It’s easy to think that having twins could simply mean a double-dose of everything. Double the feeding, double the washing, double the nappy changing, double the clucks and coos from smitten passers-by… But it’s not just a straightforward numbers game. Being the proud parents of twins can present some unique challenges. Here are some handy hints to help you on your way:
Follow a routine Organisation becomes all the more important when you are dealing with two. Twins thrive on it and their life is all very much togetherness in those early years.
Join a twins club Feeling over-awed? Signing up to a twins club is your pass to a group of fellow sympathetic parents who know what’s like and can offer support and advice.
Watch out for Twin Escalation Syndrome There’s nothing like having a grinning companion to egg you on in your misdemeanours. One twin starts chucking their pasta, the other joins in. And the next thing you know it’s Little Italy all over the floor. Psychologists have dubbed this conspiratorial mischief-making Twin Escalation Syndrome, or TES. The solution? If the tested tricks of distracting and ignoring don’t work, you may have to separate your twins for a short time.
Give individual attention From their genetic make-up to their environment, twins share lots of similarities and so it’s unsurprising that they may have similar thoughts. However, it’s important to allow them room to develop their own individual personalities. Spending regular time on their own with either you or your partner will give them space to grow and find their own identity.
Discipline the perpetrator …and not the by-stander. If one twin is misbehaving and the other is not, it’s important that the other child doesn’t feel like they’re in trouble, too. If one twin is having time-out, the other twin can easily empathise with their sibling and feel upset. Ensure that this twin gets lots of positive attention from you.
Carve out some me-time Whether it’s treating yourself to a bath or just curling up with a good book while your partner takes the children out for a walk, it’s important you make time to relax. After all, recharging your own batteries means you’ll have the energy you need to for tomorrow. It may sound obvious, but creating time to spend alone with your partner is important, too, allowing you the opportunity to communicate and to simply enjoy being in each other’s company. Put a date in the diary to order in a takeaway or ask a grandparent or babysitter over for the evening.