20 June 2020

David Willis reached out to Twins Trust when his 14-month-old twin girls, Bonnie and April, decided sleeping was not for them!

The family routine had been to feed the girls and put them to bed when they fell asleep in their mum and dad’s arms after having their milk.

David and his twin girls

But a few weeks ago, the girls decided they were not having any of it, and would still be screaming when mum Weronika left the house for her night shift at the local hospital.

“It was a difficult time for all four of us,” said David, who says his wife is the most amazing mum. "The routine that we had suddenly was not working for us.

We didn’t really have any contact with the health visitor as it was difficult during lockdown, so that’s when I got in touch with Twins Trust.

David was supported by volunteer Marianne, a qualified childcare support practitioner trained by the Norland Agency.

“Firstly neither Marianne or Helen from Twins Trust said we were doing anything wrong, and reassured us as parents,” said David.

“This was important for us to hear and immediately put us at ease.

“Marianne then asked us about our typical day. She made some really simple suggestions like bringing milk, nap time, lunch and tea time all forward, and letting the girls just have a 30-minute morning nap rather than an hour.

“Because of this the girls’ night-time routine could be brought forward to bath at 5:45pm, then into our bedroom, and not theirs, for milk and a story before bed. Marianne advised it was important for the girls' bedroom to be for sleeping only, not for playing or for feeding.

“When we put them to bed we say ‘it’s time for sleep’ and lay them down in their cots while they are still awake. We can now hear them chuckling together, and then they go to sleep.

I’m sure there will be bumps along the way but these tiny changes have made the world of difference.

"In between talking to Marianne we booked onto two sleep webinars, which again were brilliant.

“Health visitors and the NHS of course is great for general advice, but when you have twins it is different, so the advice from Twins Trust from people who know, has been invaluable."

Weronika and David with their twin girls

“We wanted reliable, consistent advice we could trust, and didn’t want to just try something ourselves, only for it to not work, or just work in the short term leading us back to square one. This is why I would urge anyone with twins, triplets or more who needs it to reach out for a bit of extra help from experts.

Sometimes it can be hard for people to do, but it could help your family life so much. I’m so glad I did.