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Tween twins

(4 Posts)
TwinTum Tue 30-Jun-15 13:59:58

I have 11 yo twin girls (non-id) who will be starting secondary school in Sept. At primary they have been in the same class (single class entry). They get on well (although are very different both in looks and personalities) and have overlaps in their friendship groups so will often be invited the same parties and sleepover etc.
I wondered if there are any issues that tend to crop up in the case of twins at this time (and in fact some may face them earlier if their twins are separated earlier).
For example:
1. When DD1 has a friend for a sleepover, DD2 will join in and sleep in the same room (and vice versa). This currently makes sense as the friend is also a friend of the other one (even if not quite as friendly). I guess in future they wont know each other's friends so well, so may be the expectation should be that the other should not fully join in the sleepover?

2. I suspect DD2 will (at least initially) make friends more quickly and be invited to more. DD1 is also popular but tends to be a grower - she is harder to get to know as she is quieter than her sister and less good at taking the initiative in friendships. Did you find this caused upset at this age?

3. DD1 is very disorganised and I think will find the move to secondary school tough, because more will be expected of her and she wont be able to rely on her sister to remind her to bring stuff home, or even to borrow books from when she has forgotten (as often happens). Did you find one struggled more than the other on being separated for any reason or any personality traits that became more noticeable?

4. Did it cause issues if one hit puberty before the other (which is looking like will happen)?

Any other twin specific issues that cropped up for others at this age group?

mandy214 Tue 30-Jun-15 14:16:09

I'm a twin (with non-ID sister) with 10yr old twins (b/g twins) too so am watching carefully.

For me, I don't remember it being intimidating although of course it must be, and actually it was good that she was there - are your girls going to be in the same class? We were, and when we were streamed into ability groups, we were in the same group too. We still had different friends though. One issue was that her group of friends was slightly more trendy than mine, we used to bicker about that.

I think they'll both get organised quite quickly, even if they're not in the same class I'm guessing their timetables won't be massively different. You might need a chalkboard or something to keep tabs on what they each need.

I suppose competitiveness became more pronounced because secondary school was more results driven and I do remember feeling second best if I didn't get a higher result than her, but it was generally swings and roundabouts. I did better in some tests, more in others. I wasn't on the netball team (and she was) which caused a slight inferiority complex for a while - I suppose you just have to keep an eye on them.

The only other thing that grated was that even though we are not ID, we were / are very difficult to tell apart so teachers (who had less time to get to know us) would sometimes refer to us as "the X twins". Hopefully that isn't an issue if yours are different but its worth perhaps building in 1:1 time if you can so they're not always together.

Looking forward to reading what everyone else has to say!

TwinTum Tue 30-Jun-15 14:42:48

They will be in different classes for the first time. Academically they are similar (they are going to an academically selective school) but with different strengths and weaknesses (e.g DD1 better at English, DD2 at maths). DD2 is much sportier and will have a chance of being selected for teams etc. DD1 loves sport and will always have a go but is not great at it. She may well be miffed if her sister gets selected for a team and she doesn't, even though she knows her sister is better at sport.

I think DD2 will enjoy being more independent from her sister (they are pretty much together all their waking hours currently which is very unusual in life). DD1 will I think also benefit in time, but will struggle more initially. She would not think of herself as being quite dependent on her twin, but in reality i think she is more dependent that she thinks she is (particularly on the social and organisational sides!)

They have actually not suffered a lot of the typical twin concerns, like being compared to each other or people not taking the time to work out which is which. I think this is in part because their current school is very hot on this and in part because they really do look very different (their last teacher said that they only make sense as twins when you see the whole family - one looks just like me and one like DH, and DH and I have very different colouring; a previous teacher said that if someone walked into the classroom and was asked to pick out the twins my two would be almost the last 2 they would pair together)

If they end up with the same teacher for a subject it will be interesting to see if they mix up the names. Mind you, I am not looking forward to senior school style parents evening - twice as many teachers to get round as anyone else!

mandy214 Tue 30-Jun-15 15:39:20

At least you'll be at the same school. We'll almost definitely be at different schools (mostly single sex here) so 2 lots of parents evenings / trip meetings and no chance of my organised twin helping out the other hmm. Good luck, its really a tough time!

I must say, my T and I were together all the way through school, even though I wasn't picked for the netball team, I was a reserve, so still did all of that. Did all the same activities out of school too (guides / dancing). We were only split up when we went to different universities at 18 and whilst it was liberating in some ways, I felt like I'd lost a limb! Would have been easier to cope with I think if it had been a more gradual process through secondary school years.

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