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what to do about my 3 yr old daughter who is going through middle child syndrome!

She has just recently become the middle child. She's got a 6 yr old sister, and a 3 month old baby brother. I have talked to her about why she doesn't want to take naps or go to bed at night, and I'm pretty sure it's a matter of her thinking she's missing out on things if she sleeps. Baby brother is breastfed so I have him with me almost every 2 hrs to nurse, and I think she's missing being the "baby". She acknowledges that she's a "big girl". She is very stubborn & strong-willed, which I think will be great characteristics when she's older, lol, just not now. My husband also just started working a 2nd job along with his regular full time job; she's very much a daddy's girl. The Dr. told me she's most likely going through middle child syndrome. How can I help her transition & how can I keep my sanity??

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Asked by harp3love at 4:07 PM on Sep. 21, 2010 in Preschoolers (3-4)

Level 5 (58 Credits)
Answers (3)
  • I think it is important to keep control of the situation as a parent while still making her feel important. Make sure that daddy takes time to be with her, maybe out to breakfast or to the corner store. Involve her in what you are doing with the baby. There is a fine line between a spoiled brat and a kid that needs to know they are still loved.

    Answer by mepperly07 at 7:04 PM on Sep. 21, 2010

  • I really don't believe to much in middle child syndrome. Each child can feel out of sorts and out of place from time to time. I think its important not to lable it as her now being a "middle child." You already know to take time with each child, to make each child feel special. Most parents know that. What your entire family is experiencing is a transition with a new family member. Your entire family is adjusting to a new normal. Finding new roles is going to be difficult but it doesn't have to be. Also keep in mind children at her age also have these same issues despite not having a new sibling. It can also be a mixture between a family transition and a developmental period for her. Keep being the supportive family you are, develop a new routine and she will adjust.


    Answer by frogdawg at 9:41 PM on Sep. 21, 2010

  • Well, we're figuring things out as we go, naturally. She is very affected by not having Daddy at home as much, so we're thinking up creative ways to help her adjust to that. She loves helping & insists on reading the book, "I'm the big sister" every day now. I think she's starting to take pride in that, since she's looked up to her older sister also, she gets to share the title, =]
    I appreciate the replies to my post, and I agree with things you both said. I will say though that I don't label her "middle child" w/her around. I say it just to let people know where she stands in birth order, really. All children go through things like this & transitions, but I think depending on birth order, they are faced with certain struggles.
    I have always embraced their wants/needs as individuals, but this little one specifically just needs more Daddy time I think, lol. Looks like I'll be planning more dates for them =]

    Comment by harp3love (original poster) at 2:53 AM on Sep. 22, 2010

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