How to Use This Blog

A Wayfarer is a person who is traveling, a particular place, a circumstance, a stage of life, etc. Let's walk the road of adoption together. The journey is so much better with company!
Much of this information is useful for any adoption, but this blog is designed to be a
I hope this blog will be helpful to you in your adoption whether you are considering, waiting or home. I started this blog when we were adopting and found there was next to nothing on the web in any orderly manner. I set about to collect information for myself and then for others. Now, there are more sites for resources, but still not much that brings it all together. I hope this blog will serve as a sort of clearing house for Ethiopian Adoption Information. Please feel free to contribute your knowledge through commenting.
You can search by topic in three ways. 1. Go to the "key word" tabs on top and open pages of links in those topics. 2. Use the "labels list" in the side bar or 3. use the "search bar" above the labels list. You can also browse the blog by month and year in the Posts section or in any of the above as well. The sidebar links are to sites outside of this blog. While I feel they provide good information, I can not vouch for each site with an approval rating. Use your own discernment for each. If you have more to add to the topic, please add it in the comment section of that page or post.
And, please link to The Wayfarer Adoption Blog by putting my button on
your blog so others can use this resource too. Please link to this blog when ever you can and whenever you re-post things (or images) you have found here. Thanks!
The solid tabs are links to my other blogs for books and family. Check them out if you are interested.
Welcome to the journey!

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Like-Twins, artificial twinning

I recently posted this to my agency yahoo group and thought it would make a nice informative post. Hope it is useful to those of you considering this possibility.

Artificial twins are children in the same family who are closer than a year in age. Some say 8 months apart or closer, others say closer than 11 months apart. They can be birth child/adopted child, two adopted children adopted at different times or the same time, from different ethnicity or the same, same gender or different genders. There are even cases of birth children being this close in age. Irregardless of how it occurs there are certainly factors to consider before intentionally doing this. I think extra consideration is needed if the two to be "twinned" are the same gender. Remember, if you have a referral for a child who is around a year younger than a child you have, you are likely going to find that the child is in fact closer in age or older than the child you have in your home already (for Ethiopia).

We adopted two boys who were said to be about 5 months apart in age. In reality they are likely about 2-3 months. We have altered the birth dates to make them 8 months apart in age due to emotional maturity/ or lack of and some delays physically/or lack of, this is going to work out well for us because we have one who is just plain talented and one who is delayed. But, the truth is we have created a situation that would be considered artificial twinning. We encounter a lot of  "Oh, twins!" when we are out in public. While this is working out fine, the boys are good friends now, not at first- at all!, there is some competition that is confused by their age being so close. I think it will help when one goes to school and the other stays home. It would have been more ideal and better for their own personalities and bonding if one were a few years younger rather than a few months. But, that is not what God designed for our family and it is working out fine. Our first two are 19 months apart and we had to deal with some of the same things even though the gap is wider. I also know that some of this is sibling rivalry and is normal. I also know that closeness in age and same gender will exacerbate the competition beyond just sibling rivalry.

I would say that every family is going to work this out differently. What works for one is not going to be the same as another family. I would ask some questions of yourself about the situations' potential effects.  We thought long and hard about this before we did it and read a ton. I think we made a good choice overall. More work? Well maybe not more, but certainly different, and yes, a lot of work/ energy.

Maybe some questions like this: (this would work for birth order disruptions too)..

1. Do my kids, in the home now, have set places in the family? How attached are they to their positions?
2. Will the personality of the child most likely to be displaced be able to bounce back from this easily? Is he a flexible child, easy going, compliant?
3. What sort of energy will it take for me to keep up with two this age? To give the needed attention to the newer child? To give the needed distinction between older and younger? To give affirming energy to the child who was in the home first?
4. Am I willing to hold one back in school in order to keep them apart if needed? Or to keep them in different classrooms/same grade in order to limit the competition as much as possible? Knowing the personalities of my kids, is this even an issue? What if it becomes an issue, what will you do? If you home school this is less likely to be an issue with school, but sports, etc. it may be. How will you deal with that?
5. What sort of energy and situations will I need to have/provide in order to give the children "individual distinction".
6. What if one of them hates being so close in age? Feels over shadowed, left out, too much competition for recognition, one child is better at X than the other and what if that causes problems due to the nature of the closeness in age? How will I step in? What can I do?
7. How will I organize the home in order to give them time away from each other to allow them to develop as individuals rather than together? Rooms apart? Time or activities apart?
8. If the children look similar what will I do to help others NOT associate them as twins, especially if I choose to send them to school together? Outsiders are likely to compare the children even if they do not carry the same DNA. This can be hard for kids who are not twins but have some expectations of being twins or like twins, especially if they look similar.
9. Can you afford to have two of everything? Clothing the same size, you will need double, some toys too, school and extra curricular fees, college at the same time, etc.
10. What about the issue of friendship. What if one is left out of a party invitation?Or a relationship/friendship all together?
11. What if one of the "twins" has some more serious issues emotionally or physically? How will that effect the other child? It will be more traumatic if the children are "twins" than if there is some space between them.
12. You need to be willing to make the new child his or her correct age (age given at referral is not always accurate) even if that means "twinning" or making him or her older than the child they are close to in age. Can your family handle this potentiality?
13. How successfuly can you split your time between the distinct needs of the two kids? How will this effect the other children in your home?
14.Two is more work than one, do you have the energy and the support?
15. School. Are you willing to keep a child with a summer or late spring birthday back in order to keep the distance, distinction between kids. NON twins in the same classroom/grade can cause any number of issues. Think of all these you can, how they will effect your children and come up with a plan.

I am sure you can come up with other questions that pertain to your own family situation. Dig up all you can in order to make an informed decision and have the tools you need to succeed.

yahoo group for like-twins
articles and web pages dealing with the question of artificial twinning:

Hope this is helpful.

a blog post from A Bushel and A Peck on adopting two at once. 

No comments:

Post a Comment

Please leave a comment:

Related Posts with Thumbnails

Sponsor a Child


The content on The Wayfarer:Ethiopian Adoption Resource Blog is for informational purposes only. We are adoptive parents, but we are not professionals. The opinions and suggestions expressed here are not intended to replace professional evaluation or therapy, or to supersede your agency. We assume no responsibility in the decisions that families make for their children and families. There are many links on this blog. We believe these other sites have valuable information, but we do not necessarily share all of the opinions or positions represented by each site, nor have we fully researched every aspect of each link. Please keep this in mind when visiting the links from this page.
Thank You.

A Links Disclaimer

I post a lot of links. I do so because I feel that the particular page has good information and much to offer. I do not necessarily support all that each site has to say or promote. I trust you to sift the links for information you feel is worthwhile to you. Each person's story and situation are unique and different things will be useful or not useful to each one in different ways. Please use your own discretion when accessing links and information.