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My freind just had twins but is this normal? - Page 2

post #21 of 41
I put my girls on a schedule but not until 3mos old. Up until that point I fed them on demand. I still do...i am reallly flexible with their schedule....Yea I did lose my mind but they are my babies and it was worth it.
post #22 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by hipumpkins View Post
I just read her email back to me and she says that everything she's read says put them on schedule...you can't feed multiples on demand, "you would lose your mind" she says, "IT's whole different ball game with twins"
I am so upset by this. and yet it's none of my buisness.

:
The expert is a nurse.
do you have ANY links to dispute this or should I really jsut butt out.
Well, plenty of us nurse twins on demand and haven't lost our minds yet. Though maybe we were loose a few screws to begin with? Seriously though, I think Michellyn is right, there are times when having them synchronized works well, and other times when it's really better to be able to deal with them separately.

Too bad that your friend is insistent. I feel terrible for her babes too. I'm going to hope that the wisdom of babes wins out and once the 'expert' leaves the babes will insist on their own schedule and your friend will just have to be flexible and adjust!
post #23 of 41
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by f&p'smama View Post
Also, it's probably true that most things you read says have your babies on a schedule. The only thing I really read about nursing before hand was Mothering Multiples by Karen Gromada & I don't think she advocates nursing on a schedule. If you happen to live in the San Francisco area, I'd be happy to give you my copy for your to give to your friend, if she doesn't have it.
Thanks for the offer but we are in NJ.
It's a tough thing to let go b/c she has asked me so many questions and seemed to really like the way I parented.
It's like I was invited in to offer so many answers and now I have to move along. I will move along but I just feel sad.
post #24 of 41
Why don't you tell her about this great forum you find with twin moms who take a more AP approach. And then ask a mod to delete this post.

Seriously.
post #25 of 41
Thread Starter 
She has actually been here...not the twin forum but the no vax and the adoption forum.
hopefully she'll find her way back. I am afraid of getting too pushy simply b/c I don't have twins and she is thinking..."she doesn't know. she doesn't have twins" but in my heart I can't understand why something that is dangerous for a single birth is now a perfect remedy for a multiple."

Someone with twins who is very natural non vax and is still nursing her now 15 mos twins has offered up her email for any questions my friend might have.
post #26 of 41
I feel bad for her and her babies. I've been told to tandem nurse on demand, even if it meant overfeeding one baby at first. When one nurses, put the other to the breast too. That seems like it wouldn't be too much extra work even if it's a little tough at first. The only thing differant about small babies is they can't open wide enough sometimes and they need to eat more frequently. I can't see how scheduling them when they are SOOO little and need to eat so often would help them to gain the weight they need or for her to keep her supply up.
post #27 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by OGirlieMama View Post
Why don't you tell her about this great forum you find with twin moms who take a more AP approach. And then ask a mod to delete this post.

Seriously.
:
post #28 of 41
I have heard of this kind of thing where I live, there are special "baby nurses" that you can hire at night to do this. I *know* very few people who do it, because they're unbelievably expensive.

I guess I will go out on a little bit of a devil's advocate limb and say that I do understand her sentiment that demand feeding would "maker her lose her mind." I demand-fed my multiples, one of whom was teeny to me (he was under 5 lbs---my first baby had been 9 1/2 lbs!), and the other was a hefty 6 lbs (still small to me) but was on IV antibiotics at home for 6 weeks after he got out of the pICU for a staph infection he'd picked up at the hospital (nice, huh?). There were nights where I was up so often I just sat there and tried very hard not to sob because I was so damned tired and worn down. I kept telling DH over and over i couldn't do it. I did stick it out, but it was effing hard (on an emotional/fatigue level...I had no supply or latch issues with any of my kids), and I really do have empathy for people who feel like they might 'lose their mind', and admittedly feel a bit of anger towards the notion that we should poo-poo those feelings.

OTOH, she might just be parroting what "everyone" says. But the fact that she shut down a good friend so quickly leads me to lean towards the 'overwhlemed' status rather than the 'sheep' status.

I wouldn't talk about how she's going to ruin her babies. Not saying you'd use those words directly, but you know what I mean. I might encourage her towards practices to keep her supply up, because the night nurse is going to leave eventually, and approach things from that angle. But to be blunt, it is really hard to take advice and/or chastisement from non-multiple moms even if you know in you gut they have a point.

