Between websites, books, blogs, emails, and conversations with other mom friends, not once has anyone mentioned what I consider to be the top three things parents NEED before their multiples are born:
1. Updated wills
2. Updated life insurance policies
3. Emergency savings
I know, I know. It’s on everyone’s to-do list. Let’s talk about each item.
1. Updated wills. Depending on the study, maternal death rates for multiple mothers are four to ten times higher than singleton mothers. This is a scary statistic to me! There are so many complications that can arise when women carry more than one baby. Without a will, the court decides what happens to your estate and your children. While the conversations about what to do if you or your significant other pass away are extremely difficult to have, they are extremely important.
If hiring a lawyer is prohibitively expensive, there are many online options for creating legal wills. Even bedrest didn’t keep us from creating a will. We found a lawyer (a fellow twin mom!) who was willing to do everything over the phone then let me sign the papers lying on a couch in her office.
2. Updated life insurance policies. Often the news of twins means the family moves to a one-income family. If one or both spouses were to die, is there enough money to cover child-rearing expenses? What about the mortgage, the cost of child care, food, transportation, etc? How would your quality of life be impacted with the loss of income? Again, this is difficult to consider but now is the time to review life insurance policies because expenses significantly rise with the addition of multiple children.
3. Emergency savings. Raising children is expensive. Additionally, multiples are more likely to be premature and that can bring a myriad of unexpected health problems. Maybe breastfeeding won’t work out so you need money for formula. Maybe your children are so premature you can’t put them in group care, so you opt to quit your job. Maybe they will be in the NICU for an extended period of time and you reach your maximum out-of-pocket deductible. My twins were close to full-term but Alex had torticollis and developed severe plagiocephaly as a result. Despite fighting all the way up to the top, his $3000 helmet was not covered by insurance.
I know doing these tasks are not as fun as picking out nursery decor, but preparing your financial house for multiples is just as important as preparing your house for multiples. Having a will, sufficient life insurance, and emergency savings can help protect your family in a disaster. And unlike babyproofing your house, once you complete these tasks they are done!