Question: Should you tell your child that he/she was a twin? If so, when?
Archive for September, 2011
Hello, thank you for your question. I can’t tell anyone what to do but I can offer some food for thought. I strongly believe anything that affects the fabric
of who we are, we have a right to know, e.g. adoption – we already know that adoptees do very well when they know from the beginning about their origins. The same would hold true, IMO, regarding knowing you were half of a duo. We know multiples are aware of each other in utero and it can be argued that some of the conflicting feelings as they grow, may be as a result of losing their co-multiple, even though that is difficult to prove. Some actions can be just normal growing pains or, there may be happy-go-lucky people. If I began life as a multiple, I would want to know that fact. Letting them know earlier rather than later allows survivors to integrate the information and make it a part of the fabric of who they are rather than learning later and understanding that they were never who they thought they were. Some survivors don’t recover without therapy. The parents are dealing with the loss of a no doubt much-wanted child and with a survivor, they can find themselves in the position of having to face their own feelings of pain and grief. We might therefore mess up the message. What I find easier about sharing at the beginning and telling the truth is that if we mess and use the wrong words or become overcome with our own emotions, it isn’t so bad with a baby or toddler but potentially much more complicated with a, say, 14-year old. Hope this helps. Best wishes, Lynda