You’ve Brought Home a new Baby and your Toddlers Suddenly Talking like one

Most young children will revert to some sort of immature behavior when a new brother or sister arrives at the house. This is particularly true of first-born children, who perceive that they are no longer the sole center of attention. Other behaviors to watch for are clinging, regression in potty training, difficulty sleeping, potty "accidents", and apparent loss of previously-mastered skills, such as using a fork or even walking. Older children may begin to have trouble in school, argue or complain or whine more than usual, or sulk.

The answers are the same, no matter what the age group. Find ways to deal with the underlying feelings. Children are naturally pretty egocentric, and the arrival of a sibling rocks their worlds. Be sure that you find ways to help the older child feel that you still love him or her. Spend time with the older one, preferably one-on-one. Play an extra game or read an extra story. Make a big deal about the things the older one can now do that infants cannot, like listen to a story, eat dessert, cut with scissors, or go to a movie. Nurture a sense of responsibility by requesting help with meeting the baby’s needs, like bringing needed care items, occupying the infant while parents are busy in the same room, or helping make baby comfortable. Show your older child how to play infant games, such as peekaboo or use a rattle correctly with the baby when the time is right. Dream together about the fun things siblings can do when they grow. Remember the things the older one did when little and share those stories. Get out the baby book and the old baby pictures to help make the connection that we all were very young once.

In general, help the older child know that he or she is loved and secure and an important part of the family. For the most part, it’s probably best to ignore the little regressions. If you feel the need to respond (if the older sibling is hitting or something), then stress that kids who act their age get the perks of being "grown up." Kids who act like babies probably cannot handle the exciting and fun things that older children usually enjoy.