Raising newborn twins...starting over.

[deleted account] ( 17 moms have responded )

My daughter is 18, a mother of a beautiful little girl, and 8 months pregnant with twin boys. When she found out she was pregnant she was going to give the baby up for adoption. When she found out she was pregnant w/twins she was devastated. She said it would've been hard enough giving up one, and now she had to give up two. So, I volunteered to raise the boys as my own; eventually adopting them. My delemmas are multiple...we all live in the same house. If I'm going to adopt them, what do they call me? What do they call her? What do they call their sister? I've taken on a big task, not only financially, but emotionally as well. What will this do to my relationship with my daughter? I know I'm doing what's in the best interest of the twins and my daughter, but now I'm wondering if it's in the best interest of the family. I have huge concerns about missing work to care for them for the first six weeks. Child care is very expensive. My daughter doesn't work, but when I decided to do this I made a promise that I wouldn't put the task of watching the twins on my daughter. I'm just afraid I may lose my job trying to find childcare for the boys. I've got so many things to work out. I just need a little feedback from outside the family to help me see some perspective, and to remind me that I'm doing the right thing.

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Kim - posted on 06/29/2011

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I forgot to add...If you do adopt the twins you, under law, are allowed the same 12 weeks off as a natural birth parent under FMLA. The Family medical Leave Act. Talk to your HR person if you are concerned about loosing your job. You may even qualify to take time off even if you don't adopt.

Stacie - posted on 06/29/2011

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i agree with you about her being immature. i don't see how you can go that long with either pregnancy and not know you wern't pregnant. i had twins first and now pregnant with one. its sounds like she is not mature enough to care for any child weather or not it was her fault for getting pregnant in the first place. I think thats why adoption was created. god gives some people the gift and others are not so lucky but, with adoption the not so lucky ones get that grate gift of life to do wounderful things for children. not all women have the instincts to be a mother or the matchurity to be one either.
Maybe you can work out some kind of contract with your daughter stating the resposibilties you want her to have in helping you. i think anything you do needs to be put in writing for the fact that she could end up doing something to bit you in the butt. with her acting so immature she could get mad over something stupid and try to take the children away from you and that would not be good for them at all.
Have you thought about seeing a counselor? someone you can both talk to aout the things going on and can help with ideas on how to get through this. help both of you find the best thing for these babies. they will have them at the hospital too. if they come before you can see someone. it sounds like to me theirs alot of things that need to be worked out between you and your daughter and you need someone else from the outside to see the other sides of things and give advice.

Kim - posted on 06/29/2011

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I definitely think she needs to be held accountable for the choices she's made. If she can't take on some of the responsibilities, I don't think it's fair for you to have to do it. If I were you, I would still take into consideration giving them up for adoption. As hard as it may be, your daughter can't just get pregnant and let someone else take care of the baby she created. At 18 I had a job and was living on my own, and have been ever since. Think it's time for her to get a little bit of maturity and responsibility.

Heather - posted on 06/28/2011

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I would personally recommend letting your daughter know that while you are taking over as the mother of the children, as long as she lives in your home she will have responsibilities. Those responsibilities will include watching the twins while you are at work, or going out and getting a job to help with bills so that you can afford daycare. It sounds to me like she needs something to do with her free time.

Jane - posted on 07/05/2011

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My brother and his wife are raising their granddaughter simply because my nephew is unable to do it consistently. My nephew she knows as Daddy, and my brother and his wife are Yayo and Yaya (Greek for Grampa and Gramma). Now that Daddy has matured a bit he does take her to stay with him for up to a week at a time, but since he forgets things like doctor's appointments, she generally ends up back at Yayo and Yaya's house. The only problems I see between the various folks involved is that my brother and his wife sometimes really wish my nephew would grow up (he is 30 now and is finally able to remember to pay the rent and is getting better at keeping a job for more than 6 months at a time).

I would suspect that if you keep things open and develop simple, truth-based explanations of why the boys belong to Gramma and the girl belongs to Mommy things will go okay.

OTOH, I adopted both of my children. We deliberately chose an "open adoption," one where we met the birth parents and have stayed in contact with them to varying degrees. In fact, tomorrow I am taking my son (who is 16 now) to stay with his birth father for four days. We see the birth parents as family members, on a par with an aunt or an uncle.

