favouritism, family members who favour one twin over the other

Michelle - posted on 02/03/2010 ( 20 moms have responded )

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Ive got 15.5 month old twin girlies, their personalitys are completley different, one is outgoing & craves attention all the time while the other one it quite quiet & laid back. when family come to visit they make a huge fuss out of my all smiling & singing wee girl & barley look at my quiet wee princess who is trying in her own way to get some attention. it makes me mad & i end up litterally swapping the girls so that they both get a chance, what should i do???

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Tracy - posted on 02/04/2010

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hi Tina. my twin girls will be 17 next month. My family had a very hard time in the beginning understanding the importance of treating both girls as individuals. My husband and I made the decision early on to raise them as the individuals they are instead of "the twins" The quieter of the 2 always got less attention until I took it upon myself to pull my mom and my in-laws aside. It was a difficult discussion, but once I "explained" (my husband called it laying down the law, lol) that we never wanted any of our girls to feel left out, or that they weren't as special as their sister things got a little easier. Sometimes it's reminding people that childrens feeling get hurt regardless of our intentions and we have to be careful to lavish both children with affection as well as attention. I know, not the easiest thing to do, but then again nothing with twins is gonna be easy! Good luck and please let us know if things improve for you.

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Tammy - posted on 02/16/2010

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I've done the same thing or I'll get in the floor and start playing with the shy one then the other would come over then they feel equal

Tiffany - posted on 02/16/2010

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From the minute my girls were born my mother favored one over the other and I really made me mad! Now when she sees my girls I make sure she spends equal time with them to learn each of their personalities.

Jacquie - posted on 02/10/2010

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It is normal for twins to be normal. Be firm with family members and try not to "brand" the twins. My girls were the same way and if it is any help...they do change and come into their own...

Tammy - posted on 02/10/2010

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Well I'm the Grandma and I felt the same way when the Boys were born their 13 months now, one looks my Daughter and the other looks like his Daddy.First one born was the one who took all the room in Mommy belly,second one was left behind he was the smaller one and had to stay under light for a bit,So I favor him more first one gets all kind of attention he's more out going second one more shy,but the shy one goes for thing first while the first one sits back and watches so funny those two

Danielle - posted on 02/10/2010

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i completely agree with amanda! people without twins just do not understand the little nuiances of them. my sons are at different developmental places, they are 2 different children. and they were born very premature, and people still expect them to do things at the same time. my one son had OT, developmental therapy and speech therapy and i do it just so hopefully he can have the best chance when starting school to be where everyone else is at. but he is doing great on his own and if we didn't have another son to compare him to, we may not even know he was so behind! and after reading so many responses, the truth is he might just be where he is at b/c he witnesses his brother doing things he cannot and it just might make him not want to do it even more. who knows. i just know i love and praise BOTH my sons for all their individual traits and so does my husband and like amanda said, no one else without multplies really gets that.

Amanda - posted on 02/10/2010

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I know how you feel (im glad im not the only person who has this problem). I have 13 mo old twin girls, one very energetic and outgoing, the other shy and quiet. My in-laws and my husbands side of the family seem to comment on how much my energitic daughter is developing and doing, and seem to think that there is somthing wrong with my other daughter b/c she is shy, quiet and doesn't seem to do what her sister does. I have to stick up for her and tell everyone that she may not be doing what her sister is exactly doing developmentally, but there are other developmental factors that she can do that her sister cant. And in some cases, she can do things, but she wont do them around strangers; she will cuddle up on my shoulder. you just have to stick up for you kids and tell people like it is. People seem to compare twins b/c they feel they should be doing the same things. Whenever either of my girls does something new and exciting i praise them for it with hugs and kisses and clapping - they both get equal attention from us and from my parents. good thing we dont' see his side of the family a whole lot. But if i have learned one thing from having twins, is that people who don't have twins or multiples just don't understand, and never will.

Danielle - posted on 02/10/2010

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wow i am so glad to hear other people having this situation! my twin boys are 19 months and one is totally outgoing and much more developed than his quieter and less developed brother. everyone raves over the outgoing one and doesn't notice how they just ignore my other son! its amazing to me. anyway, when my parents are here or any family, i always say, please make everyone part of the fun and i make sure my husband and i are always praising both of them for all of their gifts. i would say bring it to their attention so that they are aware. good luck!

Haroulla - posted on 02/10/2010

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Hi I have 5 year old twin boys who are completely different one has a very high iq and the other is very physical. Most people seem to favour the brighter one who is also the smallest of the two. I just make sure that I and my immediate family treat them the same and if the smaller one is more demanding I just say to him I'm dealing with your brother so he has to wait and they both accept this.

