When to Tell Our Son We Are Having Another Baby

Updated on January 04, 2011
E.W. asks from Jackson, NJ
16 answers

I am pregnant with our 2nd child and I was just curious when you mom's of 2+ told your kids you were pregnant. I am only 10 weeks so far, so I know we aren't going to tell him yet, but when do you think is a good time to tell our 3 yr old son? Thanks!

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answers from New York on

Not for quite a while. Seven months for them is an eternity and they
really do not have the concept of time. I would wait until it becomes
obvious and you are preparing for the baby.



answers from Wichita on

It's hard for kids that age, because they dont have a great concept of time. Everything is today, tomorrow, or yesterday, so in 6 months is like years to them. I think I would wait until I told the rest of the family, which is usually around 12 weeks.

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answers from Portland on

My experience as a family nanny showed me that kids often don't really 'get it' until the baby comes out. When I was pregnant as a nanny, I didn't tell the children until I was showing, because they began asking questions.

Parents often sweat the transition before the baby comes; in my opinion, most of the work of this transition will be done after the baby comes and 'in the moment'. While we like to think we can prepare our children for new babies by reminding them constantly that the baby will be coming, it's just too abstract for kids this age to know positively what they cannot see. They are so much in the present, too, that when we are constantly referring to baby before baby comes, it can be a bit of a weird distraction.

If it were me, I'd tell him as late in the game as possible. When he can't sit in your lap anymore: that's a more tangible "there's a baby in there" than there would be before. We do want to be careful not to overshare: I know a few moms who shared their good news a bit too early, to the confusion of their children. Add to this that the due date is 'only' eight or seven months away for you, but this seems like an unimaginably long amount of time to them.

Be excited for yourselves, as you should be, and let your child enjoy their time as your special one-and-only for as long as they can. It's worth it!

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Modesto on

I'd wait until your stomach was actually noticeable to him. He's definitely not going to understand if he cant see it. You could mention it to him and tell him your tummy is gonna grow.... if you think he's interested enough in that type of thing (only YOU know how bright he is right now and what he can understand). Honestly I'd probably wait until he can feel the baby kick, that's about the perfect time to tell them. ("Guess what? I have a baby sister in my tummy, you wanna feel her move?") That's how I would like to find out if I were 3 :)
I just read Hazel's post and she has a point about not saying much about the new baby to the 3 yr old. Let your 3 yr old have what's left of his lone time with you for as long as he can. If the baby starts being "special" too soon he could really feel the pull of rivalry even before it's born.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

We told our son who was 3 yrs 11 months a day or 2 after because we chose to tell our familiy right away and decided we would rather tell him ourselves than him hear through the grapevine or pick it up from conversations with others...

So I bought him a book and we read it and told him before he went to sleep... I think it work well because he felt included... it wasn't like a family member or friend talked to him about being a big bro before we actually told him mommy had a baby in her tummy and she was going to get fat... jajaja

I adapted a really good book that we read every night to engage him in the pregnancy for his age... it is called Making Me: The Pregnancy activity book for my Big Brother or Sister...

I highly recommend it... My son looks forward to it every night... we decided to read as part of our bedtime routine so that all 3 of us can be together and prepare for the baby...

I think in the end it depends on your son and your family dynamics... Do what your guts telling you to do...

Good luck...

1 mom found this helpful


answers from San Diego on

We told each child(ren) their sibling was in my tummy the day we found out! I got pregnant with my second 2 months after my first turned 2. We told him right away. He went to all my apts and everything. He got the idea that it wasn't going to happen right away. Some days he didn't care when I wasn't showing really. Other days he got that there was someone growing in there. Yes, we had to remind him until I was big enough for him to figure it out. When I got pregnant with my third my boys were 7 & 5 and we told them before we told anyone else. They both went to all of my apts, we got DVDs and books to show them what was going on. They were both there to see their sister being born.
I had a misscarriage between my second and third about a year or so before getting pregnant with my third. We told the boys we were pregnant with that one too, but not immediately. It came as a total surprise and it was hard for us to swallow so we didn't tell anyone right away. When I lost it we told them that the baby couldn't grow right.. They were sad but were fine and understood. They handled it just fine.
It helps telling them right away because they have something to explain why you are sick or tired and they don't worry about that. When I reminded them I didn't feel good because it was taking a lot of energy to grow a baby they weren't scared that I was super sick or dying or something.
I don't know why people wait. The one we waited on is the one we lost. We tell everyone the second we find out and those are the ones we haven't lost.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