It might be better to approach things from a "hey these things worked for me to keep up milk supply" angle, but she seems to have given you somewhat of a bared-teeth message of back-the-heck-down. I don't know how close you are with her, if you are very close I'd just apologize and say that you feel like you've hit a nerve, you know that BFing was very important to her and that you're there as a resource and support if she needs it, that you'll be happy to help her get out of the house (if you are) to go to LLL meeting with you, ect.
post #29 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by christyc View Post
How sad. And uninformed, considering the # of us here raising twins without a schedule like that. Without really losing our minds. It kind of breaks my heart.
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post #30 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by torio View Post
Well, plenty of us nurse twins on demand and haven't lost our minds yet. Though maybe we were loose a few screws to begin with? Seriously though, I think Michellyn is right, there are times when having them synchronized works well, and other times when it's really better to be able to deal with them separately.

Too bad that your friend is insistent. I feel terrible for her babes too. I'm going to hope that the wisdom of babes wins out and once the 'expert' leaves the babes will insist on their own schedule and your friend will just have to be flexible and adjust!
I agree. I read all the books that said that there was no way you could feed on demand and the ONLY way was scheduling their feeds. After having my own twins, I have found that no, this is NOT the case. I have no problem feeding them on demand. Sometimes I tandem sometimes I don't. And they do have a flexible schedule, but it was one by which I followed their cues and they pretty much set it themselves.

I hope she fires this woman, it just doesn't sound like a good situation at all.
post #31 of 41
Here's Karen Gromada's website:

http://www.karengromada.com/

She does need a copy of Mothering Multiples.
post #32 of 41
Thread Starter 
If she should happen to email one of the people who gave me addresses I will ask them to let her know about the book b/c she did already tell me that she read 2 books and took a hospital class and well she's got that nurse. So I would feel very pushy.
She did email back asking some other questions..about pacifiers and such so she hasn't crossed me off the list of adivce people b/c I expressed a concern about the scheduling. I want to to keep the communication open...maybe I will wait a few days and say that I happened upon that book.
post #33 of 41


No, it's not normal assuming they were full term(ish).

Mine were on a strict schedule during the first several weeks - I set a timer to feed them every 2 hours, otherwise they wouldn't get enough calories. Eventually they outgrew the need for that (around 1-2 weeks after their original due date I guess) and moved into demand feeding.

ETA -- And clearly if they wanted to eat before their 2 hours were up, we were delighted to feed them!
post #34 of 41
I demand fed twins and didn't get anything resembling a schedule (unless you count "1:00 - stare blearily at the babies; 2:00 - stare blearily at the babies" a schedule) until they were fairly old. I didn't lose my mind and not only didn't lose my supply I was able to build it from needing to supplement to NOT needing to supplement.

It wasn't fun. Anyone who has fun the first few months with twins is a better woman than I.

I know a woman who hired a night nurse, wondered why her supply was never enough and why she was unable to nurse after about 4 months. I didn't feel close enough to her to tell her that that sleep she felt she needed was going to ruin her supply (and now she, Miss Mainstream, is co-sleeping because she needs her sleep so, hey). Sigh. It's hard.

Anyway, after this incoherent ramble I third (or fourth) the Mothering Multiples recommendation.
post #35 of 41
I seriously debated posting - I deleted a post a few days ago. I am more mainstream than many of you (no, I have never read babywise), but some of the reactions on this thread have really bothered me.

First - her milk will not necessarily dry up. The NICU would not allow me to nurse for a week and after that it was infrequent at best. I pumped (and pumped). Once the babies came home, we tried, but for a variety of reasons, direct nursing did not work for us. I pumped for almost a year. I never had to supplement with formula or anything else. I had enough milk for both babies and was able to freeze a ton. Yes, I was fortunate, but the blanket statements about how she will never be able to nurse if this doesn't stop have really rubbed me the wrong way.

Second, as a pp mentioned, sometimes the babies need to be on a schedule. The NICU sent them home on a schedule. My babies showed no hunger cues. I had to feed them on schedule to make sure they ate enough. period. If they ever did show a hunger cue, of course I fed them (and yes, I offered both food even if only one showed a sign), but that rarely happened. I would never tell a mother that she HAD to put hers on a schedule, but I would certainly never say that schedules are always bad.

My point is that it all depends on her situation. I don't know this woman's credentials - she may be a quack. BUT the kneejerk reactions aren't helpful when none of us know the situation. Just my opinion.
post #36 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by fivi2 View Post
I am more mainstream than many of you (no, I have never read babywise),
First, let me say that this is not an attack, but a response. I also am more mainstream in some areas. The fact that you haven't read Babywise may be one reason that you don't react as strongly to this. I know many people who believe your children will not turn out right if you don't put them on a schedule because Babywise essentially teaches that failure to do so is spoiling them and being a child controlled home. I was initially influenced by Babywise (and even after rejecting it, I've found myself misinformed by many of its teachings.

