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2.5 year old twins and a newborn. I'm really struggling

(12 Posts)
CharlieKat Thu 12-May-11 17:49:36

I'm mum of twins who are now 2 and a half and I've just had another baby (6 weeks). I really thought that after twins one would be easy (or at least a bit easier) but I'm really, really exhausted and feel that I'm failing miserably in terms of looking after all 3 properly now. sad

I'm EBF but finding the time to feed calmly and properly is almost impossible with the DTs running around (I EBF the DTs for 8 months so I'm used to exhaustion - but I thought feeding a single baby would be SO much easier...)

Also (and perhaps this is the main issue) DS is such a demanding baby. I literally can't put him down so spend most of the day holding him while he screams and trying (and failing) to spend proper time with the girls. Oh and getting out the house seems like an impossible feat only to be managed when DH is around!
Not sure why i'm posting really - just would love some tips/encouragement from mums who've had twins then another....

harrygracejessica Thu 12-May-11 19:57:54

I've got twins who are 2.5 and have just had anouther set of twins who are 3 weeks. I've ended up just bottle feeding them as the others would create bedlam if I breast fed or expressed and then fed. I've also got a 4 year old too so manic in this house.

Have you tried your baby in a sling so you can still do things with the twins?

CharlieKat Thu 12-May-11 20:22:25

Wow, harrygracejessica, now I feel really pathetic for complaining!! That really puts it in perspective - I can't imagine how much harder 2 sets of twins AND a 4 yr old would be. Congratulations on your newborn twins!

Do you mind me asking if you have any help with them all during the days? We can't really afford paid help (I've not gone back to work) but my Mum helps when she can.

Oh and yes - the sling has helped but he's v heavy already and it's tough on my back if I'm carrying him for too long.

AtLongLast Thu 12-May-11 21:13:00

No great tips from me CharlieKat but I expect to be in a similar position in a few months so watching with interest! I think you have just shattered my illusion about how easy a singleton will be though - probably for the best lol wink. Good luck!

CharlieKat Thu 12-May-11 21:27:01

Congratulations on your pregnancy AtLongLast! I'm sorry to shatter those illusions - but don't despair as I think perhaps it depends on the singleton baby. I think I was blessed with fairly easy twin girls and (despite thinking it super hard at the time) I've only just realised what having a VERY demanding/unsettled baby really is like now I've got DS.

Perhaps also the twins learnt v early on that I couldn't carry / comfort both at once and so that made them somehow more patient?

How old are your twins?

AtLongLast Thu 12-May-11 21:52:20

The boys are 13months at the moment and we think I'm due in November - will find out next week......

I agree, the baby's character must have a lot to do with it. Ds1 was laid back to the extreme. We think ds2 was a more challenging baby, though he has calmed down a lot over the last 6 months.

I'm just so aware that we didn't have any additional problems like colic, reflux or worse to deal with too and we've requested the same this time...... grin

twolittlepigs Thu 12-May-11 22:19:37

Awww CharlieKat, I could have written your post word for word almost 9 months ago. My twin boys were 2 and a half when my little girl arrived. Like you I had thought one would be a breeze!! But of course it's not one, is it? It's one newborn and two toddlers! And that is a lot! I was so unprepared for how another child would change the family dynamic. One that (and as a mother of twins you'll appreciate this) we had worked hard to achieve and life had only been feeling less chaotic for a short period. I breastfed my boys for 12 months. Managed 5 with my girl (for a variety of reasons...). Like your little boy, my girl was so demanding and much more difficult to manage/soothe/comfort etc than her brothers. But it did improve (around the that magical three month mark!) for us and we now have a very easy little girl and the balance has shifted back to the boys being the more demanding, so at least we're back on familiar ground in that respect!!

