New here, boy/girl twins (feeding issues)

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WhiteWolf68's picture
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New here, boy/girl twins (feeding issues)

Hi, wanted to introduce myself. I just gave birth to boy/girl twins last Monday (9/24), I can't believe they're a week old now. Smile

My daughter was born at 5 lbs. 3 oz. & lost some birth weight. We've been trying hard to get her drink more but it's been difficult. Trying some tricks we read online for NICU/Preemie babies, seems to help a bit but not always. She goes back on Saturday for another weight check, hoping she's gaining weight.

Has anyone ever had one twin smaller than other? I did see online that Similac has a "NeoSure" formula.
Do you think maybe we need special bottles/nipples for her?

Right now we are doing some breastfeeding but more formula feeding. Feeds seem to take forever...
Please someone tell me it gets easier...

The main thing I am worried about is soon I have to start taking kids to school, no more help at home. Its 1/2 hour round trip via stroller/walking. Just worried about if they wake up hungry or if I started a feed & time's run out.

Do I just let them cry till I'm back?

P.S. Grateful my MIL is here but she leaves in 2 weeks. My Mom is not speaking to me. She dislikes newborns, picked a fight soon as I got home from the hospital. She did this when I had my son too (long story). So I rather not call her for her help.

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:lurk:
Jen, as you know I don't have twins but Robbie was a preemie and tiny (4.12) and had issues eating at first, falling asleep, not latching (both breast and bottle), within 2 weeks he was downing the bottle with no issues. It took him 10 days to get back to birth weight so hang in there.

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Whew, that's good to hear! She looks like she's filling out a bit, face wise, coloring, etc. I'll be looking forward to her downing down a bottle! Smile

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Hi Jen!

Congrats! Bella was 2 pounds 14 ounces, 6 ounces smaller then her twin. She was exclusively nursed once we came home (Bottles of BM in the NICU), except for one bottle of BM at bedtime until she was 4 months and wouldn't take the bottle anymore. Have you tried Nipple shields? I used them for both kids until 4 months. They worked wonders!

Heather

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Congratulations! It does indeed get easier. It won't seem like it yet but it does!

My daughter also lost a lot of weight at first. Born 6 lb 10 oz and was 5 lb 9 oz when we left the hospital 48 hours later. We had several weight checks and I think it was about three weeks before she hit her birth weight again. Her doctor never recommended and we never tried a high-calorie formula like Neosure. It just took a little time to get on track. Do keep an eye on the weight though. I feel like at-home scales are probably the worst idea ever for people like me who would have obsessed over it, but I checked her weekly at a breastfeeding support group and that's how we caught her slipping into a failure to thrive situation a couple of months later.

As far as bottles and nipples go, use whatever works! We have had to switch nipple types several times, I mean, in addition to upping the flow as she got older. For a while she liked the Avent bottles, but that was short-lived. We sometimes used Evenflo nipples but mostly used preemie Dr Browns nipples on my Medela bottles at that point (and the same bottles with Dr Browns size 4 now). Meanwhile, her brother, who was born a little longer but who weighed a little less at birth, grew like a weed. He has been on the charts (15th %ile or so) forever, but she has yet to make it on the charts. At 10 months, he's 19 lbs and she's 15 lbs.

She had difficulty latching and I despite LOADS of effort for 14 weeks, that just didn't happen for us so I pumped and supplemented for the first couple of months, then just pumped (for her, my son could latch), and recently started supplementing again since she doesn't take solids yet and I'm so over pumping. At this point for you and for a couple of months really, feeds just do take forever. It's so hard, I know. It was so much harder and so much more time consuming than I ever expected (every minute of every day unless you really set out to do something else occasionally like eat a bite of food or take a shower -- and that never seems to total more than a few minutes total each day and the babes cry through it. I know, it sucks.) But it really does get easier one day! Just keep on surviving! As for the walks to school, do what you have to do, the babies will be fine. For my family, we found it worked well to record all their feedings for the first weeks just so we know they ate enough and who I fed last, etc. We actually still now record all of my girly's meals since she has had issues and we want to track patterns that have been associated with formula intolerance. Maybe you can try writing down their feedings just so you can feel more confident that you have fed them enough even with your walks. And the walks are good for all of you!

Unfortunately, my daughter continues to have feeding issues at 10 months so I can't say what normal will be, but I hope things go more smoothly for you and your girly soon!