We are pregnant with #3 and I told our 2 1/2 son and 1 year old daughter immediately. Actually, I told him before his daddy since his daddy was at work. LoL... I was bouncing around smiling really big and told him there was a baby in mommy's tummy. Because mommy was excited he of course got really excited. He was slightly confused though about the baby being in mommy's tummy... was it my belly button? :-P A few days later he announced that he also had a baby in his tummy. LoL... Anyway, he doesn't fully understand but knows it is something good and exciting because mommy and daddy are very happy. Just be really excited with your son and tell him a little baby is in your tummy and ask him to kiss the baby. If your child sees your husband kissing your tummy and sees you both getting really excited then he will also do the same. Some people have a problem with little boys playing with dolls but they teach boys a lot of great skills. You might consider getting your son a real looking baby doll that he can help feed and take care of, especially when you have the baby. You can have your baby and he can have his baby.

Also, when our daughter came home she brought our son a present. She gave it to him as a token for being her big brother. He was thrilled. You might consider having your son's new sibling bring him a nice little gift. Maybe something he can play with but keep forever as a remembrance.

ADDED: If the child is yours I think it is better to tell them earlier on so they can get use to the idea and can get excited about a new baby. We let our son get in on the fun of picking the name, asking him if he wants a boy or a girl, etc. It gives him a sense of "this baby belongs to me" and helps keep them from getting jealous. IMO, if you wait until the baby is near being born to tell the child then the child will get more jealous because they haven't had time to get use to the idea or share-in on the excitement or planning for the baby. Get your child involved... even after the baby is born. Let them help with diaper changes or other things they can do. It gives them a sense of "ownership."

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Bloomington on

we waited till our kids figured it out themselves. i read books to them about pregnancy and big brother/sister... finally they noticed my belly and asked. it was cute. made the pregnancy faster too because i wasn't talking and thinking about it all the time... i think i was 14 weeks by the time i was showing enough for them to notice.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Tampa on

I think I was about 10wks, maybe 12 when we told our 3yr old son. I don't think he really got the idea until he saw one of the ultrasounds (I've had multiple with this pregnancy). I'm 30wks now. He's gone to several appts and ultrasounds and now likes to feel & watch his baby brother move in mommy's belly. We told him awhile ago that his brother had a long time to grow and get strong before he could come out, so he does realize that and will say that from time to time. At 3 he doesn't get the concept of time so just telling him that has helped - I don't think he's ever asked when the baby was coming out, he just says he has a long time to grow and get strong :)

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Raleigh on

I think we are going to wait until our appointment at 11.5 weeks (right now I am about 6). If we happen to go earlier than that, we will probably just wait until 12.


answers from Chicago on

We told our kids after our 20 week ultrasound when we knew the sex. We have a 3.5 yo daughter and 2 yo son. Best wishes and Congrats!



answers from Chicago on

Our twins just turned two when I found out I was pregnant with #3. I told them right away, but they're so young I don't think they get it. They'll point to my belly and say, "baby," but I don't think they really know what that means.



answers from Youngstown on

I am expecting #3 (8 weeks) and have not told my kids yet. They are 5 & 3 and I am waiting to tell them until I see the doctor at 10 weeks and make sure all is good. I know my daughter will be thrilled but not sure if my 3 year old son will quite get it yet. Good luck and congrats on your new baby.


answers from Washington DC on

huh. i'm surprised at all the suggestions to wait. we just blathered it to everyone as soon as we were sure. i still can't think of any good reason we would have considered sufficient not to.
i hasten to add that it's not a big deal. whenever you're comfortable!



answers from Colorado Springs on

Oh, we tell ours right away! We love to celebrate it together and bask in the joy of it all. Our littles just love it when we announce a new baby! It's theirs, too. I wouldn't wait another day.



answers from Honolulu on

I have 2 kids... the eldest is my Daughter. My son is now 4.
When my daughter was already 3 years old.... I was pregger's with my son.
You can opt, to wait 3 months.... that being the 'safe' time in a pregnancy... per miscarriage etc. And is when people usually 'announce' their pregnancy to others....

Before I was pregnant with my son though, I had had a pregnancy... my daughter was maybe 2.5 years old at that time, but this pregnancy then miscarried at 6 weeks. I had already told my daughter about that pregnancy, by then. But so then I had to tell her, that baby was 'sick'... and did not survive. She actually took it real well and understood. She was not traumatized by it or anything.
So then, when I was pregnant the 3rd time, (with my now son), I waited longer.... before announcing it to my daughter.

all the best,

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