Giving birth to triplets almost feels like a curse if you look at the past three stories that have run in Daily Monitor concerning them. First on February 25, we reported about a woman in Kasese, Jane Kabugho, who had hardly anything to feed her children on, as she had no steady income, her relatives could not help much and the father of the children could not afford to give her anything.
About a month later, on March 27, we reported about another mother of triplets in Bushenyi, Mary Madamu, who had given birth to triplets prematurely and who was likely to face hardships when she left the hospital as she and her husband could hardly afford to take care of them.
Yesterday, we published another story on triplets. Twenty one-year-old Grace Nadango’s triplets are older, eight months old, but she has also been abandoned by the father of the children. The last she heard from him was when he was called and told he was a father of triplets whereupon he switched off the phone and has not been in touch since.
Children are meant to be a source of joy and pride. But this is not the case for many out there as the three women’s stories show. For them, what should be a happy moment is instead a stressful one. The thought of having to feed, clothe and raise three newborn children at once is terrifying. Bringing up just one is work enough. Many of these people in the rural areas can hardly afford just to take care of themselves, so taking care of triplets is certainly a huge task.
This is why antenatal services are important. Nine months is a fairly good enough amount of time to prepare for the coming child. Once a woman knows she is expecting twins, triplets or more, she can start preparing for their future and even if she is not well-off, a few things can be done to prepare the home for the arrival of the children. The nurses can tell her what to expect, as well as the amount of feeding, clothing and care the children will need.
It will also be helpful to give the mothers Mama Kits as a start-off package to help with clean and safe deliveries. Apart from that, women should be empowered and encouraged economically to start projects such as farming or small businesses that can earn them an income with which to take care of their family. That way, even if they are abandoned by the father or other relatives, they can still raise the children.
Also, once the father of the children is told what he can do to prepare for the bigger family he will soon have, he will have time to plan ahead. Knowledge after all is power.