Here are five practical tips to help you survive the first.
- Have meals frozen and ready to eat, or organise friends to drop meals off to you, or subscribe to a meal delivery service. Don't be afraid to buy second-hand things or hire baby items. Having multiples is expensive! So save where you can and put that money towards paying for help, such as enlisting a lactation consultant for those early days or a night nanny so you can catch up on sleep.
- Do not over think everything. Just because they were born at the same time, it doesn't mean they will hit milestones at the same time. They are different people who learn at their own rate. Be confident in your own parenting style. Don't let others tell you what or how to parent. You know your family best. Do whatever works for you. There is no one right way to parent.
- Don't be hard on yourself if one baby is crying and you are with another baby, you will help them as soon as you can and they will be ok. It’s also ok to just put them safely in their cots when they're crying and go into the garden for five minutes while you pull yourself together.
- Join your local multiple births club - these families become your lifeline as they are so supportive, understand it all and keep you sane! And make sure you have bits of time away from the kids, it will make you a better parent. Honestly!
- Be kind to yourself. Having multiples can bring lots of extra challenges that other people just won't understand. Ignore advice for parents of singletons, or those with children born close together. They mean well but don't understand the logistics of multiples or why their suggestions just don't work with more than one baby.