“It was often hard to entertain my older child, while needing to give so much attention to my very sick baby. I felt guilty for not being able to pay enough attention to them both when we were in hospital. It was a daily struggle balancing everyone’s needs and not blaming myself.”
Having older siblings when your baby is on the NICU can be challenging. Boredom, wanting to go off the ward to get something to eat, or to the family room to play are common issues which arise.
We understand that mums and dads feel under immense pressure to want be part of their baby’s daily routine, but that having an older sibling in tow can make that tough.
We also understand that the NICU is an overwhelming place for siblings too, seeing their baby brother or sister so poorly, watching mum and dad worry, is traumatic for them.
We’re striving to put together a Sibling Care Policy which listens to the needs of parents with older siblings, listens to the needs of the siblings and aims to create a much more supported experience for families.
Generate a culture where siblings feel included
Provide entertainment for siblings on the NICUs we support
Facilitate workshops for siblings
Create a sibling buddy system
Provide counselling support for siblings, even years after discharge