Or is DH. Regarding bed time routine with DTs(118 Posts)
My twins are 12 weeks. We've established a routine of bath feed bed that starts around 6.30and takes usually an hour but often longer if they won't settle. It's improving with consistency,and now both are waking less at night and stretching out time between feeds. DH had an unavoidable meeting tonight where he had to attend to give a presentation. Totally fair enough as he's the wage earner right now. However, routine has gone to hell and I've been up and down the stairs umpteen times. DTs are now back down with me in front of Eastenders until DH gets home. The thing is, he now wants to go to football training every Tues night from 7-9. He already does footie all day on a Saturday, often playing at away matches a few hours away. I think all our progress will get undone as I can't manage bedtime for DTs alone.
Are you breastfeeding? If not or if the twins accept bottles with expressed breast milk then it's only fair that one night a week you take time out away from home (at twins bedtime) and let him deal. Then discuss and go from there.
The hellos due to the fact that the 12 week olds are not yet old enough to understand a bedtime routine.
Your husband wants a couple of hours out once a week and I don't think that is at all unreasonable.
You will get used to the bedtime routine and you will learn to manage it.
I don't understand why they're downstairs until he's home?
Can't you feed them to sleep and put them down upstairs?
Sanctimummy has it nailed. How does he feel about doing the bedtime routine alone? If both of you get an evening off, it's worth considering.
One night a week for him is not unreasonable. It's not necessary to bath them every night as at 12 weeks they can't get that dirty. Routines will change as they get older anyway so why not change on a Tuesday to not bathe so it becomes normal.
I never managed to bathe our DTs on my own, so I didn't. Much less stressful when he didn't get home in time for 6:30pm bed time.
Until 6 months they should really stay downstairs with you until you go to bed.
I would feed and bath ( don't need to bath daily) and just pop in Moses basket/ pram downstairs. When you actually go to bed do a routine of dreamfeed, little lullaby and say goodnight and pop into cots/ basket then
I don't think wanting one night a week off is unreasonable, although i agree with PP who said you should also have that opportunity (even if its just sitting watching TV while he does bedtime!)
I also agree with those who said baths every night aren't needed, I was actually advised not to bath every night.
I kept ds "up" but asleep in the living room with us and took him to bed when we went to bed until he was 6 months old. Mostly we did this because advice to prevent sids states that the babies should be in the same room as you at all times but also I couldn't be doing with pacing up and down half the evening and trying to put a baby down who just wanted cuddles with mummy and pappa. At 6 months we started to put ds to bed alone at 6/7-ish and he went down and slept really easilly.
Forever why should they sleep downstairs? If they are put to bed in safe sleeping position and I am sure op is checking on them, I really don't see why they need to be downstairs.
I am replying and imagining two of my baby.
He can wait til they are older surely and less demanding?
I have written off this year of our lives in terms of outside activity. So has DP.
Wonders how the fuck you get two babies asleep when two of us struggle with one bloody baby!
I don't think football once a week is unreasonable, but once is enough when your wife is at home dealing with baby twins.
I have dts so I understand how difficult it is, how focused you may be on routine, etc. It's also galling that your dh is assuming that he can reclaim some normal leisure time when you probably don't have any at all. So yanbu. That said, I think it would probably help your self-confidence massively if you found a way of doing the bedtime routine by yourself. It is really hard but it is doable and will get easier and easier. It would benefit everybody if you could establish a routine that doesn't have to include a bath for both dts each night eg do one a night. In a few months they will be big enough to bath together in seats so you can re-establish nightly baths then if you wish.
On the football thing, could you explain to your dh that you would like him to hold off for a couple of months until you feel more confident. Perhaps have the objective that by six months old you will both have one night off a week? He needs to learn to put them to bed by himself too. Fair enough if he needs to work, you need to do the childcare, but managing two little babies while he plays football in addition to his Saturday game is too much IMO.
If I had 12wo twins I'd be very pissed off if DP wanted a night off every single week. He's got the whole of Saturday FFS - when does the OP get time off?
I'm with the DP on this. The world does not stop revolving because there are babies.
When was the last time you dealt with twins day in day out?
I would have been horrified if DH suggested going out one evening a week when DD1 was 12 weeks, and that was only one baby! I could have 'managed' the evening on my own but she was a very demanding baby, cried a lot throughout the day and particularly in the evening, and I was severely sleep deprived - by the time he came home from work I was desperate! And this was despite going out in the day to meet friends etc. So OP, I thing YANBU, not at all - your DH needs to accept that his life will change but once the twins are more settled, hopefully in a few months, he'll be able to start going out in the evening - as will you.
Waltzingmathilda - the world does stop revolving if you have baby twins. You don't get to do anything you did in your past life. It changes as they get bigger, but when they are tiny you do not have a millisecond to yourself unless you happen to have amazing synchronised sleepers. This on top of a pregnancy where your bump is double the size of a normal pregnancy.
So of course if someone needs to go to work they can't be there to support their partner, but leisure time isn't really on the cards for anyone.
As said, I think the primary carer needs to be able to cope on their own (as should their dp), but this isn't a case of being too child-focused.
IMO it's either one night off each, week or he shouldn't go. If he does footbal all sat Saturday I assume you have all day Sunday off?
As PPs have said SIDS guidelines is that the babies should sleep in the same room as you until 6 months - including naptimes and evenings - so putting them to bed downstairs is actually recommended.
I would also say that a bath every night is actually bad for their thin skins and so don't even attempt to bath them yourself!
Personally DP has always had one evening a week to do some exercise, and often one whole day of the weekend. As long as you get the opportunity to take time out for yourself if you want it, then that's not unreasonable - as long as he pulls his weight at all other times!
