Tuesday, April 3, 2012

The Neediness of Twins

Before the girls were born, when we had time to sit and think, to plan before action, to contemplate the future, one of the things we wondered aloud was "do we split the girls up at some point?"  Do they share a room for the rest of their lives?  Do we put them in the same classroom for kindergarten?  Do we buy matchy clothes?  Do we always have them do the same activity or does Gina take one some place while I take the other?  We've not answered these questions just yet.  We've got our thoughts, our hypothesis. ... but we haven't a damn clue on what is "right" to do.  And here's the dilemma: we want them to be themselves, not "the twins".  If we encourage their independence, maybe they'll find it.  But is that who they are?  Last night the girls went down and I went about briefing a few cases, waiting for Gina to come home.  After about an hour Arianna woke up crying (more of a whimper, not a scream or anything) and calling for me.  I went in and asked her what was wrong - she asked me between breaths "Daddy, where old sissy go?"  First let me explain that there is "old sissy" and "new sissy" to distinguish between the twin and the baby sister.  I told her that Genevieve had already gone to sleep and that's why she couldn't hear her anymore.  Keep in mind Genevieve never shuts up.  The kid just talks and talks and talks until she finally blacks out; so it's no wonder Arianna assumed if she couldn't hear her, she must not be there.  She kept whimpering, obviously upset by what ever had caused her to wake up.  After a few minutes of rubbing her back, Genevieve - in a very soft voice - pipped up "here I am sissy."  Whimpering stopped.  Arianna rolled on to her tummy and the lights went out.  I tucked her in and moved over to Genevieve - she too was passed back out.  My problem with forcing them apart to find their own identity is that their identity is undeniably intertwined with that of their twin.  Their world has always been one of close proximity and reliance upon their womb-mate.  In moments of fear they have the courage of two.  In times of panic they literally have an outside, calming voice beside them.  They never laugh alone and they never cry alone either.  In all the fighting and the screaming and the typical sisterly actions, they are anything BUT typical sisters.  There's something special there.  Something unique.  Something, I wonder, if I have any right to force apart.  They need each other.  At least for now. And maybe that will change.  And maybe it won't.  But who am I to say the neediness of twins is a weakness.  If anything it might be what makes them stronger.


  1. AMEN! This is exactly what I always say. People always try to tell me that I should seperate my girls, that it is horrible to call them "the girls" or "the twins"...that they will never have their own identity or be special. BUT... I think being a twin IS special. It think the bond IS special! Thanks for putting that into words...I loved it!

  2. This brought tears to my eyes. My twin boys will be 7 months tomorrow and I look forward to seeing their relationship bloom.