Episode 111 of the Dad’s Guide to Twins Podcast Show Notes
Listen as we discuss important mindsets to remember as you’re in the midst of challenges raising twins, including:
- There is a light at the end of the tunnel
- How to handle advice from other people
- Everything happens in phases
- Why looking ahead will help with your current challenge
- How looking for the positive will make your life a lot better
- When a routine will help break you out of rut
- Why you must take a break to maintain your sanity
- How reviewing everything you’ve accomplished will give you much needed perspective
Welcome to the 111th episode of the Dad’s Guide to Twins podcast. This is Joe Rawlinson, you can find me on the web at twindadpodcast.com where you’ll find much more information on having and raising twins, along with the show notes and transcript for this and all previous podcast episodes.
If you stick around to the end of today’s show I’ll let you know how you can get a free copy of my first book the Dad’s Guide to Twins. In case you missed the last episode, we had a great interview with fellow father of twins, Brian Clemens who shared his story. You should go back and check out his experience in the podcast at twindadpodcast.com.
Today what I’d like to talk about is an important topic. It is an important mindset that you as parents of twins have to have in order to survive and thrive as parents. That is that there is a light at the end of the tunnel of your current twin journey. No matter where you are on the journey, odds are there’s something that you’re struggling with in parenting your twins. Sometimes you can be so caught up in the day to day challenges that you forget that you’re making progress and that there is a light at the end of the tunnel.
I want to talk you through a few things today that will help you remember that hope, that there is a light at the end of the tunnel and that you are going to make it, you can do it as a parent of twins.
First is be careful with the advice that you receive from other people. You’re going to receive advice from a lot of people, friends, family, neighbors, complete strangers, co-workers, even myself. What I want you to do is remember that everyone has an opinion, even people without kids have opinions. Even people that don’t even have twins have opinions about raising twins. That requires you to filter the advice that you’re getting from other people because the advice and the things other people say to you can really weigh you down if things are not going as you would expect based on their comments. You need to trust your instincts and do what works best for you, your family, and your twins, not anyone else. As advice and tips, and anecdotes come in you need to filter those out and only take what you’re going to take action on and use in your family. Don’t feel guilty if you don’t take people’s advice because you’re the one who best knows your family situation.
The next important thing to remember is that when you are raising twins everything happens in phases. There’s a newborn phase, there’s a teething phase, a potty training phase, terrible twos, terrible threes, and on and on. Your twins are going to continue to go through these different phases and cycles that each have their own unique challenges as parents. Remember that everything is a phase and so what you’re in right now is going to pass. Remember and say to yourself the mantra, “This too shall pass.” Whatever the challenge is right now, the challenge of the day, the challenge of the week, it’s going to pass and you’re going to be on to something new before you know it. Keep that light at the end of the tunnel in mind that things come and go in phases, and they’re going to be very intense phases because usually your twins are both going through them at the same exact time. That requires a lot of your attention, a lot of your energy, and thoughts, and emotions are tied up in this. That’s totally natural but remember that phases come and phases go, and before you know it you’ll be on to the next challenge.
Remember to look at your current situation and look at yourself and then project ahead a few years into the future with your twins. Is the current challenge you’re having right now, is it really going to last that long? The answer’s probably no. If your twins are teething, or if they’re potty training and you look ahead a few years you can say, “Hey, my kids are not going to be teething when they get to high school. They’re not going to be potty training when I send them off to college. They’re not going to be nursing still when it’s time for them to leave the house. They’re not going to be in diapers or sleeping in my bed still years from now.” The challenges and the day to day problems that you’re having right now are not going to last forever. Your kids will outgrow them or they will learn, or they will adapt and be on to bigger challenges down the road.
I want you to remember to always look for the positive in parenting your twins. Many people say that your twins or maybe even you say your twins are double trouble. You should instead focus on the fact that they are a double delight or a double blessing. Being a parent of twins is an awesome experience. When you look for things that are going well, things that have gone right, things that you’ve done that have succeeded that’s going to give you a lot of positive momentum to overcome the current challenge that you’re facing.
Take comfort in your routine. It’s okay to fall back to your routine. Sometimes you notice things just aren’t working right in your house and you may realize, “We got out of our routine, we got out of our schedule with the twins,” and that can cause everything to be flipped on its head.
If you’re not sticking to a routine you may want to revisit that with your twins. As your twins get into a routine they start to know what to expect and they start to more easily flow with the routine. When everything seems to be random to them, happen at random times and random order, it can be confusing for them and that’s why they may put up more resistance. Revisit your routine and take comfort in that that it can help smooth out the day a little more easily for you.
Another way to get some perspective and to see that light at the end of the tunnel is to take a break. Even if that break is very small. Your breaks may come in many different forms. It may be a simple go to the bathroom without any kids, it may be take a shower by yourself, without any kids, it may a trip to the grocery store while your spouse stays home with the kids, or maybe something longer like eating out with your friends while your spouse stays home and watches the family. It is important that each parent gets a break from the day to day burdens of parenting your twins. You need to work as a team to figure out how that break is going to happen, who’s going to go on a break and have schedule and the logistics will work. It is important to take those breaks because it will give you some much needed relaxation, an energy boost and some perspective, and renewed ability to jump back into the fray of parenting.
Remember to always count the blessings and one of the ways that you can do this is to count and to refer back to the milestones that your twins have already reached. Remember that you’ve already conquered a lot of challenges to get to the point where you are right now with your twins. If you look back at what you’ve already done, what you’ve already accomplished, how far your twins have already grown and developed it will help you give you renewed purpose and optimized that yes you can overcome the challenge that you’re having today. Sure, okay, great your twins are now sleeping through the night but then they start to teeth and that interrupts the routine. You know what, you can look back and say, “Hey we got them to sleep before, we can do that again.” The middle of potty training, it seems like it’s never going to end, you can look back and say, “We got them to eat solid foods, they can feed themselves, surely they can overcome this challenge as well.” Refer back to the milestones and the steps, and progress you’ve already made and that’ll help you move forward with your current challenge.
As a parent of twins you can do hard things. Twins are hard, they’re not easy. It’s not easy to be a parent of twins, to care for two little ones at the same time and the physical demands that that requires. Now if you can parent twins and you can raise twins, you can do anything, you can do hard things. That should give you great optimism and a huge pat on the back because you’ve already done so much. You’ve been able to juggle these twins and make it happen. You can overcome the challenges of today and next week, and the years ahead. You got this you can do it. If you can parent twins and raise twins, trust me you can do anything.
Remember there is a light at the end of the tunnel, it may be around the corner, it may be hard to see, but you can get through the challenges of today of parenting twins and move on. Just remember, you can do this and you are awesome.
Thank you so much for listening to the podcast today. As promised at the beginning, if you would like to get a free audio book version of my Dad’s Guide to Twins book you can do so by visiting freetwinbook.com. Once again that’s freetwinbook.com. Thank you so much for listening, I really appreciate it. I’ll see you next time.
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