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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    England
    Posts
    260

    Talking Twins: Mama of twins, Expecting twins, or a twin yourself!

    Just thought I'd start this since I'm expecting twins in the new year. Had a few questions to ask particularly about how people who've already had twins gave birth. Did you have a c-section, if yes, was it out of choice or was it necessary? Do you think it'd be possible for me to have a natural birth, really don't want a c-section.

    Any other comments or tips on twins, I would be really grateful

  2. #3
    I have two sets of twins (IVF). Twins are great don't let people scare you with any of their negative comments about how much work it will be! It is busy but completely manageable and while there is more work there is also more joy. I did have C-sections both were part elective and part necessity. My first set had to be delivered because of preeclampsia. I was induced and wasn't making much progress and I was so tired because I had been in the hospital on bedrest prior and you can't get any sleep when you are in the hospital so after a few hours I was tired and decided to have a C-section. Baby B was breech so I also knew there was a possibly of delivering A vaginally and then still having to have a C-section with B so it seemed like the easiest option at the time. I don't regret the choice. My second set I had planned to have a repeat section but ended up in labour on my own however Baby A was oblique and her heart rate dropped every time I contracted so even if I had wanted to deliver them vaginally it wouldn't have worked. I went into my first pregnancy thinking I wanted to have a vaginal delivery(with an epidural though) but I realised that with an pregnancy but especially one that is high risk as twins are you just kind of have to go with the flow. I do know women who have deliver twins vaginally though so it is possible, C-sections aren't necessarily inevitable. I also found that all of the doctors I had were very receptive to whatever type of birth I wanted which was great!

    As for twin tips I recommend tandem feeding. I always envisioned myself breastfeeding but it didn't work for me so I formula fed but whichever type of feeding you end up doing tandem feeding will let you get a lot more sleep. Good luck to you an congrats on you babies!

  3. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Posts
    1,186
    Twin tips:
    Accept any and all help! It's great to have extra hands to hold babies, help around the house (cooking, cleaning, laundry, etc) and to help with anything else that might come up. Honestly, just learning to "go out" places with twins is a little challenging and takes some practice. I actually did test runs of just getting everyone into and out of the car alone while my MIL was there to help in case I needed an extra hand or her advice. (we had 2, then 4 older kids when our twins were infants so that added to the logistics)

    This is great: http://www.mommygear.com/ez-2-nurse-twin-pillows.htm

    Get at least 2 "baby keepers" - what I consider a baby keeper is a swing, bouncy seat, or pack and play - this is a safe place to put one or both babies so you can leave the room for a moment if needed. Or if one is sleeping, you can safely keep them in the swing and tend to the other. I say "at least 2" because I like a variety and my babies have always liked the swing and bouncy seats so having 2 of those each were a great lifesaver at times!

    I'm a sling mom - so look into that if you are interested. It's essential for me to be able to get housework and shopping done and have my hands free. My littlest ones are at a great age now where they still love to be in the sling and are great at holding their head up/supporting their body that I often spend alot of the day with them both in slings (one front one back!)

    Have tons of burp cloths, bibs, and onesies on hand.

    If you want to breastfeed, my biggest advice is about your supply. The first 3-6 weeks are so crucial for your supply. Prepare to spend the majority (and I truly mean majority) of your time nursing, preparing to nurse, snuggling with the babies, etc. I kinda lived out of my bedroom for the first month after my first set of twins were born. My MIL took care of the rest of our home and I truly appreciate that. Knowing what a large commitment I was in for was helpful because I didn't try to do too much or take my supply for granted. I also had things planned that I could do while nursing. It also allowed me to get alot of rest because I slept while they slept much of the time those first weeks.

    Two cribs are not necessary for quite a while. You may decide to put them in their own cribs when they are 6-9 months old if they have different sleeping styles or patterns, but honestly before that point, I feel they really do best sleeping together. Our sets of twins each seem to contain one "louder" one and around 6 months they start disturbing the other's sleep so we separate them, but before that point, they are both up and down all night anyway so it did not matter to have them together. You can even go longer with them sharing a crib if needed. You may also want to look into the mini-cribs or space saver cribs if your nursery/baby room is tight on space.


    Births:
    First let me say-- Twin Pregnancy Diet - "Brewer's Diet" - Look it up. It's great. TONS of food and honestly difficult to follow to the T, but I believe in it so much. It's a very high protein diet.

