By Joanne Clifford
Although I’m still a self-proclaimed novice MoM (mother of multiples) with two and a half year old triplets, I do feel that I’ve experienced enough in my short mommy lifespan to write about this topic. All mothers share a kinship, a bond that no one else can understand until they have raised a child of their own. The same thing goes for MoMs as well. There is just something inherently different about raising twins, triplets, or more than there is to raising one child at a time. Trust me, it’s different. So, for all the MoMs out there (and all you friends of MoMs), here are a few things that this mom of multiples would like everyone to know!
Please do not feel like it is necessary to bring up Jon and Kate Plus 8 in every conversation you have with a MoM. We actually do watch normal shows not focused on multiples. So bring on the Bachelorette and American Idol gossip!
We are secretly jealous of singleton moms. It may seem glamorous to have multiples, but the party ends when the work begins! We have endless daydreams of single strollers that fit effortlessly through doorways and having enough hands to hold a child AND talk on the phone at the same time.
There are several comments that we hear every single day, so please try and keep these choice phrases to yourself if you feel them rolling off of your tongue when you happen upon a MoM and her crew:
“Are they identical?”
“What do you do in your spare time?”
“Are all of them yours?”
“You must have your hands full!”
We know you mean well, we just hear these comments all the time. Wanna blow a mom of multiples away? Comment on something NOT focused on how many kids she has with her. You’ll be sure to get a shocked, yet grateful, smile.
For a MoM, the schedule is paramount. Everything we currently are and wish to become revolves around the scheduled order of our children’s lives (ok, this may be exaggerating a bit, but the schedule IS important). Please … do not mess with the schedule! It may mean we have to miss out on some play dates and lunches with friends, but the potential tradeoff to bucking the schedule is too horrific to imagine. Just think tired, hungry, cranky toddler times three and you will shudder in fear as well.
This one tends to be hard, but please treat our children as individuals even though they share the same birthday. This is easier to do with fraternal multiples than it is to do with identical ones. I can’t tell you how many people only know my triplets as, “the boy, the curly-haired girl, and the straight-haired girl.” There is also a tendency to give them labels like “the leader,” “the shy one,” “the talker,” and so on. Multiples do share a bond like no other, but they are also their own individual people who deserve to be treated as such.
When it boils down to it, MoMs just want to be treated like every other mother out there. We all have our good and bad days, no matter how many children we have or if they were all born on the same day or different days. Whether we have singletons, twins, triplets or more, we all love our kids and are just trying to be the best mothers we can be to our children. That’s something this mom of multiples definitely wants you to know.
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