Your concerns about missing work and the cost of daycare make me wonder if you are trying to make things easier for your daughter through a misplaced sense of love. The fact is, your daughter already has one child so she presumably knows where babies come from. The fact that she got pregnant again says that she is not being very responsible. The fact is that she isn't able to figure out she is pregnant until far along in the pregnancy says she is not very mature and shouldn't be parenting anyone.

Your offer may not be actually in the best interest of your daughter or the boys or you. Your daughter (who does not work and so is not contributing financially to the care of herself or her existing child) is expecting mommy to step in and fix things. But at 18, legal adulthood, she needs to start thinking before getting into a mess, or figuring out how to solve it once she is there.

Quite frankly, I think she could use a little devastation. It is painful but it sure does help one think twice about getting into the same situation again.

And where are the fathers in all of this? Unless their rights are formally severed either voluntarily or by the court, no one will be allowed to adopt the boys. If the fathers don't want their rights severed, then they need to step up and provide some child support.

I strongly suggest you consider adoption. We used Lutheran Social Services because they offer open adoption, but there are many other reliable agencies that provide similar services.

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17 Comments

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Lynn - posted on 07/09/2011

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You may want to look into the Mirena IUD. Then she will be protected from any further pregnacy's until she has grown up.

[deleted account]

She is on the pill but had to take antibiotics. The rest is history...I don't think they stress enough the dangers of taking antibiotics and the failure of birth control.

Jane - posted on 07/07/2011

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What does she do about birth control? You might want to look into that so she doesn't get pregnant yet again.

[deleted account]

I've decided not to rush in to adopting the boys. I'm going to help my daughter to learn how to raise these children on her own. All of her children have the same father, but he isn't financially or emotionally stable enough to take care of these children either. He jumps from family member to family member and has no steady income. All I can do is be there for her. I can't just change my mind on the adoption because now we are both set on having the boys in the home. We'll make it work. We're not the first family this has happened to. Thanks ladies for all of your encouraging and straightforward words of wisdom.

Cheri - posted on 07/05/2011

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Have you or your daughter ever thought about adoption? I myself am adopted and I'm thankful every day that my birth mom loved me enough to give me up for adoption. She wanted the best life she could offer me, so she gave me to an adoptive family she knew would love me as their own and give me everything I ever needed. My birth mom gave me the wonderful life that I have now. As a result, she was able to move on with her own life too, and she gave my adoptive parents the baby they had dreamed of. Adoption can be the ideal solution for everyone involved.

My husband and I have been trying to adopt for a year now and we would do anything to adopt a baby or twins. We had one birthmother already change her mind, which was devastating but we will never give up on our dream to have a family.
If your daughter chose adoption, she would be guaranteed that the family had a rigorous background check (local and FBI), that they were financially prepared (part of the background check), and that she could get updates (emails/cards/pictures) for 18 years after the adoption. She could even get financial support and living expenses, as part of the adoption, to help her move forward with her life too. Adoption is a huge decision and one that is not right for everyone, but when it is, it can change everyone’s lives for the better.
More than anything, we would love to adopt and raise those twins to be our own. If you are at all interested in considering us, here is my email. cheri.kivisto@sas.com We have been homestudy certified to adopt and already working with an agency and lawyers who would handle everything. God bless you all in whatever you choose, I know it will be the right choice for you. Cheri

Nicole - posted on 07/03/2011

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I was 23 when I had my twins, my ex had just left me and i had no where to go but back home. But i knew one thing that i wasn't going to abandon my kids. I stepped up and started to work when i could again and help around my parents house any way i could. I believe it made me a stronger person for myself and to be a stronger person for my children. I believe you are doing the right thing by helping her but she also needs to step up and help in return. Good luck !

