In the United States, about 3% of pregnant women give birth to twins or triplets. This can be an exciting and scary time for parents, especially if you were only expecting to have one baby. Raising twins can be one of the most rewarding experiences of your life, and you can use some helpful tips to get through the most challenging times.
When you find out that you are expecting twins, it is important to strategize and plan ahead to prepare for the arrival of your babies. Make sure that your nursery is set up to accommodate two kids and that you have ample clothes and supplies for each.
Once your babies have arrived, you may have to change your routine based off of what works best for your family, so make sure that you are flexible and can adapt as necessary.
2. Buy secondhand
If you are expecting twins, the thought of having to buy two of everything can be overwhelming. Instead of buying two new cribs, changing tables, and dressers, consider buying your items secondhand. Going to a thrift shop or garage sale to find used furniture instead of buying new can help you to save a lot of money.
3. Treat your children like individuals
Many parents who are raising twins make the mistake of treating their children like a unit rather than individuals. Instead of dressing your children in matching outfits, make sure that you treat your kids like individuals with different likes and dislikes.
4. Develop a routine
When your twins are infants, getting onto a good routine is essential in order to minimize your stress level. Try to keep both of your babies on the same routine so that they are sleeping, eating, and playing at the same time. This will give you the downtime that you need to recharge.
5. Invest in a good stroller
Handling two children when you are out in public can be a real challenge, so it is important to invest in a high-quality and durable stroller. These days, a variety of stroller companies are developing lightweight strollers for twins, and you can choose side-by-side options or units where one child sits in front of the other.
6. Give each child individual attention
While your twins will likely enjoy spending time together, it is also important to give them individual attention. Spend time with each one of your twins separately to give them the attention that they need while allowing you to develop a stronger bond. Also make sure that no child is receiving more attention than the other so that sibling rivalries do not develop.
7. Encourage their own interests
It is completely fine if your twins develop unique personalities with their own likes and dislikes. As a parent, you should encourage your kids to pursue their own interests.
Whether your kids enjoy sports, music, art, or reading, it is your job as their parent to support what they love and help them to pursue these activities.
8. Ask for help
In the early days of raising twins, the amount of work that you need to do can be overwhelming. Add in the fact that you are probably not getting enough sleep, and you will have a potentially stressful situation.
Do not be afraid to ask your extended family for help. This can involve making meals, doing laundry, or simply sitting with your twins so that you can take a nap.
9. Join a support group
Twin births are becoming increasingly common, so there are more support group options available than ever. Check with your pediatrician to see if there are any local support group meetings. If not, there is a wealth of information online that can direct you to the right place.
10. Make time for yourself
It is important to make sure that your life is not being consumed by your twins and that you take time for yourself. By getting out of the house to spend time with friends, go on a date with your spouse, or simply grab a cup of coffee, you will be happier and more relaxed. This will help you to feel energized and ready to take on all of the challenges that your twins have to offer.
Most of all, it is important to enjoy each precious moment that you get to spend with your twins. While raising multiples can be challenging at times, being the parent to twins can leave you with a lifetime of wonderful family memories.