No, but when you have tiny babies the world revolves around them, not bloody football.
My twins are 5 yo, I still remember the first time I had to bath them and put them to bed on my own (DH away with work for 4 nights). So stressful. I completely sympathise.
I eventually worked out a method (as with most things multiple it's figuring out the logistics which is so tricky).
I used to put a bouncy chair in the bathroom and whoever wasn't in the bath was is the bouncy chair
screaming then I arranged the bed with pillow barricades so they were on either side of me while I fed them screaming.
I promise, promise, promise that it does get easier. At your stage I thought I was going to die from lack of sleep and was still wondering how I'd ever make it out on my own for more than the 30 mins I had in between feeds.
I survived. My children are wonderful, funny, happy little people, who didn't settle
sorry into a routine until they were about 7 months old.
It starts to get easier soon. Honest.
In the meantime, speak to your DH. Tell him how you feel. Ask him to hold off for a month. By 16 weeks the world will be quite different and you can reassess.
Waltzing - I assume you don't have twins?
Cos if not You. Have. No. Idea
If you do have twins were you just so sleep deprived you've forgotten?
Wondering how my mum coped when I was little and she had a set of twins as well as three others all a year apart.
I agree that the OP should also be entitled to some time off to enjoy her own leisure activities, but the DP should not be denied his time either. He works hard and provides and as long as he helps out during the rest of the week when he isnt working then I really don't see what the problem is.
Runningchick Perhaps you should ask your mother?
I think a compromise is needed here. He has his one night a week 'off' but you get one too to so whatevervitvis you want to do, even if it is chilling out reading a book. Pop to a friends for a chat etc. doing bedtime routine on your own wont be half as bed if you know you get your regular break too, or resentment will build. Would he be amicable to
Also it would be good for dts to get used to one parent doing routine at an early age incase either of you are unexpectedly unavailable.
I'm sure his football can wait until the twins are older.
Or he should be prepared to do it all alone one night per week, as well as spending one whole day alone with the twins too. Only fair.
Running chick she coped because what other choice is there.
The OP will cope too. She's allowed a wee moan.
2 babies - both screaming their heads off for one to one attention. 1 person trying to stick to a routine because co-or dinating their sleep is the only way to guarantee that you won't be up for four days straight without ANY sleep again.
Do the maths guys. This isn't about making sure everyone gets a night off in equal shares.
Ha ha ha to a night off every week for DH. He's lucky if he gets one night a month and our twins are over 6 months.
I agree that you need to be able to do bedtime alone (fwiw I did bathe mine every night from about 10 weeks, one on the floor, one in the bath and. Swap around- that wasn't te hard bit.) but if DH could be home, then he was home. Even when they go to sleep, mine don't stay asleep so I can't relax really as if one wakes, then the other will often wake and trying to calm two fractious tired babies is NOT FUN.
Personally I think a good compromise would be football every other sat and training each week with you getting an evening a week to go to the gym/meet a friend/mooch around the shops/whatever to unwind.
But I do think you need to start finding your own way to cope with bedtimes, whether it includes bathtime or not. After a few times it will get easier and you will be more confident.
sanctimummy that would be about 18 years ago - why ????
I cope fine all day, manage to take them out every day, even if it's just to M&S or tesco. They're as good as gold and get cooed over by lots of old ladies. I can tandem feed them during the day, but the bedtime routine defeats me. We only started bathing them daily a few weeks back, really only to help sleep cues. Their skin is just fine, not drying out thanks. The thing is, the routine has really paid dividends so far with 6 hours sleep some nights( broken up for feeds) so I'm a bit precious about it falling by he wayside. Maybe I must learn to try and do it alone? They go into their respective cribs with the video monitor on. The room is darkened and they sleep bette than downstairs
I've asked her before and she says its just what mums do - if you have babies then you look after them, you cope with what life brings.
I appreciate that times have changed and men are now expected to be more involved, but I don't think that a persons social life has to stop just because they have had a baby (or two).
What do single parents of twins do? Surely they cope somehow.
I also think that restricting a person too much and refusing to let them enjoy reasonable pleasures in life breeds resentment and creates bigger problems. Surely it's about compromise ; sure you can go play football a couple of times a week, but I'm having sunday afternoon to go for a sauna and afternoon tea with my mum and I'm going for drinks with the girls once a fortnight.
Maybe I just enjoy having the tv remote to myself a couple of times a week and having the bargaining power of also deserving my 'me time'.
Runningchick.. You have twins yourself no??
Of course people cope if they have to - most people in the world don't have a washing machine, but that doesn't mean it's desirable that we all start washing clothes by hand. Why should the OP "cope" just so her DH can play football. Surely he's adult enough to realise that his life has to change, massively, in the same way that hers has - and that it might be very tough not to get any "me time" for a few months but it's not forever. He already has every Saturday to himself, it seems very selfish to insist on one evening as well when it comes at such a cost to his DP.
OP - have you explained to him how it makes you feel, and also that it's not forever?
I coped with putting my dts down from one week old. I also coped with severe vomiting (me and them) when I couldn't stand up. I coped with colic and reflux in tandem. I coped with no sleep at all for days at a time because when one slept the other was awake. I coped with this whilst recovering from a c section and complications, and with severe anaemia. Because I had to. Doesn't make it alright.
On the plus side I did have an enormous sense of confidence from the fact that I knew I could cope.
By the way I also really enjoy them and it got miles easier after five months. I would have twins again if I could (just a singleton last time)
Cansu the keeping them with you is something to do with they pick up on your noises so are more likely to remember to breathe. IIRC from some research which I can't remember what when they are in a quiet room all by themselves they sleep more soundly which in a small minority of children can cause them to stop breathing.
