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Emotionally Healthy Twins: A New Philosophy for Parenting Two Unique Children Paperback – February 12, 2008
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"[A] wonderful resource.”—Staten Island Advance
“Will become the standard reference for parenting twins.”—TWINS, October 2008
“Will become the standard reference for parenting twins.”—Twins, July 2009
About the Author
Top Customer Reviews
Dr. Friedman's discussion early in the book about the "twin mystique" sets the tone for her later observations and parenting suggestions. This "mystique" is a set of faulty ideals about twins that are held in popular culture: they inhabit their own private world that only they hold the map to; they feel lost without each other and want to preserve their twosome status into adulthood; one always knows what the other one needs, therefore twins are "each other's predestined partner and confidant."
I consider myself a thoughtful, educated and empathic person and parent, and never thought I'd fall into the mindset of this mystique, but this book totally challenged many of my beliefs about twins. And I thank the author for that! I don't pretend to know what being a twin is like, but I now know a lot more about the issues surrounding their healthy development. Friedman's personal story about discovering the need for alone time with each twin really struck an instant chord with me. I can't believe (and kick myself hard!) that I hadn't embraced this idea sooner - it's a remarkably simple solution to the overwhelming feeling of not being mom enough for two little ones who need a lot of your constant attention.Read more ›
PARENT-TO-BE: I have wonderful news! Brad and I are going to be the parents of two babies!
MOTHER-IN-LAW: What do you mean? Are you saying you're having twins?
PARENT-TO-BE: Yes, but we're already thinking about them as two separate children, because that's what they are: two separate babies born at the same time.
MOTHER-IN-LAW: What's wrong with calling them twins?
PARENT-TO-BE: Nothing's wrong with it. It's just that Brad and I feel strongly about relating to our babies as two distinct children rather than as a pair. And we hope that our friends and family will treat them as individuals as well.
MOTHER-IN-LAW: Hmmmm. Okay, well congratulations, anyhow!
"Two separate babies born at the same time" -- if only there were a more succinct way of saying that. Oh, wait, there is --- throughout much of the book Friedman uses the term "same-age siblings". The term would probably be less grating if she said something like, "I'm using this term interchangeably with the term 'twin' to drive home the point that they don't need to be treated like a pair anymore than non-twin siblings." But instead we're left to guess at the reasoning behind her goofy coinage. Other than language weirdness, here are my other problems with this book:
* She gives no consideration to a cost/benefit analysis of her favorite prescription: alone time between a parent and one twin.Read more ›
I think hers is the best, most well-reasoned out argument for putting twins in separate classrooms that I've come across. I'm intrigued by the suggestion of giving each twin his own birthday party (although I am thinking, for budget reasons, in our house maybe we'll just start out with each twin getting his own birthday cake).
That said, I can't get completely behind this approach. I can understand wanting the twins to be their own identities beyond "the twins," but at the same time, the twin thing is a very special connection and I really am reluctant to do anything to break that connection. I'm certainly not going to stop buying them matching (or slightly different -- same shirt in different colors) clothing to underline their individual identities. Believe me, if my children didn't want to wear matching clothes, they wouldn't! But they enjoy dressing alike...for now, anyway. When they're not so into it as they grow up, I'll stop buying them matching clothes. But in the meantime, I really don't see how it hurts them.
What it is is truly unique psychological guide, for the parents, to raising twins with their own identities and parents not losing their minds to guilt over raising twins. When I found this book I was ready to parent "the twins" and to describe them as such. After reading this book I feel that I have some small insight into the world of twins, especially identical twins and their need for their own identity. According to the author that identity starts with the parents treating both babies as unique individuals. For example, one of the most seemingly simple, but effective, ideas in the book seems to be that each parent needs to spend alone time with each baby! Also, we have stopped telling people that we are going to have "twins" but that we are going to have "two-babies". It makes a difference in our minds regarding the separateness and uniqueness of each baby.
As an identical twin herself, as a mother of twins, and as a practicing psychologist specializing in twin issues, the author is uniquely suited towards addressing these often overlooked aspects of twining. I don't believe that any of the suggestions of treating the babies as individuals are going to take any of the "specialness" out of being a twin. Twins are "special" by default, the author is providing strategies for parents and children to enjoy this specialness and not to let it be their defining characteristic.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Worth a read, but books can only prepare you so much, the rest you need to wing.Published 7 months ago by Ljiljana Brdaric
Some interesting advice that I will definitely keep in mind, but overall this book was alarmist and somewhat negative. Read morePublished 18 months ago by Ricki Siemens
The header says it all. Ive just started it but don't feel like finishing this book. It leaves no room for folk on their own parenting journey. Read morePublished on February 13, 2013 by Mira
In fact, it was pretty boring and not a "New Philosophy." I have yet to find an intelligently written book on raising two siblings who are the same age.Published on June 13, 2011 by Felicia
Initially I felt this book laid the "treat your twins as distinct, whole individuals entitled to separate experiences and relationships" message on a little thick. Read morePublished on December 20, 2010 by L. Poon
I really wanted to like this book. I'm the parent of five year old identical twin boys and I have been searching for a good resource about school aged twins. Read morePublished on September 16, 2010 by Twin Mommy
I'm not very impressed with this book.
First, I can't imagine having told others that I would be a mom to two babies....rather than say 'twins'. Let's get real! Read more