The Unspoken Dissent of Twins

28 Jun

During their 6 month check up, our paediatrician made an interesting comment:

“I know it’s hard with twins at the moment.  But just wait and see.  They’ll be each other’s company and entertainment.  You won’t have to worry about finding things to do.  You’ll have it much easier than parents of single babies.”

I clung to those words like superglue.  Waiting earnestly for the days of self-sufficiency.

And we’re here.  And to a large degree, he was right.

Largely, people are correct to assume that twins means a natural closeness.  An inseperable bond.  A happy harmony.

But no one mentions the flip-side; the clash of opposing personalities.

Just because they’re twins, they will still go through sibling rivalry.

Even in the womb, Little K was dominating by nature.  After all, he was the one that took up two-thirds of the nutrients from the placenta.  He was also the one that did most of the kicking and swirling around.

On the other hand, Little N was placid.  He was happily snug in the downward position two weeks before the scheduled C-section delivery.  Sometimes in the middle of the night, with Hubby spooning me and both of us with our hands on my belly, we would wait and wait for Little N to finally make some movement.

Yet – once arriving in the outside world – their different personalities seem to have complimented each other.

Until recently.

Somehow, just within this last month, we have managed to go from here:

To here:

We knew it was coming.

It began discreetly.  Little K would snatch a toy right out of his brother’s hand.  Little N – the accommodating one – would just move on.  Happily play with another toy.

But now as their personalities further develop, their own ideas of what they want are also setting in.

And because Little K is bigger than his older brother, he will get away with more.  In return, Little N – being a sensitive soul – will run away in a corner and cry.

We see that there’s an imbalance.  We’re trying to reason with Little K to give back the toy.  But when both are still too young to communicate and understand the “sharing game”; where there isn’t an older sibling who will “know better” and surrender that toy; it all results in a lot of chaos.

What’s baffling about it all is that Little K is actually not aggressive with other children.

If he sees another kid playing with his favourite toy at playgroup, Little K won’t act on it.  But if it’s his twin brother ?  Watch out.

Fortunately, Little N is starting to stand his ground.  And despite the Little K tantrums it causes, we’re encouraging Little N to stick to his guns.

Again, the effects can be horrendous.

But we have to do it.

Until we can actually sit down with them and explain the concept of “taking turns” or “sharing”, it’s going to be a rough ride.

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13 Responses to “The Unspoken Dissent of Twins”

  1. Kristyn June 28, 2011 at 3:23 pm #

    Oh dear, goodluck!!

    Hey, I’m already missing you guys. We should do yum cha one day eh?

    • mamagrace71 June 28, 2011 at 3:54 pm #

      Yumcha ?!!!! Yeah, baby !!! When ? When ? When ?
      I will forewarn you – I have a fetish with chicken feet…nom nom 🙂

  2. Daisy June 28, 2011 at 3:40 pm #

    Oh! I know what you mean!! My boys have only just hit one and they are already starting to try to assert their dominance. I have their big sister here to help, though. She is great at distracting them with other toys, or finding something else they can all play. ALthough she has her own moments of bully behaviour. But both my boys are very good at sticking up for themselves (I think it’s borne of having Roo be older, but still so close in age). I’l be watching with keen interest how your boys get on!

    • mamagrace71 June 28, 2011 at 3:57 pm #

      I can just imagine how tricky things can get if Roo has her moments of “dominance” 🙂
      On the flipside, has she ever felt outnumbered ?
      In any case,a chaotic household is usually one full of love. Right ? 😉

  3. Mumma's Mini Mes - Kym June 28, 2011 at 4:26 pm #

    Oh I can imagine you have your hands full but at least when they become tweens, teenagers and adults they will have good skills to deal with conflict.

    • mamagrace71 June 28, 2011 at 7:45 pm #

      Oooooh, here’s hoping ! Thanks for dropping by 🙂

  4. Jen June 28, 2011 at 7:15 pm #

    Oh ho ho! Good luck with that “explaining the concept of sharing”. I do that about 8 times a day. How old do you think they have to be to understand that one? I’m waiting… (read that in the “I’m wa-a-aiting…” tone that you have to do when you’re waiting for them to understand the concept of sharing).

    • mamagrace71 June 28, 2011 at 7:48 pm #

      Haha, you’re too funny !
      I really don’t know when it’ll start to sink in but I’m hoping the process won’t be too messy. Wishful thinking, right ?

  5. Nay June 28, 2011 at 9:37 pm #

    I am reall enjoying reading your blog – especially learning more about parenting twins. It’s very informative in an informal way 🙂

    Leilah sounds a lot like your Little N – if she gets toys taken off her she just cries. She really needs to gain some confidence…

    • mamagrace71 June 28, 2011 at 10:04 pm #

      Awwwwww, thanks Nay !
      Yeah, we have the same fear that Little N needs to build his confidence too.
      Yet at the same time, we know Little K isn’t doing this intentionally.
      It’s all getting tricky.
      But I guess it’s tricky for every parent 🙂

  6. debwildhope June 28, 2011 at 10:19 pm #

    Wow! Good on you for encouraging your placid boy stand up for himself. And after this stage I’m sure they’ll be best buddies. I bet as adults they’ll be very close. 🙂

    • mamagrace71 June 28, 2011 at 10:23 pm #

      Oh, I do hope so, Deb !
      Hopefully this rough ride will be for the better 🙂

  7. muminsearch June 28, 2011 at 10:48 pm #

    Once they work out the sharing and taking turns thing, they’ll be ok. My kids go through rough stages every now and then, but at the moment it’s peace and they can play for hours and hours. I do have the advantage of on of the kids being a bit older and more understanding though… Good luck with it.

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