Twinning! How to Survive the First Year with Twins


The moment I found out I was pregnant with twins I knew I was in for a whirlwind of change. I think the first words I said were “Oh my gosh. I’m going to have to get a mini van.” I was prepared to have a second kid and had kept all of the baby furniture, supplies and clothes. I was an experienced mom now and a second baby would be a breeze!

But, I was not prepared for twins.

I now needed two of everything and had to completely rethink the way I do certain things. There are times in which they both want to be held or fed. I learned very quickly to be creative, and although some of the things I came up with weren’t ideal, you do what you have to and make things work.  

Here are some tips I have come up with for surviving the first year with twins:

1. Feeding

I tried to keep up with breastfeeding for the first month but it was hard — really, really hard! So, I moved to formula and my kids are just fine. Ideally I wanted to feed each of them individually and hold them in my arms, but that doesn’t always work when you are by yourself and the babies wake up hungry at the same time. My favorite inexpensive solution was placing two Boppy pillows on the ground. This way I was able to prop each baby up and hold two bottles at once.  

Don’t waste money on the hands-free baby bottles. By the time they are old enough to actually use these, they can pretty much hold their own bottle. I thought this was going to be a genius solution, but I think I only used them one time.

2. Sleeping

Try to get both babies on the same sleep schedule. This can be tough sometimes, but totally worth it. This is the only time you have to eat, take a shower, clean some bottles or take a nap. Mama needs a little break sometimes and this is the only way to make it happen unless you have some help.  

Also, the rock and play sleepers were a godsend! Both babies slept really well in these things for the first six months. I tried to get them to sleep in their cribs, but that doesn’t always work. In the rock and play I could rock one baby with my foot while feeding the other. Now they make automatically rocking rock and play sleepers so there is no need to do it manually. 

Sleeping and feeding at night is tricky. My husband and I took turns throughout the night. We had to feed them every 2-3 hours, so we would feed one, put the baby back down, then wake the other for a feeding. This meant one person was up for 45 minutes feeding, but it allowed the other to sleep consistently for 5-6 hours. This schedule seemed to work the best for us.

3. Diapering

I’ve got nothing. It’s the same as one baby, but double the changes and double the diapers.

4. Bathing

The first few months of bathing twins are the same as a bathing a singleton. Once the baby can sit up I found the simplest solution: I put a laundry basket in the tub with both babies in the basket. As they get bigger you can move to two baskets. Genius! Super easy way to keep them sitting up without worrying about them slipping and sliding.  

5. Housework

Channel your inner Elsa and LET IT GO! This was one of the hardest things for me to learn. You will be lucky to keep up with cleaning bottles and laundry. And you know what? It’s OK! As long as your children are fed, diapered, happy and somewhat clean, who cares? No one except you. Everyone will understand why your house isn’t clean. If someone offers to help out, by all means, let them. I used to feel badly having someone else do the housework, but I don’t anymore. 

Having twins can be exhausting, but remember that this season shall pass and you will get through it! They will get older and routines will change. It may not get easier, but you will eventually get to sleep through the night and THAT makes all the difference in the world. I would love to hear about tips which helped you survive the first year with twins. I know I was reading every tip and article I could find.