Please tell me how you coped with twins(17 Posts)
I have twin boys 81/2 months and I am struggling. Everyday seems like an endless cycle of feeding, cleaning and nappy changing. We go out at least once a day but can never be out long as I don't like to bf in public as I tandem feed and feel awkward! I would love to hear how others have coped especially on your own as my dp works really long hours and doesn't help at all through the night due to mh reasons. Thanks
Sounds familiar! I can't really remember the first year as I was constantly sleep deprived! It does get better though as they get a bit older (although I think I found the toddling stage the hardest). Sounds like you are doing fine - it's just hard.
I found things got easier after the first 6 months as they started sleeping through the night.
toddling stage is quite full on but so rewarding.
things I've found that help the most are
changing bag packed the night before.
clothes for everyone ready each night.
a good routine- makes life easier for everyone.
making sure they nap at the same time- I'd never get anything done otherwise.
there's always good and bad days and it can get monotonous but it'll pass.
They have never slept through so feeling pretty zombified right now! I'm so grateful for them to be here though so shouldn't moan. Thanks for the suggestions
having a moan doesn't mean you're ungrateful, it's bloody hard going some times and amazing the rest of the time.
a sleep/night routine was the turning point for us, sleep deprivation is so hard.
heyohh if you don't mind me asking did your twins sleep in separate cots / rooms as mine share a room but I think they wake each other up
they share a room but separate cots, I think they are quite heavy sleepers as very rarely wake each other up.
It's hard work. I had twins when my eldest had just turned 2. And no local family to help.
Is paying for a mothers help an option? I had one for an hour each morning - just an extra pair of hands made all the difference. Or could you look into getting someone doing a childcare course at a local college to do a placement with you - I think they are often looking for people to take students for a few hours a week?
First thing I'd like to say is that it is hard. It's really hard! So feel free to moan about it. I am not a single parent but my husband lives and works in another city for much of the week. In the first year of their lives he was often away all week. Looking back on it I think I was in a bit of a fog. There was a big difference once they started to sleep better at night (or at least one at a time did) - but I confess one has been a pretty bad sleeper off and on since they were born. But it is a lot better. I can get good chunks of sleep now - makes all the difference.
Like others I'd say organisation is the key. Get everything you need for the next day ready in advance. Always have a spare bag of clothes in your changing bag. Also, I couldn't have cared less about how my house looked. We were all washed and fed and in clean clothes. Anything else could wait. As well as tandem feeding I did everything at the same time, as far as possible. Changing nappies, changing clothes, feeding, waking, sleeping etc. Obviously they still had their natural cycles which you have to go with a bit but everything else was done in sync. I read a few parenting books about twins. I disregarded almost everything I read in there about 'routines'. God, I hated those books!! You'll find what works for you.
Is there a twins group near you? I never went to one but if you're struggling it might be a help to meet parents in the same position.
By that age mine were in separate cots but same room. If they were in a deep sleep it would take a lot for the other to be woken if one was crying.
You'll get through it!
The first year was so tough. Chronic sleep deprivation. I coped by getting out of the house twice a day - once to the park or along the river for a walk, and once to something - anything, where there was a bit of adult company - church playgroups were always especially kind and welcoming, baby singing or just a meet up with local mums. There's usually one whose baby is snoozing who is willing to hold one twin while you deal with another.
But I just got through, day to day. Life massively improved after the first year.
Mine woke each other up. DD was LOUD. She went in her own room and we kept DS in with us which helped a bit.
Following with interest! Chloe I also have 8.5 month old twins (plus a nearly 2.5 year old) so I feel for you (and me!!). I actually posted on this board a couple of months back when I was having a bit of a meltdown... Thankfully things have improved since then as they are napping so much better and the reflux has really settled down so I feel like there may be light at the end of the tunnel!
Like yours though they aren't sleeping through (one does occasionally, but usually wakes once; the other occasionally wakes once but usually twice, sometimes three times.) I'm still breastfeeding so I'm doing all the wake ups. I am SO TIRED altho weirdly I do think I have somehow acclimatised to it. I always wake up feeling dreadful but after a cold shower and a hot cup of tea I can somehow face the day. Totally have no social life though, I'm too tired!
We've got them in separate rooms (one in their bedroom, one in with us) because they definitely wake each other up. To be honest I'm a bit sick of it and desperately want our room back to ourselves but until they're sleeping through I don't see how it can be done. I've got an absolutely amazing HV has said any time we want she will help us out with some sleep training. I'm holding off for now, but I'm back at work in the new year so think of things aren't better in a month or so I may take her up on it.
No amazing tips - I'm after some myself! But I do always feel so much better if I can get out and about (the isolation and cabin fever can be awful)... Would you consider feeding them one at a time just while you're out? Or giving them the odd bottle here or there? I guess as they get more established on solids that issue will largely sort itself out anyway!
Allegretto can I ask when you got your two back in the same room? My bedroom is a bit of a sanctuary normally so I'm really looking forward to that point!
Sorry probably not much practical help there but lots of empathy. One way or another we will get through it!!
Thank you Heloise glad to hear it's getting a bit better for you. Sometimes I will feed one when out but the other will usually cry and so I'll be sat with one baby crying and one trying to feed quickly and then when I try to pop them back in pram they will cry too ! By which point I just wish I'd stayed at home
Yeah the one baby crying while you're seeing to the other thing sucks.
Hats off to you for tandem feeding though - I never got the hang of it!
Lots of good advice here.
I've just come on to say you are not the only one who finds it hard. I struggled so much in the first year but it does get better (and worse) in many ways.
Mine are 4 now and it has different challenges. I keep thinking how different life would have been having just one baby!
My tips would be to join classes / playgroups and definitely a twins club so you have adult company at some point every day. Are you in touch with your antenatal group? The NCT had a mum and baby group and pretty much everyone had babies of the same age. The twins group was massively overstaffed so always someone to hold at least one of the babies whilst I had a coffee.
Can you feed lying down at night? My H was in the other room at that point (he'd been diagnosed with a critical illness so needed to rest - even though up until that point he'd helped during the night) and if the babies grizzled / wanted a feed after say about 4am, I brought them into the double bed with me (one either side of me) - I could generally snooze whilst I fed. I know not everyone is comfortable with that but it worked for me.
I also made a point of sitting down & watching TV / reading for at least an hour of their 2 hour lunch time nap - can you do that? Just put your feet up and relax?
It is really hard, good luck, hang in there it does get easier (although mine are 11 now and the hormones are kicking in!!)
I honestly don't know how I coped! Had a 2.5 yr old too, a defining moment of 'what has my life become?' was sat in armchair with a feeding baby under each arm 'a la rugby ball' whilst potty training 2.8yo stood on footstool in front of me touching his toes while I attempted the bottom wipe!!! 😖 Tandem feeding and co sleeping helped massively plus lots of fresh air, walks and buggy fit classes (and big fat bollocks to 'routines'!)
Hang in there Hun.... This too will pass xxxx
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