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I am not enjoying this.

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 
Warning, huge whiney vent to follow . ..

I have so much to be thankful for - full term healthy twins (after 3 years of infertility!), relatively happy babies, a paid year long maternity leave, a great DH, and an amazing little five year old boy. I should be happy, but this all feels so hard right now.

I used to be a good parent to my 5 yo DS. I practiced gentle parenting a la 'non violent communication', Gordon Neufeld, UP etc. I had the time, energy, whatever. I know lots of people do it with 3 kids but I am so far off the path it isn't funny. Even when I can keep my composure it is a constant "shh, babies are sleeping" "be gentle" "quiet, no yelling" "clean up your stuff" blah blah blah. I am tired of hearing myself nag.

I have been experiencing 'delayed bonding' with the twins. I love them of course, but I keep waiting for the 'baby crush' to come like it did with DS but it only comes in fleeting moments every once in a while. After waiting so long to have more children and doing IVF I want to be over the moon crazy in love with them. I'm not.

We used to go out all the time . . . park, bike rides, playdates, museums, etc. Now that the babies are here we only go out a couple times a week and while we are at home DS mostly watches tv until it is time for me to pack them all up to take him to kindergarten in the pm (thank goodness he loves kindy!!). Soon it will be 40 below zero and it will suck even worse. I feel isolated, lonely. Going out is a lot of work and isn't really 'fun' since there is only a short window until one or both babies melt down.

They nurse ALL. THE. TIME. I nursed ds1 on demand for 4 years, so I am a commited nurser and I won't be stopping, but yeesh. I'm not liking this at all. They nurse every 1-2 hours all day long, including over night. This wouldn't be so bad if they were nice about it, but their latches suck and they nurse aggressively. I've tried to solve it without success. We have had thrush on and off (mostly me, only Adam has had a few patches in his mouth that are now gone). I think they are mostly nipple feeding, which of course means they are less efficient, hence the nursing all the freaking time. My nipples hurt, and a I don't like nursing them the way I enjoyed nursing DS1.

The sleep . . .oh the sleep. They slept better for the first couple months, but since the 12 week growth spurt they've been waking every 45-90 mins. Sigh.

The combo of lack of sleep, lonliness, and such means I am eating like crap and think I have GAINED weight since 2 week pp. WTF? I am nursing twins and figured I would be able to lose weight fairly easily. I know I need to cut out the baked goods , but the exhaustion etc is working against me. My ND says she figures my metabolism has slowed to a crawl and my adrenals are very stressed. My body feels like it was hit by a truck. I tried to get back to exercising, but with so little sleep my body can't repair itself so I stopped to avoid injury.

Well, I think that's it . I just needed to get it out, yk? The babies are 5mo tomorrow and thriving . . . 19lbs, smiling, happy, developing well. I just wish I could enjoy this a little more
post #2 of 21
I know it can't be easy.
post #3 of 21
Oh jeez - it sounds SO hard - and as much as you want to enjoy this, it seems like too much stress and work to get there? Does your ND having any SOLUTIONS to your stressed adrenals and slow metabolism? I know there seems little time for it, but DO try to take care of yourself?

Do you have any friends that you could have over - someone who won't care that your house is a mess and not expect to be waited on? SOmeone to help you get that need for grown up conversation met? Someone who won't mind coming to you b/c she understands how tough it is to get ONE kiddo out the door, let alone THREE - two of which are babes....?