If I have that wrong then please correct me but that is one reason I have kept mine with me as newborns.
OP I do feel your pain two is much harder than one. DD2 and 3 are only 2 years apart and I remember the first time I put them both to sleep. We all co-slept and bfed to sleep but I was still in a muddle and felt pinned in the bed by them. I think as well with 2 you can't practically put them to bed at the same time every night by yourself. Some nights one child will be fractious and you will need someone to settle her whilst you put the other to bed.
I would be asking DP to do a night by himself once in a while. All parents need a night off but they are so young and you never get this time back, maybe get him to start football again next season
I don't think you are being unreasonable at all. Stick to your guns. It's not like this stage is going to last for ever, probably only a few more months until you feel more capable and their sleep has settled down... And football really is going to be there forever.
We had two dd's close together (14 month gap) and I didn't do bedtime on my own for ages, and neither did my partner.
Personally I don't think it is reasonable to expect you to cope with this on a regular basis. Bedtime is the hardest bit of the day and as you say, it's also an important part of the day in terms of setting up a good (well, not crap) night's sleep for you. This is really important stuff!
On the night's my DP had to go out (for work or whatever) up until DD2 was maybe 7 months old, I always got someone to come round and help me. They would also do the same for me when I had things to do in the evening.
I'm sorry but this he 'provides' and 'works hard' stuff is complete and utter shite. Does op not work hard? Does she not provide the childcare for dp to go out to work, presumably to a job he likes with career progression etc? Whilst op is at home with dts 24/7.
They are both allowed downtime, they are both working, albeit different jobs but equal importance. If one partner had so much free time then then other should get the same.
Wickerbasketcase I think you will want to be able to manage it on your own at some stage - just not yet. Would your dh consider doing it on his own? I think its a fair question to ask him because that's what he's asking of you. They are 12 weeks old fgs, surely the football could wait for a while yet.
I don't get all this " babies shouldn't cause real life to stop" crap? Of course they shouldn't, but I'm sure that if most people were honest the first few months of life with a baby (& you have two) - real life is more than a bit topsy turvy!
op my dh worked away all the time my 4 were babies. first 2 16 months apart and second 2 born 9 years later again 16 months apart. hard on everyone.
yes you cope of course but If dh had been here he wouldn't have played bloody football one precious evening. he wanted to he here but couldn't be.
they are little for a short time yes but it's bloody bloody hard.
what's with this wage earner crap?? you work too.
I know you don't want to hear this but they do sleep eventually....
actually until lunchtime today ( last 2)😄
hand in there op.
I think you should discuss it again in a month or so when twins might be more settled and you might feel more up for the challenge. Also you can discuss which night you'll be having to yourself and what activity you'll be doing etc.
He shouldn't have a problem with that, you can both work up to it.
single parents of twins here, and I must agree with posters who say 12 weeks for a bedtime routine is setting yourself up for a hard time, also, bathing them every day is exhausting. Give your self a break, do what is easiest for you and dts. You can't really control things at this age - but in time, you may impose your iron will (mine are eight now)
and you both should work hard to have a night off where possible
I am shocked that the OPs dh is already out ALL DAY every saturday!!!
I am looking after our ds in the early days for 10hrs a day while dh works, plus bf so doing most of the 8hrs overnight too.. dh only gets to see his son for about 5-6hrs max on a weekday, that time imo is too precious to spend playing football if he's ALSO out for half of the weekend.
We hope to introduce one weeknight 'off' each at about 12 weeks but there's no way dh would also be out all day one of the weekend days too!
I have read that more babies die of sids when they sleep in a room separate to the patents ( both naps and night sleep.) it is not know what causes sids so we can't understand why being in the same room as a parent offers some protection but I personally think that babies in the same room as you for tge first 6 months is a worthwhile inconvenience.
I think managing twins bedtime at that age sounds really harsh - think for the time being your DH could give the football a miss. Since he plays on other days, I don't think it's a big day. 12 weeks is so young and things will get easier.
I have 15m DTs plus 3.5DS. I remember the first time I had to do solo bedtime, I was terrified! But I managed. and it gets easier every time.
I agree that a bedtime routine is vital, especially with twins. Like you we did (and still do) bath at 6.30pm, milk and bed. The key is planning. I would lay out their nappies, sleepsuits and sleepbags in the bathroom and both towels. I would strip both twins to their nappy and then wrap DT1 in a towel. DT2 would then go in the bath. DT2 then dried, and dressed. at 12 weeks she would just stay on the floor, once rolling in a bouncy chair. then repeat with DT1. by 12 weeks mine were on bottles so I would either pop them in their bouncy chairs or prop on pillows (set up beforehand) to feed them.
I appreciate SIDS guidelines but we chose to put ours to bed upstairs - the reason for keeping them in the same room is to keep them slightly disturbed and for the sound of other breathing to regulate theirs - as there are 2 of them they are never alone anyway. we have no other risk factors therefore I felt comfortable doing this. and of course checked them regularly.
My DH does cricket nets once a week and is out all day Saturday at a match. Life does not stop because you have children, it just requires a lot more planning.
OP I know it is so daunting but it does get easier (once both could sit up I started bathing both together which speeds things up! now I bath all 3 together!).
