New Understandings of Twin Relationships: From Harmony to Estrangement and Loneliness

Author(s) : Barbara Klein, Author(s) : Stephen A. Hart, Author(s) : Jacqueline M. Martinez

New Understandings of Twin Relationships: From Harmony to Estrangement and Loneliness

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New Understandings of Twin Relationships takes an experience-based approach to exploring how twin attachment and estrangement are critical to understanding the push and pull of closely entwined personal relationships.

Based on the research expertise of each of the authors (all identical twins in their own right), and vignettes from twins across the globe, this book describes the inner workings of the twin-world, showing how the twin-world creates experiences that are often more intense and intricately textured than those in the singleton-world. Chapters debunk myths surrounding twinship and analyze the developmental stages of the twin relationship as well as the effect of being a twin on one's mental health from different perspectives. The authors articulate how attachment, separation anxiety, loneliness, estrangement, and the subjective experience of the twin and non-twin "other" impact behavior, thinking, and feeling.

Through its careful study of the many psychological challenges that twins face throughout their lifetime, this text will help psychologists, scholars, clinicians, and twins themselves attain a deeper understanding of all interpersonal relationships.

Reviews and Endorsements

The book for which you are waiting! If you are a twin, have twins in the family, or are just plain curious about twins-read this book now. The narrative explanation of twin thinking and behavior comes alive from three blended perspectives-communicologist, psychologist, and sociologist. The who, what, where, and why of twin lifeworlds is depicted with profound insight and enticing clarity. The research, the therapy, and the statistics about twins emerge in personal narratives, thematic analysis, and defining typologies. For the general reader and specialist alike, the book covers person to person communication, issues of identity, anxiety, and separation for each twin, each family, and the public response to both. - Richard L. Lanigan, director and laureate fellow, International Communicology Institute, Washington, DC; fellow, Polish Academy of Science.

There is something liberating about reading literature written by twins for twins. It's authentic and relates to a subconscious space rarely recognised. For the main struggle that all twins face is that of being misunderstood by the non-twin. Once again, Barbara has managed to bring together a wealth of information together with her collaborators which give us a better understanding on multiple levels as to the dynamics of twin personalities and their struggle for identity and independence. The challenges that being born a twin are highlighted further in their need for better understanding often plagued by lonliness and confusion. This book allows twins to decode their personalities, deconstruct their reactions and finally understand that there is a perfectly logical reason for the challenges they face. The more research done in this area, the more we as twins will be able to understand our make up and transform these seemingly limiting factors into advantages. - Mikela Fenech Pace, HR Consultant and Executive Coach. An author herself she is the daughter of a fraternal twin father and an identical twin mother, is a fraternal twin and is the mother of fraternal twins.

As an academic and parent of twins, I love the combination of theory and lived experience in this book. The scholarly, evidence based approach is confidence inspiring, and, combined with the author's lived experience of being a twin and working with twins, you know are in very good hands here. As a parent of twins who is not a twin, this book gave me a window into my twins' lives that I didn't have before, giving me a greater understanding of who and how they are and how they develop, and what challenges they face as twins. It also brought me face to face with and corrected my own assumptions about their lives that were not accurate. It's a book I'll return to more than once as I navigate parenting twins, and I highly recommend it to any parents of twins! - Erin McCarthy, PhD, professor of Philosophy, St. Lawrence University.

"New Understandings of Twin Relationships" is a marvelous book. It provides a rich portrayal of the intricate lives of twins and the unique challenges and pitfalls faced by their parents. As an academic, I found the discussion thought-provoking and fascinating. As a singleton parent of gifted twins, I found it also moving, helpful, consoling and inspiring. - Paul Forster, PhD, professor of Philosophy, University of Ottawa.

"A marvelous work. In reading the manuscript, I learned of the importance and endurance of the twin relationship. I also found that twins must respond to a wider world. These life stories are compelling and inspirational. The book has opened my eyes to an essential area of human and social development." - John McNeil, Professor Emeritus, UCLA Graduate School of Education & Information Studies.

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