And I wanted to add that you'll find calculations and formulas for how much they should be eating and how fast they should be eating and how much they can take at a time ... but realize that your girly will likely be different and once her weight is climbing back up, try not to listen to people (other than the pediatrician!) who say that a baby should be taking an 8-oz bottle by a certain age (I'll tell you my girly takes 2-3 oz at a time now) or that they need X number of ounces at a certain weight.

Anyway, I wrote too much.

Congratulations! Smile

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We seem to be having a better day today, she took 2 oz earlier which is better than 1.

Heather, thanks for the suggestion, my problem right now is finding time to even breastfeed & pump, with 2 older kids and my MIL here it's been crazy... but I'm determined and told everyone I need more *privacy* time. So off I go to use my pump that surprisingly still works great from when I had my other son five years ago. Smile

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Yes! It gets better! Kay has always been at least 2 lbs smaller then Brad. She had reflux horribly and it hindered her weight gain. Establishing bfing is hard. I tell everyone, get to six weeks, something happens and it gets easier
And set mini goals (make it six weeks, then 3 months, then 6 so on) that helped a lot. Once it get to six months it seems second nature and a lot easier because you are not their primary food source anymore. Kay had a lazy latch and it was painful, but I keep at it and my nipples ended up getting use to it. She still had a horrible latch but we are used to it know.

I don't envy you right now, the first month is hell. But you'll make it through. With every stage comes new challenges but it does get easier. Do what you can to survive because that is all that matters right.

Congrats again.

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Quick update: Fae gained weight this week, yay! She's now 5 lbs. 6 oz., which is super. Smile We're very happy about that. Next up, is getting a double stroller, DH wants to get the Bugaboo Donkey but it's out of stock right now (they changed the frame on it).

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I feel your pain girl! Smile Well, I can say I am still balancing everything in between feedings. However, going back to work and trying to get out the door at a certain time is quite a challenge. I also have a kindergartener and so I understand that aspect too. So let's start with her feedings... Neosure is a little heavier in calories so if your concerned about weight gain, you could talk to your pediatrician about that one. I dont know specifically what your little ones health status is (nicu, apnea, etc) but my pediatrician said as long as they are gaining weight, they will have their feedings where they eat good and some not so good (ie spitting up or not finishing their bottle)... on the flip side, in the beginning Anthony was not eating enough - hardly any really- this was in the NICU and they were concerned about him getting dehydrated, losing more weight, etc and decided that they would give him a gavage (sp?) tube for whatever he didnt eat - for example if he was told he had to have 20ml but only ate 10, they would put the rest through the tube. So I guess it really depends. I would say if you are really concerned push up your appt. If not, just continue to try to encourage feedings by sort of tickling the chin, maybe offer her extra feedings (like we are on a 2.5-3 hours schedule but I feed both at the same time) and maybe try a different bottle/nipple?

I can say that everyone here says it gets better... for me, I can attest that it hasnt changed much (mine are just over 2 months) but its gotten better bc I have gotten into a routine and therefore, things have gotten easier. I have had many days where I am wondering how I will get through and do certain things, certain activities and so far, I have managed lol... although there is still a long road ahead haha I just keep thinking of other women (here) can do it, I can! Smile

I dont know if that helped but hopefully you will get in a routine soon and things will get easier!

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She's feeding so much better now, taking in 3 ounces. Smile

I was wondering if you've gone back to work by now. Are you doing a school drop off in the mornings too with the twins? I was reading online last night about doing the "car seat" trick, feeding them at the same time that is. I think that's a huge challenge, when they both wake up and want to be fed at the same time.

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Jill- I was wondering the same thing. How has the transition back been?

Jennifer- so glad to hear she is feeding better. How has the bfing been going? Kaylee was a slow gainer. It took her 4.5 months to double her weight and she was only 5.1 when she was born. Good luck with the stroller purchase.

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It's been super crazy. My MIL flies home end of month and then it'll be just us settling in to routines.

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Jennifer- Don't feel bad about stopping breastfeeding. Bfing twins is a definite challenge. That is why I did not try it. I knew I was going back to work (with a 30 mile commute). My girls are just fine. Sarafina was on a high calorie formula and she is still drinking whole milk (and is almost 3). She is just petite and she tends to be a picky eater.