I disagree completely that at 12 weeks they cant do routine. we started at 3 weeks and by 5/6 weeks they were going down happily and still do now.
do you have any local family or a friend who could help you on the night that DH is out? if not could you ask him to maybe put it off for a few weeks? I agree with languagetimothy that in a few weeks it will all become a lot more manageable.
have to say I don't get this obsession with it being 'fair'. he can have a night off if I do. seems silly. I don't have a hobby that takes me out in the evening. DH does. i'm not going to invent something to do so he has to deal on his own. seems very childish to me.
Good luck OP, there is light at the end of the twin tunnel I promise!
Hello trashcan my dt's are 8 too,
I got myself into what was a oddly strict routine in that feeds for the first 16 weeks, 3 hourly, days and night following on from the SCBU routine, I didn't need to feed at all between as they took what they needed.
but this routine left me free for anything else, I knew what time they where to be fed and would feed, leave the house and know I could be out for 5 hours with only 1 feed to do,
we did this throughout the night to until they where 7 months old when suddenly they slept through... one had naturally fallen into 5 hourly at night a couple of months before this and the first night was ...12 hours straight the first night then after 11 hours ever since.
important things to note are I was not a zombie for those 7 month, tired but not strung out, Dh would do the 12 midnight feed and the 9 am feed just before he left for work, I would go to bed at 10 sleep til 3 and 6 in a sort of half asleep way, I am sure many people now what I mean you are aware but as soon as you lie down straight asleep again, feed them, I would then sleep until 10.30am...yes I would, I didn't have to go to work, no one marking my time sheet, no prizes for staying awake after the 6am feed. they slept too trade off is no mid morning nap needed.
I don't think it is unreasonable for either partner to take time out from the children but it need to be as fair as it can be, you don't necessarily need to have a day or evening off every week to the minute he has, but nurturer your social life and make it clear that when you are out unless you will return home to find a vehicle with blue flashing lights outside your home, phoning you for every little problem is not an option
My DH did not take to this easily but nor did I, we had our moments, I remember the days shopping I had to return to 2 crying 12 month old's at 3.30 "they have been fine until an hour ago they they have been real pains" general chit chat ensued with them needing cuddles, my question of "what did they have for lunch?" was met with a blank stare and a "Oh! Fuck!" as he ran into the kitchen...
we all have really hard times I was lucky this work for me...I found 3-4 yrs old hell, constantly phoning DH in tears. whenever I found it difficult I would repeat "it is just a phase it won't before forever" I am finding 8 a golden age with mine, my friend is finding 8 a nightmare with her boy.
Take what I say with a pinch of salt, all people and children are different, get out on your own even if it is just to the supermarket, take all the help offered, if they find it difficult, they won't offer again but you will have had a least one break out of it, say yes to everything you want to do, worry about logistics later, if you do that first you will do nothing, negotiate with you DH might be the football idea seems to him a easier way to get you too agree to time out, but the real reason is he wants a few beers after with friends more, let him go for the beer after miss the footie, or have his friends round and you supply the beer, might be he is worried with his new responsibly and wants to get fit worry about his health and providing for his family, men need friends too and to talk through their new found "Dad" responsibilities
Sorry long but I really remember how hard the early years are, I feel for you,
Oh FGS with the "babies must be in the same room as you" line. Research being stretched to it's most crazy conclusion. I take the research with a grain of salt TBH. They'll be fine. Just don't smoke around them, wrap them up in synthetic polarfleece blankets, drink a bottle of wine and fall asleep with them in the same bed as you. As long as you don't do that, the chances of them dying of cot death because they're 'not in the same room as you' are next to zero. Besides, if it's the sound of another person breathing that regulates their breathing, twins have it made. They have another twin's breath to hear.
put your foot down.
im with the wait till they are 6 months side till your dh opts out of the night routines. they are still changing too and quickly. At 3 months they might just be about to drop one of the daytime sleeps so the night routines will be come all confuddled again. IN my experience, when I thought I had the routine sorted, was the prelude to the routine going out the window due to developmental / neurological changes/milestones iyswim.
Listen to schmee- messing up one night of sleep so he can have a social life (at your expense) means the following 4 days will be utterly crap for you - but he wont be there to see the consequences, will he as he will be at work.
Give him a kick up the arse.
Whilst I think you shoudn't be so needy, on the other hand he should want to do it. It's kind of early days to be doing it on your own.
Hope the babies are doing well, congratulations
I also disagree with the 'at 12 weeks they can't be in a routine', just like others. Our DT's were in a routine from the very beginning and I mean it.. Some people may say that's rubbish but when you have multiples, you need something to keep your sanity. Even the hospital advised to do it.
I believe life shouldn't just stop for both parents, it just takes some re-adjusting. Our DTs are now happy, albeit noisy and slightly kamikaze 5 year olds.
The reason they are supposed to stay with you in the same room until 6 months is due to sudden infant death syndrome. I know, I know everyone on here thinks its ott but it really has saved lifes in the years this has been recommended.
A small baby in a dark room without disturbance will all into a deep sleep. It is at this deep sleep that they are most likely to stop breathing. If a small baby is asleep in the living room with you and hears you moving/ tv on/ kitchen noise then they will still sleep well but won't drop into a dangerous level of deep sleep as the background noise keeps them at a safer level.
At night x2 adults tossing and turning, breathing, etc will also keep them from a dangerously deep level of sleep.
You only have to look on the fsid website to read all the bereavement stories and how they recommend it. A dummy is also now recommended when they first fall asleep to regulate a breathing pattern.
I'm all for routine, but at 12 weeks I think it shouldn't be so complicated or difficult for someone. Feeding, changing nappy, and popping in a Moses basket downstairs is plenty of a routine at this age. It is also easier for you as can be done by one person easier if needed, babies can be watched, exta feeds given to one if needed or one can be settled again straight away.