My friend (lived far away) only let it be known how much she was struggling AFTER the worst of it was over - it was hard for her to admit it - she had a similar situation with a 5? yo and twins - she really missed the 1:1 time with older dd and resented the demands of the twins - it DOES get better but it takes a LONG time and for your sake as well as the babies - get some support, however and whenever you can - taking care of YOU will help the bonding too!
post #4 of 21
post #5 of 21
I have no multiples, but saw this in New Posts and just want to say, Hats off to you for nurturing two infants at the same time, plus another child. I have no advice except that you should not go hard on yourself if you feel you're not enjoying as you should. While I'm sure the babies are delightful and you get a kick out of them and adore them, I know that one infant was hard work. Double that, and oh my. You're not sleeping. That alone is a major deal. Your body is further zapped due to nursing (at least it zapped me, way back when... honestly I had so much more energy when I stopped, but that might be just me). You are constantly on demand for the needs of three young lives, and probably have no time to yourself. And really - on paper, none of that sounds "fun". I was already having marital difficulty when my child was that age, so my now-ex was no help, but does your partner do anything to help? Are you up to getting a mother's helper? Doing all of that alone sounds sheerly exhausting. It's okay for you to feel however you feel.
post #6 of 21
Have you tried LLL meetings? Its a way to get out and get nursing help at the same time.
Dont feel guilty-kids where I live watch TV before school all the time-this is normal, although it may not be the "ideal"!
Your doing super nursing two and the benefits are great for them!!! Once there latching right you'll be able to go places again, I went through that with my oldest for a month before I got nursing help! Good luck!!!
post #7 of 21
Hugs to you. It is SO hard to nurse small twins. Especially if their latch isn't great. SO hard. You sound like you need sleep really bad. Not good sleep=cranky, overeating and feeling down for me. You said DH was supportive. Can he take the twins for you in the mornings after they wake up and let you get another hour or two until they want to nurse again? Maybe just on the weekends? I could sleep so deeply during that morning time, and the babies were usually very happy and easy to please for my DH when they first woke up. You need some sleep and you will feel better.

Don't worry about the bonding so much right now. It will come, but it won't come in the same way as it did with your first. You are falling in love with two people at once. That takes time and bounces around from one to the other. Be patient.

Hugs again. It will get easier (and harder again but that is another post ).

I've been there. Hang in there.
post #8 of 21
The first eight months or so with my twins were ROUGH. REALLY rough. I had a two year old, and a chronic serious illness, and these two odd-looking bald babies who weren't chubby like DD1 had been, and one of them was colicky and SCREAMED ALL. DAY. AND. NIGHT. whenever he wasn't nursing.

My relationship with DD1 got rocky-- I had no patience left for even the most normal behaviors. I was snippy and snappy and unpleasant to her all the time.

We never went anywhere.

I remember one day DH came home from work and I had convinced myself that I had to give one of them up for adoption-- that I wasn't capable of mothering all of them.

I know how you feel about the delayed bonding-- that wonderful in-love feeling I had with DD1 just wasn't there. I loved them, of course-- I wouldn't have been still there, still trying, day after day, if I didn't. But it wasn't what I remembered feeling with DD1, and I felt terrible about that all the time.

I think I had more than a touch of postpartum depression, for months and months, but I was so busy trying to keep up with their demands, that I never even had time to notice or try to get help with it.

But you know what? It came-- the bonding. It just took longer. They started sitting up, and crawling, and eating solids, and the demands decreased a bit. DD1 got accustomed to her new role in the house, and we settled into a new way of being together.

And I look at them now-- at the bonds that they have not just with me, but with each other, and I can see that it was all worth it. Every minute of it.

Hang in there. Seriously. It's not going to last forever. And nothing terrible happens if a child has to wait a few minutes for something they need, and nothing terrible happens if a child cries for a few minutes while you're taking care of another's urgent needs, or taking care of your own needs. You are only one person, and can only do so much.

And I agree with the PPs-- finding a window of time that can be for you, even if the babies are less than happy about somebody else holding them for an hour or so, can really help. So can a friend during the day, just to hang out and chat with.

