28/06/2011 17:01 BST | Updated 22/05/2015 10:12 BST

Second Time Mums Really Are More Laid Back!


Second babies are far less likely to get the 'kid glove' treatment bestowed upon the first-born child, a new study has found.

According to a poll carried out by nursery brand Munchkin, second children can be left to cry for longer and will go onto solid foods at an earlier age. They are also more likely to be left to manage their own food, and will be picked up less when they are hurt.

A third of the 3,000 mums with two or more children who were polled, said they feel more comfortable leaving their child to entertain themselves while they get on with the housework, whilst 33 per cent only changed a nappy when absolutely necessary rather than after every feed.

The findings also revealed 26 per cent of 'second time mums' are less likely to make the baby their own special meals after weaning, and simply blend whatever the family is having, with the same number admitting they started weaning their next child at four months rather than at six months as with their first-born.

Second children are even encouraged to develop more quickly – as mums expect them to reach important milestones sooner and trust them with a knife and fork earlier.

They will also be allowed sweets and chocolate at a far younger age than their older siblings, and can watch 'older television' at an earlier age, too.

And rather than taking a long maternity leave, working mums of second children will put them in childcare so they can return to work sooner.

The poll also revealed that six in 10 mums thought they were overly attentive with their first child, with 42 per cent admitting they worried more about them than their second child.

Munchkin spokesperson Claire Rayner said: "This poll is very insightful and confirms that having two children means life becomes even more of a juggling act for mums. With the first, there is just one child to look after and mums can give their undivided care and attention. It is understandable that mums will be more confident the more children they have, and therefore less worried about things."

20 things mums have admitted to doing differently with their second child - does it ring true for you?

1. Leave to entertain themselves with toys while you get on with the housework.
2. Only changed a nappy when necessary rather than after every feed.
3. Stopped making the baby their own food and blended what the family has.
4. Started weaning the baby onto food at four months rather than six.
5. Leave the baby to cry for longer rather than rushing to see what is wrong.
6. More willing to accept second hand clothes.
7. Spend less money on toys and treats.
8. Only had the baby in your bedroom for the first few weeks rather than six months.
9. Let them watch 'older television' at a younger age than their older sibling.
10. Not as worried about safety and buying home safety products.
11. Happier to buy second hand safety products – gates, bed rails, monitors.
12. Leave them to manage with their own food.
13. Sterilise bottles, toys and feeding equipment for less or no time at all.
14. Pick them up less when they hurt themselves.
15. Give them sweets or chocolate at an earlier age.
16. Trust them with a knife and fork at an earlier age.
17. Spend less money on safety products.
18. Go back to work sooner.
19. Expect them to develop quicker.
20. Put them into childcare earlier.