If you are someone like me, then you will know the overwhelming feeling tied in with a number of mixed emotions knowing you have more than one baby on the way. About a month ago through Facebook and Instagram , I briefly shared with you our story of expecting triplets which came with added shock because we were already new parents with our oldest Emily. Let me tell you, having 4 kids all under the age of two at once will HAUNT YOU!
My biggest fear as a parent is failure. I have been through a lot of hardship as a kid experiencing many things no child or person should ever go through. There is a lot of pressure on us as parents and people in today’s world where we must live up to a certain expectation or standard to the status’quo.
As a parent of triplets + 1 ages 4 and under, I wanted to share with you, my fellow dads some great tips that will HOPEFULLY make your life easier. You and your significant other are going to be receiving ALL KINDS of advice from the most experienced parenting vet to the random person in the grocery story people will find away to some how input their expertise.
That being said, this is a great time to introduce my number one tip!
TIP ONE: Take advice!
Listen, you are going to get a lot advice. Some of it will be great and some of it will be way outside of left field. Just remember people have their own experiences and I have always believed that everyone has good intentions when offering their advice. Not everything is going to resonate well with you, but keeping an open mind will allow you to grow as a new parent. It will give you an idea of how others have overcome certain parenting obstacles or reached certain milestones. Keep an open mind and take all of the advice because you are in control on which advice you use. Any advice is always better than no advice.
TIP TWO: SUPPORT YOUR PARTNER!
Being a parent of one child let alone multiple children is not a sole owner operation. It is a joint responsibility! It drives me crazy when I hear stories like “Oh my wife changes all of the dirty diapers” or “my wife does the feeding/burping”. Sure you will have the odd debate about who changed the dirty diaper last so the other person should change the next one, that is all in good fun. But to have a parent dedicated to solely one task, such as the “dirty diaper” is a BIG NO NO! As a dad you will most likely be the first person to meet your child, physically hold your child and interact with your child. While your S/O is on bed rest they are relying on your efficiency to man up and take full control! It does not end at the hospital. Your kids are going to consume your entire life and inconvenience the HELL OUT OF YOU! Work together with your partner, develop a plan, a routine and dive right in! Also, have fun in the process.
TIP THREE: ACCEPT HELP
This one is simple. Ask or accept help! Find close family or friends who are willing to devote time to you and your family. Your kids will consume you, your kids will inconvenience you, your schedule becomes their schedule. Take advantage of down time, get out with your s/o for a date night. Your family and close friends are their to help you so why not take advantage! Your sanity matters and so does your s/o’s!
TIP FOUR: HELP WHEN YOU CAN WHERE YOU CAN
Remember, there will be specific tasks that you as a dad will be unable to complete ie: breastfeeding. In the earlier stages feeding can be quite daunting and most of all time consuming. This takes me back to Tip Two: Supporting Your Partner – One of my most memorable experiences was par-taking in their feeding experience. It was the perfect opportunity to connect with ALL of my kids. It was one of the biggest things that made me feel important and needed. My advice is to stalk up on bottles! Whether your kids take breast milk or formula making your s/o feel comfortable is very important. If there is excess amounts of milk, you will most likely store. This is the perfect opportunity for you as a dad to have some milk/formula on hand and ready to use. As they get older, with multiple children it can be more difficult and quite messy when giving them solid foods. One thing I can suggest while feeding is dumping everything into a bowl and continuously feeding one by one by one ..and repeat until finished. Be involved and help when you can. THE MOM STUFF IS ALSO THE DAD STUFF!
TIP FIVE: PUT YOUR FAMILIES INTERESTS FIRST
As a parent and as a man – you are going to lose the ability to just do the things you want when ever you feel like it. Those after hockey beer nights with the boys will become a little less of a priority or weekend hangouts will be more non existent. I am not saying you will never get to do any thing for yourself or never have fun but becoming a dad, a parent is a completely selfless way of life. Your schedule will no longer be your schedule. Communication is key! Like I said, you will still be able to have time for yourself or with your partner, it is a must. How can you take care of your kids if you are are not looking after yourself (of course having them in mind). However, it needs to be communicated it needs to be planned. Again, circling back to working together.
I am still a new dad and in the very early stages with my experience as a parent of multiple children and let me tell you, the amount of life experience I have gained is HUGE! I have always been inspired by other people in all of the great things they do, and there are some very wonderful parents out there who really set the bar high. Some you will see on social media others are every day people. Being a dad and being a parent unites us all in some way. It is very important we learn, develop and build off of each other.
Please keep an open mind to my tips/advice – I am a very involved parent and will take on any task. I hope in some way you read this and find value to add to your situation.
I would love for you to share the tips you have taken away from my post or share with me the valuable tips you have learned from your own experiences. Share in the comments below!