The twin bond

One of the things that I was most looking forward to as the mother of twins was the twin bond. I had heard so many stories about the deep, sometimes spiritual connection that twins have with each other. It was exciting to me that my kids could maybe have that super strong bond between each other.

Then I heard the other stories. “We couldn’t let them touch each other for years. They were vicious.” “She held her under the water in the bathtub when I turned my back.” “I’ve never had to deal with something like this with my other children.”

People seriously say things like that. Not to be helpful. Not to scare new moms. I think it’s because people think that stories are all relatable. We all want to hear your amusing/interesting/scary anecdote. And we don’t. At least, I don’t.

Just like I didn’t want to hear about the stretch marks that twin moms got on their ankles while I was pregnant, I don’t want to hear about your murderous twin toddlers while I’m struggling with mine in the grocery store. Even if you are trying to be helpful, it’s just not. Tell me the good stories instead.

When my babies chase each other around the kitchen table giggling so hard that Cormac snorts it makes my heart so happy. When they give each other those open-mouthed baby bird kisses, I melt. When Clara makes Cormac laugh out loud by doing something funny with a toy I feel like I could burst with joy.

When I found out that there were two embryos baking in my uterine oven, l tamed my anxiety by focusing on the idea that they would always have someone to play with: a partner in crime, a pal, a built in best friend. I hope that they remain close. I hope that they always giggle at each other and while I know that they won’t always chase each other around the kitchen table, I hope that their friendship will be the strongest part of their relationship.

So far, that bond has been a remarkable thing to observe. It has grown and changed. I am hopeful that it will continue to do so. They can be jealous, of course, and even mean to each other. Cormac has bitten Clara more than once and Clara is pretty terrible about stealing Cormac’s food if she thinks she can get away with it. It’s my job as the parent to curb those behaviors and praise them for the good moments. Hopefully we can continue to foster and grow that amazing twin bond.


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  1. Anna -  January 9, 2013 - 6:30 pm

    So far i havent seen a strong bond between my 4 mnth old twins if they touch each other they start crying! But i am looking forward to seeing what type of strong bond they will develop 🙂 thanks for
    The encouraging blog!

    • Jessica Murphy -  January 13, 2013 - 3:52 pm

      It took awhile for that bond to develop on our end, Anna. I’m thankful that it did though and so excited to see them become friends as they grow up!

  2. Arlene Kalmbach -  January 10, 2013 - 10:05 am

    I have twin one year old boys and I follow your posts for that reason. I too don’t want to hear the bad stories, they’re not encouraging and impact me unnecessarily. It’s not fair to my little guys. Who thus far act like I’d expect siblings to act. They show kindness and they show meanness. The kindness and closeness is the majority. The meanness is only when little Henry, who takes a pacifier gets robbed by little Liam, who doesn’t but thinks it’s cool to walk around with Henry’s paci in his mouth backwards. It happens a lot but it’s not a big deal and we watch and deal with it. Liam also figured out really quick that if he wanted a toy Henry was playing with he could bite him and Henry would drop it. This happens quick so even though they’re being watched it happens. After a few times…Henry bit him back and it hasn’t happened in weeks. 99% of the time if they’re not playing together they’re playing independently right beside each other. Like back to back or shoulder to shoulder. We’ve been really impressed with how although they have the run of a large open living and dining room area they are always about a foot apart. That’s really neat. Not to say they can’t be separated. Sometimes Grandma snatches one for some solo loving and they both do fine.

    • Jessica Murphy -  January 13, 2013 - 3:55 pm

      I love getting comments from you Arlene! (Texan biologist twin mama lady)
      I love how the physical closeness works as well. They like to be near each other. Do yours cosleep? Mine are in separate cribs (at the beginning of the night) but I’m considering a single floor bed at the moment…

      • Arlene Kalmbach -  January 13, 2013 - 3:59 pm

        Hi Jessica
        Mine do not cosleep either BUT I totally plan to do a bed on the floor (or near the floor since scorpions are such an issue here). I already scoped a low platform bed out from Ikea. I’ll just use a full size mattress. My nephews are all a couple of years apart and slept together until the oldest was twelve. They are really close.

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