Hi, I’m Felicia Morrison and the writer behind Bringing Up the Littles. A blog about all things motherhood. I’m a stay at home mom to four little ones, the youngest being twins. I might be crazy, but I love this journey I’m on and so now I’m writing about it to help out other moms just like me.
I might be insane or maybe I’m just dedicated, but either way here I am five months into an exclusively breastfeeding journey with twins! That’s right, twins. I will say this, they’re not my first babies that I’ve breastfed because I have also breastfed my second son for 18 months. He was also exclusively breastfed.
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For the sake of this post I will clarify that when I say exclusively breastfeed, I mean no bottles. I definitely recognize any form of giving babies breastmilk as exclusively breastfeeding, but in this post, I am strictly talking about baby to breast and no bottles or supplemental nursing systems.
So how do I manage to exclusively breastfeed twins and stay sane? I’ll tell you.
1. Drink water and eat food.
I know this is probably a no brainer. I mean we’re hassled our whole pregnancy to make sure that we are drinking enough water and eating enough food, but the same thing is just as important when it comes to breastfeeding. It is even more important to do this when exclusively breastfeeding twins because your body is supplying enough milk for two babies instead of one.
As a rule of thumb, I always drink water when I’m thirsty, before and after every meal. I’m not very good at checking reminders or remembering how much I drink, but I know if I fill up my Ozark Trail cup at least three times in a day I’ve hit my hydration goal.
When it comes to eating, I’m honestly not that great at it. It’s something I struggle with since having the twins because taking care of myself has been a bit difficult with postpartum depression. I go more in depth with how I remember to do this in this post. But the best way for me to know that I’ve eaten enough is to always make sure I have a high protein snack with me. I usually eat this while in the car because it’s one of the few times I’m not holding a baby.
2. Keep a Routine.
I know with exclusive breastfeeding that you should be feeding your baby on demand, but with twins that becomes a little bit more difficult. To make things easier I keep a routine. About every three hours or so they’re usually both hungry and this is when I nurse them together.
Now, I’m not saying to make one twin wait in between to keep up with the routine. If you’re exclusively breastfeeding you want to keep up with the demand to increase your supply, so breastfeed the other twin if they’re hungry in between, but a routine helps when things get hectic.
3. Breastfeeding tandem
Part of my exclusive breastfeeding journey with the twins is tandem breastfeeding. The EASIEST way to do this is with a My Breastfriend Nursing Pillow. This pillow has SAVED my life.
It helps prop the twins up so that you can breastfeed them in a football hold almost effortlessly. Tandem breastfeeding has saved me so much time in my exclusive breastfeeding journey with the twins. Instead of nursing each baby for 20 minutes which totals to 40 minutes, I can nurse them both for 20 minutes total. It’s a game changer!
My favorite times to tandem breastfeed are our night time breastfeeding session and when I just want to sit down and watch a good show! Self-care is important, right?
4. Breastfeeding separately
Sometimes it’s so much easier to breastfeed them separately. While exclusively breastfeeding the twins, I have found out that sometimes it’s easier for one twin to breastfeed more efficiently if they are breastfeeding separately. This does take longer as stated above, but the babies usually get fuller and when it’s nap time this helps them sleep longer. Mom win!
4. Breastfeeding twins in public
Part of exclusive breastfeeding twins is breastfeeding in public. This can be very challenging for some because it puts you out there. If you’re like me it’s a bit more difficult for me to just pop my breasts out and feed my baby. I feel self-conscious. I can’t help it.
I know that I’m just feeding my baby though so what do I do? Honestly, it depends on the setting that I am in. If I’m out and about with my twins running errands, I usually just breastfeed them in my car. I breastfeed them separately this way and because they are still little, I usually have to set a stop time so that I can feed the other twin. I usually unlatch them when they’ve gotten a 2-3 let downs and are getting drowsy. I do this because otherwise they will sleepy nurse for about 30 minutes and I’m left with the other twin crying in the back.
If I am at a doctor’s appointment and the twins get hungry, I do two different things. If the appointment is about to wrap up, I usually try to play with the twins and keep them occupied to avoid breastfeeding in the doctor’s office (not so much for me, but for the doctor. Especially if they’re a male doctor.) If it’s the beginning of the appointment though I do breastfeed my twins. One at a time because I can’t bring my twin breastfeeding pillow everywhere unfortunately. Sometimes I give the doctors or nurses warnings, most times I don’t. I use these same methods if I’m at my kids’ events such as cub scouts meetings or sporting events.
5. Twins can be difficult.
I’ve learned a lot since having twins. I honestly wish I knew some things before I had them (I talk about this here), but I’m glad I’m learning them now. Exclusively breastfeeding twins is so much different than breastfeeding a singleton. It brings on new challenges, but it also makes my heart feel so full when I’m breastfeeding my twins and I look down and see them watching each other or holding each other’s hands. Exclusively breastfeeding twins truly is a journey, but it’s a journey I’m happy to take.