    Our first set of twins was a planned homebirth. During my pregnancy with our 2nd child, I became interested in homebirth and just didn't have enough research or the right setting to do it that pregnancy. After she was born, I then had completed two natural hospital births. I had and still do have a very distinct "birth style" and birth is very personal to me. I continued my research into homebirths and got my husband offficially on board for next time around. Well, next time around took a while to arrive and it was a huge suprised to have twins. I do have some complications during pregnancy (placenta issues / high blood pressure) so between my history and my twin pregancy, I was seeing a high risk OB and also a mw on the side (paying out of pocket) to establish a relationship with her. It was actually pretty unrealistic for my particular situation to be planning the homebirth, but we persisted and I figured the worst that would happen would be we'd have a hospital birth and she or someone from her team would come to the hospital with me as a quasi-doula. I followed the Brewer's Diet very closely and my blood pressure stayed perfect the whole time. I started having intermittent contractions around 25 weeks- just BH ones though. Every week that passed was a miracle and suddenly I was in a position where the homebirth felt like it could actually happen. Once we hit 36 weeks, my mw would take me on officially and my OB knew of my plans so that was that. We had the girls at 37.5 weeks at home. They were born 45 minutes apart and weighed 7 pounds 6 oz and 6 pounds 14 oz. Perfectly healthy.

    Our second set of twins were a natural vaginal birth in a hospital. I did want to have a homebirth again, but in the 2 years since our previous birth, the MW who delivered the twins was no longer practicing due to restrictions in our state. I was not able to find another MW to take me as a client. I was ok with that though because I had a great relationship with my OB (the same high risk one I had seen with twins #1 and also who treated me during a pregancy that I lost between our sets of twins). I was pretty vocal about my wants during delivery and as long as twin A was head down, we could try for a vaginal birth -- and of course as long as both were in good health, etc. too. The pregnancy had complications with my blood pressure -- started rising in the late 2nd trimester. I started having BH and real contrax around 24 weeks and was in the hospital for preterm labor once around 30 weeks. We had steroid shots at that time because we thought the girls may have had to be delivered due to my blood pressure. They were diagnosed with IUGR- most likely due to my blood pressure/the placentas not functioning properly. (I have a mild blood clotting disorder) They were born at 34 weeks and were in the NICU for 17 days. They were both in really good health, just very small. So they mainly stayed in the NICU to grow, learn to feed, and they had a little trouble eating and breathing at the same time at first.
    I don't personally have experience with being pressured into a C-section during any of my pregnancies. In this most recent pregnancy, we were going to do an amnio and induce, but the girls arrived on their own 2 days before the amnio appointment! The best advice I've read about C-sections is to educate yourself -- about all sides: the risks, the benefits, when they are medically necessary, if there are correlations with interventions and C-section rates, if certain other conditions seem to lend themselves to a C-section -- this way you will be informed and can communicate your personal desires for birth. It's OK to have personal wishes and discuss with your doctor. If he/she won't discuss or immediately informs you of their "procedure for all twin births" it's ok to look elsewhere or tell them that you are not comfortable with a certain part of that plan. Be educated and have open dialogue with your provider.
    Wife to one great guy
    Mama to six pretty ladies: Scarlett (12), Penelope (9), Alice (3), Fiona (3), Lucille (16 mo.) & Coraline (16 mo.)

    & 4 angels gone before us: Christian (7 wks), Amos (6 wks), Naomi (16.5 wks), & Hosanna (6 wks)

    ~We fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.~

  4. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    West Coast, US
    Posts
    165
    I'm 16w5d pregnant with di/di twins! My doctor is willing to attempt a vaginal birth as long as baby A is head down. Good luck!

  5. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Northern Virginia/DC metro area
    Posts
    2,732
    I'm a sister of twins. Does that count?

    I was almost 11 when they were born, and read all my mom's books, so I actually know quite a bit. Can't really help on the c-section vs. natural birth thing-- my brothers had TTTS, and it was a very high-risk pregnancy, so there was no question of a natural birth there.

    As for comments and tips... don't let them know which one is X number of minutes older until they're old enough to be mature about it. My brothers have latched on to that recently and it's causing them to break out in fights every thirty seconds.
    Also, figure out if there's a Mothers of Multiples/Twins club in your area. Those can be really helpful, since everyone there knows what you're going through.
    Gwen
    College student, bookworm, terrible influence.
    Owner of a cat: Minerva "Minnie"


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