In a few months time it can be reviewed and adapted to cot upstairs.
Ps I recommend a beanbag upstairs once older as a good way of feeding/ reading/ changing two at a time
Another mum of twins here. The replies above make me realise why I always feel uncomfortable hanging around mums of singletons - they Just Don't Get It!
Twin mums have so much guilt to deal with constantly. We can't be the sort of mum to our babies that mums of singletons are to theirs. So to everyone expressing horror at the idea of a bedtime routine and breaking SIDS guidelines above, you're really not understanding what it's like to have twins and you are only adding to the OP's sense of guilt.
A bedtime routine is absolutely essential for lots of twin mums who would otherwise break under the strain; we had one from 10 weeks and I was like a new woman once it was implemented.
Twin dads are MUCH more involved in baby care than dads of singletons. It is not an option for them to duck out of their responsibilities.
I would be seriously putting my foot down OP. Bedtime is when you need him more than any other time in the day.
We only did baths twice a week, but even so bedtime is a horribly stressful event and needs two pairs of hands (ideally. Sometimes I do it alone, but it's not much fun for me or the babies).
I had another falling out with my husband last night over bedtime and my twins are 8 months old! He just doesn't understand how hard the last hour of the day is and how I count down the minutes until he walks in the front door. I put mine in the bath, expecting him home within 20 minutes to help me get them out and he was 20 minutes late. It is really hard to get twins out of the bath without someone else there to help, for obvious safety reasons, so mine ended up all cold and wrinkly waiting for him. Hideous.
Put your foot down with your husband, OP. To really drive the message home, ask him to do bedtime on his own one day. He will understand then.
forevergreek you don't have multiples do you?
Queenofkelsingra had the ideal solution to bath time (a few posts up thread). Queen baths her twins one at a time, preventing them sitting in the water for longer than necessary and making the task far more manageable.
DH used the same queuing method at bathtime as above too.
OP, I would seriously post these questions on multiples in the multiples area so that you get relevant to multiples advice.
Runningchick dads have to be a lot more hands on with twins, a twin mum doesn't grow and extra pair of arms and eyes when pregnant, although I often think the extra pregnancy hormones we had to suffer should have made that happen!
Life goes on hold with twins for the first year. I am so envious of mums of singletons to the point I wonder what they do all day! You really have no idea what it's like, just because your Mum went through does not mean you understand. I am a very strong person, but the first few months nearly broke me. And that was with a very supportive husband who has not yet been out alone since the babies were born. It's the same for all the other mums in my twins group. It's not like having one baby but with a bit extra. You are constantly doing something, constantly feeling guilty about what else you should be doing, your emotional and mental energy is down to ZERO even before the day ends. It's not just a case that we do twice as many feeds and nappy changes as mums of singletons, it is way more complex than that.
Hubby needs to be home for bedtime every night, it's not much to ask in the grand scheme of things.
OP also consider posting on the Tamba message board. I find that with a couple of exceptions, people are a bit more practical and less judgey/idealistic there.
Ditch the nightly baths it's unnecessary and another job u don't actually need to do nightly. Dh needs to wait a few more months before football if it has been 1 baby I wouldn't have had a problem but 2 is a bit more understandable.
Lots of people have their own struggles be it twins or something else.
Try having a child with such a complex disability that he requires three people to solely care for him simultaneously when he goes for respite (which happens 8 nights per year). Then imagine coping with that same child on your own whilst your partner goes to his full time job as you have a mortgage that needs paying and shock horror even 'letting' that partner go out for drinks after work sometimes despite being exhausted mentally physically and everything else due to coping with the tasks that take 3 other people to manage.
The disabled child doesn't sleep well, never has, the whole family has very long term sleep deprivation, has to get up even when child s sleeping to administer various medications. The mother has to stay on hospital with the disabled child many many times each year. There is also another chld in the family who has to be given time and needs looking after.
This disabled child isn't going to get settled into a routine and grow up and get easier to manage, he is going to get more difficult to care for and consume more of his parents energy.
Routine is vital for the disabled child and things have to be done atthe exact same time, in the exact same way each day .
Life throws things at you and you deal with it and i Actually believe that parents are more productive when they have their down time to enjoy something for themselves.
As long as the partner does not take an unreasonable amount of time to himself and helps when he is around then I think it is fair to have some time to himself.
So yes I don't have twins and don't understand what it is like to be a parent of a twin, but I do understand what it is like to struggle with things that other parents don't have to struggle with.
FSIDS guidelines - they need to be in the same room as you for the first 6 months, naps and night time sleeps. Very, very important. It HALVES the risk of cot death.
I can understand why you're clinging to the bedtime routine with twins, but you would probably feel a bit more relaxed about it if you accept that the babies will not notice or care about routine at this age, although it doesn't hurt for you to get into a pattern of getting them settled for bed if that's what works for you.
Anyway, WRT your DP... he's not BU to want a night to do his own thing once a week, on the proviso that you also get a night to do whatever you want while he takes charge of the babies. It's the balance that matters.
I am on the side of life doesn't stop just for twins.
It can't. Or when do you allow life to resume? When they are 1 and starting to toddle off all over the place?
When the terrible 2s start?
Life doesn't stop just for twins, or just for a single baby, but it's very very different. If an adult wants their life to not change at all then I cannot understand why they would have a baby in the first place, after all if their life is so wonderful already, why would they want this horrible disruption of a tiny person to look after. If you have a baby I think you should accept that your life will be different for at least a while - six months, a year without a once-weekly football match, when you already go out every Saturday is really nothing in the scheme of things.
Dear lord, I'm suddenly feeling massively grateful for my DH!
