Should I have another child after autistic twins?

Man and woman with hands holding the woman's pregnant belly,  Should I have another child after autistic twins?
Should I have another child after autistic twins?

One question we hear often in our community is whether I should have another child after having autistic twins or triplets. Having a baby is well, having a baby!  We all go into pregnancy not knowing what the outcome is. It’s natural to have mixed feelings, ranging from excitement at the thought of a new baby to concerns about managing additional responsibilities. If you’re thinking about whether it is right to have another child, let’s look at a few ways this might affect your family.

Take time to reflect

Start by taking a good look at your current situation. Parenting autistic twins, triplets or quadruplets is a unique and demanding job. You might wonder if you are ready to add a baby into this mix. It’s important to consider how you are coping with the challenges now. Are you feeling emotionally and physically up to the task of a new baby, or does the idea feel overwhelming? Your support system is also very important to consider. Do you have family members or friends who can lend a hand? What about access to professional resources like therapists or support groups? Knowing you have a strong network can make the idea of a new baby less daunting.

Your personal readiness is a vital part of this decision. Reflect on your desire for another child. Is it something you deeply want, or are there lingering doubts? Think about how another child fits into your long-term vision for your family. Sometimes, talking through these feelings with a partner or a trusted friend can bring clarity.

Is autism hereditary?

Another thing to think about is the genetic aspect of autism – there’s a good chance that another child might also be neurodiverse. This shouldn’t discourage you, but it is something to consider. Genetics do play a significant role in autism, but instead of being caused by a single gene, it’s usually the result of a combination of genetic factors. Research involving twins and families has shown that if one child has autism, there’s a higher chance that their siblings might also be on the spectrum, suggesting a hereditary link.

Think about how a new sibling might impact your twins. Babies bring joy and change in equal measure. How might your twins react to shifts in their routine or sharing your attention with a new sibling? Some children thrive with a new baby brother or sister, while others might struggle with the transition. Consider ways to ease this process. You could involve your twins in the pregnancy and preparations, making them feel included and excited. However, it’s also crucial to prepare for potential challenges and think about strategies to manage any difficulties that arise.

Ultimately, deciding to have another child is a deeply personal journey. It’s about balancing your dreams with practical considerations and the unique dynamics of your family. Trust yourself and your instincts. You’ve navigated the complexities of parenting autistic twins, triplets or quadruplets, and whatever choice you make, you’ll find a way to make it work for your family.

Did you have another child after autistic twins, or are considering it? Share your stories below.

Should my autistic twins share a bedroom?

Boy and girl twins on bed looking at book
How should I decide if my autistic twins should share a room?

Just one or all of your children may be autistic, but how do you decide if your twins should share a bedroom or not? It’s a choice that can shape their daily lives and your family dynamics in many ways.

The joys of sharing

First, let’s talk about the positives. Sharing a bedroom can create a special bond between siblings. Imagine them whispering at bedtime, or giggling under the covers. Often times, twins, triplets or quadruplets do not want to be separated – they’ve been together since day one! Sharing a room can make them feel safe and secure, especially at night when the world feels a bit bigger and scarier. They might find comfort in being together.

Sharing a room is also good in a practical sense – sometimes you just don’t have any other choice! If your home has limited space, having your twins share a room can free up other areas for play or therapy. It can maximize your living space, making room for other activities or quiet zones.

Some challenges

Of course, sharing a room isn’t always easy. Autistic children often have unique sensory needs and preferences, and what works for one might not work for the other. One child might be sensitive to noise while the other loves to hum or talk themselves to sleep. These differences can lead to sensory overload or sleep disturbances, which can be hard on everyone.

Image showing boy girl twins reading in bunk beds together.  Click for link to Autistic Twin Bedroom ideas on Pinterest.

Sleep is another critical factor. If one twin is a light sleeper or has difficulty staying asleep, it could disrupt the other’s rest, leading to tired and cranky mornings. And let’s not forget the need for personal space. Everyone, including children, needs a little privacy and a place to unwind. Sharing a room can sometimes make it hard for your twins or triplets to find that personal bubble.

Finding a balance

If you decide to go ahead with a shared bedroom, there are ways to make it work smoothly. Creating defined spaces within the room can help. Maybe each child has their own bed nook, complete with their favorite toys and decorations, giving them a sense of ownership and personal space within a shared environment.

@stayflyuk

Reason for our being so quiet is, we have been doing up our twin boys bedroom for their 7th birthday. Both of them are autistic / adhd and love everything sensory. They bloody love it and we are so proud of the space we have created for them #blairandellisturn7 #autismacceptance #sensoryroom #audhd #autism #bedroommakeover #twinboys

♬ Counting My Blessings by Seph Schlueter – Seph Schlueter
StayFlyUK share their autistic twin boys bedroom makeover!

