So, you’re having twins – congratulations! It’s going to be a fantastic experience, and your two little ones are going to have wild times together, keep each other company, and be the best of friends for life. Maybe. At some point in the very distant future, with any luck. But for now, it’s going to be something of a whirlwind for you, your partner, and any kids you have already.
We won’t lie – it’s going to be tough, too. From the moment you realize you are having multiple kids – at the same time – all the way through to paying for them to go to childcare, there is an astonishing array of problems when you have twins. And today, we’re going to highlight a few of them for you and get you ready for what can be an utterly mind-blowing experience. Ready to get started? Strap yourself in and prepare for the ride.
OK, so there is every chance you will be amazed, delighted, and have all kinds of positive thoughts when you first find out you are having twins. After all, it’s kind of magical, right? But your partner is likely to feel very differently. It’s them that will be carrying two babies around for nine months, after all – and all the complication baggage that goes with a twin pregnancy. It’s essential that you understand your partner’s fears, of which there will be many, and be as supportive as possible. And yes, before you ask, you will need to ‘be there’ a lot more when your wife is having multiple kids than you were for a typical pregnancy.
An interesting nine months
So what, exactly, can you and your partner expect for the next nine months? Well, unless you are incredibly lucky, there will be all kinds of things to watch out for. First of all, morning sickness is often twice as severe when you are having twins, so your partner is likely to be out of action a lot. Back trouble is another common ailment – carrying around 12-15 lbs of little people in the final trimester is not something you would wish on your enemy, let alone the woman you love. There will be a lot more medical attention, too, as the vast majority of twin pregnancies are considered high risk. And then there is the sheer worry and emotional turmoil you will experience as you worry about managing for the first month, not to mention the next five years.
The twin reaction
When you tell people you are having twins, there are two types of responses. The first is from people who haven’t had twins, and they will be as delighted to hear your news as you were when you first find out. And then there are those that have been through a multiple pregnancy themselves. From these seasoned pros, you can expect a hand on your shoulder, a sympathetic smile, and perhaps an apology for your predicament. It’s only at this point you are likely to realize how big a deal this actually is.
There are, of course, a multitude of ways of trying to deal with any ordeal in life, and the more practical you can be, the better. But if you thought planning for one child was difficult, it’s a walk in the park when compared with laying the groundwork for twins. You’ll need equipment – tons of it if fact. And pretty much all of it is huge – click here for reviews on the best double umbrella strollers around, and you’ll see what we’re talking about. You’ll have to double up on car seats, and if you have other children, you might even have to buy a new vehicle – that old 5-seater is just not going to be big enough. There are special cushions for twins, too, and if you find out you are having different sexes, it’s going to cost you a small fortune in clothing for the boy and girl. We hope you have good credit or plenty of savings, in other words.
The final weeks
In the last stretch, the likelihood is that your wife could be entirely out of action. Some women damage their backs when carrying all that weight, others end up splitting their stomach muscles in half due to the stretching – and there are some that suffer both. You will need to arrange time off work, long before your paternity leave if any of this stuff happens to you. And if you have an unsympathetic employer, you’re going to have to rely on friends, relatives, and possibly even professional carers to help out your partner. And this is all before you even meet the babies!
OK, so we’ve painted something of a negative picture, here – but there is a silver lining. Watching the birth of twins is a remarkable experience, and you and your partner will be experiencing something not many others do. It’s worth pointing out that a lot of twin pregnancies end up as C-sections, so don’t pin your hopes on an all-natural birth. But either way, by the time you have welcomed your new babies into the world, the rush of feelings you will have will be quite incredible, and something you will remember for life.
Once you have left the relative safety and security of the hospital, things can get tricky. You and your partner are on your own with two incredibly demanding little beings that are vying for attention. You might strike lucky at first, and have a pair children who can sync their feeding, sleeping and waking times – but we won’t lie: it’s unlikely. And if you have another, older child in the mix, your job is going to be even tougher.
BUT – and it is a big but – you and your partner will find your way. You will get attention from a lot of lovely people, and many of your family and close friends will offer a lot of support. As your babies grow older, they will start to form their twin bond – which is quite magical to observe. They will entertain each other, and although there will be many fights over the coming years, the chances are they will be tighter than tight. It’s not easy – but the best things in life rarely are – good luck!
GetConnectDad is growing at an incredible pace because parents are actively sharing what we are doing with their friends and families. We are so thankful. If you would like to receive a bi-weekly summary of articles like this, please fill out our subscription form below. We are very careful to limit the number of emails we send per month because we, like you, are busy parents!