Friday, 13 March 2009

Stomach snub

I have been thinking/worrying a lot about the effects the new baby will have on Betty, but also how lovely it will be for her to have a younger sibling to play with, or torment in the case of me and my poor younger brother.

Some of the incidents that spring to mind…

• When I was nine years old my dad said he'd give me £50 if I ate a worm. I ate the worm and got my £50, but my mum (who was pretty annoyed with my dad for encouraging me to do such a stupid thing) made me split the money with my younger brother. I was livid and thought it only fair to force him into eating a worm to earn his half.
• During the school holidays (shortly after the worm incident) I locked my brother in a cupboard for three hours while my mum was at work. Just before she was due to come home I let him out again. He cried and wailed and told mum what I had done but I convinced her that he was making it up.
• I used to pick flowers out of peoples’ gardens, and then hand them to my brother and tell him to go and knock on the door and try to sell them to the owner.
• And I would often suck the chocolate off Maltesers and then hide them all over our house. When my brother came across them and asked me what they were I would scare the life out of him and tell him that it was alien poo.

I keep hearing from friends and from celebrity mums in Heat magazine that when pregnant with the second child, the older sibling affectionately strokes and kisses their mummy’s tummy, talks or sings to the unborn baby, or tries to look at it through mummy’s belly button.

Betty has shown absolutely no interest in my expanding stomach. When I dare mention to her that there is a baby in there, she gives me a filthy look, turns her back on me, and starts singing ‘The wheels on the bus…’ very loudly.

This could mean that either she thinks I am completely deluded for talking about such absurdities (especially as she regularly witnesses me downing entire Chocolate Oranges, and often refers to me as ‘Daddy Pig’), or she knows full well what is going on and doesn’t want to think ab0ut the fact that she soon has to share her home and parents with another little Button.

17 comments:

Laura - Are We Nearly There Yet Mummy? said...

Hilarious - does your brother suffer from claustrophobia?

My daughter has just learnt to lie ... and she deos it well. I often find the 3 year old crying and saying that the 4 year old has pushed/hit or taken something from him and she sits there all angelic.

Unfortunately for her, her brother is set to be tall and will overtake her in the next year or two. She'll be in trouble then!

Elsie Button said...

that's exactly what happened to me and my brother - one day he was suddenly MUCH MUCH BIGGER than me and i got my comeuppance - and continue to do so!

She's like the wind said...

I may have mentioned this before but I'll say it again, I was an only lonely child and didn't have anyone to fight with, but being the mother of 2 drives me nuts when you can't tell who's lying. When I was pregnnt I continually talked about the baby bump and hop life would be when the baby came and what we would need, where the baby would sleep, maybe you shouldn't mention that right now!! etc etc, my son was 2.5 when my daughter was born and he was brilliant, so much so she used to shout on him in the morning (she was a very clever baby, only joking, once she was older) and he used to go and lower the cot sides to let her out and walk her through to mummy who as delighted to see them at 6am! Betty will come round. And as for you Mrs Button your poor brother, probably scarred for life!! xx

Iota said...

Knowing Betty, I think your last guess is probably the nearest.

There are lots of great books about becoming a big sister. But vet them first, and don't read her the ones that go on and on about jealousy. Of course it's a real issue, and you want to make a child feel it's ok to feel put out and to voice those feelings, but you don't want to major on that. And some of them make it sound like the child is going to have an instant playmate, in which case a scrawny screaming demanding newborn is going to be a bit of a disappointment. We had one that was about a rabbit family, and we had to keep explaining that Mummy was going to have a human baby, not a rabbit baby.

Usborne does a good one called "The New Baby".

Elsie Button said...

hi she's like the wind - that is so sweet about your children getting on so well. And yes, my brother is scarred and still hates me!

Hi iota, i really appreciate the advice/recommendation and will def get that book - i am quietly terrified about the reactions we will get from betty.

Metropolitan Mum said...

Growing up with an older brother has only tought me to a) duck down quickly when things come flying into your direction and b) appreciate the principle of opportunity cost. Being the younger one, punishments for things I haven't (or have...) done used to be pretty mild. But what I got out of blackmailing my guilt-ridden brother made it worth taking the blame on me.