Yes, life throws all sorts of stress and strains at people, but the idea that 'people just cope' is nonsensical. People regularly don't 'just cope'. People fall apart. Single parents fall apart too. If I did not have a DH who was prepared to shoulder more of the load when I got ill, I'd have been admitted to a mental hospital, and my children would have been removed. That's life. 'Just cope'? Dream on. I am consantly aware that because of our situation, the strain on him is greater, and we need to pay attention to that too, to make sure he doesn't go under as well. The way we're working at the moment is that any time I am physically able to have the children for an hour or two to give him a break (or a glorious day if that's possible), I do that. It's not ideal for either one of us, but we both get that we have commitments to each other and the children that we need to meet, even when times are hard.
The idea that one parent should have to 'just cope' while the other parent gets to go out and live their life is outrageously one sided. Most parents work as a partnership, making sure that everyone's needs are met as best as they're able.
I actually don't think either you are your DH are being unreasonable, OP. You are finding it more stressful than he is prepared to admit, and he's finding the restriction of his social life harder than you're prepared to admit. I think you need to be very calm, and talk about this together. I think it's reasonable for you to ask him to try to do one evening single handed so that he can see for himself the sorts of strains it will put you under. I think it's also reasonable for you to discuss possible coping strategies for either one of you doing it single handedly at need. I think it's reasonable for you to say 'can we reassess in four weeks when we've worked out some of the teething problems?' Realistically, you've only tried to do this alone once, so I think it's a little early to say that you simply can't do it.
Good luck with it all!
I have never had twins so obviously have no idea how hard it is, however I do think you're making it extra stressful for yourself trying to bathe them every night. Also I don't agree with leaving them to sleep upstairs whilst you're downstairs, but they're you're babies.
however it would be a cold day in hell before DP pissed off playing football instead of helping my raise his babies at the weekend. Once in a while? Fine. Not every bloody weekend for an entire day and certainly not every Tuesday night too.
When's your time off OP?
My husband wanted to play sport in the evenings just after our twins were born. Yeah, no.
Oh, and OP? Twins are bloody marvellous (eventually). Congratulations!
12 weeks is such early days. For one baby let alone two!
For my (now 6 mo) DS, bedtimes suddenly became easier between 12 weeks and 16 weeks. So there is hope just around the corner hopefully. Can DH hold off a month or two?
Definitely don't feel guilty for instigating a routine, my DS had been in one since 10 weeks and it definitely chills him out in the evenings with things happening in an expected order. I'm sure it is more important for twins. Babies will associate a smell with sleep, so I'm in the camp of Putting them to bed upstairs so they can associate the room the cot is in smell with sleep. It's lovely (essential?) to have down time too without babies once they have gone to bed.
Your bedtime routine needs to be much shorter. Half an hour at most.
From around 6 weeks my oh and i both had one night off each a week. It worked well for us but i understand it wouldn't for everyone. I think it is really important to make sure you are getting equal amounts of down time. How many hours off is he getting on Saturday? Make sure you are getting just as many hours, maybe all if Sunday or Sunday morning and one evening a week? Even if you just use the time to sleep it is fair that you get this time too.
So the OP's DH wants an evening and a day off from the limited time (of necessity) that he spends with his family. Someone do the percentage for me?
I think it's very, very unreasonable actually, even if they'd had a singleton, not twins. (And, although delightful, twins really are hard work).
And the usual MN argument of the OP having equal time off (and I do appreciate she needs a break and her own time too) drives me nuts.
When would they all be together for more relaxing and fun times?
12 week old twins?
A hobby that already takes him off all day Saturday?
He's taking the piss to disappear Tuesday nights too.
yes thinking about it I agree with Tarka
it's not like you get to disappear the whole of Sunday is it??!
Christ on a bike aren't people reading the thread? Bath time might not be necessary but it's a bloody good sleep cue so why should she drop it? And twins are never alone so away with your judginess on them sleeping in a place where the OP has said they sleep better.
OP, Yanbu. I only had the one (though I am a twin myself) and I wish I'd put my foot down about DH's football when ds's was tiny. Him being absent 3 times a week let him think that life with a baby wasn't changing our lives so much, and I'm still holding onto resentment from that time.
Often it's not a choice being on your own in the evening if partner has a long hours job - I am about to have no 2 and will be on my own most evenings. Choosing to go out for leisure is a different matter. I would put my foot down for that!
OP if you need your DH's help then there is your answer, yes he is BU to go out. Personally I would ignore all this utter bollocks of some pp saying let him have a night off, being confined breeds resentment shit, he's a parent, he doesnt deserve a night off!
FWIW my DH came home every night by 6pm for the first six month's because I needed him to and if he felt resentment he was smart enough to suck it up! And ffs its not about either parent getting a night off, parents should muck in together to get through the hard times then you can enjoy the good times. DH goes out and for holidays with the lads now and I enjoy time on my own with DD, but we wouldnt have survived if he'd been a selfish twat about 'having time off' when I really needed him.
Feesh- I don't have twins no. But have x2 children with a 1 year gap, and have been a maternity nanny and sleep consultant to many multiples over the last 15 years. I honestly don't mind in the slightest what people do, but I would hate for someone to loose a child to cot death unessecarily. It's just not worth it ( and yes I have worked with a few people who this has happened to with a child, and have helped them with sleep training and routine with subsequent children, but from being in the same room)
Those saying 'life doesn't stop for babies/twins' are clearly only referring to the father of the children - the mother's life (as she knew it) of course has totally stopped... and will do even more if the father is able to take a whole day off AND an evening off as well as being out at work all day five days a week.
