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by Patricia Irwin Johnston, MS


So You've Already Got Pseudo-Twins. Now What?

A word of caution: Families of separately arrived, close-in-age children who arrived beyond the infant stage may find some, but not all, of the advice here of value. If your similarly-aged children have arrived in the family several years apart (for example one as a newborn and the other as a toddler), your own and outsiders' inclination to twin these children may be significantly less pronounced. The advice offered here has been designed specifically for those parenting two children six to seven months or less apart in age, both of whom arrived in infancy.

OK, so maybe upon reflection you agree with this article that artificial twinning is not the best idea, but it's too late...you're already parenting two children less than nine months apart in age who each arrived as an under-one-year-old. What should you do... give one back?

Of course not. No one would advocate that. In fact, as pointed out earlier, even those professionals with the strongest feelings against pseudo-twinning agree that families who acknowledge its difficulties and address them head-on are likely to raise healthy, happy children.

If you make your babies' individual needs paramount, without a doubt, your family's life will be more complex than most, and your work as a parent will be significantly more complicated than that of parents of children nine months or more apart or that of parents of gestational multiples, but you can do this.

You are simply going to need to be even more adept than most parents by adoption must be at walking a tight rope of issues peculiar to your family's situation. The fact is that you don't want to lump your children together as an inseparable pair (neither do the parents of genetic twins), but you don't want to drive a wedge between them either.

7 "Instant Family? A Case against Artificial Twinning" appeared in articles in Adoptive Families magazine, Pact Press, and Serono Symposia USA's newsletter Insights into Infertility before becoming part of Launching a Baby's Adoption and then this book.


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