I Always Wanted Twins

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Categories Mommy Issues, Other people, Parenting Twins

“Oh, are they twins?  I always wanted to have twins.”

How many times have you heard that one?  It ranks right up there, for me, at the top of the list of incredibly annoying things that complete strangers feel compelled to say to me.  As with most of the inane comments, I generally give a half smile and continue herding my cats children through whatever errand I’m trying in vain to accomplish.

But what I really want to say is… Oh really?  You always wanted to:

  • have a high-risk pregnancy, in which you live in fear of going into labor too early, get five times as huge as a normal human being, and stop being able to tie your own shoes at about 24 weeks?
  • leave the hospital without your babies, because they’re still in the NICU?
  • attempt to breastfeed two premature babies whose mouths are so small they can’t possibly get a decent latch?
  • try with all your might to keep these two infants on roughly the same schedule, in the hopes of maintaining a small shred of your sanity?
  • have your vision of what it’s like to be a first-time mom completely turned on its head, because you don’t have a single spare moment to actually enjoy your babies?
  • live your life by your babies’ synchronized nap schedule in the name of survival?
  • push a double stroller that drives like a school bus?
  • have a simple cold take three weeks to go through your house, as it gets passed from baby to baby to mom to dad?
  • get pulled in the direction of two new crawlers, and then two new walkers?
  • worry about gross motor delays, fine motor delays, plagiocephaly, torticollitis, and speech delays?
  • get stopped by EVERY SINGLE FREAKING PERSON IN THE GROCERY STORE when all you want to do is get a gallon of milk and get back to the car before they both start crying, again?

Oh, no? No, you weren’t saying that because you wanted to experience the most intensely difficult 4 6 12 18 months ever known to man?

No, I think what you really wanted was to have a nice matched set that you could dress the same for formal pictures, and imagine them to have some sort of secret language or ESP or something.

Oh, and maybe you always wanted to:

  • have two babies who became two toddlers who could entertain themselves much better than most of their age-mates.
  • hear the shrieks and giggles and babbling that becomes shrieks and giggling and conversations from their shared bedroom (even if it means they aren’t asleep when they should be).
  • watch them make up games and invite each other to play at a surprisingly young age.
  • have your own little built-in social/parenting experiment, watching them grow in ways that are the same and different. And having the second one there to let you know that not all of the hard stuff is your fault.
  • have that “instant family” with two kids, without having to actually go through labor twice.
  • be a somewhat more laid-back parent by necessity.
  • find an awesome sisterhood of moms simply by virtue of having parented two kids of the same age at the same time.
  • feel kind of like a rock star whenever someone says to you, “I don’t know how you do it.”

Oh yeah.

Me too.

Disney World 2010

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51 thoughts on “I Always Wanted Twins”

  1. I’ve definitely gotten that and had similar thoughts.

    But recently a student who works at my kids’ preschool said something like, “I used to think I wanted twins — I’m a twin myself — but with these two, now I don’t know!”

    I think I’d rather get, I always wanted to…

  2. I think having twins is just so special, and honestly, I LOVE hearing when people say they wish they had twins. They really do mean well, I think, even if it can be annoying to hear it over and over again. I really think it’s sort of a compliment in their mind! Sort of like my huge pet peeve, “Better you than me.” I’ve been told time and time again that it’s supposed to be a compliment, but it always feels like people are saying, “Sucks to be you!” Haha!
    .-= Laura aka LaLaGirl´s last blog ..Raising Teenagers! =-.

  3. Love this post…i too sometime think this and then try to sit back and realize how truely blessed we are…it is hard sometimes isn’t it. Mine ore only 18 and it’s def. been the toughest time of my life since day one of getting the news. But we’ll make it and look how fast it’s going in retrospect. :) thanks for this post!
    ~tara

  4. I always thought I might have twins since fraternal twins run in my mom’s family. But I also wonder about people who say they’ve always wanted twins. I’d say be careful what you ask for. There are great things about having twins but it is hard work!

  5. I work with a lot of younger people (think late teens, early twenties) who are always telling me “OH, I want to have twins.” I get the adorableness of it all. I just want to say “come to my house for a minute and see how you feel.” I wouldn’t trade my life for the world… but it’s not always cute.
    .-= Quadmama´s last blog ..Show Us Your Wrist! =-.

