I am a mother of multiples, but I do not consider myself a “Multiples Mom,” maybe because I had a singleton first. My husband and I never refer to our fraternal boys as twins–they are always “the boys” or to family, “the brothers.” I tell my daughter and her friends that she is lucky to be the big sister to twin boys–not every girl gets that chance! But when it comes to my boys, I try to emphasize the fact that they are brothers who share the same birthday.
Recently Jenna, a fellow HDYDI blogger, discussed the issue of twins and identity, and you can read her eloquent thoughts here. At the end of her post, she asked, “What would happen if I told people I have a son and two daughters, instead of telling them I have a son and twin daughters?” Well, this is what I do every day. If someone asked me how many kids I have, I usually respond with one 7 year old and two 4 year olds. I never mention the fact that they are twins unless asked.
Both boys are different not only in physique but in personalities and interests. One boy is very athletic, but tenderhearted, and you will often see him taking care of his dolls. The other boy is not as interested in sports, but loves to pretend firefighter/policeman and play board games. They look like brothers and their personalities are so different that once kids and teachers get to know them, they are hard to confuse with one another.
This past year in their “three’s” preschool class, fellow parents and students were asking the boys if they were twins and I realized that up until this point I hadn’t even TOLD them they were twins! I always say, and they now say to me, that they are brothers and best friends. I might have under emphasized their twin relationship too much. It is special to be a twin, but more important for us to focus on our family as a whole.
As much as I try not to be multiples specific, having twins is a fact of life. As my daughter says, “how can I get a break, Mom, there are TWO of them.” Each year I am surprised by the multiple specific issues I face: separations for classrooms and playdates; differing interests and activities; getting along with each other and their sister; sharing a room. Whether a Multiples Mom or a Mom that happens to have multiples, we all face the same problems. Do you consider yourself a Multiples Mom?
Leslie H. is a freelance writer and mom to an amazing 7 year old girl and two adventurous 4 year old boys.