The "twin talk"

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Last week, one of my twins Alex was complaining about the tag in his t-shirt. I proceeded to show both boys that everyone has tags in their shirts. I thought it would be easier for Alex to accept the tag if he understood it. But how do you explain tags and sizes to a 2.5 year old? I told them the tag said 2 because it is for a two year old. I asked Nate, “How old are you?” He had a blank look on his face so I said, “How many are you?” He smiled and said, “Twins!”

This was a big shock because we almost never call them twins. We call them brothers. My husband and I never discussed this out loud, but considering the boys just learned the phrase “garbage disposal” last week, we did not think they were old enough to understand the difference between twins and brothers.

I asked Nate who said he was a twin and he said it was their day care teacher.  Since Nate brought it up, I said, “Yes you and Alex are twins. Twin means Nate and Alex have the same birthday. Nate’s birthday is Alex’s birthday. Alex’s birthday is Nate’s birthday.”

Nate thought about it then said, “I want to eat birthday cake.” Alex said, “I want birthday cake too.”

Just as I thought. Clearly not ready to understand their twinness.

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7 thoughts on “The "twin talk"”

  1. Did somebody say “cake?” :-)

    I do think it’s interesting to see when they start to understand that “twin” is different than just “brother.”

    It was also funny to be home and hear various people refer to my kids as “the twins.” I just don’t ever really say that.

  2. My girls have been referred to as “the twins” at day care for some time. It used to bug me a lot, and I know they really don’t know what that means. But now there’s another set of girl twins in their class, I think it will be cut down quite a bit.

  3. Hee :) I like the way he thinks…cake is always good!

    My mom (and her twin sister) were always called “the twins”, and she HATED it. When she had twins, she vowed they would never be called “the twins”. So my little brother and sister (twins), now in their thirties, are still known as “the babies” or “the babes”. I think there’s something about twins that makes people want to lump them together. I must admit, I call my boys “the boys” all the time! Hee!

  4. There are several sets of twins at my girls’ daycare/preschool so I don’t think anyone refers to them as twins. We almost never reference it. But there is another little boy at school that shares their birthday. I mentioned this to them recently, and at the sound of the word “birthday”, one daughter piped up, “I want cake, please!” It seems they think like your boys!

  5. There is a set of boy-girl twins in the classroom attached to my girls’, and their student assistant is an identical twin whose sister visits rather regularly. We also have fraternal triplet cousins. As a result of all this exposure, my 2.5-year-olds seem pretty comfortable with the idea of being twins and sisters, and even understand that they are identical (like their teacher and her sister), while the other multiples they know aren’t. We also focus on the shared birthday concept. I tried to talk about them being in Mommy’s belly together, but they looked at me like I was crazy.

  6. Twin B took until about age 4 to believe that he wasn’t older than (2-inches-shorter) twin A – indeed, as the name suggests, twin A is almost 15 minutes older. They did learn the word twins very early at daycare, but didn’t understand what it meant for quite a while.
    OTOH, my singleton girl (at age 7) got pissed because she felt she had a right to a twin sister and suggested we should adopt her best friend.

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