sitting her in front of a tv with some movies for awhile would be ok while you rest.
If she tantrums she should be in her room till she's finished.

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answers from Dallas on

Sounds like one of those times when Mommy needs to be Mommy, and she needs to respect your needs. 3 1/2 is old enough for her to understand that "Mommy needs to lay down, so you need to play quietly while I rest. I'll be right here watching you the whole time." Tantrum? Then you can sit in your room with the door closed all by yourself until you are done.

5 moms found this helpful


answers from New York on

My daughter had just turned 4 when my son was born. I was a working mom. We had our daycare provider on call for labor. I was having a home birth. I labored on a Saturday. My husband took our daughter to her swim lesson, played with her in the yard and once I was really in hard labor, he dropped her off at our daycare provider's home. She kept our daughter overnight. See if you have SAHM friends who could be on call for early labor, or a local teen sitter for afterschool hours. At 3 1/2, your daughter is also old enough for a talk about how she is expected to behave when mom is in labor, and that you will NOT be able to play with her at that time. Good luck

4 moms found this helpful


answers from San Francisco on

How far away is your husband? Mine was 20 to 30 minutes so I wasn't too worried. I also had my BFF "on call" if I needed her (she let her boss know ahead of time that she may need to leave suddenly, her job was also 20 to 30 minutes away.)
Obviously if there was an emergency I would have called 911.
Re your three year old, she's old enough to be listening and understanding at this point. Let her snuggle and read with you but she should NOT be hopping in and out of bed and crawling on your head, that would drive me crazy, pregnant or not. Teach her how to climb in and out gently, and if she gets too rough she needs to play on the floor.
Honestly if you feel the need to lock yourself in the bathroom now I can't imagine what it's going to be like when you have two kids to deal with!

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Hartford on

Honestly, let her have her tantrum as long as you put her in a safe place to do it. My goal as a parent was never to keep my children from crying or having tantrums. It was to keep them safe, fed, clothed, sheltered, etc. If they don't cry or have a tantrum then it's a bonus. :-)

Stay rested and stay hydrated. Those are your two best bets for keeping from going into false labor.

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answers from Milwaukee on

Well when DD was due DS was 3.5. We were at the mall when I went from braxton hicks to horrid painful labor all in one contraction. I had to imediately drive myself to the hospital with horrible contractions every 3 minutes that I could not talk through (man those stoplights seemed long). I had to bring my son with me. In the hospital room I had blood dripping down my legs, contractions where I could not talk and a 3.5 year old going "What's wrong mom?" LOL Eventually I got FIL to come get him and I delivered 2 hours later.

Soooo it will all work out. Even if you go into labor and your DD is there, you will figure something out.

For the next 2 weeks really talk about the baby, get her involved in knowing what is going on. Then turn on the TV!!!! Get cozy on the couch and rest. Let her tantrum if you tell her not to jump on your head. She's going to have to stop doing that when the baby is around.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Houston on

Find a mother's day out at least for the next 4 months, I assure you it will be the best thing you do for yourself and even for your kid, if not there are some day cares that are just drop in, meaning they do not have formally enrolled but you can just bring them when you need some help.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Boca Raton on

When my kids were really little, and I just could not function (i.e. sick) I would throw a mattress down on the floor and lay there, and let them run around me.

My older son was 3 when his little brother was born and I can remember him being very difficult right around then too. I think they pick up on our tension, and feel nervous, etc. I would just try to relax with her as much as possible, and recognize that you are NOT going to get much done over the next few weeks. Anywhere you can grab some support - get it.

I also like the idea of finding a Mom's Day Out or drop-in program you can use on an as-needed basis. My only concern would be bringing germs home to the new baby. But it's all a balancing act anyway.

Hang in there and best of luck!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Detroit on

Is this a home-birth? Or do you mean you'd labor at home for some time? Get to the hospital ASAP! My neighbor started to feel labor and in half-an hour the baby came!

My four were all induced on the due date (luckily, or would have been 10 lbs!). so I never had any labor at home. I would contact a neighbor who can come over ASAP on short notice until something more long-term is in place.

As for the mommy time you need, TV. It's just for a few more weeks at most. You need to rest. I get it. I'm not as far along as you but my 3-year-old is in preschool 5 hours a day for his own good. I felt terrible being so sick and tired. Now he's happy, and engaged at school. And I can rest. Still have the toddler at home but he naps, and the older kids are at school.



answers from Los Angeles on

I know where you are coming from because I was home alone with my son before my daughter was born, but for me my kids came at night when my husband was home. It just turned out that way. But had he not been there and I started feeling contractions, I would call my doctor and explain my symptoms and if he felt I should go, then I would go. I would rather go too early and be sent home then risk going to late. Then immediately I would call my husband and have him come home and take us. I could have driven to the hospital myself last time with my son but then again she came at night. When my daughter came, we had everything prepared and just threw our bag and our son in his PJs in the car. You really need to have someone on high alert to meet you at the hospital or take you there and then to be there to watch your kid.



answers from San Francisco on

Have someone (dependable) take care of your toddler while you deliver your next child.



answers from Minneapolis on

Now is a good time to call in a favor from your pals and church ladies who keep offering to do something! You don't have to leave the house for their help and attention to the children to be effective. Barring this, now is the time to pull out the special movies and have a cuddle up 'dark' day (blinds pulled, all the blankets and pillows piled about) so you guys can snuggle, rest, and indulge yourself in a Barbie Princess CD marathon.

As for when the actual moment arrives, I trust you already have arrangements made of who would come over. (again, this might be a person to call and ask for 2 hours of help so you can at least nap.) As a mom who has been through this before, you'll know when it's really time, and when you need to begin to worry. I was baby #3 and my poor mom was in labor with me all day until my dad finished his shift, came to get her and dropped my older siblings at the babysitters, and took her to the hospital. Lol! Guess their plan wasn't that great. Of course, in 1970, you didn't leave work for woman related business like childbirth. Poor mom had no relatives or friends nearby to help her out.

So pick up that phone and ASK FOR HELP!!! Most people love to help expecting moms, so don't be shy!



answers from Washington DC on

You call a taxi or 911 to take both of you to the hospital. Do not try to drive yourself.



answers from Chicago on


I had a whole spreadsheet of what to do with my daughter when my son was born. Do you have a friend or neighbor or babysitter who might watch your daughter? What do you plan to do with her when you go to the hospital (assuming you aren't planning a home birth)? I would ask around among your close friends. If all else fails, if you have Netflix or Amazon Prime, there are lots of episodes of Sesame Street and Mr. Rogers, etc., available online.

Best of luck!

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