My twin boys are two months old now and I have found that I am harbouring a huge amount of guilt because I have two babies who both need my attention most of the time, as well as two older children who also need their mum and I am only one person and it always seems that someone is getting the short end of the stick.
I have found that with my twins sometimes I have to let one boy cry while I settle the other. I would have never let my eldest children cry.
I am having a hard time finding enough time during the day to spend time with my older children.
Do you find it hard being an AP with multiples?
Hi there! You aren't alone!! I have 8 weekers and a 19 mos and I only wish I had more time to spend with each one. I feel like it's almost impossible to give each girl individual attention...moreless focus on my 19 mos son. I find the only way to do it is slipping it in while others sleep or sometimes one or two have to cry sometimes. And I hate that. My son was in my arms 24/7 and I never let him cry. And I can't be like that with my girls. I just don't have enough hands!! I use my sling alot so I'm holding one while having hands free to care for other or play with my son.
I understand the guilt but probably YOU are the one getting the short end of the stick. You are doing the best you can to spread your love evenly and that's all you can do. It is hard but you're doing it and you just have to do what you can and what works for you and try to give yourself some of that time too.
hi! i feel guilty sometimes too, so don't feel bad! i had all of these great ideals before i found out i was having twins... and sometimes i'm jealous of other mamas who can have their single baby in a sling all the time and i feel like mine are deprived because they can't both be in a sling all day... but i've found that as they get older, they seem to understand that sometimes they have to share. since i can't have them attached to me all day, i spend a LOT of time on the floor playing with them and making myself available for nursing, snuggling, etc. i also take full advantage of having one-on-one time with them whenever i can. whenever i can get an extra pair of arms over here, i do it and then i get the other baby all to myself. in the first few months, they were on their own schedules which happened to be opposite of one another for the most part and as difficult as that was at times, it gave me lots of opportunities to nurse them singly, have them in the sling and just focus on one at a time. at about six months or so they started to take a nice, looooong nap in the afternoons at the same time and now i have a couple of hours to myself which has been lovely. i am in total awe of mamas of multiples who have older children besides... things will get easier and it will happen before you know it. and ITA with gotmilkmama: try to find time for yourself when you can. i know a lot of people told me that in the beginning and i wanted to smack them but it's really, really true.
Ah yes, the twin mommy guilt. Frankly, I always considered myself an AP mommy wannabe, not the real thing, due as you mention to the lack of ability to sling two and the necessity to have one crying while settling the other, etc. My LLL leader told me I was an AP mommy and that made me feel good, but I still look into their eyes and wonder if they are feeling neglected... phooey!
I think the thing is we do the best we can and try to stay alive, he he.
I think we wouldn't be mothers to twins if we didn't feel a little guilt. I'm sure mothers of singletons feel some guilt too, but I can't speak for them. When my girls were first home from the hospital I felt like a horrible mother. I remember sitting on the couch crying because I couldn't hold each one as much as I would have liked. I also had lots of ideas of what kind of a mother I was going to be (I was going to exclusively breastfeed, cloth diaper 100% of the time, etc.) but much of that had to be compromised when I had two babies at once. My girls are almost 11 months old now and the guilt is much better. I still have it a little, but I think that comes with the territory of having twins. It helps to talk to other twin mommies who know what you're going through. I joined my local MOMs club just for that reason, although most of the women there don't have the same AP parenting philosophies I have--but they're still mothers and still understand that "twin guilt".
Good luck. It must be really hard with other little ones....I can't imagine. It should get better for you as the babies get older, though. I think it got better for me once my girls started sitting up on their own and didn't need me so much physically.
Also, there's a wonderful online community called apmultiples on Yahoo! groups. There I learned that it's ok to consider yourself an AP mama and not live exactly by the AP "creed." APing multiples is much, much different than APing a singleton. AP is about listening to your child's cues and responding to them. Unfortunately with twins, they often have to wait longer than a singleton does. I hated hearing this in the beginning, but it's true...and my girls seem to understand now that sometimes they just have to wait a minute while I'm with sister before I can tend to their needs. Hang in there.
I felt guilty after having my boys. Guilty for many, many things. Breastfeeding was a nightmare, I couldn't hold both of them at the same time all the time, wasn't comfortable using a sling when they were that little (we do use it now though), had to comfort one more than the other because he was colicky and just didn't stop crying (thank goodness his brother is so darn mellow!), guilty because I couldn't give my daughter the undivided attention she got before they were born...guilt, guilt, guilt. But you know what I realized? I wasn't making the situation any better by feeling guilty about what I couldn't do. I started to look at what I could do. I could snuggle each one as long as they'd tolerate it when the other was asleep. I could read to my daughter as I fed the boys, I could manage to be a fairly good mommy subsisting on very little sleep. Don't beat yourself up, you're doing great. It took a very long time for me not to feel completely overwhelmed with having twins and an active toddler. Once the boys started to hit major milestones, things have gotten a little easier. Not as easy as they were when dd was their age, but easier than it was when they were 2 months old. Hang in there and don't fear, your babies know that you love them.
I too, can completly relate to the guilt thing - I have 6 YO old twils, and it took a long time for me to stop feeling this way. It does all turn out OK though, even though at the time you might feel you will emotionally scar them for life... Our children are now stable, loving and emotionally secure, regardless of how often I had to leave one to cry.
I also have a 3 YO, and I felt his birth and babyhood healed a lot of my feelings of guilt, I could do all the things with him I couldn't with the twins. I don't think he has turned out any different, but it did help me at the time.
Not to say you need to rush out and have another baby now!
Never lose sight of how little it matters in the scheme of things. Your children are being loved and cared for and in twenty years, and forever more they will have the wonderful gift of each other. Twins are blessed with amazing sibling connections.
yes - lots of guilt that they have to fuss while I take care of someone else, that my older ones don't get enough attention, that I don't have time to just sit and hold the baby, that my back & neck are too bad to really sling the babies even individually and they spend a lot of time in their swings, bouncers.
single mama to 5 (12.5, 11, 10, and 8 year old twins)
hi! especially to all you newer mom of twins!congratulations and welcome to the wonderful life of twins!!!!!
the guilt can really get you down, but what i think we all should focus on is that we are all doing the very best we can. i mean i think our children are going to be better off then those who do not try to respond, sling and who do CIO. KWIM? i think our babies are very fortunate to get ALL the attention thier CIO, never pick baby up ect friends they have in life. i kmow for a fact that we have chosen the harder road up Ap only because its way more demanding of us as parents, but so much more rewarding in the laong haul. peace and love to all you hard workin, ever lovin mamas : :2tandem LOL this one is so us right now!where did it come from???I need two flying by like that though!!!
I can totally relate.My boys are almost 8 months and for some reason have decided that they do not want to fall asleep gently at teh breast but they want to be rocked which works ok when I have an extra pair of hands we each take one but tonight I could not hear one cry so I decided to try this I lais them in their crib and unlocked teh wheel sang some songs and I rolled them and they feel asleep with no crying.Has any one tried this?
I think as a mother we always feel guilt when it is not with one it is with the other or your husband hopefully we will get use to it.