  6. I don’t know if it’s PMS or what but this post made me cry. It was just so REAL and HONEST but so touching at the same time. Having twins is the single most difficult thing I’ve had to endure. And I don’t think anything could possibly top the hell that was their first year on this earth. But now….OMG. As much as I want to wring their necks on a daily basis….they AMAZE me just as much! And one of the best perks? Like you said : meeting an amazing circle of women who totally GET it :-)
    .-= Marnie´s last blog ..the beauty that surrounds me… =-.

  7. Erm, uh, um, erm, uh, well, see, uh, before I had twins, I said this.

    In fact, I actually said this to a mom I saw with twins AFTER I had my twins, because I forgot for a second that I had twins. Hey, don’t judge me, I hadn’t slept in six months :)

  8. Wow, you absolutely capture all the good and bad (and ugly!) that comes with a “matched set”. Wonderful, wonderful post. I’m sending the link to all my friends and family and maybe I’ll even print out a few copies to hand to those ANNOYING people that make this comment!!!

    BTW, 18 months was the hardest for me. My girls just turned 3 and I’m loving it!!
    .-= Lena´s last blog ..Twin Quintessence =-.

  9. My husband used to say that ALL the time, before we were even married! And I told him to shut up because there was no way little-old-me was carrying two of his enormous babies at one time. And I said the odds were so slim – it would never really happen. Joke’s on me, I guess!!

    Even now that we have the twins and have been through the hard, infant months, he still says one wouldn’t have been enough – he wouldn’t have wanted to share. To which I say, no worries – there will always be a diaper for you to change, too!!
    .-= Nicole´s last blog ..Sitter Worthy? =-.

  10. What a great post! Well said on all counts. I’m so glad you followed up with the good stuff…I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry for a minute. :)

    Yes, the first 18-months were harder than I could have ever imagined (and I was one of those that wanted twins after struggling with infertility – it was my 2-for-1, after all), but the rewards now are amazing. But you already know that.

  11. Beautifully written. Couldn’t have said it better myself. Maybe you should make a t-shirt! Or even just a small notecard we could all pass out that says all of that!

  12. Well said! To anyone dumb enough to tell me they always wanted twins, I would say this: “Oh, so you always wanted to have your mental and emotional limits pushed and tested every waking moment for at least an 18 month to 24 month period of time?” If you cannot endure that, you have no business saying you”want” twins because the reality of twins for me has been, every ounce of my physical and mental energy is consumed by my boys when they are AWAKE. When they are asleep, I’m fine. (0:

  13. Ain’t that the truth! I spent the first half of my twin pregnancy fairly resentful and dreading the future because of all those things in the first list.

    I love that you added that last bit with all the joys as well, though. Those really do more than compensate for the negatives, especially as they get older!

    I DO feel like a rock star a lot of the time, especially when we are out and about, and I try to just nod, agree and and give myself a pat on the back any time the “you have your hands full” or “I don’t know how you do it” comments pop up…
    .-= Kristin @ Intrepid Murmurings´s last blog ..How to keep 10 kids busy for a LONG TIME (plus yummy granola bar recipe) =-.

  14. Thanks for reminding of the fun times! yes, the first 16 months were horrible! There is a reason that there are support groups for MOMs clubs and it is to deal with the stress of living through those beginning months. It certainly sent my ideas of what it would be like to be a first time mom spinning on its head.

  15. I admit I was one of those people who always wanted twins. Pam’s right, I’ve never had someone say they wanted trips but often people saying they want twins. I tell them ‘be careful what you wish for, I dreamed of twins too.’ That usually scares them off lol. I wouldn’t change things for the world but I do wonder what a “normal” pregnancy & single infant experience would be like.

  16. I totally agree. I linked to this on my blog today.

    When I was at 23 weeks, and miserable, and still worried about something happening, I tried to explain all of the anxiety of twin pregnancy to a co-worker. When I finished, she turned to the person next to her and said “Didn’t you always want twins?” Like I hadn’t said a word. After that, I decided to just smile and not say anything. But in my head I’m screaming “You have no idea what you are saying!!”

