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Same sex twins of different sizes... how to deal with comparisons?

(9 Posts)
Linguaphile Wed 26-Feb-14 21:31:46

One of our girls has always been a bit shorter and wider than the other. At first the difference was not that noticeable, but now people are always commenting on how DT1 is bigger or 'more plump' than DT2. Today, a stranger in a shop mistook DT1 for a boy and when I said she was a girl, she apologised, saying, "She's just bigger than her sister. I could definitely tell your other one was a girl because she's so delicate!"

I get that it's natural for people to compare because they're twins, but all the unsolicited and comments are unwelcome and are really starting to get to me. One day very soon, my girls are going to understand what people are saying about their bodies, and although people don't mean any harm in comparing, those comments could cause body image issues and unhealthy competition. It's particularly worrying as DH's family is fairly harsh regarding excess weight (even on babies), and I worry that there will be a lot of teasing about being the 'fat' twin, even once she has grown a bit and lost it.

I also worry that the comments are affecting me, causing me to unnecessarily compare their weight and fret about whether I'm perhaps doing something wrong with DT1's feeding (though I honestly can't think of what that would be as both are given the same amounts--we don't encourage them to eat if they seem full, for example).

They're both normal weights, though--still in the same percentile, even (just below 50th).

Any words of wisdom here? How do I deal with all of these comments in a healthy way? I know I can't shield them (or myself) from all comparison, but some tools for equipping them and myself to take it all in stride would be great.

DreamingOfAFullNightsSleep Wed 26-Feb-14 21:43:39

I'm not sure really, but in a similar boat. At 22 months, my boys don't even look like twins, the Clarks lady measuring their feet was totally baffled by why they had the same size feet and couldn't believe they are twins. My bigger twin (who was the smallest born by a pound) is around the 50th centile now. His brother has slipped down to the 9th (he does have reflux and food intolerances though)

I end up blustering about Dt1 having reflux to total strangers sometimes as i get so cross. Do they think we don't feed one child?! I don't really know the answer, except to keep telling both boys they're perfect, just as they are.

DreamingOfAFullNightsSleep Wed 26-Feb-14 21:44:18

The little twin is about 4" shorter too

Moggy72 Wed 26-Feb-14 21:49:12

I am a twin and my sister is at three dress sizes smaller than me. I was a bit more aware of differences between us when I went through a serious puppy fat stage at around the age of 11. I've always loved my food whilst my twin was a picky eater and even now has much more self discipline than me. My parents always brought us up to be really confident and independent girls - so it didn't really bother me... Though people are probably more image conscious nowadays. My parents always played up our individual strengths e.g I was a bit more intelligent and got better grades. Stay focused on the positive differences between your DTs.

Moggy72 Wed 26-Feb-14 21:50:48

Btw I also have twin DSs - so I know the urge to constantly compare.

ThreeBeeOneGee Wed 26-Feb-14 21:55:18

I have B/G twins but the girl is significantly bigger than the boy, and has been since birth. People find it really hard to get their heads round this.

beachesandbuckets Wed 26-Feb-14 22:27:45

similar kind of issue here that has been worrying me and am relived that its been raised. One of my baby girls is quite pretty looking, and everyone comments on how cute she is, she is always the first baby to be picked up even by Dh. My other little girl looks like Dh, she is mistaken for being a boy, and has less feminine features if you see what I am saying. I am worried that they will be known as the 'pretty twin' and the 'ugly one'. I totally appreciate that I am being ridiculous, and that I am grateful that they are alive and healthy, but I guess that its a mothers instinct to worry about future issues and how I head these off, as they are obviously going to be compared until they are adults. Are there any books on raising twins that anyone would recommend that would cover self esteem or such like.

DreamingOfAFullNightsSleep Thu 27-Feb-14 11:19:14

beachesandbuckets when my Dts were born, Dt2 was little, perfect, dainty features, adorable. Dt1 looked like a goblin working in Gringotts bank, in harry potter, if you've seen the films. He was a lb heavier too, so I had a tiny, cute one and 'huge' (6lb9!) less cute one. I was so worried about that, but Dt1 is gorgeous now, grown into his features, and is actually the more obviously cute one in some ways now. If your girls are still babies, there's loads of time for them to change.

I should add, if neither of your girls are overweight, there really shouldn't be an issue, its just thinking up a suitable comeback for the random comments hmm . What i find so annoying though is from babyhood, small and cute is seen as better. My Dt2 is tall. he's not even chubby, or chunky. But little Dt1 gets the attention sad

I have just bought peaceful parent, happy kids, and siblings without rivalry on recommendation from a friend, so when i finally finish reading them I'll report back on usefulness smile

neversleepagain Thu 27-Feb-14 17:29:15

My girls are physically the same size and same height, they are the same size clothes too which is handy, they were only 4oz apart at birth and there has never been more than 10oz difference between their weights.

However, their faces look completely different. DT2 has my olive complexion with brown hair and brown eyes, DT1 has her father's fairer complexion with blonde hair and green eyes. The fairer twin was also not nearly as pretty as her sister when they were tiny and everyone would comment how beautiful her sister was. It used to upset me. They are now 17 months and DT1 has turned out to be a smiley happy little girl and people warm to her much more quickly than her sister. She is more outgoing and loves other people.

I am not looking forward to when they are older and having them compared to each other. To me they are both lovely.

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