Thursday, February 10, 2011

Chapter 11: The grief of a lone twin

This chapter will explore various aspects of the grief of the lone twin.  If your twin died, it will hopefully also reassure you that it is natural, in the circumstances, to have feelings of grief about your twin.  The grief of twin-loss is completely different from the grief engendered by other family bereavement experiences, such as a parent, sister or brother.  Few people understand this difference.  If you are the only womb twin survivor in the family, you may end up totally isolated in your grief.
The death of your own co-twin can be a catastrophe. Your entire inner world, constructed since conception around your personal role as a twin, is completely shattered. 

The twin bond
The grief that twins experience when their twin dies is without equal anywhere in the field of human relations, for nowhere else in human life is the love so deep.  We grieve as much as we love and we love as much as we are bonded to one another.  The grief feels as acute as the bond is deep.  The bond between twins is the closest bond in Nature, so is all the  more painful when the bond is broken.
    The twin bond differs from all other possible attachment bonds formed in the lifetime of a human being. Twins live entwined lives at every level imaginable.  For a twin, the twin bond is the primary and deepest attachment bond to which all other attachment bonds are subservient.   This unique bond begins at conception and lasts a lifetime; it truly is life-long and transcends even death.

A foetal assumption
The twin bond formed in the womb arises out of a “foetal assumption.”  The foetus, knowing no other situation since the beginning of life, can be said to take for granted that the co-twin has Always Been There and is simply part of The Way Things Are.  So the deepest attachment bond of all is not created in the same way as other attachment bonds formed in born life. The twin bond is formed out of the certain knowledge of a consistent Presence, somewhere close by.  It has been pointed out that this deep childhood attachment is not some kind of infantile dependency and is particularly string bwteen MZ twins. Like all other strong human attachments, the twin bond is necessary for the development of both twins, throughout their lives. 

A preoccupation with the co-twin
For twins, the whole idea of twinning itself is a major preoccupation, with particular emphasis on their own pair.  DZ  twins differ markedly from MZ twins in the way they relate to others, such as in the way they make and share their friends.  MZ twins may share as many as half of their friends, but then they share so much already and have always done so since their earliest days.  DZ twins share fewer - about 25% for same sex and only 5% for opposite sex. Opposite-sex twins may end up at different schools and spend much of their lives living separately.  The bond between opposite sex DZ twins is much less intimate than same-sex DZ twins and MZ twins.  MZ twins sometimes end up marrying another set of MZ twins and living very close to each other.  Clearly, only another MZ twin would understand and empathize with the need to speak to one’s co-twin several times a day.

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  1. If u red Charles Boklage book , how new humans are made , in the chapter on boy girl twins . He said that boy girl twins are the most intimate relationship any male or female could have .

    Base on my observations.Boy girl twins are either extremely close and inseparable . Or they are just like normal sibling and not close at all and lead separate lives. Most boy girl twins mostly end up in two different opposites.

    Just my observation. Because many boy girl twins i see either end up in this two different endings. Of course most end up in the latter ending.And its wrong to assume all ALL boy girl twins to be not close and less closer than mz twins .

    Still society still have a role in breaking the bonds between boy girl twins too. Society always want boy girl twins to be very close at young then separate at teenage hood(Prevent incest?). While same sex twins are encourage to be close as possible till death .

    Just my two cents.

  2. Thanks for the comment. It's not an assumption that DZ twins are less close than MZ twins. This is a fact, established by research carried out by Nancy Segal.

  3. I guess its true to an extent. Still there're always exceptions.