    The good part definitely makes up for the pregnancy and the early months!
    .-= Melanie´s last blog .."I Always Wanted Twins" =-.

  17. Wow… even spending 3 months in the hospital on bed rest I still don’t begrudge people the wish to have twins. Sure it’s hard, but I love having twins, I don’t see why others wouldn’t love it too.

  18. L-O-V-E IT!!!! So well said Goddess!
    BTW, I think it’s a cultural thing (I live in France), but noone has ever said ‘I always wanted twins’. I just always get comments along the line of ‘wow – 2! kudos to you super mom’. It’s nice.

  19. I LOVE THIS!!!! This is great, i wish i had this on a piece of paper, so when im out with my twins, i could hand them this post! AWSOME!

  20. THANK YOU! I am a new mom of twins and have had a crazy few months and this is just want I needed to hear. Love my girls so much and so grateful for them, but others with out twins just do not get it. I am so sick of singleton mom’s saying that and then giving me advice. Great idea to make this into a t-shirt or card!! I would buy them.

  21. Funny, no one ever says they’ve always wanted triplets. :)

    Everything you said applies, though, especially when they interact with each other. I’d love to capture some of the smiles and screeching and laughing at each other, but they freeze and stare at the video camera whenever I get it out.

    Great post!

  22. People ask me how I do it all the time and honestly I have no idea. I know how I did it up until this point but now I feel like I don’t have a clue. Mine are 2 and a half and I can’t seem to get them to listen to me or stop fighting long enough to actually enjoy these days.
    .-= Staci Dauphine´s last blog ..Hello from Texas =-.

  23. Great post!!

    I too, am stopped in every.single.asile. at the grocery store but it doesn’t really bother me! Then again, I really like talking to people though. The one thing that does actually bother me is when people (who have no clue) say “oh, you’re really in for it. double the trouble, you know?” Ummmm, unless you have been through it, please don’t say this to me!

    I love connecting with other moms of multiples. The first few months were particularly hard for me and speaking with women who have actually gone through it was such a comfort.

    Thank you for posting this!

  24. You said it! Twins are fascinating to most people, so I get why everyone loves them and showers attention onto them. I have slowly come to enjoy being a pseudo-celebrity! Having twins has been more exhausting yet more amazing that I ever would have thought possible. I also never would have expected to make some awesome friends that I wouldn’t have known if I didn’t have multiples.
    .-= Kim´s last blog ..Quite a Playgroup! =-.

  25. Awesome post!

    I remember, as a child, telling my mom that I was going to have twins some day. She, of course, told me that I couldn’t just make that decision (That’s not how it works, she would say), but that didn’t stop me from pretending that two of my dolls were twins. I had so much fun pretending to be a MOT at 9 years old.

    But like many, I had a tough twin pregnancy with problem after problem. The last 8 weeks of my pregnancy when I ended up on strict bedrest, were some of the scariest weeks of my life. And that line, “be careful what you wish for” definitely crossed my mind a time or two.

    But all those bullets in the second half of this post, ring true for me as well. I love being a mother of twins, and now I can’t imagine it any other way.
    .-= reanbean´s last blog ..Potty Training: At the Beginning Again =-.

  26. I’m so glad you ended this on a positive note. While the first year was a total blur, and the first 6 months were the absolute hardest, I definitely think the positives outweigh the negatives. Having two little 2 year olds run to me for a hug or shout “Mommy!” when I enter the room makes all the frustration go away. Well, most of it, anyway. :) I always react positively when someone tells me they are expecting twins — they need all the encouragement they can get. And I also try to act positively when someone is fascinated with my identical girls. I realize that I’m a member of an exclusive club that many others wish they could be a part of — even if they don’t really know what they are wishing for. :)
    .-= Leigh Ann´s last blog ..Star of the Show =-.

  27. What a great post! I am a first time mom of 13 week old twin girls and when I get a second I read this blog. You made my day — it’s so hard sometimes (esp this morning as last night was not a good one) and I nodded along to everything in the first half of the post– and then the second half gave me the oomph to get through today! (I know at some point they will sleep through the night!!) And even when they are both melting down at the same time…I know I wouldn’t trade them for anything.