Marie - posted on 02/09/2010

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argh, i wonder why family members, and friends, favor one sweet little baby over the other! my twin boys, who turn 1 in 2 days, are so different, one is all over the place, smiling and laughing at EVERYTHING, and the other is pretty energetic, good sense of humor, but he's not so smiley when it comes to strangers
i think no matter what the reason for favoring, the other twin should get at many chances as the favored....if i am even making any sense! lol

Karen Meredith - posted on 02/09/2010

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speak up,tell them what u see and that u wont stand for it..tell them if they wont change,then u wont bring ur kids around them..u have to think about what the children will see when they r older..when my twins were in elem. school they were both in the same class,the teacher showed favoritism so much,that she was even marking math problems wrong on my sons work,even when my daughter had the same mistake and hers was counted correct..i spoke up and she never did it again..if u cant do it face to face ,send a note..i did because i knew id loose my temper face to face

Ciera - posted on 02/09/2010

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I have that problem with my boy and girl. My girl is the outgoing and active one and my boy is quiet and cuddly. My boy, though, is the one who gets the attention. I think people get a little out of sorts with my girl and her active personality and they would rather sit and cuddle with my boy. The sad part is that she is like that bc she likes people to play with her and getting that sort of attention. I get so mad sometimes bc people will go straight to him and pick him up even when he is just laying there and fine while she is just dying for some playtime and attention. She is such a fun and sweet little girl. She has the sweetest heart and just loves her "little" (by 1 minute) brother and I just want people to see that it's not cool to play favorites with them. They are so different but they perfectl;y compliment one another. Yes, I know the aggravation!

Donna - posted on 02/06/2010

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Well, I have an older daughter and twin girls. I have two family members that always pays more attention to my older daughter. It breaks my heart to see it. I will never understand it. I thought it would get better when the girls got bigger, but my older daughter is 11 and the twins are 7 and it has not changed. I hope things get better for you.

LLESLI - posted on 02/05/2010

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Oh man! reading all these responses is worrying me so much. I have 2 month old twin girls and I can already detect favoritism from family members and it kills me. One of my little girls smiles all the time while the other just doesn't like to, she knows how to she just doesn't like to and everyone crowds around my smiley baby, this sucks but I guess we all as mothers have to put our foot down with the people we love and nip the situation in the bud. I'm just hoping not to look like mother hen or over bearing while discussing the issue.

CHERYL - posted on 02/04/2010

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hi i have 7month old b/g twins and my family(apart from my parents) seem to like the girl always picking her up to show to friends and it does make my angry not sure if its because she is the smaller one!

Michelle - posted on 02/04/2010

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hi tina it was the same for a while with my two Keira really started talking & we gave her lots of praise for it, but at the same time Sophie got very quiet & withdrawn. i even started worrying about her development. i made a huge effort to spend more time concentrating on sophies strengths & what a difference. i think im more accepting of their differences now & more relaxed about the whole Keira can say this why cant sophie? they are different children. both of our families dont really have that much to do with the girls (i dont talk to any of mine) so its only a small amount of time they actually get to spend with family members so for me its really important that they make an effort to talk to both of them i totally agree with what your saying about making the family cuddle sophie & i have tried to say to them that sophie responds so well to one on one attention but i dont think they realise there doing it. things between us all have been a bit strained since i was pregnant & had to stay with the inlaws for five weeks, it was a nightmare with my father in law telling me "well weve all been pregnant its no big deal" not the best start to us living with them. so its been a long road to have them involved at all. my husband isnt keen to talk with his parents & thinks im being overbaring, if i say anything to them its likely to be taken the wrong way!

Tina - posted on 02/03/2010

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Our twins are now 5 - and at school! When they were about 18mo, my daughter was putting together words and actions like "I sit", "I stand" Up and down, up and down - it was really cute. Her brother stopped making any noise at all as a result of all the attention she was getting. This went on for a while and some members of our family were beginning to suggest that there was something wrong with our boy..... they didn't care if he was in the room or not and some awful things were said about his possible IQ! We tried to make up for it by telling him and them how good he was at other things but in hindsight what we should have done was stick up for him and told them to shut up. Maybe you should take them aside and have a chat, crying helps - they might not even realise they're doing it especially with you working so hard to make it even.... It would be awful for your quiet one to think that you're making your family cuddle her.... Good luck.

Danielle - posted on 02/03/2010

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I have have noticed some of this with my twin boys they are 9 now. The funny thing is they have different personalities alright. But I totally agree with the saying "God only gives you what you can handle" they flip flop with their acting out ever since I can remember. This week it is Devin and this could last for a month. But back to the topic if you really think about it doesn't it always seem that some family members or people cannot treat everyone equally. As you are raising twins you will notice that you compare alot because they are growing at the same time. If you had an older child and then a baby who do you think they would be favoring then? This is what having sibling is all about. One thing I notice with mine is that they are the bestest friends but remember it takes two to argue as well. They don't seem to be as jealous over things as most siblings they have had to share before they were even out of your womb : ) And mine have never noticed the favortism even though I did.

Rachel - posted on 02/03/2010

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I have 7 month old twin boys that were born about 8 weeks early. Even though both had to stay in the hospital I have noticed that our family favor Will who was the smaller of the two and had to stay in the hospital about two weeks longer than Alex. I just try to play and show Alex attention when we have family over.

Amanda - posted on 02/03/2010

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I have the same situation... I have a set of 2 1/2 year old twins, Hailey is always going and playing and Kailey is quiet and keeps to herself but everyone favors Kailey over Hailey for some reason.

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