What Is It Like Having Triplets?


When people find out that I am the mother of triplets, besides wanting to know how I handle them on a daily basis, they want to know what its like to have triplets. I usually say something like, “It’s exactly how you think it would be… crazy” or “Imagine three of your kid.”

But the problem is that most people can’t imagine what that’s like. They have no experience with triplets and can’t begin to fathom triplets. I know this because I was the same way before I had mine. I remember watching a cousin of mine with her twins when my oldest son was just 14 months old and thinking that I would never be able to handle twins.

Thankfully, I was right. I never had to learn how to handle twins…. just triplets.

So, what is it like having triplets? I’ll tell you, based on my experience with triplet toddlers…

Having triplets is washing pee soaked sheets from someone wetting the bed just about every morning.

It’s using 212 newborn sized diapers in about eight days.

It’s dealing with people asking you personal questions like, ‘are they natural’ or ‘did you have sex 3 times in one night to get triplets’?

It’s going through one pitcher of formula in a 24 hour period.

It’s a constant, non-stop chorus of “me too’s.”

It’s being the mom other mom’s scoff at because you have kids who come in a group and they tend to gang up on other kids but secretly loving this because they stand up for each other.

It’s getting more free time because they always have a playmate around who isn’t mommy.

It’s dealing with a kid shoving a t-shirt in the toilet, a kid coloring on the wall and a kid jumping from the couch… all at the same time.

It’s constantly doing a head count when at a playground or play area because they are never all together outside of the house.

It’s feeling like a failure because one baby always had to cry it out because your arms only can only hold two.

It’s begging and pleading with God for just two hours of sleep in a row because that is all you need to function.

It’s hoping that some day baby vomit will become a couture perfume smell since that is what you always smell like since you have triplet infants who all have reflux and vomit all the time.

It’s forever and always having to drive a minivan.

It’s an overwhelming sense of joy you get when three little people give you ‘I love you, mommy’ hugs.

It’s judgmental stares and eye rolls.

It’s the ability to rock a baby, burp a baby and feed a baby all at the same time.

It’s tripping over and stepping on a child because there is constantly one under foot.

It’s frantically searching the house for three different lovies so that three overly tired and crabby toddlers will finally take a nap.

It’s being able to understand three different things told to you by three different children at the same time.

It’s finding ways to make each child love being a triplet but also love being an individual.

It’s standing firm to three children who constantly test the limits.

It’s 30 fingernails and 30 toenails to cut and trim.

It’s always pulling three sippy cups out of the cupboard.

It’s having to only go through every stage at the same time.

It’s a huge sense of pride in the fact that you have triplets and manage to get dressed every day and even leave the house.

See, having triplets is really not all that hard… expect for when it is.

Now, don’t you want to have sex three times in one night in hopes of getting triplets?

Related post: What to Expect After Having Triplets


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    • 3

      Tammie Carmichael says

      Jen, you Rock it girl!!! I have never heard the sex 3 times in one night lol!! made me laugh!! I do feel the same and wow the numbers really sneak up on you when you count diapers, formula, nails ect… Mine are 16 months and we have gates galore. Everyday is a new adventure! I am super proud of my boys, they have worked real hard to walk and now we get to have some fun! It takes a special person to be a Mom and a super unique person to be a mother of multiples! Congratulations on your 3! Keep it Rocking!!

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      • 4

        Jan Farquhar says

        My father called out triplets “morning, noon and night” as a joke – saying my husband should not have come home to “visit” at noon – and then we would only have had twins…LOL !! Our older son, spread it around our local neighbourhood – which didn’t help either…. We thought it a great joke when he first said it, but later with three babies keeping us so very busy, it soon became a bit hard. We went onto having a daughter after our trips. and then 18 years later, got two more ‘gifts’ : another 2 girls. So all up 7 children, lots of laughter, fun and love.!

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  1. 8

    Cate says

    Thank you…..moms of singletons don’t understand. I have 8 kids – 8 seperate pregnancies, yes, all vaginally, and yes, I had sex 8 times ;) – and people look at me funny a lot. but they are age 29 to 5 (YIPES my baby goes to kindergarten this year!!!)
    We are very selective with our playdates–only kids with Moms that I like. Afterall we have no need to have a playdate at all. I just look at it like this, if they can survive the sibling rivalry at home then they will be ready for the ‘real’ world . Most of the time I just ignore them and read my books LOL

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  2. 9

    OHN says

    And I thought it was hard having two kids 17 months apart with another kid 5 years later. Moms like you have a special place in heaven. It has a large feather stuffed chair that smells clean, includes a hot male servant that wants nothing but to please you, and all the chocolate ice-cream you can eat….with all the calories removed.

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  3. 12

    Domesticated Gal says

    While I envy you being completely out of potty-training in one fell swoop…the idea of having 30nails to clip every week scares the bejeezus out of me.

    But hey – at least you don’t have to deal with the eternal question of “Do I have one more kid?” because everyone treats you like you aren’t a “real” mother yet just because you only have one…or two…kids.

