Breaking the Inseparability of Twins

by mamagrace71 on October 2, 2012

There seems to be this romantic notion that twins should never be apart. That there is both sweetness and strength in the fact that they are each other’s constant.

And no one was more moved by this than I. Seeing the boys kick and squirm during the ultrasounds, it was astounding that two little beings were so compromsing in such a tight space. 2 little sacs, sharing the one placenta.

Often, both relatives and strangers alike, have all “ooohed and ahhhed” at their intertwined bond; the way they run around in a park randomly holding hands; the moments of happily sharing and swapping their Thomas trains; the little badgering conversations they have with each other (“Come on, K-Bear, come on, come ON!!!” “Okay, okaaaay!”)

But alongside these moments are the growing questions many have asked about whether we’ll be seperating them at school.

Again, my initial idyllic plans were to always, forever keep them together. After all, isn’t that what makes twins special?

Not long ago, illness was rife in our house.

The first bomb that hit was Nunu’s throat infection.  He incessantly coughed like a barking dog.

There was no way he was fit enough to go ahead with the normal weekly activities of swimming class and daycare.

For 3 days straight, a little pajama clad Nunu, would wave his bro off, as he was left behind and quarantined.

It was heartbreaking.

The day I dropped K-Bear off at daycare, sans one twin brother, I was an emotional wreck.

Luckily, we have a very understanding carer, who also happens to be a personal friend.

I got to the door and when she realised that there was one missing, I almost burst into tears.

It was a myriad of concerns that consumed me. I was worried how K-Bear would cope without his brother at daycare. They had never been apart for this long from each other, let alone without either parent.

And yes, perhaps I was letting the drama queen get the better of me. Singleton kids survive daycare on their own. All. The. Time.

But then, my mind would turn back to Nunu. His cough still wasn’t getting better. The visible changes in his appearance; the waning face, the heavy set dark eyes; all made me completely helpless. I wondered if being sick was exhasubated by the absence of his identical sibling.

It was much ado about nothing.

While K-Bear may have asked for his brother a couple of times during that first day, by the second, his sense of new found freedom was palpable.

Back at the ranch, someone else seemed to enjoy having free reigns of the telly…

and the computer…

It was the week when this over-protective, twin mama realised that in constant togetherness, there is the comfort (and necessity) of being apart.

As a wise bloggy friend of mine Bridget, who also happens to be mum of TWO sets of twins, once said, “They need to find their own.”

And thus, breaketh the inseperability of twins.

Joining in with the delightful Jess for IBOT

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{ 29 comments… read them below or add one }

Good Golly Miss Holly! October 2, 2012 at 7:00 am

Bless! I have a girlfriend with ID twin girls & they were inseparable until they started school. I think she found having them in separate classes helped them come into their own personalities more x
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kirri October 2, 2012 at 7:13 am

The first time one of my twins was sick, the healthy one refused to go to prep alone as she was ‘too scared’. The second day, she agreed to fly solo and I spent much of the day worrying as to how she would cope. I was elated when she came home and said she had the best day ever – “just being me”.

Twins most definitely need to ‘find their own’ and mammas of twins need to muddle through the emotional complexities of that journey as well. Not easy at times :)
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gillian October 2, 2012 at 7:38 am

I often wonder about this with my own twins. Part of me wants to dress them the same always, for them to always be together, live together and marry a cute set of twin girls… And part of me knows they need to have their independence and their own identities.
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Caz (The Truth About Mummy) October 2, 2012 at 7:46 am

Not being in the twinnie club you don’t think of things like this. But I can totally see it. Very interesting – I’m guessing they would need space to develop their own personalities.
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mandy October 2, 2012 at 7:47 am

awww what a nice read. i dont have twins but i can relate to your concerns x

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Housewife in Heels October 2, 2012 at 8:14 am

Love this! It’s so lovely to hear about the special bond that your boys share. I am an identical twin and loved growing up with a constant companion. We were put in separate classes at age 7 based on teacher’s recommendations. I think this was important for us to gain a sense of individuality rather than being always regarded as ‘the twins’. But being a twin and being so close to my sister, will always be an important part of my identity. All the best with working out the best for your boys!
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Rhianna October 2, 2012 at 8:34 am

If I had twins I would struggle with this as well (says the mother who loves dressing her kids the same despite there being a five year age gap)
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Lyndal October 2, 2012 at 9:26 am

it sounds like you are doing the most fantastic job with them lovely!
x

#teamiBOT
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Salz October 2, 2012 at 9:29 am

I know in primary they like to separate them. They say because they ARE different people and have to make there own friends. They also work better separated. They are adorable when they are together though but your bloggy friend is right they need to find their own.

They will be fine mumma. Children adapt quicker then us adults.