Tara@Sticky Fingers said...

Elsie you were a horror!
I thought older sisters were supposed to be loving and supportive of their younger brothers and take them under their wing. You'd better hope you have another girl so she stands a fighting chance!

rosiescribble said...

She will love being a big sister I'm sure, maybe not intially, but in time, and they will develop such a special relationship. Dont worry too much!

AliBlahBlah said...

My 3 yr old yesterday asked if we could throw her 2 month old sister in the trash....

I feel for her, because quite honestly, gaining a sibling at 3 years old means very little benefit to her, right now. I remember asking my Mum why my friend had a Cindy Dolls House and not me, and my Mum replied 'well, she's an only child and you have your brother'. I would have taken the dolls house in a heartbeat! Possibly not now though...

And yes, I do keep checking the trash...

Crystal Jigsaw said...

So you loved your brother then!! I'm sure Betty will adore her little sibling too.

CJ xx

Coding Mamma (Tasha) said...

Your stories of you and your brother are hilarious. My sister was 12 years younger, so I never had that kind of relationship.

I'm sure Betty will be fine. It will probably take a bit of adjustment, but I'm sure they will have lots of good times together as they grow up.

Rosemary is very interested in there being a baby in my tummy and quite often leans down and shouts 'Hello baby!'. She's a bit confused about why I don't know whether it's a brother or sister and why I can't say 'OK, then.' when she says she wants it to be a little brother (I think possibly because Peppa has a little brother?!). But she has been interested in babies since she could say 'Baby' and always goes up to them and strokes them and says 'Ah. Look at the cute baby.' The reality may come as a shock to her!

How long have you got to go now?

that girl? said...

Ha Ha... the alien poo story is great! And as for what celeb mums say I think you can think you can pretty much ignore most of it! I mean I wouldn't believe anyone who "snaps" back into shape in two weeks due to personal trainers/nannies/chef's etc. . I think a lot of them come from planet La La!

Suffolkmum said...

I'd better not let my son this post or he'll get more ideas for tormenting his little sister! Betty's response makes me laugh. Don't worry, she will get used to it and never remember anything different. They'll love each other.

Beccers said...

What a funny post!

I am the youngest child and apparently when I was a baby my sister was annoyed because I was "sitting in her seat" so she "carried" (ie pulled!) me from the sofa to the rug in the middle of the room and then declared she knew nothing about it when my mum came back into the room 10 seconds later.

My friend recently had her second baby and was feeling very pleased with herself because her son was doing the talking through the belly button thing and all looked rosy. Until they visited a friend with a new baby. The first ten minutes were great... lots of "Ah baby" from her son all was looking well... it looked less well 5 minutes later when he shouted "put the baby down now mummy, put it on the floor, i'm here mummy" much to her embarrassment. (To reassure you he loves his baby brother now, probably because his brand new baby bro bought him a new playmobil toy when he came home from the hospital!)

Sparx said...

I so love to know you were awful to your younger brother too. My brother will relate in great detail the things I did to him as a child. I convinced him that there was a body buried under the old hearthstone in his bedroom. I told him I was a vampire and would run hissing behind him down dark corridors. I once hid under his bed while he was brushing his teeth and stayed there until after he had read his book and turned out the light...I then reached my arms from under his bed and grabbed him. Another time I hid in his closet and after lights out, flopped groaning out of it onto his bed. It's a miracle he still loves me.

A Confused Take That Fan said...

Elsie Button - And I thought that you were such a nice girl! You must get it from your dad. Eating worms for godsake!!
I have found that whatever you do, there will be jealousy issues. And these will continue until...well probably forever. I did the new baby bought you a baby Annabel thing. And the new baby book before arrival thing. But to be honest, they have to kind of like it or lump it really. I found child 1 still got the most attention even after baby because she could speak and demand things. Baby number 2 spent a lot of time in a bouncy chair. They are still jealous of each other every now and again. But child 1 now can't recall life before baby 2 anymore, so don't worry too much. I am sure you will continue to love and make Betty feel loved and that's what counts.

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