My dh does MORE than me in the evenings at weekends to try to make up for the fact he's out of the house around 50 odd hours a week minimum at work - he wants to make up for that time lost in terms of gettng to know his son.
Maybe 12 weeks is a bit soon but in another month or two it will feel more manageable?
I don't have twins but did have 3 under 3 inc 11 mo and a newborn. I think you have to be really organised and think up some coping strategies but it is doable. There will presumably be other meetings so worth working it out from that perspective if nothing else?
Having said that, maybe you and dh need a chat about what's fair and reasonable here? All day Saturday would be too much for me, I don't think that's fair on you at all.
As a mother of twins myself (now 4yo) I think you need to learn to do it by yourself (as does DH so that you can have some time out for yourself too)
There is going to be lots of occasions over the coming years where you will feel overwhelmed and outnumbered but thats life with twins
You need to learn to cope as there will be times like this where he isnt around and he needs to learn to cope without you too.
It is hard but it does get easier
Thanks all. The advice from those above with twins themselves, I will take, thanks especially to feesh who sums up how I feel. The rest I will take with a pinch of salt.
"I don't have twins but I have x within a year/all under 3"...... No you still don't get it!
Perhaps if the OP only wanted support from people who also have twins and agree with her POV 100% then she should have posted in the appropriate place and asked only those who agree to respond. Asking if you are being unreasonable suggests that the OP wants a variety of opinions and is open to different points of view.
I think you need to talk to your DH about expectations.
It's reasonable to want one night a week and a few hours at the weekend to do non-baby stuff, but you need breaks too. When the DTs are too small to permit such breaks, then you have to do things differently.
In your shoes I'd be telling him that anticipating the family needs is his responsibility as much as yours. I'd spell out that you are not (yet) ready to deal with bedtimes single-handed, and suggest that he gives it a try so he really understands what it involves. Make it clear that this isn't a permanent change in what you and he can do in terms taking solo time of hobbies/activities that matter, but it is what is needed right now. And I'd suggest he misses one term of weekday football and that you reassess after Christmas. And make sure you get a few hours off some/every weekend too.
OP - I know the multiples page doesn't get as much traffic but at least you would get advice from those of us who really get it. dealing with multiples is such a different ball game from siblings (even very close in age siblings).
I hope you manage to have a chat with your DH and find a compromise that works for you all. I promise it gets easier, I no longer have to give myself a pep talk to do bedtime on my own!
maybe try doing bedtime on your own while DH is in the house? a trial run to see if you can feasibly find a method that works for you with the security of DH being there to jump in if needbe?
don't give up on your routine, it is crucial to staying sane with twins! (oh and lots of helps too!)
I had dts when dc1 was 17months. Dp worked 12 hour days and we don't live close enough to family that they could pop round to help (Not that they could anyway, what with them all having families and jobs of their own to deal with).
Dp used all his paternity looking after dc1 while I was in hospital with dts.
From the second day home from the hospital, I got on with it. I tried different ways until I found ways that worked for me. Ways of feeding/bathing/getting them to sleep/timings of feeds and naps were all figured out by me and the best way I could do it all. I found a relaxed routine worked, nothing too regimented, that couldn't be changed if something came up.
My life didn't stop just because I had twins. I still went shopping, met friends, did toddler groups/parks, visited family, decorated, etc.
Frankly, I feel insulted that people think that just because I had twins I should be rocking in the corner unable to manage. Everyone copes with things differently.
Op, give it time, do it a few times on your own and your confidence will grow and you will find it easier. If not, then tell your dh that you need more help and go from there.
12 weeks is too early for him to go out for one night a week plus all Saturday.
Rather than go out yourself to match his nights out, just pretend you are very ill and ask your DH do the bedtime routine on his own with the two (that way you are still keeping an eye out on the babies, iyswim). also see if he grows extra arms.
Unless he has experienced it first hand he wont have a clue what he is aksing you put up with so he can have a social life. It seem he doesnt respect you enough to see the stress he he putting you under due to his social life.
He also might be seeing other new dads of single babies and somehow feel he is just like them , but is isnt. dads of DTs need to be much more hands on.
well said alloutofideas so many people seem to think 'oh god how can you cope with twins'. quite frankly, twins is what I have so twins is what I cope with. I was very lucky to be dealt such a hand and I get on with it!
why the hell SHOULD a mother of twins do bedtime by herself just so that the father can have ANOTHER game of football when he already gets a whole day of football at the weekend???
it's not at all the same as having to do it yourself because you are a lone parent or your partner works late.
I don't have twins, but I think he's massively taking the piss. All of those people basically saying "suck it up", why the hell should she? Why shouldn't he "suck it up" that his life has to change a bit too?
It's not about whether you can cope its whether you should have to. Football is not an entitlement when you have baby twins. It's just not.
alloutofideas I'm sure you realise how extraordinary you are by being able to have done what you did. I have the same gaps, and nearly went under. Please don't spoil your achievements by minimising what you did, and coming off as smug.
I was just about ok with dh continuing his hobby one day each weekend when we had dts, but said evenings were not ok at all, I needed him home for bedtimes!
BUT as work frequently meant he was home late we developed our bedtime routine from the start which I could manage by myself when required. So definitely no daily bath, far too hard at that age on my own.
I think it is great to have the exact same bedtime rituals, in our case it was getting changed, dim the lights, bottles in their bouncy chairs, lightly swaddled, then put down in bed. Of course there were good days and bad, but we settled into a pattern that suited me and dh did his best to be home playing his part as much as he could.
