Tag Archives: twins

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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Think Twice: You’re My Twin, Not My Parent

Parents who have adult children involved with partners whom they dislike know better than to share unsolicited opinions. Perhaps they learned through earlier mishaps or were advised by close friends that disclosing unwanted judgments or advice can cement their son or daughter’s commitment to what is perceived as an ill-fated outcome. This quandary became the topic of conversation with an identical twin gentleman in his fifties whom I will call Kurt. He contacted me because he was feeling estranged from […]

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