Quote:
Originally Posted by fivi2 View Post
First - her milk will not necessarily dry up. The NICU would not allow me to nurse for a week and after that it was infrequent at best. I pumped (and pumped). Once the babies came home, we tried, but for a variety of reasons, direct nursing did not work for us. I pumped for almost a year. I never had to supplement with formula or anything else. I had enough milk for both babies and was able to freeze a ton. Yes, I was fortunate, but the blanket statements about how she will never be able to nurse if this doesn't stop have really rubbed me the wrong way.
I think some of the comments people have made here were overstated, but it can/does significantly damage one's ability to nurse and/or confidence in nursing. BTW, you are an awesome mommy to do all that pumping and feeding--it must have been exhausting! I barely had time to nurse, much less add pumping and cleaning bottles to it. Most people who encourage scheduling do not encourage pumping as much as would be necessary to keep up with a baby's demands, and as I'm sure you're aware, most people's bodies produce less with pumping than with the baby/babies nursing. I had a really hard time pumping, just trying to get my supply up. My body just doesn't like to let out much for a pump. I think that some of my wrong ideas (initially from Babywise) kept me from realizing just how often I needed to nurse to generate enough supply. I'd thought that nursing more often would only cause my babies to get the same amount of milk in smaller meals, not tell my body that I needed to produce more milk.

Quote:
If they ever did show a hunger cue, of course I fed them (and yes, I offered both food even if only one showed a sign), but that rarely happened. I would never tell a mother that she HAD to put hers on a schedule, but I would certainly never say that schedules are always bad.
This is where most schedulers would disagree with you. The theory is that the parent knows what the child needs more than the child. If the child has been fed (on the prescribed schedule), changed, and had play time, the parent knows he cannot need to be fed again. Thus, the crying must be because the child needs to sleep (or because the child is trying to assume control of the home). I think almost everyone would agree that schedules aren't ALWAYS bad; however, this schedule seems very suspicious. If the schedule was necessitated because of sucking problems, why should the mother sit and watch the first week, only starting to do things the second week? What "smelled bad" to the previous posters was the way she was going about scheduling; it just sounded so similar to the way women are advised NOT to trust their mothering instincts and to trust the book(s) ways of doing things. I feel as if Babywise killed some of my mothering instincts. I don't know how to read babies' cues too well--I just keep going through the list of possible needs until something works.

I understand that no one knows the situation exactly, but enough was known for me to fear for her. Her children will survive, but it's just unfortunate that she's not aware how those methods could damage her ability to provide enough milk for her twins.
post #37 of 41
Since it sounds like she is interested in other aspects of AP, please direct her to the AP multiples yahoo group

These women are such a wealth of information. Karen Gromada, the author of the LLL Mothering Multiples book, posts on there regularly. She can definitely provide some expert advice.

Or direct her here! There are lots of MoMs here who have nursed our babies on demand. Sure it's hectic and sometimes really hard (I had low supply and had to pump and supplement with formula from 4 months to around a year), but what part of having twins isn't? If anything the constant nursing was a great excuse to take a rest from all the laundry!
post #38 of 41
What about telling her about this board? Then maybe she'd see that lots of moms with twins do it differently?
post #39 of 41
Michellyn - I appreciate your response. I just wanted to add another perspective. Many people (like me) read these threads in the future (?) when they are searching for answers. I personally thought that some of the reactions were a little dramatic given the information we have. I agree that babywise is bad (although I have not read it, I have heard much about it). and I am so sorry that it caused you so many problems. But I don't think the OP mentioned babywise - I think that was someone else's immediate response when they heard the word schedule. So we don't know if this is a "babywise schedule" like you described or if it is a medical schedule - so the babies get enough food. That is all I wanted to point out. It seems like sometimes people hear certain words and assume the worst without knowing the situation. (and, no, I have no idea why the parents can't help in the first week). If a friend of mine had posted this question (I pumped and had the babies on a "schedule" - again only because they did not show hunger cues for a long time) I would imagine she would have gotten similar reactions, but the situation would not have been what people are assuming. If that makes any sense at all!
post #40 of 41
Oh I do think that "schedules" are sometimes appropriate. I forgot to mention that my babies, which were 6 weeks premature, were on a schedule. Meaning, the MOST they could go without food was 2-3 hours. If I didn't wake them, they would not get enough and continue to lose weight as they were doing. And this schedule was more for the nurses I think. I found out that a few nurses weren't feeding them for FOUR HOURS (I guess they didn't realize that EBM is different from formula)

But from the OP, it sounds like that this isn't the case..I could be wrong of course.
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