Dear Barb—All Manners of Twins

Dear Barb:

Hi, my sister has 2-year-old twin girls.  Ever since they were born, my sister has dressed them identically.  I don’t think that is a good idea. How will they ever establish their own identity?  I have talked to my sister about this, but she says, twins are supposed to be dressed the same.  She doesn’t believe it will impact their sense of self at all.  What do you think? Thanks, Trish.

Hey Trish:

Thanks for your letter.  I personally tend to think it is okay to dress them the same some of the time, but they also need to develop their own identify by dressing differently at times.  According to research from the Multiple Birth Association, after the age of three, twins should be able to choose their own clothes and develop their individual personalities.  Also, as they get older, they should not be referred to as the “twins” but rather by their own names.  I’m sure that once they assert their unique personalities your sister will allow them the opportunity to express themselves through their dress.  At this age it is easy to choose how to dress them, but they will eventually assert themselves and want to choose what to wear and how to do their own hair etc.

Dear Barb:

My sister has two adult sons, who each have teenage boys.  When we have family gatherings I can’t believe how these boys behave.  They basically sit on their phones the whole time and rarely interact with anyone.  When the family get together is at my home, I insist no phones during dinner and the boys almost seem lost.  They have no social skills and forget about manners! The boys never say please or thank you and my sister and her husband don’t say anything to correct this behaviour.  What is happening to this generation, I worry about how they will function as adults.  Is it just me, or is this a concern for others as well? Thanks Karen.

Hi Karen:

I think your letter reflects a lot of the thoughts and feelings about the young generation.  However, I think we need to keep in mind the behaviour of teenagers of previous generation, and the concern adults had for them.  I don’t know about you, but I remember being a teenager and when family visited for special occasions, I would be barricaded in my room on the phone.  Or if I was at someone else’s house, I sat there totally uninterested in what the adults were talking about.  Even when someone spoke to me I grunted out a one word answer.  It seems that we all got through that and turned out to be half decent people, so I wouldn’t worry too much.  Your sister and her husband are probably choosing their battles carefully, so as not to totally alienate their children.  Hope this helps Karen.

Email your questions to voice@voicemagazine.org. Some submissions may be edited for length or to protect confidentiality; your real name and location will never be printed. This column is for entertainment only. The author is not a professional counsellor and this column is not intended to take the place of professional advice.
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