In my case, two things saved me-- 1. I decided to put DD1 in preschool, even though she wasn't quite 3, for three mornings a week, and 2. I chose a period of time in the middle of the night, between about 11 and 1:30, when I didn't nurse. If they woke, DH took them. I would nurse at 11, and then at 1:30, but if they needed comforting between them, he would take them and walk them around. He wasn't happy about it, but me going totally stark raving mad obviously wasn't a good idea, so he gave in to it. They were six months old, when we started that. I figured the AP police would probably flog me, but I had to do what I had to do to survive.
post #9 of 21
Originally Posted by Llyra View Post
The first eight months or so with my twins were ROUGH. REALLY rough.
^^this. and i didn't even have an older one! they are my only. the first year is just so insane with two babies. you're so busy keeping them alive and fed that you can't even focus on how much you adore them, except for fleeting moments here and there... i totally get you. i always felt like if i had 1 baby it would be so much more lovey-dovey... like, an outing would be no big deal (just pop baby in the ergo!). co-sleeping with 1 and night nursing on demand? that sounds like a piece of cake! easy, even!


mine are almost 21mos now. and i am in LOVE. i know some people think toddlers are tougher, but i think they're ten billion times easier. they play, they eat regular food, they hang out, they sleep pretty well. such a different lifestyle. i can BREATHE now.

you are in the thick of it. just keep on doing what you're doing. this too shall pass. and once you're out of the fog of sleep deprivation and whatnot, you'll be able to enjoy your delicious little babies.
post #10 of 21
I am right there with you, mama.
post #11 of 21
I could have written your post word for word. I went through IF and did IVF as well and have an almost 5 y/o. He watches way more TV than I would like and my parenting has also changed. My duo are almost one now and things are getting way easier. They don't nurse nearly as much and they play together alot throughout the day, ds plays with them tons too. The sleep is still crappy. I realized last night that I have been laying on my back, surrounded by pillows with a babe on either side for almost an entire year now...not sure how I survived. It took me quite a long time to be emotionally invested in them like I was with ds (instantly with him). The work it took to get through the day was too much to really enjoy them and get to know them. I only ever saw their little heads while they were nursing which was all.the.time. I felt like an animal with these little people sucking the life out of me and all I could do was sit there and take it. DS always needed me as soon as I got them settled in to nurse.

Now, I adore them and can really enjoy them. It's so much easier than the first 8 months or so. I can do things I want around the house while they play together. They enjoy toddling around the house and I often find them squished in some corner somewhere together, conspiring against me.

Just hang in there...it's going to get more enjoyable soon. They are going to start coming out of that baby stage and start exploring their world and each other and hopefully won't be so dependant on you. Do you have playdates or friends come over? I would have died without that. My friends knew that there was no way I could go to their houses with them and enjoy it at all, they all came here and I just sat and nursed while we visited. Pretty soon you can put them in highchairs and bake with ds or do some arts and crafts while they munch on a biscuit

Hang in there....

post #12 of 21
I don't have twins (I lurk though because we are thinking of TTC another one soon and twins is a possibilty because of our IF - 2.5 yrs to conceive DS2 -) BUT I related to your post for many reasons. And our second DS has health issues and was/is a VERY high needs child that requires most if not all of my attention.
I think you are mourning the relationship you and your older child had. It is a hard realization to come to that things will be different between the two of you, at least until things get easier with the babies. I had my son when my DS was almost six, and he also watched too much TV and had to go with the flow when I had to put the baby to sleep (taking almost 2 hrs some naps/nights). It makes you feel sooo guilty and you just want to be like, remember when I was a good mommy?! LOL, but you are still a good mom. Circumstances have changed, and when those babies are older you'll get out more. The winter might be hard...maybe try finding some crafts he enjoys that he can do or have him help cook dinner or do chores. Kids that age loved feeling involved...it doesn't have to be going somewhere every day.

But think of it this way, you are giving him the gift of siblings and he'll carry that with him all through his life. The next year is going to be hard, and yes you have to change the way you parent because going out everyday is not practical anymore. Don't feel guilty about it though, you are still a wonderful mom.

And you will fall in love with those babies. Your under so much stress right now that I think your just getting through the day...but the day will come when they start to babble or gaze into your eyes and then it'll be all over! If you are still feeling this way in a few months though it wouldn't hurt to talk to a doctor about PPD. I know a lot of moms that have these feelings are just going through major hormonal adjustments that can bring on PPD as well. And besides, its always nice to talk to someone and get out all of the stuff you carry around...so either way it couldn't hurt.