  28. My twins are not here yet (a couple more weeks) and I;m already annoyed at the twins comments.

    I really hate when they say that I dont have to worry about any more kids since I got 2 AND they are B & G. WTF? What if I want more kids.

    I do think that it will be fun even though I’m preparing for a long road.
    .-= Sazz´s last blog ..I love you! =-.

  29. Such a wonderful post!

    While I had a very straightforward pregnancy and birth and many of the things on your list thankfully didn’t happen, I still feel very annoyed when people say to me that they wished they had twins. (Usually, the comment “YOU are an idiot.” passes through my mind.)

    Before I had children, I thought that having twins would be nice too. (They are ALL over my family!) Then I got pregnant the first time and was relieved when my midwife heard just one heartbeat. I took a singleton for granted the second time I got pregnant and as such, was blissfully unaware of the twins until 6 months along.

    Karma had a good laugh over that one.
    .-= Samantha´s last blog ..The Menu =-.

  30. All I can say to that is YEP! I swear it is creepy how many times your posts sound like they could have come from my life. The only difference being that my twins are both boys, mine are about a year younger, we live on the other coast and my husband is “J” not “M”.

  31. Fantastic! We just returned to Japan from a vacation to the states. I was so happy to be back around a language that I don’t understand because I was sick of peoples’ comments!

  32. Thank you, Thank you, Thank you!!!

    It readas though I wrote it. These are so exactly my sentimants, I’m printing it out and will read it again and again. It makes me feel so much more normal to hear another MOT have these thoughts.

  33. Oh how I could say this word for word. I totally get this to a “T”. I have parents say, “I am no different than you, just because I didn’t spit mine out at the same time” or “I have multiples, just 3 years apart..” Then the “I wanted twins”, I tell them that they need to thank God they didn’t…

    The first year was a blur in our household. I was a mom of 4 under 5 (really 4 but our oldest turned 5 shortly after the twins were born).. I am still trying to find the clearing of the fog and we are at 20 months…

  34. I thought I had wanted twins until I had 1… Then I knew that 1 at a time was PLENTY for me. :) I really don’t know how you do it. :)

  35. Hi…. a little late to the party but then I’m late for everything these days SIGH. Great post. When I had my first child I was part of a baby group that included two sets of twins. I felt NO envy whatsover and just felt overwhelmed by the very thought. Six years later WHAM..how did I get here? My twin girls have now turned 4 and I think for the most part I’m in the greener grass now. I go to preschool and see the mothers with three kids two years apart , the youngest will be a newborn and I think to myself ” how the heck do they do it?” and I actually think I have it easier than them now and feel a little daft using the twin card anymore. There will still be twin issues to deal with but apart from “the separate or not to separate at school discussion” I can’t think of anything that will be as intense as the first 3 years. (I am fortunate that my girls had no issues at birth or any physical/learning problems). I don’t begrudge the dumb questions too much …how can people know the right/wrong thing to say without having experienced it themselves? They just throw out those old sayings for lack of any thing else…but what I really find aggravating is “How can you tell them apart?”. My girls are fraternal and apart from hair colour and height are completely different. Are people blind?…now that I think about it this comment usually comes from old men so maybe they are. The thing that makes me cold with rage..the increasing use of triplets in advertising. Makes me ill… they seem to be normalizing what is NOT normal.
    .-= Corina´s last blog ..Unsolicited Advice for parents of twins =-.

  36. I just read this and I have often had all the same thoughts (though probably not many of the positive ones at the time someone makes the comment but still true nonetheless!). We are part of an exclusive club!

  37. Great post – my friend who is also a twin mom posted it on her facebook so i clicked over. I had a two year old at home when the twins were born. Boy/girl set – girl is autistic, boy is typical. My favorite question when I was sleep deprived and cranky – “Are they identical?” Always tempted me to answer: “actually, yes, they’re hermaphrodites!” Um, last time I looked in their diapers, one had a penis and the other a vagina, so NO, they’re not identical! Now they are almost 5 and still a handful but much easier to manage now…

  38. Very funny and so true….had twins when my first was 18 months. Twins are 10 months now, slowly regaining my sanity. Thanks for summing up so many of the feelings and end ending with a positive perspective

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