Monday, 22 June 2015
How twins can bring out the stupid
The first few years were insane. Trying to breastfeed two at a time, even trying to bottle feed two at a time. Two crying babies, two sets of diapers. Two babies to comfort at the doctors office after injections, two cranky kids when grocery shopping. I can honestly say those first years were a blur, either that or I have blocked them from my mind completely.
It got easier as they got older, as did most of the questions people tend to ask when they realize they are twins. I thought I'd cover a few of the dumb questions and statements here so that maybe when faced with a parent of multiples someone somewhere will stop and think before asking.
Which one is the boy/girl?
I obviously don't get asked this any longer, but this was one of my biggest irritants when they were little. If they were dressed in neutral colours sure, but stop and look. One is dressed in blue and the other in a cute white onsie with pink roses all over it. Now ask the question again, because I'm going to answer it and tell you the boy is the one in flowers, just to see your reaction.
Are they telepathic?
Why yes they are, right now they are telepathically discussing what a moron you are. I wish they were telepathic, just imagine they could fight without needing to scream at each other and I could ask the one to silently call their sibling for dinner without needing to block my ears at the resounding yell from right next to me.
Have they always been close?
No, they hated each other from the time of conception, it was a real fist fight in my uterus from day one and they came out not talking to each other, in fact it was only after about age 2 that they decided they loved each other.
Do twins run in your family?
Okay, I'll break this question down. Firstly this one is my pet peeve, the biggest reason for this is I find it intrusive. Basically what you are asking is are they hereditary or did I use IFV or IUI. There are three ways I can answer it. I can take the easy route and say yes, (its not a lie, my brother in law has twins.) It provides a quick end to the conversation and stops someone from prying further. I can say no and simply refuse to elaborate, although I've had the "Wow, how freaky that you got twins" comment at that. Or I can be truthful and tell you what you are really asking. Yes, they are IVF babies, we had help getting pregnant as I have suffered from endometriosis all my life which made it near impossible to get pregnant. But really, think about it. Do I ask you how many times you fucked to get pregnant, what position you used or even if your kid was planned or a condom breakage. No, I don't. So stop prying. I would like to add here. I have no issue discussing or sharing my story if someone is going through infertility and needs help or to chat with me, I am in no way ashamed of needing to use IVF either. It's more the fact that complete strangers feel like they have the right to ask this question, sometimes in front of my kids that bugs me.
Are they identical?
I'm always tempted to answer this one with just a look, you know the one, it simply says you dumb-ass in one easy look. I started answering this by patiently saying "No, they're fraternal, you know, boy/girl, they can't be identical." But I'll admit to getting short on patience these days and having occasionally answered it with, "Well one has a penis..." and just leave it there.
Two for the price of one or million dollar family:
This one always makes me roll my eyes. Yes, they're going to cost me a million dollars I'm pretty sure of that. But two for the price of one. Well, how much did it cost you to get pregnant. I'm betting for most of you maybe a dinner out and a bottle of wine? I paid $25 000 by the time I got pregnant after multiple attempts and various ways. Then factor in that I couldn't reuse my cribs, car seats, high chairs for the siblings like you can, I needed two of everything right away and you'll see how ludicrous that statement is.
Lucky you, you got it all done at once:
Yes, lucky me. I got to juggle two babies, both at the same time with very little time to sit and bond with either one. I got to have a high risk pregnancy, multiple doctor visits never knowing if something was going to go wrong and be able to relish in the fact that I was pregnant.
Wow that must have been hard work:
I normally just smile sweetly and nod at this one, resisting the urge to thank them for being obvious.
So you had a C-Section?
Why would you assume this and even more perplexing, why would you think that I would want to discuss out in public what I pushed out my vagina with a complete stranger? The answer is no, I gave birth to my twins naturally, with the aid of lots and lots of drugs.
How did you cope when both babies cried at the same time?
I did what any mother would do, I ignored them and poured myself a large glass of wine, then I looked at who needed me more urgently and attended to that kid first. Crying never killed anyone, you deal with it the same way you would if it were two different aged siblings.
I know I'm not alone in being asked these questions, it's a recurring theme, ask any parent of multiples, they will tell you word for word they have been asked the same things. Yes, we do have a club and yes we do sit around and compare notes and judge the stupidity out there.
I'm sure some of you are reading this and know you are guilty of asking someone these questions, perhaps even me. Please know, you're my friends I don't mind answering questions from friends, but I reserve the right to silently mock you if you say something stupid.