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Helping Florida children cope with new stepsiblings

Going through a divorce when you have children is like a lesson in patience. The children need time to adjust to the new way of life. Once things settle down some, you might decide that it is time to remarry. That might lead to having another baby.

As excited as you are about bringing a new life into the world, your children with your ex might not share that same joy. Our Florida readers might be interested in learning some ways they can help children who have been through so much during a divorce learn to cope with having a new step sibling on the way.

Children usually don't take news about an impending stepsibling very well. In fact, some children might get extremely upset. They might be jealous of the new baby before he or she even arrives. They might feel anxious about how the baby is going to change things. This is especially true for older children.

Younger children might seem sort of nonchalant about the pregnancy at first. As the baby grows and they can feel kicks and see the baby move, they might be more excited about the change that is coming.

One way that you can help to alleviate the negative emotions your child might feel is to include them in the pregnancy. Don't make them feel like they are on the outside looking in. Ask for their input in things like the baby's name or the color of the nursery. Try to include them in the festivities regarding the baby, including getting to see the baby at the hospital. Once the baby is here, the child might start to come around if they haven't before then.

Bringing a new baby into your new relationship might mean that you need to request some changes pertaining to certain aspects of a child custody agreement. Knowing how to do that and learning your options might help you to decide how you should approach your need for change.

Source: Family Education, "Bringing a New Baby into a Stepfamily" accessed Mar. 13, 2015

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