Candi - posted on 07/02/2011

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Wow. You are in a tough spot, but what a brave woman you are. I hope your daughter appreciates what a fantastic, strong mother/grandmother she has. First of all, look at care.com and sittercity.com. they give background checks for all of their sitters. You can also call the education/early childhood education departments of you local colleges and universities to look for students who may be looking for some work. I'm going to bet that you are going to want/need a mother's helper for the first year so that you can a., get some sleep and b., get out of the house when necessary. Care.com and sittercity.com also give assistance in finding daycares, although not quite as much. You might try calling your local Early Intervention people because they will have lists of family support resources in your area, including respite care for children with special needs (which you shouldn't need), and childcare providers who have been recommended by other parents. Two, you are taking on the role of mother in this instance, so even though their birth mom will be there, you are MOM. Don't feel bad about having them call you mom because you are adopting them as mom. You can explain the difference between birth and adoptive when they get to an age when they understand, and it will give you more power as you help them to develop. You want them to respect them as the ultimate arbiter that you are. You always want them to know the complex relationship, but they will not be old enough to comprehend until many years down the road, so mom will suffice. Finally, have faith in yourself! You can do this. The first year is exhausting, yes, but there are a lot of joys, and you can get a lot of help because you have twins. send letters to formula companies. They will send you a free box of formula because you have multiples (The forms should be on their web sites, if they insist on forms.). Diaper companies should do the same, and they will put you on a list for regular coupons. Contact your local mothers of multiples club. They will have resources as well and, usually a yard sale where you can get everything you need at a fraction of the cost. My local MOMs chapter has a childcare swap to make everyone's lives easier. Again, you can do this! Just keep telling yourself that.

Karen - posted on 07/01/2011

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I agree with most of the posts here. You are a very caring mother (obviously). And since your daughter was irresponsible enough to get pregant twice by age 18, it is time for her to do some serious growing up herself. I think there might be very weird feelings between you if the kids start calling you mom. So maybe she should think long and hard about how she will feel to hear that around her.
Maybe she should not give them up, but with the undertsanding that you are there to support her. If she is home, she should be taking car of her children. And you can help by supporting them financially/ working. Taking car of twins (with a toddler no less) will not be easy. She will want to pull her hair out and scream sometimes. But she needs to own up to her responsibilities. In the end, if she did, she could really be proud of herself and have some self-respect.

[deleted account]

It sounds like your daughter has a great set up. She continues to act irresponsible and you are the one left cleaning up her messes. You realize she has no incentive to change her behavior. To have 2 pregnancies by age 18 and it sounds like not once has she ever had to deal with the consequences. She needs to get a job if she lives under your roof and start being responsible unless you also want to be responsible for her 4th, 5th, 6th, and 7th irresponsible pregnancies.

[deleted account]

The closer it gets to her having the twins, the more nervous I get. I don't want her to think that she's free and clear of all responsibility but I do want to make sure the babies are taken care of. She is very immature. She has a baby less than a year old already. She didn't know she was pregnant with her until she was 7 months along. She didn't know she was pregnant with the twins until she was 6 months along. If she's not mature enough to know what's going on with herself (despite all the talks we've had beforehand), how can she be responsible for two more lives? As far as adoption is concerned; I can't just change my mind in this situation. It would devastate her.

Kim - posted on 06/28/2011

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I think it's great that you are taking on this responsibility. But I do think your daughter should take this opportunity to grow up and realize people aren't always going to be there for her when she messes up. I think she should be responsible for helping to raise the babies. I think she should get a job and help with raising them. I don't think you should rush in and adopt them. Give her the chance to go back to school and start a career of her own so she can raise them on her own. Let them call her mom, just be there for her to support her. I'm sure her motherly instincts will kick in and she will want to be a mom. Even though she cannot do it on her own, she will be able to with your guidance and support.

Stacie - posted on 06/28/2011

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i know you are doing the right thing. I was adopted and i have twin boys that are 2 1/2 now. my biological mother was young and in high school and ade the best decision to give me up. What i can suggest is that the boys call you mom if you plan adopting and daughter doesn't want the responsibilty and they can call her by her name along with your other daughter. you don't have to put lables of sister on either of your daughters untill the boys are older and may be become curious. to many labels could be confussing to them. i was always told that i was adopted but was never told ahything about why or my bio mother until i was in my teens. just knowing at a young age that i was adopted was nice my parents always said i was speacle and made me feel good about it. as far as care for the boys have you looked into nanny services? i know child care is expensive with nanny services you can find the right person to help and they come when you need them to. so maybe you can work part time in the begining and have a nanny come for the other time you need. possible other freinds or family that may be willing to help to you with them. with twins its all about scheduling. Have one set from day one. they eat every some many hours and stick with it. your relationship with your daughter should stay the same. just because she giving birth to the babies and all the struggles and stress it may cause you, you can't take it out on her. you decided to help so i would say to never make any problems your having her fault and things should be fine. also make sure all the right legal documents are filled out, so no other problems of coustdy can come between you. i hope everything goes well for all. if you have any questions about how someone who is adopted goes through emotions about it feel free to message me.

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