Tailoring the sensory environment is crucial too. Think about noise machines, individual reading lights, or blackout curtains to cater to each child’s needs. Small adjustments can make a big difference in creating a space that works for everyone.

Establishing routines is big help – having clear and consistent rules about bedtime, playtime, and personal space can help reduce conflicts and anxiety. A predictable routine can make sharing a room more manageable and pleasant for your children.

Ultimately, the decision comes down to what feels right for your family. Pay attention to how your children react respond to sharing a room. Be prepared to adapt and make changes as needed. Remember, flexibility is key—what works today might need to be adjusted tomorrow as your children grow and their needs change. Whether they end up sharing a room or not, the goal is to create a living arrangement that supports their well-being and happiness. You know your kids best!

Do your children share a bedroom? Share your ideas and stories below.

Dealing with jealousy as an autistic twin mom

Woman standing on a beach looking at the sea
Take time for yourself when jealous feelings arise

It can be hard to talk about – but jealousy might come with the territory of being an autistic twin mom. Sometimes, it’s hard not to look at other moms and feel a pang of jealousy. You can see other children hitting milestones that yours have not yet, or may not ever. Their lives might seem simpler, their routines less chaotic. It’s okay to feel this way.

Understanding Twin Mom Jealousy

Why Do We Feel This Way?

First, know that you’re not alone and it’s very common to feel this way. Jealousy usually comes from a place of comparison. It’s natural to look at other moms and wonder what it would be like to walk in their shoes. Maybe their kids don’t need the same level of support, or their daily lives seem more manageable. Acknowledging that these feelings are normal is the first step in dealing with them.

Doom Scrolling

Social media can just make it worse. Seeing everyone else’s picture-perfect moments can make you feel like you’re not measuring up. But remember, social media is a highlight reel, not the whole story. Behind every polished post are struggles and challenges that aren’t shared as publicly.

Embracing Your Journey

Celebrate and Find Your Strengths

Your journey with your autistic twins is filled with unique milestones and victories. Celebrate the small wins—like a new word spoken, a successful playdate, or a meltdown managed with grace. These moments are huge and deserve recognition.

You have your own strengths as a mom. Maybe you’re great at creating sensory-friendly activities, or you’ve developed a special way to communicate with your kids. These strengths make you an amazing mom. Embrace them!

Finding Balance

Be Kind to Yourself

Practice self-compassion. It’s okay to feel jealous sometimes. Instead of beating yourself up, acknowledge your feelings and remind yourself that you’re doing the best you can. Self-compassion goes a long way in reducing feelings of inadequacy.

Connect with Others

Finding a community of other moms who understand your unique challenges can be incredibly validating. Autistic Twins Triplets and More was started because I felt so alone and like no one else understood where I was coming from. Connecting with others who “get it” can provide comfort and practical advice.

Practical Tips for Managing Jealousy

Limit Social Media Time

If social media triggers feelings of jealousy, consider limiting your time on these platforms. Focus on engaging with content that uplifts and supports you rather than comparing your journey to others.

Set Realistic Expectations

Set realistic expectations for yourself and your family. It’s easy to get caught up in what you think you should be doing based on others’ experiences. Remember, your path is different, and that’s okay. Setting achievable goals can help you stay grounded and focused on what really matters.

Every family has its own rhythm and beauty. Focus on the unique aspects of your family that bring you joy. Create your own traditions and memories that reflect your family’s special dynamic. Embracing what makes your family unique can shift your focus from what others have to the wonderful life you’re building.

Seek Professional Support

If feelings of jealousy and inadequacy become overwhelming, seeking professional support can be very helpful. A therapist can provide strategies to cope with these emotions and help you develop a more positive outlook.

Make Time for Yourself

As a mom, it’s crucial to carve out time for yourself. Engage in activities that bring you joy and relaxation. Whether it’s reading, gardening, or enjoying a quiet cup of coffee, these moments can recharge your spirit and help you approach motherhood with renewed energy.

Feeling jealous of other moms is totally natural, especially when raising autistic twins comes with its own set of challenges. By acknowledging these feelings, practicing self-compassion, and focusing on your strengths and unique journey, you can transform jealousy into acceptance and appreciation for your own path. Remember, you’re not alone, and your journey, with all its ups and downs, is worth celebrating. Keep going —you’re doing an amazing job!

Share your tips for dealing with autistic twin or triplet mom jealousy below.