It really does get easier (for a little while until you hit the terrible tantrum and "I do it" stage). I think our turning point was at about 6 months, then again at 12 months. It is getting so much easier now that the girls are almost 3. I see the light at the end of the tunnel, so to speak. We are two years away from age 5, which I always say is the "magical" age of rational thought. Smile

As for feeding two babies at once, it is hard, but you can do it. We often used two bouncers and sat in between them. Sometimes, I fed one in my lap and one in a bouncer. I preferred to feed them at the same time. IMO, a schedule with twins is an absolute necessity. We did not feed them exactly every so many hours, but when one woke up in the morning, we woke up the other, and got ourselves on a schedule that way. They ate every 3 hours, so once they were awake, they were pretty much on the same schedule. It made getting out of the house much easier.

As for getting out and about with twins (and more kids), I found it to be so hard. There were days that we got into the car, and I had to sit there and breathe before driving because a) just getting everyone ready and out to the car was exhausting, and b)getting everyone ready was so frustrating. It is still that way. That has not gotten much easier.

Keep plugging along. You are in twin survival mode now. Slowly, you will stop having to survive twins and you will get to enjoy them (most of the time, when they are not fighting over a toy or pulling each other's hair, or knocking each other over). Smile

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I agree with Mel. Don't feel guilty at all for not bfing. I always say do what keeps you sane and happy. You already have a challenge of caring for two new borns, don't let the stress of bfing add to everything else. I also agree with Mel that it gets easier. I found 6 month and 12 months as well to be the biggest changes. Obviously there are new challenges now mainly due to the fact I have two walkers that get into everything. But I find they are starting to entertain each other and really interact. I'm actually loving the fact that I have twins instead of cursing my ovaries for dropping two eggs (don't get me wrong, i love and adore my babes but those first 6 weeks sucked and it would have been a lot easier if they were born apart!). Hang in there. It's survival time so do what u must to survive!

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"melnzai" wrote:

As for feeding two babies at once, it is hard, but you can do it. We often used two bouncers and sat in between them. Sometimes, I fed one in my lap and one in a bouncer. I preferred to feed them at the same time. IMO, a schedule with twins is an absolute necessity. We did not feed them exactly every so many hours, but when one woke up in the morning, we woke up the other, and got ourselves on a schedule that way. They ate every 3 hours, so once they were awake, they were pretty much on the same schedule. It made getting out of the house much easier.

Agree. I also have a breast feeding pillow (I bottle feed, but it still works!) I can't imagine not feeding at the same time - they are eating every 3 hours, so I feel like that would all I would do!

I go back to work in 2.5 hours, so getting nervous about trying to get everything done, everyone out the door, etc.....I'm sure after a week or so, a routine will develop and make it tolerable!

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Definitely "survival mode" here but we're managing... Had to call the Pediatrician today because my son's been super fussy the past few nights, as in not even sleeping! So she she said to get some gas drops plus we ran out and bought Dr. Brown bottles. That boy is actually a lot less fussy now and seems to be resting a lot better, whew! It's nice to see him be more peaceful instead of grumbling in pain. Smile

UPDATE: Last night was the worse, Finn was up from 11PM till 3AM, would not settle down, stop crying. Phoned Pediatrician up again today, she says to try to spread out feedings longer, see how that goes. If no improvement, then tomorrow we'll take him to see her and she'll make a diagnosis whether it's reflux or colic.

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Hope it gets better. We are having sleep issues too. Hang in there.... I'm hanging on by a thread.

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Our pediatrician told us to phone a gastro specialist for Finn, so we'll try to get an appointment this week. In the meantime we are trying "Colic Calm" and last night was a wee bit better. He still started his "episode" at midnight but it didn't last till 3 AM this time. We also let him sleep half the night in a swing, which I think helped too. If the Colic Calm does good tonight, maybe we won't even need a doctor. ::fingers crossed::

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*Fingers crossed!!*

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Here's hoping. Could it possibly be reflux. Kay had it. It wasn't overly painful for her but I know other MOM who had babes with severe reflux and they were in a lot of pain because it. Once medicated they did much better. Kay just projectile vomit everywhere. It hindered her weigh gain and made more laundry for mommy!

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My other boys had very bad reflux, so it's a possibility. He doesn't spit up like they did but it could be "silent reflux". Colic Calm helps but it's not a cure all, he still grumbles and fusses, like he's in pain. We have an appointment first thing Wednesday morning with the specialist, hopefully will get some answers.