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Kevin October 2, 2012 at 9:32 am

A good example of our kids being much more durable and capable than we give them credit for. If only we could “get out of the way” more often.
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Emma October 2, 2012 at 9:40 am

My partner is an identical twin, I think they really like the fact they were not always together!
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Enid Bite'Em October 2, 2012 at 9:45 am

Yes, separate identities are important, but as they get older they’ll be able to decide for themselves how much time to spend together, and if they’ve had a chance to develop individuality, like you’ve given your boys, they’ll know the difference and be able to make the decision that feels best for them (here’s hoping it’s the same decision!) and then poor old Mum/Dad won’t have to worry about it so much :)

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Patchwork Cactus October 2, 2012 at 10:06 am

My brother and me are only 11months apart, we were in the same year in school, had all the same friends and experiences etc. We only separated schools at 16 and it was great for our relationship. We didn’t have the identity crisis of twins but we did rely on each other a lot as we emigrated countries and had to create a whole new world. I developed my technical side when I had to do it myself and his handwriting greatly improved without me there to fill in his forms for him. My parents were big on giving us different experiences and im happier for it.

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Kelly HTandT October 2, 2012 at 11:01 am

A little separation never hurt anyone. We all need to find our independence. You don’t want them being 30yr old single men because they can’t bring themselves to leave their brother for long enough to start a relationship lol. But I can kind of relate. My boys aren’t twins but they have been inseparable since H was born and it breaks my heart if they spend a day apart. I’ll be so sad when J starts school and leaves H behind. Bit different though, I know x
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Chrissie at Me and My Munchkin October 2, 2012 at 2:13 pm

Oh how I just love to read your twin-posts! I can only imagine what that would be like, as I struggle to drop just one off at daycare. Only having the one child, I don’t know what it would be like to have to organise 2 of them, or have them be apart. Keep up the good work Mama!
Chrissie xx
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jess October 2, 2012 at 2:14 pm

I remember my sister, who was the youngest of three until I came along 11 years later, saying that as an adult, she struggled to do things alone, because she was always with her elder sisters growing up. It’s something I’m mindful of with my four; teaching them to enjoy each others company, but also to be able to separate from each other as well. With twins I can imagine it’s even harder to do, but probably just as necessary.
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Catherine Rodie Blagg @CoTaaB October 2, 2012 at 2:24 pm

I’ve mentioned this before, but my best friend is a twin. One extrovert and one introvert. It wasn’t until one went on to uni and the other stayed at home that they found ‘thier own’ as Bridget says. Separation is hard, but probably a good thing – it’s not forever :-) xx
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Kylez...aka...Mrs. P October 2, 2012 at 2:32 pm

I don’t know how you do it, having two at once, I’m so super impressed. i can imagine at first it would be hard, but then as they get older being apart would probably be good for them, and also make them appreciate each other even more.
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Aroha @ Colours of Sunset October 2, 2012 at 3:41 pm

I went to high school with a set of idential twin girls. They had their own separate groups of friends but were still close. When I moved home and found out one lived in Melb and the other in Brissie I was shocked. LOL! They will find their own, and always have each other too. Such a precious gift, twins. For their mama and each other!
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iSophie October 2, 2012 at 4:37 pm

My eldest son’s best friend is a twin, his other twin is in a different class. They are so different, and my son actually doesn’t get along with the other twin much at all. Was a little bit awkward when it came time to birthday invitations but ended up not being a prob. I discovered that twin etiquette meant I didn’t have to invite both twins just because.

Gosh your boys are gorgeous!

IBoT

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Julia Kuku Couture October 2, 2012 at 5:25 pm

As a primary school teacher I see lots of parents of twins unsure about if they should separate them or not. My view has always been they they should stay together in Kindy (unless one is super dominant) and then discuss it with the teachers who will be able to give your their thoughts on it for the following year. Classes are usually made up based on academic ability, behaviours and personalities so for those reasons they may or may not need to be separated.

P.S your boys are such cuties xx
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Ai Sakura October 2, 2012 at 6:18 pm

I really am one of those people that think twins will do most things together.. so sad to hear that Nunu was looking all forlorn without his twin. Thankfully, they managed to find their own joy soon enough though!
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Denyse Whelan Education Specialist October 2, 2012 at 6:55 pm

That’s a very interesting and insightful post Grace. Hard to get your head around it all as a Mum..seems like the boys themselves showed you it was OK. As far as school is concerned, it is always a case by case scenario. I would never recommend separation to a parent unless there seemed to be a very good reason. It will all work out, as you already can see…so my lovely mum..good job!! Denyse x
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Rita October 2, 2012 at 10:05 pm

My auntie had two set of twins, all girls. She always made a big deal about not dressing them the same way and try to search for their own personality by giving them different activities. I don’t have children but I think follow your heart, you are the best person who knows what your children need.
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Nami October 3, 2012 at 2:43 am

You’re going to find this strange, but my parents acted like twins. They would act elated when they were apart from each other, as if my sister and I forced them together all the time. Still, they kept their “feelers” out for each other. Must be nice to have that kind of partner in life.
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Penny October 4, 2012 at 3:02 pm

I felt a little of the same the first time I dropped Purr off to kindy and Squeak had to stay home due to illness. I wasn’t too upset, I really believe they need time to function as one, learn as one. It’s going to be hard to live a life competing against one another. I think that worries me more than splitting them up.
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Alice October 5, 2012 at 9:07 am

Grace, great that you can see the benefits of together and alone time. Princess, our middle, has been in the same year as twins both in Perth, and two sets here in Brisbane. A friend of mine is also a twin, and it’s fascinating to hear the different reasons for keeping them either together or apart at school. Two out of the three families decided to separate them, and it’s been fun to see their personalities really shine :)
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