Tag Archives: twins

Twin Competition: Friend or Foe?

I have always been intrigued by the stories that I hear from twins about being competitive. Many twins appreciate sharing in the successes of their sibling. Many twin athletes who compete in the same sport, for example, say that they would rather see one of them win than both lose. The motivating companionship of the experience makes the competition invigorating and exciting rather than mean-spirited and malicious. Twins who play competitive sports have a healthy outlet for competitive feelings. In […]

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When Twins Break Up

Twins who do not get along with their sibling definitely feel a sense of loss. Although the rupture most likely begins with anger and resentment, the ultimate split results in a distressing emotional upheaval. While this estrangement is not tantamount to the death of one’s twin, the split can nonetheless intensify painful feelings of grief and regret. Acknowledging that one’s twin connection is no longer special or comforting is heartbreaking. In fact, some twins feel tremendous shame over the split. […]

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No Room for Healthy Competition

My work with twins has highlighted how they often have difficulty handling conflict and competition. Rather than agreeing to disagree or listening to their twin’s perspective, they are driven to win instead of compromise. I believe this lack of emotional maturity results from the fact that they are still struggling to come to terms with their individual identity and therefore are still fighting to beat their rival rather than respectfully accepting their differences. Isn’t it ironic that twins, who are […]

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Twin Travails

High school–age twins frequently contact me via my website to request help with a project or paper about twin relationships. Most of them research issues or ideas that resonate with their developmental experiences. The other day, three female sixteen-year-olds—an identical twin pair and a fraternal twin—asked for my assistance with a presentation they were preparing for a school assembly. I suggested that they discuss some of the challenges that twins encounter growing up, since most people are incredulous to learn […]

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R-e-s-p-e-c-t

Twins who grew up in the role of the caretaker often struggle to not repeat that behavior in other intimate relationships. Even when a twin successfully discards this role with her sibling, she may consciously or unconsciously duplicate this behavior with friends, other family members, and significant others. An adult twin woman in her thirties, whom I will call Cherie, continually gets herself in trouble by putting the needs of her friends first. She has tremendous difficulty saying no to […]

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