joan2.jpg“Don’t twins always want to be together?” This single inane question emanates from the mouths of the educated elite on down.

The Harvard educated high school college counselor cannot understand why my twin sons are applying to different colleges and why they make such a big deal about adjusting their schedules so they have separate classes. “I don’t understand this”, she mumbles incredulously, “don’t twins always want to be together?” Even the University executive vice president is shocked to learn that our son’s twin is attending a different college. “Don’t you realize that there is a discount for twins who are roommates?” he says to us.

Sadly, however, it is parents of twins who seem most outraged by our decision to send our sons to different universities. Our sons were aware from an early age that attending the same college was not an option. Although we recognized that some viewed this stipulation as mean, unfair, or unhealthy, my husband and I did not want our sons put in the position of having to decide this for themselves.

Parents of twins who have not recognized and nurtured their twins’ needs for individuality and separateness cannot tolerate the notion that their twins’ might want or need to be on their own. One parent I know sabotaged her twin daughter’s desire to have a separate college experience by urging the other twin daughter to apply to the same college after her sister had already been admitted. Months later she contacted me wondering why the twin who was admitted first was enraged with her sister and refusing to speak to her.

Parents, educators, and society at large need to revamp their mindset about twin togetherness.



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