I often read the r/parentsofmultiples subreddit, which I started doing during my wife’s pregnancy in 2014 to try to prepare for what was coming. While there is no true preparation, I found it helped to read others’ experiences.
Some friends of mine who had already had twins gave me the “100 days of hell” pep talk. The first 100 days (give or take) = hell. After that, it’s not green pastures, but something lightens. I think that was fairly true in my experience, but maybe having been conditioned to think that would happen made it so. I can say that 4 years on, even if I look back at pictures, my memories from the first year are sparse.
Ultimately, I couldn’t love my twins any more than I do, and I am lucky to have an incredible partner parenting with me. That being said, I found the first 2+ years really hard and very stressful. Each day did get marginally easier, even within the first 100 days; however, it took a long time to feel like I had emerged from the dark shroud of an identity crisis, unrelenting schedules and painstaking lack of sleep. And I felt I had emerged as somehow changed, which creates a separate set of stresses. The root of these things was not solely by virtue of having twins. It was — mostly — being a parent for the first
I still visit that subreddit to glean that sense of community, even though I don’t contribute. People there often ask for advice, and I like seeing the other comments, but I don’t know how instructive my experience really is, especially 4 years later with some unreliable memories. I’m also careful about the advice I give strangers on the internet because who knows who these people might be or what they are going through.
Now that the twins are 4, they ask me what I do for work. I tell them I help people create sets of rules. They don’t what it means to be a lawyer, but they know what rules are, and sometimes they will even observe them. They are bulldog negotiators and have BS sensors that would be a billion-dollar product if you could make it a device. It’s a little terrifying, but I can look back and know it is a phase, and also know, a little bit better, how to deal with that terror. By the way, that perspective has been a handy toolset outside of parenting.