childhood · Children · The Twin Life

A Few New Rules for Interacting with a Twin Caregiver

I hear a lot from other (usually young) mums how they would love to have twins. I laugh. I snicker.

Because, I know what they’re thinking… Two babies, how sweet! Two cute little bums, awwww! Dressing them alike, how adorable!

But, I know the reality… Two babies, crying in the night. Two little bums, that get bigger and smellier every day. Dressing them alike, umm no. I get them confused enough as it is!

So the next time you see someone with twins, think before approaching …

  • How is their day going? Looks bad? Then don’t ask, just help.
  • Do they look tired? Get them a coffee or a glass of wine. Take a kid.
  • Have they had to run after one while leaving another with another mum and sprint across meters to just catch the other by the arm today? Be that other mum.
  • How many tantrums has your kid had today?.. Double that.
  • How many times have you told your child ‘no’ today? Well triple that. Chances are one child gets told no, the other sees the attention the first twin is getting and tries it to get a reaction by doing the same exact thing and gets told no, first child does it again to see if it’s just a random occurrence, or if he can get three out of three. His odds are good.
  • How many pairs of socks has the twin mum had to pick up this morning? How many raisins or pieces of popcorn has the dog eaten? Too many.
  • Is mum wearing makeup? A normal amount, she may be approachable. None, or WAY too much to cover the bags and dark circles under her eyes, do not approach, I REPEAT, DO NOT APPROACH.
  • Never, ever say (men, you are the worst offenders of this) “Looks like you’ve got your hands full!” Let me just answer in a way that my mother used to answer those puzzling but obvious questions by say… No Shit Sherlock. Seriously? Smile and nod, smile and nod.

Ok. Now that’s done, let me apologise. It’s been a long couple of weeks and sometimes I just need to rant. Any other twin or non-twin parent will probably understand. All of this always happens within moments of each other, within an hour of going shopping or having not enough sleep.

I guess the important lesson here is don’t feel like you have to chat to everyone that makes comments about those amazing bundles of joy sitting in the pram. There will be those days when you can’t be bothered, the day has gone to shit, dinner isn’t cooked, one kid will not sit in the pram without screaming and you just realised you haven’t brushed your teeth. But then, amazingly there will be the days when you can’t help but chatting up the elderly neighbour about how awesome these beasts are! It does happen! And it’s that little pat on the back that can keep you going.

So, if I smile and nod at you, don’t take it personally. Some days we just need to keep moving on…

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