The Fussy Baby Site

Colic and Siblings

An issue that often isn’t discussed in parenting books is the impact of colic or fussiness on your other children. If this is your first baby, it is hard enough living day in and day out with the fussiness or crying.

But if you have 2, 3, 4 or even more kids, the stress and guilt you might be feeling can be absolutely overwhelming. Taking care of a fussy or colicky baby is a full time job (with overtime!), and trying to juggle caring for your other kids can be extremely difficult.

There are some obvious logistical issues that may emerge:

  • Driving your older kids around while trying to maintain a nap schedule for your infant
  • Trying to cook meals for your family while your baby screams because she can’t be held
  • Giving your other kids the quality attention they deserve, while still caring for your baby

Some parents have also found their older children actually feel stressed by the crying. If they are quite a bit older, they may even feel a sense of responsibility to help stop the crying. This is not a burden any child should carry.

“You’ve got to get a sitter in there. You’ve got to get this child with other people, so that older child knows that their quietness, and their strength, is also valued, and they get attention for that. They get separate alone time. I cannot say that strongly enough. In some ways, it’s easier if you get this child as your first child, because you don’t know what to expect. It’s harder psychologically to have this child as the second, third, or fourth child….it is so much harder with this interactional dynamic between the other children and this child. It’s like the pressure is there to get hold of these things quicker then had this been the oldest child.” – Linda Budd