"I wish somebody had told me the reality of life with newborn twins. It’s exhausting, it’s not fun, it’s nothing like you had envisioned, and you wonder if the work will ever end.”
That’s how blogger, Meredith Gracey described the first six months with her newborn twins in a recent post on Scary Mommy - and she didn’t leave much to the imagination.
Curious to know if life with baby twins is really that ominous, we asked Mothercraft nurse Chris Minogue, an expert on twins, for the lowdown.
Here are her six most important tips:
1. Manage your support team
“Don’t have everyone come at once. If your husband is taking six weeks off work and your mum is also available, make sure you stagger them. Having lots of hands at the same time is not the same as lots of help,” says Chris.
Listen to Chris on Kinderling Helpline:
2. Spend money on help for peak times
"Between 2pm and 7pm is the busiest time. If you have no support and are looking at getting support in, like a mother’s helper or nanny, then focus that help in those peak times. This will also help take the pressure off your partner when they get home, which means you’ll be getting the balance right," says Chris.
3. Learn to tandem feed
"Whether you bottle feed or breastfeed, tandem feeding is an important way to find balance. If your babies are out of sync, that means you’re always toggling between two schedules, which can get exhausting and overwhelming,” says Chris.
4. Make home a comfortable place
“The nature of having twins means you’ll be home more often than other parents, and you’ll probably just duck out to the park,” says Chris. “The benefit of this is that it creates a nice rhythm between Mum and babies and also, the twins will tend to sleep better because they’re locked into their routine.”
5. Join a multiples mother’s group or playgroup
“Multiples groups or playgroups are very beneficial as there are like-minded parents who can help you out. The mums with one baby are often unaware of how much you have to juggle when you have two.”
6. Enjoy it!
“Parents of twins have lots of unexpected benefits. And one of those is that around the 5-6 month mark, baby twins begin to recognise each other, and play for long periods together on the floor,” says Chris. And while parenting baby twins is not always fun, mum of twin boys, Karina also has some great news for you - it gets better!
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