I do fall into the camp that thinks life SHOULD change dramatically when you have kids, especially twins. How can it not? Days were easier to make subtle changes to but the biggest change for us was evenings: absolutely no going out or having people over because we had to be able to manage bedtimes.
People who managed BECAUSE THEY HAD TO when their partner WAS WORKING. This woman's partner fancies doing a bit more of his hobby, WHY SHOULD SHE HAVE TO MANAGE TO INDULGE HIM? They are his children too!! Sorry for shouting.
Feesh, I had twins and a singleton within 18 months, so really, I have triplets!
Leaving anything else aside, I always worry about newish mothers who get hooked on a routine with very little babies. Because it could be a proper routine-but could also just be a week of flukes. And either way it could go all haywire at the next developmental stage- and if you've invested heavily in the routine it feels even worse when it all changes. You've got the awfulness of everything being all over the place again, and the feeing that you've done something to "break" it. Rather than it just changing because that's what babies do. iYSWIM.
Yes but the reason OP posted is that she had to do bedtime solo as her dh had a late meeting. It's pretty likely this might happen again so it'd be a good idea to think about how to make it easier next time, surely?
I hope you've got extensive experience of looking after 3 dc under 3 feesh otherwise you know, you really have no idea either.
The hobby thing is a different question. All day Sat plus every Tues is taking the piss imho.
I do not think I am extraordinary at all, blue.
I have posted on the thread without mentioning i had twins but it seemed that unless quantified it with my experiences, then my opinions weren't valid.
I wasn't going for smug and I am sorry if it came across that way. I certainly don't feel it, was trying to give my experiences in a nutshell and give another side to the whole twins must be horrific stance. I never said it easy but what I did to make it easier.
Thank you, queen, I feel very lucky to have mine too.
Can I just say that as a mother of singletons, I am <cringing> on behalf of all the other singletons who have piled on to say that their 13 / 16 / 18-month age gap is more or less the same.
No. It. Is. Not. It is nothing like it.
The OP isn't bathing them every night to make things hard on herself. She is trying to get some semblance of a routine in order to ultimately make things a bit easier on herself. And 12 weeks is absolutely not too early to be doing this.
She is probably tying to wrap some semblance of control around a situation most of us cannot fathom.
wickerbasketcase - you're not being unreasonable. But posting here in AIBU did mean you were bound to get a load of competitive martyrs coming on to say that your DP is entitled to a night out, and you should sucki it up.
Well, I disagree. In these early days he should be helping.
Speaking as a mother of 16 week old twins and a 2 1/2 yr old. For your own sanity make sure u get one night off from bed time routine and ur OH gets one night off aswell. I used to bathe my singleton every night for a routine however with the twins , they get a bath at some stage during the week never at the crazy bedtime witching hour. Find what works and makes it easy for u, as it will all change again fairly quickly with teething/growth spurts. My husband is a cricketer n a rugby head an once I demanded the same hours as he had off he quickly reduced his two nights training and one full day at weekend . You do have to leave the house during ur time off though because oh will rope u in
One night a week is not that unreasonable anyway but how the hell do you think people married to shift workers cope.
but she 's NOT married to a shift worker!!!! why does he get to do his hobby and she gets to do evrrything!????
My twins are 2yo now and we didn't do bedtime solo untiol about 20months. It was easier and quicker and both of them got the attention they wanted and went to sleep happy. In my book your DH is being unreasonable.
I understand there are people who have to do it solo, but its not the ideal choice. OPs DH doesnt HAVE to play football, he can wait until they're a bit older.
Tell him you are doing something one night every week that means he's doing bedtime solo and see how he copes....
And what Grandstanding said unelss you have two the same age, not an age gap of whatever, you will have NO IDEA of what it's like to deal with two the same age.
I think if he has all sat to play football he should wait until they are older before taking time in the week as well.
Unfortunatly late meetings may be unavoidable sometimes and you might find that the routine has to be more flexable on these days, keeping them up until they fall asleep then poping them into bed for example
I struggle sometimes with the 2 year old and 6 month old, I can't imagen how hard it must be with 2 babies
He gets to do his hobby because HINBU. She does not have to do everything, no-one is suggesting she needs to be a martyr.
Anyway it does not matter - OP has already stated that she is going to take on board the views of everyone who agrees with her and ignore the rest. Really good use of AIBU. Hopefully her DH's views get a little more respect when they do not accord with her own.
I think it is unreasonable to expect to be able to disappear off for a full weekend day and one evening when you have 12 week old twins.
Has the OP stated anywhere that her husband has refused to let her also have a day and an evening to herself?
If he was wanting time to himself to enjoy his hobbies but refusing to take over care of the twins on a regular basis to let her have some hobby time then I would say that he is beng totally unreasonable and selfish, but this hasn't been said or if it has then i have totally missed it.
I think the OP actually stated she would take on board the views of those with experience of twins, not necessarily just those who agree with her.
If she takes a day "off" as well at the weekend they will never have any time as a family.
But it's not about her having equal time off, it's about her struggling with bedtime on her own at the moment. Doesn't mean he can never do evening hobbies, just that right now it makes life really hard for her. I think it's selfish to leave her to do it in that situation. My dh has lots of hobbies, but would never want me to be struggling and the same vice versa.
Although at 12 weeks I didn't want to do hobbies, I just wanted more fucking sleep... and I only had 1.
so Sarah you get to decide what's a 'really good use of AIBU' do you?
The OP asked a question and said she'd take onboard the views of those with twins (some who said she WBU). Why would you think a DH who wants to fuck off one day on the weekend and one night during the week should get more 'respect' then a woman who's carried twins, given birth and has openly admitted she is struggling?
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