It all began in the hospital after our second child's birth; she could be with me all the time as her sister had had. However, there was a specific reason for that: The newly born J had to stay in the hospital because of low blood sugar. I fel t quilty for not being able to be all the time with the baby. On the other hand, when I was with her in the hospital, I felt quilty for not being at home with the 10-months old big sister.
The baby was in hospital for a week and it felt like an eternity - probably because of the hormones. When we brought her home, we started slowly to understand that the kids can no more get undivided attention. When I put the baby to sleep and she started crying in her bed, on the contrary to the baby time of her sister, I couldn't always go to comfort her because her sister might have been eating lunch or doing something dangerous like climbing on the table.
The most guilt for us parents has caused the fewness of reading books to the youngest child. To the oldest one we read a lot and colourfully. When we read to the younger child, the older one climbs to my arms too even if I try to push her gently to play something else. Often in a situation like this the younger one starts crying or just goes away. Luckily we have understood that when the big sister is still sleeping or outside with one of the parents, it's favorable moment to concentrate on reading and playing with the little sister. Those moments are very precious as she gets the whole attention from mommy or daddy.
One of the problems with balancing with two kids is when the big sister robs toys from her little sister. In the big sister's mind the most interesting toy is the one in sister's hand. I'd say that the firstborne is smart and has learnt good manners just by seeing the example and by advicing - she puts, for example, the litter in the trashcan by routine. However, no matter how much we have discussed not to tease her sister, she won't stop it. So is it a part of a kids nature to tease their siblings? Our kids have such a small age difference that the difference in the strength should even by time and then the little sister could maybe defend her toys.
The problem I realized just some time ago is "the postponing of speaking". Our firstborne started saying lots of words after turning one year but the younger kid sayes only the most essential words now when she's 1 year and 7 months old. She hasn't had need to learn to communicate the same way as her sister. They have the same daily rhythm and normally the big sister comes to tell about hunger or thirst. When I ask if they want to eat a slice of an apple, the big sister says "yes", so I give a slice to the both of them. Maybe that's why the little sister sometimes throws the slice to the floor.
I listed a lot of things that have caused some worries about the lastborns development but I'm sure she doesn't feel having missed something out. She has never had to be alone. Even if the mommy is doing the dishes, she has her sister to play (or dispute) with. The phase when I sometimes had to leave the lastborne crying and go after the firstborne caused that she actually slept better than her big sister. The lack of reading to the lastborne has caused that she often goes to browse books by herself. Also, when the big sister wants attention at the playground by shouting "Mom/dad, look!", the little sister likes to go her own ways and explore the playground by herself. So, The kids don't need to be raised all in the same manner. Two daughters, two personalities.