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Top tips please!(30 Posts)
I am currently 24 weeks with B/G twins and the advice from family/friends is starting to flood in. However, no-one I know has had twins so I was wondering if you could share some pearls of wisdom with me about how to get through the first few months! This is my first pregnancy so it is all new to me anyway. Any helpful advice greatly appreciated!
My MCDA twin girls are 4 months now, and their older sister just turned 3.
Advice (some has been said above)
1) chest freezer if possible (ours is in the garage) full of home cooked meals before they arrive
2) multiple changing stations with space for a couple of changes of clothes to be kept at each
3) separate area for one of you to escape to for uninterrupted sleep
4) tumble dryer of you can
5) if one needs feeding, feed the other
6) as much help, paid or unpaid, as you can get
7) if you want to BF it can be entirely doable with a little luck - mine are EBF at 4 months and it saves all the faff of bottle washing, sterilising etc. If you want more info on how we managed this, do pm me. However, see point 8!
8) NO GUILT about how you choose to do stuff/shortcuts. So long as things don't amount to actual harmful neglect or abuse, forgive yourself departures from perfection freely and immediately!! That includes choosing not to follow other people's advice, including mine.
9) Lots of cuddles together and separately
10) Go out of the house every day even if it's just a walk round the block
11) Internet shopping for groceries is awesome - book the slots for orders ahead (even 2-3 at a time) with a few essentials in the basket and amend the order the night before with anything else you need
12) Electronic reminders for EVERYTHING - less stressful and more effective than trying to rely on your brain
13) Try to leave the house alone every week or two while someone else sits with them, even if just for half an hour. Feels exciting and naughty to start with! But gives you a break from constantly feeling like you are everyone else's property.
14) be ready to cry about lots of silly and not so silly things (news stories, how beautiful their smiles are etcetera!!)
15) Time is divided into BS and AS (before smiles and after smiles) - BS feels like a huge unrelenting grind, but AS you get regular reward for all your efforts and the sun gradually comes out more and more!!
Overall though I think point 8 is the most important. You will undoubtedly strive to be the best parent you can, and pursuit of perfection is counter productive because it pressurises you further when you are already under pressure. PND is common in multiple mums, so get yourself and your nearest and dearest aware of the symptoms and signs, and if there is any concern, seek help early.
I haven't said anything about SCBU because we were extremely fortunate to avoid that, yet were still in Hosp 6 days - for the babies, not me - so be prepared for that. You may well be hungrier than the meagre food rations there so get visitors to bring healthy snacks and some biscuits. A bottle of concentrated squash helps you drink plenty.
HTH and good luck. It is a gorgeous experience.
I would disagree with the expressing advice. My twins are 15 months and still breastfeeding. If you express you're doing it twice plus you've all the faff of washing bottles. A pump never gets as much as a baby can and feeding both together, once you've mastered it,enables you to get out and about without a ridiculous array of equipment. If you have another child as I did (DS was 2.8 when they were born) it's easier to read to them etc with free hands albeit being pinned to the chair! Plus you can mumsnet whilst feeding too I also co sleep and cloth bum (saves a fortune and as others have pointed out fortnightly bin collections do not really work with twins in nappies). I didnt have a strict routine at all and just basically muddled through. I now however still have one baby in my bed every night reverse cycling as I'm back at work 4 days a week and he is a boob addict must do something about that .......
Seriously though keep chanting the mumsnet mantra 'this too shall pass' and you will be just fine xxx
Just another thought, night time feeding lying down was my saviour, which obviously means on day a time. If they both woke I had to get up and use the feeding pillow, much nicer to snuggle up and go back to sleep while they feed then hubby would swap them over when the other one woke. Always fed together in the day though just on a bog standard v shaped cushion £10 from dunelm mill! I do have an enormous armchair though so they were well secure and enough room for DS to perch on the arm with his book
*One at a time not one day at a time
I think the key may be to have v low standards. I'd read a v negative twin parenting book which implied you would implode without outside help so was quite relieved to find out it was survivable. Ours were in scbu for two weeks (as others said prepare for a possible stay) but the upside of that was it got them on a loose routine and the nurses helped with establishing bf. If you are planning to bf tandem feeding makes it much easier in the early days when they take a long time. Don't expect to get much else done and invest in some good box sets of TV series or love film etc. My husband did all the cooking and we just left most of the housework - if you have family near rope them in to help. I was constantly starving so we had loads of cereal bars and rice pots etc about. The best preparation I had for twin motherhood was doing long distance sailing trips where you are on a four hour watch system, got me used to napping on cue. Make sure to get at least one nap in day - 'sleep when the babies sleep, clean when the babies clean' ;).
Equipment wise our musts were lots of babygrows and vests (that's all they wore for about 6 months), a twin sling (or a wrap for them both), bouncy chairs, twin feeding cushion - i had a harmony duo but ended up using just a soft v as more comfy).
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