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  4. 18

    Erin Margolin says

    I have twins and you are my hero. I admire you so much. The funny thing is? We have a singleton on the way and I’m scared to death! I blocked out so much of the twins’ first year of life that I’m afraid I won’t remember how to do anything!


    HUGS to you, awesome mama!

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    • 19

      Jen says

      I won’t have another baby but something I think that after triplets, a singleton would be awesome. He/She would be so easy that I could probably do it asleep.

      Also how awesome is it going to be just to be able to hold one baby and not feel guilty that you can’t hold the other one when they are both screaming.

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  5. 20

    Forgotten says

    Don’t you love how people question your reproductive history? LOL I had spontaneous fraternal twins and I have been asked repeatedly if I was on fertility treatments. Ummm, no.

    I feel your pain on the multiples part. I have 2 four year olds and a 2 year old. People around here keep volunteering to duct tape my legs together. You gotta love the boonies.

    I enjoyed this though so thanks for the laughs and memories. ;)

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    • 21

      Jen says

      The fact that people seem entitled to know my reproductive history floors me. I have started carrying a calender around to show them when I menstruate and ovulate.

      You know, since they are so curious. ;-)

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  6. 22

    Lady Estrogen says

    I laughed, shivered a little, gagged at the vomit couture and then laughed again. I have to admit that my required sleep has dramatically been reduced, but it’s not that I don’t miss it… and that’s “only” with twins.

    Also? Sex three times in 1 night… oh my feck… that’s a great (stupid) one.

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  7. 23

    By Word of Mouth Musings says

    LOVE it …. what blessings! When we did ivf and were placing 3 embryo’s at a time, i went out and bought a mini van … sadly it wasn’t to be for us. Since i thought i had heard more than my quota of stupid questions during infertility, adopting an African American baby brought on its own brand of stupidity. Eventually to the question ‘so where did she come from?’, i would merely shrug my shoulders and say ‘I have no idea’ ;)

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    • 25

      MrsMac says

      We say “I borrowed him from a friend and liked him so we kept him,” “the humane society,” “his birth mother’s vagina” depending on how annoyed we are. Gonna have to stop, he’s nearly 18 months and he’ll figure out what we’re saying soon!

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    • 27

      Jen says

      Well to add insult in injury, I actually have to trim 40 toenails and fingernails since there is one more child in the mix.

      I have begun to make him (the oldest) chew his own. ;-)

      And thanks.

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  8. 28

    Rachel {at} Mommy Needs a Vacation says

    I definitely DO NOT want to have sex 3 times a night in hopes for twins….nor in hopes of anything. 3 times? Hell no.

    So glad to see you posting here Jen! xoxo

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  9. 37

    Julie says

    “Are they natural?” No, dumbass. Clearly they’re robots. I can’t even fathom the three times question–these are the same people who probably have children at all because they think you can’t get pregnant if you do it standing up and shotgun a Dr. Pepper right after.

    Hats off to you! My cousin just sent hers off to college last year and everyone came out virtually unscathed.

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    • 38

      Kristin says

      I ask if they are natural all the time, and I’m no dumbass!!! I simply am curious if they were naturally twins, or if they were twins from IVF or some other fertility issues. The number of multiples has grown a lot over the last 10 years or so mainly due to fertility treatments. I think it is a valid question!

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      • 39

        Danielle says

        I think that’s a VERY personal subject. Also “are they natural” can sound insulting. Probably best to ask, “did you conceive using IVF?” and I would only ever pose that question to a very good friend. Nope nix that, I wouldn’t ever ask it. A very good friend would likely volunteer that information, if they didn’t, it’s none of my business.

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        • 40

          Emily says

          I agree that it’s a very personal question and one I am quite sensitive to when asked that about my twins. Multiples are special whether conceived spontaneously or via fertility treatments. Please think twice before asking other moms that question…it can come across as very insulting even if it isn’t meant to be.

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          • 41

            Amy in NC says

            When people ask me if my fraternal twins are natural, I have a couple of responses for them. 1) No, they are fake plastic babies – they just look and sound real. 2) There was a buy one get one free sale at the baby store.

            It is a very invasive question to ask if twins are “natural”. Please have some tact and do not ask that.

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          • 42

            June says

            lol, I’ve said the same thing when someone asked me if my triplets were all mine – nope, it was a buy one, get two free sale! duh!! Here’s your sign!

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      • 43

        Lindsay says

        ‘Are they natural’ is a question you do not need to be asking a stranger. They may not feel comfortable answering, especially if IVF or other treatments were used. It’s a personal question, respect the privacy of others.

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  10. 44

    Krista says

    You are amazing. And funny. Good thing, since you probably need to be both amazing and funny every single day of your life. :) It is a shame you can’t send them somewhere for that fingernail/toenail business. That’s my least favorite mommy job and I only have two kids, not four.

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  11. 46

    Gloria K. says

    I’ve got to thank you for this post. I’ve lost count of the number of idiotic questions I’ve received regarding our triplets (5-yr old BGB). My personal favorite: “Are they natural or did you get them from somewhere?” Without missing a beat, I replied: “Target was having a sale…”

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