The nursing is hard I'm sure...and since your commited (which is great) I think it will get easier if you stick with it. I know thats no consolation now, but they are about to start solids (if you are starting at 6 mths) and that will fill them up a little more.

I guess I'm just saying give yourself permission to know this period of your life will be stressful, and just get through it anyway you can. But make sure you have a support system so you can get all of this out and get help if you need it.
post #13 of 21
Thread Starter 
Thank you thank you, a million times over. Your replies mean so much to me and they are exactly what I needed.

My naturopath rx'd some adrenal support, very strong human strain probiotics, liver support, etc. I hadn't really started taking them, though, b/c it seemed pointless to start it all if I wasn't going to change the way I was treating my body (read: I was clutching onto my junk food for dear life even though I don't normally eat that stuff). I started the suppliments today and am trying to get back on track nutritionally and am hopeful it will help a bit. I know changing the eating stuff will help tons, as long as I'm not too hard on myself and expect perfection.

I am a LLL leader so I do get to meetings and have tons of support ... although I have been lazy/too overwhelmed to try to fix the nursing issues even though I know it's important. After struggling with latch for the first 8 weeks I got worn down, yk?

I also have a number of mommy-friends, which I am grateful for. However, I seem to be losing touch a bit and isolating myself. I get overwhelmed and don't make plans and the weeks sort of slip by. I know this needs to change. I need to figure out a regular weekly routine so I know which days I can count on going out. THe kids will be fine if we stay home, but I won't . I go stir crazy. Inviting people over is a really great suggestion, though, I need to do that more.

Dividedsky - I completely kwym when you say you daydreamed about how easy one baby would be. I think that all the time when I look at my friends who have one new baby. When out I always have one in the Ergo but then someone else is left in the stroller and the situation feels like a ticking time bomb, just waiting for it all to fall apart. Less than enjoyable. It feels different, though, when I am with a friend who is able to help with a baby and does it without even thinking twice. I need to spend more time with those people. Over the summer a friend who is a teacher spent a lot of time with us. Her older boy came to play with DS1 and her preschooler twins stayed at home with her nanny. Having her was amazing . . . so sad she's back at work .

Molliejo . I'm sorry you're in the same place but happy your in the same place at the same time . Hang in there, mama.

I identified with something in every single reply, so thank you again everyone. I will bookmark this thread and come back to reread it.

Here's hoping I start to feel better/less foggy soon so that I'm better able to cope with this twinsanity. Gotta get this latch thing sorted out too . . . can't imagine nursing them for a few years with it feeling like this
post #14 of 21
Amy, again you have said exactly what I felt/lived through. One of my girls had a terrible latch and I was just too overwhelmed to deal with it for many weeks...I just let it go until I was able to handle it correctly. I have always tandem nursed them and it was too disruptive to other twin if I worked with the poor latch and they were eating so often that I didn't have a chance to work with it when the one was sleeping....aghhhh, it was so tough. She eventually got better with a little help from me.

I have several friends who are my helper friends and I showed them how to wear one baby while I wore the other because the girls wouldn't ride in the stroller and I didn't have bucket carseats. My favorite days are preschool days because I drop ds off and one of the other mamas and I go thrifting with the babes...it's so glorious. Those friends are priceless. I didn't babywear at home for the exact reason you stated...I knew that as soon as one got comfy and settled, the other would want to eat and I would have to unwrap the sleeping one.

One thing that really has helped me when I am going stir crazy is to put the babes in the stroller, ds on his bike and off we go for a walk. I always end up with a baby on my back, one in the stroller, ds in the stroller and the bike on top of the heap. Everyone who drives by stares because we look like some sort of clown car but we are having fun and are all happy to be out.

