Life as a parent to twins can be a logistical and emotional rollercoaster. There is the joy of double cuddles and double kisses, yet also the frustration of trying to get two little people fed, dressed and out of the house.
What a lot of non-twin parents don’t realise however, is that sometimes it’s not the twins causing the issues, it is everybody else. From negative comments at the post office, to over familiar baby-stroking in the supermarket queue; some people do not know when to keep their thoughts or hands to themselves.
Jess Nall, mum to nine-week-old twins Gracie and Harry as well as three-year old Spencer and five-year-old Evie, knows the pleasures and the pains of having twins and a big family only too well.
“The effort of getting myself and four kids to-and-from a 30-minute doctor’s appointment at 10am can take me all morning. There are nappies to change, toilet visits to deal with, I then load us and everything we need into the car before driving there to grab a close enough parking spot before unloading everything and everyone, all in the heat of summer!”
But logistical issues aside, Jess says it is other people that challenge her the most.
“As it does take so long to get things done with twin babies and two other children in tow, I just want to get from A to B as quickly as possible but when random strangers see the twins they want to stop and chat, touch them or offer ‘advice’!
“Mostly it is just friendly, but I’ve had it all from the ‘double-trouble’ comments to personal questions about how I breastfeed. I get asked which twin is ‘the good one’ and I am constantly asked if they are identical, even when I have told them one is a girl and one is a boy!
“To try and lessen the interruptions to my grocery shopping I layer the capsules in the pram so that one is under the other and if babies are sleeping, I cover the pram with a muslin that creates a little breathable roof. This way one of the babies is hidden from view and I can essentially get what I need to get done before one wakes up for a feed!”