Buffalo Grove-based club helps moms of multiples
Julie Cox looks through a photo album at the 25th anniversary gala for Multiple Choice Moms, a Buffalo Grove-based support group for mothers of twins and triplets. | Joe Cyganowski~For Sun-Times Media
Updated: December 20, 2012 8:10AM
BUFFALO GROVE — It was the biggest event they had ever planned — but it was for a club whose primary membership requirement is being a mom who is used to things that turn out to be larger than expected.
The Multiple Choice Mothers of Multiples Club celebrated its 25th anniversary on Dec. 12 with a gala at the Arboretum Club. Kitty Loewy, who founded the group with fellow mother-of-twins Eileen Stern, said seeing what their group had grown into was a joy.
“It was certainly more than I ever expected when we started this group,” Loewy said. “To see what they’ve done was really heartwarming.”
“They” includes Ellen Singer, a mother of 13-year-old triplets, who led the party’s organization. She said she had been grateful for the group since 1999, the first time that she left her husband, Marc, and children at home and came to a brief but effective meeting/get-away.
“I liked being around other moms who understood what I was going through,” Singer said. “I knew I couldn’t do it on my own.”
Both said that discovering they were having more than one child led to complications they had never anticipated: Singer spoke of having to order groceries online because taking the boys anywhere proved too complicated.
“Simply, how do you get out of the house with more than one kid?” she recalled. “It’s not as easy as throwing my kids in the car and going to the mall to hang out.”
That kind of help began in the fall of 1987, when young and overwhelmed Stern and Loewy checked out a club for mothers of multiples in a nearby suburb; they did not “feel the love” at that meeting, as Loewy put it, and did not return. Instead, they put a classified ad in Pioneer Press, looking for others around the area in the same situation.
“Let’s just throw it out there and see if anyone joins,” as Loewy described it.
Their creation’s first meeting was on a Wednesday night in October in Arlington Heights. Fifteen women showed up, and Multiple Choice was born.
Through the years, the group has taken up philanthropy projects and organized programs for both members and their kids. Singer said she became a regular because of the advice she got from other matriarchs of triplets in Multiple Choice.
“At each stage of the game, there was someone there to tell me about what was going to happen,” she said.
Singer said the club grew to a high membership of about 100 four years ago; down to around 60 now, the group attracted multiple alumnae for last week’s celebration, which 68 attended.
Loewy said she enjoyed learning about how the lives of her old friends and the club’s new members have changed. David and Zachary, the boys who once drove her to start her own support group, are now 27, and she is now a grandmother of two; Singer’s triplets are now 13 and presenting an entirely different set of complications, for which she still seeks advice.
“Everything else is the same,” Loewy said.