Going out with twins alone feels scary for many moms and dads. Discover simple hacks and ways to be out and about and still survive.
I wish I could take them to the beach, I thought.
My twins were five-months-old, and when their older brother was that age, I could easily tuck him into a baby wrap and carry a blanket and diaper bag.
But with twins, this felt all but impossible. I considered using a wagon before realizing they’d be too small to sit up on their own. There was no way I could push their double stroller through the sand, and I definitely couldn’t carry both of them in my arms (much less carry two car seats).
With a singleton, you can carry a fussy baby and focus your attention only on him. But with twins, you’re outnumbered. Going out with my infant twins alone was turning out tougher than I expected—and they weren’t even toddlers yet.
How to be out with twins alone
While I wasn’t able to bring my twins to the beach alone, I still found ways to be out and about with them, for both big and small outings, all without too many frustrations.
As daunting as it feels to be out with your twins alone, you can do the same. Yes, coming home from a simple trip to the farmers market can feel like you deserve an award, but the more you get used to being out and about, the easier it gets. Take a look at these tips to take your twins out, even if you’re alone.
1. Go to places you’ve been to
One of the easiest ways to be out with multiples is to stick to places you’re familiar with. Schedule a visit to the local park you’d always taken your other kids to. Stick to the stores and errands you’ve been to many times.
The more familiar your surroundings and its logistics, the less you’d need to adjust to on top of caring for your twins. You won’t have to look up directions to get there or find the best place to park. You’d know exactly which aisles to head toward and the hours the grocery will be open.
Stick to familiar places to reduce the stress of struggling with twins and save new ones for when you have another adult with you.
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2. Use your double stroller everywhere
Your double stroller will likely be your second set of arms. (I used mine just to get from the front door to the car.) You’re able to put both twin babies in one place and still free your arms to do other things. And who knows, your twins might even nap while you stroll.
Your stroller can also act as a shopping cart or storage area. You may not buy a week’s worth of groceries, but you can hang bags on the handles or stuff a few items in the bottom of your stroller.
3. Bring toys and pacifiers
Do your twins have a favorite stuffed animal or biting ring? Bring those with you as emergency entertainment. I’m not a huge fan of distracting fussy kids, but sometimes you just need to get it done!
Bring pacifiers as well. One of my twins took to the pacifier more than the other, but both of them would at least try when they’d fuss. That way, when they both fussed, I’d give him a pacifier to calm him down while I picked up the other.
4. Pick up one fussy baby at a time
“What if both babies cry at the same time?!” That had been my biggest fear of being out and about with twins. I didn’t know what I’d do if both of them started crying.
In hindsight, I rarely had to deal with two crying infants. More often than not, only one baby would fuss, so I was able to focus my attention on him while the other stayed calm.
But if your twins do cry at the same time, hold one fussy baby at a time. Find a good place to park the stroller and pick one up to calm and soothe. Then, set him down and pick the other baby up to do the same.
If both babies are still crying despite your soothing and using the pacifier, that might be your cue to head home. But more than likely, these moments will be rare. Don’t be afraid to be out and about with them simply because you’re outnumbered.
And don’t worry about what others might think. For instance, I worried other moms would pity me, something I didn’t need at that moment. Instead, I learned that moms are the most forgiving and understanding bunch. (Because we’ve all been there!)
5. Come prepared
And of course, come prepared. This is pretty much the mantra of every mom of twins, don’t you think? While you can’t predict how your twins behave, you can at least come equipped with items that help and a plan to respond.
This could mean packing a well-loaded diaper bag with extra clothes, diapers, and wipes, and feeding them before leaving. Maybe you go after nap times so they’re not cranky, and keep the length of your outing manageable. Keep shopping lists handy so you know exactly what to buy on an errand.
The more you take your twins out alone, the more these steps can feel like second nature. By being prepared, you can feel less flustered should something unexpected pop up.
“How do you do it?” a fellow twin mom asked me at a farmers market. She was also out with her own set of twins, but unlike me, she had a nanny helping her. She admitted she couldn’t imagine being out with her twins alone.
I don’t blame her. Taking care of twins at home by yourself is hard enough—being out with them ramps up the challenges you face. But hopefully, you have a few tricks up your sleeve to make it more possible.
Go to familiar places, and make use of your stroller. Bring toys and pacifiers to soothe fussy babies, and pick them up one at a time should both of them cry at the same time. And come prepared—you can feel less overwhelmed when you’ve, say, packed the items you needed or went out at a good time.
The bonus of being out with twins alone? Despite the difficulty, you can emerge stronger and more accomplished than you ever felt before. Even if you weren’t able to take them to the beach alone.
Get more tips:
- How Caring for Newborn Twins is Different from Singletons
- When Does Caring for Twins Get Easier?
- How to Avoid Excluding Your Non Twin Child
- Raising Twins after a Singleton
- How to Take Care of Twins: From Feeding to Sleeping and Everything in Between
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