The First Year With Multiples: 5 Unique Challenges

Five Unique Challenges (con't)

Challenge No. 4: Keeping Track of Who's Who

You're laughing now, but you'll see when your babies are born: Even when twins are fraternal it can be hard to tell them apart. Boyle, along with many others, is a proponent of assigning each baby a color and coding everything from clothing to cribs to bottles. She says, "I didn't realize how important our color-coding system was until I left my triplets with three volunteers so I could go to my postpartum checkup. I'd forgotten to tell them about the color system, and without it they accidentally fed one baby twice!" Color-coding has its perks, too: It's not uncommon for multiples to know their colors earlier than singletons.

Challenge No. 5: Bonding, Times Two, Three or More!

Learning to split your heart evenly in two, three or more doesn't happen overnight. So, at first, it's not uncommon to feel closer to one baby than the other(s), especially if your babies' hospital homecoming didn't happen all at once.

Try these tips for fitting in one-on-one time with each baby:

  • Feed each child individually once a day. During feedings, make lots of eye contact and get skin-to-skin with your babies when possible.
  • Take your time diapering. Visits to the changing table don't have to be rushed — singing, cooing, eye contact and smiling all make this count as quality time.
  • Take naps together. Many pediatricians and even the American Academy of Pediatrics say it's OK to nap with babies in a bed that has a firm mattress; no soft bedding, pillows or blanket to get tangled in; and no space for getting caught between the mattress and the bedstead. Just make sure babies are a safe distance from the bed's edge. (Children's bed rails, which fit under the mattress and fold down when not in use, can provide peace of mind that your babies won't roll off the bed while you're co-sleeping.)

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