Anyway my only advice to you is just know that right now you might be feeling like a "jack of all trades, master of none" but that won't be for long and you will start feeling on top of this mother of twins-plus-one lark! Go easy on yourself. It will get easier, your twins aren't going to suffer any long term negative effects of this crazy period right now (but they will make plenty of positive changes as a result of being bis sisters) and you will all start enjoying your new family soon and won't be able to imagine life as a mum of "just" twins!!

Hope all this blathering helps! I would have loved to have heard from another mum in a similar position in the early days...

twolittlepigs Thu 12-May-11 22:31:55

Oh and as for "looking after all three properly" ... I kept repeating one piece of Tamba advice that I read which was "good enough parenting". This is a temporary period in your life. I had no help either (all our family is in Australia) so when my girl finally fell asleep on my chest (the only place she would sleep initially) I plonked the boys in front of a DVD. I would do the same if she was being particularly fussy and the boys were bored/competing for my attention. No, it isn't ideal parenting in most people's books. But it took the pressure off me and off them. I took it as time to recharge so I could be a better parent for the next few hours...

Don't feel guilty for doing what works for you as a family at that moment.

Oh and harrygracejessica...hats off to you!!

CharlieKat Thu 12-May-11 22:46:03

Thank you so much twolittlepigs, it's so good to hear your experience. I feel better already(!)

Yes, now I think about it, it's very much about how the dynamics of our family have shifted so dramatically (and unexpectedly - God knows why I didn't see this coming!). And yes, like you I worked very very hard to get us to were we were with the twins and life has only been 'normal' again for a short while. Now feel like we've taken a massive step backwards and most of our day to day structure we had for the girls no longer works.

Thanks again for such positive words. I'm now going to feed DS and go to bed in a much more positive frame of mind. And wait for the magical 3 month mark to roll around!

Before I go - how did your boys take to being big brothers, was there much jealousy? I've been hoping that jealously will be minimal as the girls are already so used to sharing me. [wishful thinking emoticon]

Oh and congratulations again AtLongLast - I will make a point of also posting all my positive experiences in the months to come!

twolittlepigs Thu 12-May-11 23:00:05

So glad my words helped, CharlieKat!

Yep, I felt pretty naive for not seeing the shift in family dynamic coming! But in all honest, I'm not sure anyone really knows what to expect with the birth of a child whether it be their first or fifth.

The boys were and still are amazing with their sister. They are still learning that she is not quite as tough as them and can't yet play their rough and tumble games!! However, I can honestly say I have not had one moment of jealousy from them. I think you are on the money about them already being used to sharing you! Not wishful thinking at all!

And you will be able "reset" the girls' day-to-day structure later on. Just ride the wave of chaos for now (as you most likely did in those early days with newborn twins!!) and things will start to fall in to place slowly but surely. Your son will start developing a fairly predictable pattern to his day soon-ish and then bit by bit you can figure out the girls' (and your) day around that and tweak his a little if needs be.

Sleep well! (or as well as a mother of a six week old can!!)

PrincessScrumpy Fri 13-May-11 08:03:27

I have dd1 (3) and twins on the way. dd1 was extremely demenading as a baby and never slept so dh and I have decided to write off the 1st four months and just try to survive! In 6 months your twins will be able to go to pre school, could you afford to get them in for a few hours now? Can any friends help out?

I think 6/7w is when I was at breaking point with dd1's crying/colic/reflux. In other words, I think it's normal.

A sling would be a good idea and try to get out of the house each day. The twins will have lots of energy so letting them run around the local park will help calm them at home (hopefully) and it'll be good for you to get out. Also, you won't feel so guilty shoving a film/cbeebies on if they've been to the park grin

It will get better x

harrygracejessica Fri 13-May-11 10:24:21

I still have OH off work as the boys were born just before the bank holidays and OH had booked all of it off so then went straight into paternity leave but he goes back after a month off on Tuesday, I will then be on my own as both sets of parents work, the only thing I might do is invest in a cleaner to help if I'm not managing but I'm not interested in help with the kids as I'll be in a routine by then.

I think twins do learn to wait too

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