Feeding Newborn and Keeping 18 Month Entertained

Updated on March 29, 2008
S.O. asks from Fort Lauderdale, FL
9 answers

i am finding it difficult to feed my 2 week old as my 18 month also wants my attention,any advice??

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So What Happened?

Thanks for all your advice.. I'm going to buy a baby sling and have got lots of books from the library for my son, it is getting easier...my son is a wonderful little helper..

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answers from Boca Raton on

I have't been keeping up with my emails, since I am in the same boat, I have a 20 month old and a 4 month old, 16 months apart! The only thing I can tell you is, disney channel or baby einstein DVDs or other DVDs that he may be interested in. It is still very difficult to feed her and entertain my son. It does get better, the worst is trying to feed them both at the same time!

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answers from Miami on

It is difficult now, but soon they will be the best of friends. Mine are 22 months apart. My pediatrician told me to always keep the older one involved in what I was doing with the younger one. In the beginning I would read to my older one while my little one nursed or we would put Dora on and we'd sit and watch together while my little one nursed. I always tried to be interacting with my older daughter while my younger one beastfed so that she didn't view the baby as taking up all of Mommy's time, and in the beginning that's what it seems like because the baby has to nurse so frequently. After the baby finished I would lay her down to sleep or hand her to my husband so that I could cuddle my older one. If I wasn't able to put her down or Daddy wasn't home I would cuddle them both together. Many moms won't let their older ones touch the baby, but I encouraged gentle touching so that my daughter would get close to her sister and realize they were alike. She would have fun identifying parts of her sister's face and body. And when my daughter would feel like she needed all of Mommy we would go into her room for some special play time, just the two of us for thirty minutes in the evening after dinner while my husband had some one on one time with the baby. And my husband would take my older daughter someplace special on the weekends or to the My gym wednesday evenings for open play. It wasn't all perfect, we still had to deal with the acting out flailing arms and legs she would try to do around the baby. We were firm about what was acceptable behavior near the baby. And I did have to make her wait sometimes, because I did need to tend to the baby one on one too. It was a good exercise in patience when she did have to wait, but I always tried to make the waiting fun. I encouraged her to sing to her sister. There were plenty of days where I thought to myself what have I gotten myself into. Now nine months later my little one is still breastfeeding and my daughter likes to help, she will stroke the baby's hair while she nurses, she loves to sing to her and they are beginning to really play together terrifically. The baby just smiles so big when her sister comes around, sometimes she completely distracts her from breastfeeding. My little one is crawling and follows her sister all over the house while the older one eagerly leads her.



answers from Miami on

are you breastfeeding?
if so you can use a sling to feed and have your arms free for your 18 month old
or you can snuggle up w/ a snack & a sippy w/ the 18 month old as you nurse

if you're not breastfeeding, then you can maybe still do the second suggestion?

anyway, congratulations on your new baby!
www.thebabywearer.com can help you learn all about ways to wear your baby so you can have free arms w/ the toddler
also, here's the local group:

enjoy that sweet baby!




answers from San Juan on

I have a 3 months baby and 3 years boy. I know it is really hard, but maybe you know some things that your 18 month baby like to do. You can start an activity like play with legos or something, that he can continue alone. Also you can put the boy to help you feeding or bathing the new baby. The most important thing is to be patient.



answers from New York on

You could make a special basket of toys for William to play with ONLY when you nurse. If your house is anything like mine, there are plenty of extra toys lying around. He will be more excited to play with them if they are hidden for a while! If possible, don't let him see where you keep the basket. Also, if he tires of the toys, you can always rotate with others to keep it fresh. Good luck!



answers from Miami on

When I went through this many years ago I found that if I put my son in his high chair and gave him snacks, cheerios, etc. healthy things then I could feed his sister. I would also put a toy or two on his tray and have Sesame street on. It seemed to work for the earlier feedings. The afternoon feeding he was always taking his nap. But her hunger time seemed to be when he was napping and it was just coincidental?

Good Luck, I know it's frustrating as you don't want him to feel second fiddle, but your new little one needs so much extra care in the newborn stages. I also would have Jesse bring me her diaper when she needed changed and let him pull the tapes. Just anything to get him involved with her and helping so he felt protective of her instead of jealous.

They are 29 and 24 today and bonded extremely close and I truly think that is why.





answers from Atlanta on

Hello S....I can relate since I have a 3 years old and a 22 months old (15 months difference).

I used to sit down with my older son and watch a movie while I was feeding the youngest. I also give him a snack during that time. I know it is hard but it won't last long. Now they eat together and it has become easier.



answers from Miami on

My daughter was 25 monthds old when my son was born. My sister actually gave me this idea. She said to have puzzles and books on the bed/couch/floor where you were nursing, so you can play with your toddler while nursing. You can also get the books on cd/tape.



answers from Miami on

I faced this dilemma when my first daughter was just 2 1/2 and I had my second child. If you can time your feedings, try to sit with your son and cuddle, hug, read a story together before you nurse/feed the newborn. Also, what I would do when I sat down to nurse my daughter, I would sit on the couch with my first daughter next to me and I'd read a story to her...and the baby benefits from this as well. Give your 18 month a little snack (Cheerios, fruit, or crackers) or give him an activity, like coloring until you are finished with the baby. You'll get a routine going and I promise it gets better. I have 3 children so I've been where you are.

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