Also wanted to add that I have also managed to gain 20 lbs since having these kids.....20! Obviously I am an emotional eater...trying to get that under control because I feel horrible about myself.

I hope your supplements help and you are on your way to good times

post #15 of 21
Big hugs.

Honestly, sometimes I think we get twins in order to knock us off our AP-block! It's SO FREAKIN' HARD to do AP 100% with twins (plus other kids).

Try to be kind to yourself. It's not the experience you expected, and it's kind of rough for the first year. I think it's great that you CAN see the good in your experience (big healthy bf'ed babies! yay!)

When I felt ready to lose my mind, I would put the kids in the bathtub -- water seemed to make everyone relax a little -- or drag them to the mall and sit down and let people come up and tell me how wonderful my babies were. You know how people get about twins!

It will get easier, just give it time.
post #16 of 21
Big hugs to the OP -- what you are doing now is SOOOOOO hard and I just want to add another voice encouraging help (whether begged, bought or otherwise obtained) and reassuring that it will get better.

And I LOL at this:

Originally Posted by DoomaYula View Post

When I felt ready to lose my mind, I would put the kids in the bathtub -- water seemed to make everyone relax a little -- or drag them to the mall and sit down and let people come up and tell me how wonderful my babies were. You know how people get about twins!

It will get easier, just give it time.
I did both of those things (still do baths when the going gets tough) -- in fact, the only times I deliberately dressed my MZ girls in matchy-matchy clothes (including hair clips, etc) was when I was most depressed and stressed that first year -- so I'd dress them up and go to the mall and let people say how adorable they were!

Whatever it takes. HUGE HUGS to you.
post #17 of 21
to you! I had a really hard time when my twins were babies, and I felt so guilty that I wasn't enjoying babyhood as much as I had with my then 3yo.

It does get easier, though for me not exactly *easy*. I am enjoying them SO much more than I did earlier, and we get out of the house a lot more.

Hang in there!!!!!!!!
post #18 of 21
Thank you for writing this, and thank you for all the replies, too. I was coming here to whine about how hard everything is, and it's comforting to see I'm not the only one struggling!

To the OP, I will say, it was MUCH harder back where you are now. My twins are 9 months, eating solids, and it's easier than when they were 6 months old, not eating solids, and nursing ALL THE TIME. I'm exhausted and tired and all kinds of things, but at least I'm not nursing them every hour and a half! They mostly sleep all night, and they nurse probably 6 to 8 times during the day (6 am to 11 pm, I mean), which isn't so bad.
post #19 of 21
Big Hugs. I could have (did?!) write that same sort of post 3 years ago. I think the infertility factor makes it worse/harder. As in, how dare you complain when you got what you wanted, kwim? But that doesn't make it any easier to handle two infants! Just because you worked for it doesn't mean the floor gets cleaned automatically and the laundry is easier to do. Just as hard as the person who had an oops.

Originally Posted by LovelyNJ View Post
Have you tried LLL meetings? Its a way to get out and get nursing help at the same time.
I see that LLL is a part of your life was but was going to recommend skipping it. I found (even with my singletons) that LLL only made me feel worse.

I'm surprised the tub works for so many people! I was afraid I may drown someone in those early days, and not accidentally. It does get easier, less physical and more times of enjoyment. I never felt a magic age, but slowly over time. Thanks for venting..... It reminds me that I've got it pretty good right now. And you will feel that way at some point to.
post #20 of 21
: : I was also right where you are. At 6 months it started to get easier. They could then sit up and play and we started solids, which slightly lessened the demand for nursing. I did do some mother-led weaning to stretch the feedings to 3 hours around 9 months, for my sanity. I figure, if it keeps me nursing, that's better than going crazy feeding every 2 hours until I want to just shove them away from me. As for the tv, it takes time. 5 months is nothing with twins. I thought it would never end for us, but DD1 now has quite a few tv free days (10 mo twins and 4 yo DD1). She can either amuse herself, or plays with the babies or with me. Slowly things will improve, just hold on tight.
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