Top Tips For Mums Of Twins
Expecting a new baby is daunting for many parents. With twins on the way, things can become doubly difficult! Normal, everyday tasks like bathing Baby, changing a nappy, breastfeeding, and burping Baby can easily make a mountain out of what otherwise might be just a – well, a small hill, if not quite a molehill. Plus, there are the increased financial burdens, the heightened risk of pregnancy complications, and prematurity to consider. But, ready or not, here they come!
These are the Sister Lilian Centre’s A-Z tips to help Moms of More-than-one:
Accept help. Whether it’s frozen meals, the offer to do washing, or free babysitting, now is not the time for parents to be proud and go it alone. Accept gratefully, and spend that extra time resting or bonding with your bundles of joy.
Breastfeed. It’s more than possible to breastfeed twins. Feed them at the same time, alternating breasts at each feed. Hold them one under each arm, or feed them ‘double-decker’ style – literally on top of each other, but each at their own breast. Though feeding will take longer in the beginning, you will save a lot of time (and money!) on buying milk formula and preparing bottles. You are also more likely to have healthy babies, which will definitely make your parenting journey easier.
Co-sleeping. If your twins are in bed with you, you can be assured that everyone will sleep better, because little ones need closeness and contact. If this doesn’t work, your twins could share a bed.
Décor dilemma. Though twin babies might look the same, they are two unique human beings. A baby room should be planned in such a way that each child has his or her own space and style when he or she gets a bit older.
Enlist the help of a nanny (or two!). Though it might be expensive, hired help means Mom is investing in her own health, as well as in her relationships with her babies and her partner.
Frozen dinner exchange. Organise a group of friends with small babies so that each couple or Mom chooses one meal and prepares it in bulk to provide for each family in the group. This way, you’ll have a whole variety of meals! Because each couple only prepares one meal, they save time – and money too, because ingredients can be bought in bulk.
Get organised. Being organised is vital – lists are an incredibly helpful tool! Adequate planning saves frazzled Moms further stress and worry.
Have practical solutions. Think out of the box to find solutions that work for you and your babies, and keep lists of your –and others’ – best ideas.
Ignore some things. The house is a mess and your legs haven’t been shaved for weeks. In the short term, is that what matters? Will it be on your CV one day? Remember: ignore advice from those who are critical or whose opinions don’t matter.
Joint effort. Work together as a team, Mom and Dad; share the load and support each other. It took two to make your babies, and it certainly requires both of you now. Remember, moms and dads fulfil babies’ needs differently.
Know your babies. Get to know your babies’ individual personalities. Not only will you enjoy your little ones so much more, but you’ll have greater success handling their unique problems.
Lower your expectations. Expecting nothing but surprises is not a pessimistic attitude; it’s simply realistic. Coping this way means less stress if life doesn’t go according to plan.
Maintain a sense of humour. Laughing releases endorphins which will relieve stress and lead to greater enjoyment of the parenting experience – doubly so with twins! Some baby antics really are funny, even if they require a bit of damage control afterwards.
Nappy bag tips. Simplify life with an organised nappy bag. Draw up a list to make sure you don’t forget anything when you leave home.
Online arena. Save time by making use of the wealth of resources offered by the internet; from online shopping and banking, to researching where to find the cheapest nappies.
Prioritise. Decide which tasks are most important, and simply ignore the rest. The list should include some time treats for you with your partner.
Quiet time. Downtime is vital. Relaxing for a few minutes with a cup of tea in the garden, for instance, can revitalise you for the next few hours.
Routine. Although respecting your babies’ individual needs is always important, it is necessary to establish some sort of pattern with twins. Bath and feed them more or less at the same time, and put them to bed together. Remember, routine is something that will emerge in time.
Schedule personal time. This isn’t going to happen by itself; moms must make time for it while their babies are cared for by someone trusted. Sign up for a yoga class, go to a movie, or simply read a book.
Twin-proof the house. Most accidents that happen around the house can be prevented. Simplify things by packing away all ornaments and unnecessary equipment until your babies are a bit older. Remember that with twins, the whole is always greater than the sum of the parts. Together they can dream up more mischief than two singletons ever could!
Utilise special offers for parents of twins. Many baby stores offer essentials like nappies at a discounted rate for parents of multiples. Usually you just have to show a copy of their birth certificates to qualify for this.
Visualisation. When things get tough, visualise the time when your babies will be a bit older. This phase will pass!
Wipe the slate clean. Being hard on yourself for making mistakes simply wastes energy. A parent’s job is not to be perfect, but to lovingly raise responsible adults who can function well in society one day. As the mother of twins, you deserve an extra pinch of respect and support – and understanding for the occasional slip-up!
XXX. Give lots of hugs and kisses! Nothing can replace love and attention; two babies simply means many more touchy-cuddly moments in your home.
Young – that’s what they’ll keep you! Being involved with your children, treasuring every moment, and creating happy memories; these are the experiences that enrich our lives beyond anything we could ever imagine – doubly so with twins! Don’t sweat the small stuff, just enjoy the amazing hurly-burly wonder your babies bring into your life.
Zzz… At the end of each day, all moms and dads need to pat themselves on the back, safe in the knowledge that they’re doing the most important job on earth: raising the next generation and shaping the future of the world – in your case, two at a time!