When you have a second baby, it can be really difficult to have enough energy to look after the baby and your toddler or older child. Simply feeling tired because of broken nights may make you feel that the demands your older child makes are unreasonable. But don’t forget that they are also adjusting to the changes in the family and so need your reassurance, and still have the same needs as they did the day before the new baby arrived.
The most important thing young children need is your love and attention – a few meals replaced by a sandwich won’t do much harm, but feeling that you no longer love them because of the new baby may cause problems. Even if you are exhausted, try to give your older child a smile, some words and a cuddle whenever you can. Sometimes it feels that you simply can’t take on their demands, but children can be quite affected by not being answered and feeling ignored, so give them at least an answer and if possible an explanation if you can’t do what they want at that time.
A small ‘token’ such as a special gift you gave them when the new baby arrived may help, for example a rag doll that you can suggest they cuddle at the same time as you are cuddling the baby, may help them to feel that you are both together, doing the same thing.