Tonight I told DH not to even bother trying to lay him flat on his back in the playpen/bassinet. I'll just go straight to co-sleeping like I have been the past few nights for half the night.

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I know they say not too and ppl will kill me for saying this but both of my babes slept on their bellys. It was the only way to get a solid 3-4 hrs out of them in the starting. Maybe you would want to try that if you feel comfortable with it.

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I'll try anything, last night was the absolute worse. He screamed and cried for 2 hours and finally fell asleep in the swing but then at 4AM it was her turn to be wide awake, so I had to co-sleep with her for an hour's worth of sleep.

Anyway, tomorrow I think we're taking Fae with us to see the Gastro specialist as well. She's not screaming or crying but being wide awake lots at night which could be tummy troubles. She can't seem to settle lately... They only sleep good in their bouncy chairs, maybe time to totally ditch the whole playpen / bassinet.

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My daughter had severe ... something. I don't know what was/is going on exactly, but she screamed constantly in her first weeks and it was torture on her and me and everyone around. Eventually sleeping in the bouncy worked well for her and she slept there at night at the foot of our bed for several months (I'm going to guess until 4 months?) From there we moved her into a swing. She slept only in the swing for several more months, finally moving to her crib much of the time at 9 months. She naps in the swing sometimes still. Do what works!!!

And as for family "helping," I never bought into that crap that you should get as much help as people will offer ... most people don't want to lift a damn finger, they just want to take pictures with your babies, take your food, make a mess of your place, and NOT help. Kick everyone out! I very much regret allowing "helpers" anywhere near us in the early weeks. It only made me bitter about having them around later.

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Saw the specialist and Finn has Reflux, we now have a prescription for Prisolec (infant version, which a pharmacist had to make special). Picked it up this morning, first dose will be before noon, fingers crossed! She said it will take a few days to take effect.

Triplespiral, I totally hear ya! I started going to bed at 9PM (ish) and leaving DH with his Mother for the 11PM feed. Since I can't nap while she's here, going to bed early is the only solution I can think of. DH & I barely see each other now until she leaves which is the 30th. After she goes, I'll nap on the couch early mornings. I told him that if his parents want to visit again, they can get a hotel next time and rent a car. I also put my "foot down" about them moving in with us, since we are doing their Visas (immigration process), so DH will have to pay for an apartment. We've been arguing lots more with her here too. She wanted to come back when winter really hits so I don't have to drag twins out in the freezing cold but I said "no thanks", I'll bundle them up really well and do the school walks alone. I'm sure they will be just fine and we really need our "space" and time to adjust as a family without someone constantly here.

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How is Finn doing? Is it any better? Are you okay over there on the coast? Did you lose power at all? I have not seen any recent figures for NJ. HUGS!

Keira was our fussy one most days. She would gorge herself on formula and then spit up from that. We had her on infant prilosec or Zantac at one point. It helped some. She still overeats at times. She just loves to eat, I guess. Sarafina, on the other hand, struggled with feeding from the begining and still has huge texture and food issues. She is so picky! We supplement both girls with baby food pouches to make sure they get vitamins, minerals, and some extra fiber. They don't get one everyday, but most days we try to offer it as a snack. The joys of feeding kids! Smile

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Hi, sorry, been super busy here. We lost power for 3 days, it was pretty rough, but we survived. Luckily only got some roof damage ($1,200 worth) but considering how badly the rest of NJ got hit, we're lucky.

Finn's doing okay with the reflux but has Colic. Was unsure about Colic for awhile but now that he's 6 weeks, it's definitely Colic. Some days are harder than others but we're struggling through it, day by day. Hoping once he's past 8 weeks, things will improve. Fae is doing great, up to 5 oz. now and gaining weight. Finn is going to have to start wearing 6 months clothes already! He is super hungry, super chunky, haha.

We go for weight checks and shots this Saturday. Will post back...

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Oh no! Colic with twins. That has to be rough. I am so sorry. I will keep you in my thoughts. I cannot imagine. Keep us posted on the next appt. for Finn. I hope you find some relief for him, and I pray that it does get better and better everyday. Just keep on surviving.

I am sorry to hear about your roof, but I am so glad that your house survived and you did not have to go weeks without power. All of the people affected by Sandy are in my thoughts and prayers.

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That's crazy about your roof. Just glad you are safe.

Colic??? I couldn't even imagine. Poor thing. If you need to vent you know where to go!

KUP on your appt.