This blog is for all of my twin parents. One baby is a lot to handle in the early months, but multiply that, and you’ve got your hands full. So, what do you do when your darlings start experience split nights? Well, apart from panicking or losing your mind, consider using some of the strategies below.
Are you familiar with Newton’s Third Law of Motion? For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. So, when one twin wakes in the night and begins crying, it’s highly likely the other twin will join ranks. However, if one twin can’t hear the other twin wake and cry, they’re more likely to remain asleep.
For this reason, I suggest having your babies sleep in separate rooms to prevent unintended awakenings. Keep in mind that this isn’t a permanent sleeping arrangement. Once your little ones have mastered sleeping independently and the art of self-soothing, you can move them back into the same room.
As you’re well aware, twin schedules can differ. One of your babies may be a super sleeper, while the other may be a super eater. Try to keep your twins on the same schedule, as much as is humanly possible. Barring any medical issues, your babes should be able to be on the same nap and sleep schedule. But back to your super sleeper.
One of your twins may naturally sleep longer. That is perfectly normal, but I do recommend trying to have your babies on the same schedule with a maximum thirty-minute buffer. This 30-minute buffer will keep your little ones in sync with each other.
Practice the pause
Different rooms? No sweat. Same schedule? No problem. Pausing before running into the room when your baby starts crying? This won’t be easy. Notice I say pause and not ignore. I do not advocate letting a baby cry it out. However, I do believe you need to give your little one a little time to figure out how to get back to sleep on their own.
Think about how many times you wake in the night as your cycle through sleep stages. You typically change your sleeping position and go back to sleep. This is a learned practice. What we’re doing with sleep training is a.) giving cues that indicate sleep (such as a predictable routine and their room as a designated sleep area), and b.) giving babies the space to learn how to cycle through sleep stages. When you pause before rushing into your crying baby’s room, you allow your baby to figure out how to soothe themselves back to sleep.
As your twins go through developmental stages, you may need to circle back to get them back on schedule. As with babies, sleep training toddlers—especiallytwin toddlers—requires consistency and follow-through.
If you find yourself struggling to get your twins sleeping in sync, please don’t hesitate to contact me. And while I work with many Philadelphia area families, my clients hail from all parts of the world. Schedule a complimentary consultation with me today.