Survival of the Fittest

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Categories Infants

Before our babies were born, people told us how nice it would be for the girls to have someone to play with while they grow up.  They told us how twins learn to get along with each other and share a special bond.  I’m sure that will all be true at some point, but right now it is survival of the fittest….

Since the girls both started moving, they are constantly competing with each other. They will grab toys out of each other’s hands. They will each take one end of a toy and pull until one loses her grip and falls over and bumps her head.

They will physically try to pull each other off my lap.  And if that doesn’t work, they’ll lean in a try to bite each other.

They eat off each other’s tray, and I’ve even seen them take food out of each other’s mouth.

I’m sure they will eventually grow out of this phase and learn that they don’t need to compete with each other.  There are enough toys and snacks for everyone. And, I’m sure at some point they’ll start cooperating to overpower their older brother, but in the meantime they’ve disproven another myth about twins.

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9 thoughts on “Survival of the Fittest”

  1. My boys are only 7 months old, so they aren’t too mobile, but I do have one crawler. Every single time my son Luke is happy with a paci in his mouth, my crawler, Nolan will go over to him and steal it. Breaks my heart!

    Jen from Blonde Ambition

  2. I feel like a lot of the things “people” say about the benefits of twins really don’t kick in until they’re older.

    On the one hand, I do think that my kids were able to play more independently than their singleton age-mates by around a year old, so that was nice.

    But the real benefits of having twins, where they play with each other and all of that, doesn’t really hit until 18-24 months. After that, I think you really start to see the big benefit of having the two of them together. Before that, I think it’s just… well… fricking hard.

    But you knew that. :-)

  3. We are still in survival of the fittest mode with my B/G twins who are 2 y. 4 mo. It’s a different kind of survival now…trying to keep them from poking each other’s eyes on purpose, wrestling, pushing, and biting (re-entered this phase, yippee.)
    But then, George went to Abigail when SHE was in timeout and hugged and kissed her over the baby-gate in the hall, and said “love you Tister” and it made it all better!
    Then I took a deep breath and smiled…this is why I love having twins!

  4. My B/G 13 month old twins do the exact same stuff! One toy is always appealing to the both of them and if one is being held/comforted, the other decides that is the exact time they need the exact same thing! I am just starting to see them play actually together and laugh and chatter in the baby monitor in the morning before I come in. I see glimpses of what will soon be a reality of twins keeping each other company and all that glorious stuff but at this point, as goddess says, it is fricking hard! :) But nothing worth doing is easy and this twin thing is a gift even when it doesn’t always feel like it! I am so looking forward to when they can actually experience the benefits of twin-dom (and we as parents can too!) that so many others talk about. I love having twins and can’t wait to see how they interact when they can actually talk and cooperate together :)!

  5. Maybe it is a matter of personality, but my girls are mostly cooperative. Of course there is fighting over toys, there were some weeks of biting (thankfully, only Beatrice did it), but mostly, they do stuff together, call each other to play with them, and offer toys in exchange when they want the other’s, as well as food (learned that by themselves, at about 10mo). The thing they fight over the most now is my boobs – both want to nurse while holding to the other nipple, but alas, there is almost always another toddler attached to that one, so I have to hold their hands or they will stick their fingers into each other’s mouths.

  6. I agree with Goddess. My girls are just shy of 19 months and starting to play together SOMETIMES. They have learned to “trade” which is their way of sharing. I’ve noticed huge differences between the way they play “together” [even if it’s not totally together all the time] and the way that singletons [esp. ones with no other siblings] play with them. They have no idea how to share or trade or anything. You can’t blame them, though, because they haven’t had months of practice like twins do! It’s really rough in those younger months to teach how to share [nearly impossible], but, once they do kind of get it in their own little way it makes a huge difference on those playdates!

    I have heard [correct me if I’m wrong] that things start to get “easier” with twins [whatever that means] at around 2. Then it’s more like having two young toddlers vs. twins.

  7. Things DO get easier … but I think the age that it gets easier is a little different for everyone depending on your personalities.

    For me, I saw a huge developmental leap around 2 but the changes that made my life alot easier came around 3. I noticed this with my older daughter as well (she is 15 months older).

    Suddenly, they had a better understanding of consequences, so reasoning with them became easier. My way of dealing with arguments and toy struggles is to stay out of it unless someone starts hitting, then I step in and say, “Sort it out quickly, if I have to get involved the toy goes away”. If I get involved, that toy goes away for a long time (week or more), not just a time out. Now I can see them making a decision … is the toy worth fighting over enough to loose it? They mostly decide no … and one will say, “I’ll have a small turn then you can have it” or “You have it first, then me”.

    They didn’t do that at 2.

    The other reason it got easier for me at 3 is now I can hop in the car and take them places … WITHOUT A DIAPER BAG … no stroller, no snacks, no drinks, etc., etc. It’s great to say, “Lets eat lunch out” and not have to start planning at 6 in the morning.
    .-= Merri Ann´s last blog ..Why I’ll never be "Mother Of The Year" =-.

  8. My twin sons started fighting when F learned crawling at age 9 months. He stole toys from his nonmoving brother until, at 14 months, they both learned to walk. His brother then discovered that he was two inches taller, and proceeded to take revenge. They also started trying to shove each other from my lap.
    They still do, but they also play together a lot. They never coalitioned against their elder sister, who is still almost the same weight as the two of them together (she’ 10 and sturdy, they’re 7 and thin). The sister does complain a lot about the injustice of her not having a twin sister.

  9. H and I are 10 months on Wednesday, and have just started playing together…. sort of. They do lots of looking at each other and laughing, and some wrestling, which is proto-playing together in my mind. H likes to be wherever I is, while I is happy to play on his own. So, H will go over to where I is standing by the footstool and then use I’s clothes to pull to standing. Needless to say, I DOES NOT LIKE THIS. I is smaller than H and gets physically overpowered a lot. Today H is moving from the infant room at daycare to the 12-18 mo room where there are bigger and more mobile kids. Either H will get even rougher with I or will get put in his place!

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