It’s a fact that most mothers of twins are subject to random strangers getting involved in their personal business and asking silly questions. It’s as if people see a double stroller as a sign to freely ask the most intimate of questions.
Strangers seem infinitely curious about twin moms’ fertility issues, weight gain, and other details of their lives that they themselves may not feel comfortable sharing if the tables were turned.
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Silly questions that strangers LOVE to ask about twins
One of the most commonly asked inappropriate and silly questions to moms of twins has to do with in-vitro fertilization (IVF).
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“I’m fortunate because this question and silly questions like this one do not bother me–I use it as a moment to try and educate people,” says Jane Grimes, mom to four-year-olds Charlotte and Henry. “All pregnancies are natural; mine was not spontaneous. I always look them right in the eye and say, ‘They were conceived via IVF.’ [If there is] an indication that this is somehow disappointing, or not as good as a spontaneous twin pregnancy, I just chalk that up to ignorance.”
Speaking of silly questions, it’s also not unusual for people to be interested in whether your twins are identical–even if they are a boy and a girl.
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Twin mom Heidi Green says of silly questions she hears frequently, “When people would stop me on the street and ask me about Harry and Rose, they would usually ask, ‘Are they identical?’ As infants, they looked so much alike. I would tell them that they are a boy and a girl and they would look at me puzzled and ask again, ‘Yes, I got that, but are they identical?’ It was at that point that I realized it was up to me to break it to them, that boy/girl twins can never be identical.”
Using experiences and silly questions such as these for good instead of evil (educating the masses instead of getting irritated by them) is usually your best line of defense.
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So, mamas: it’s up to you. Do you want to come up with a few sassy comebacks for the next time someone asks if your twins were conceived through IVF (my personal favorite is, “Why, are you having trouble conceiving?”) or do you want to enlighten them with the facts of the situation? Regardless of what you do, you can expect silly questions like this to keep on coming.
Heidi Elliott, mom to five-year-old twins Reed and Larkin says, “The question I always get is: “Do twins run in your family?” Her response? “No, but they run in my doctor’s office!”
By Natalie Diaz, Twiniversity Founder. This article originally appeared in New York Family Magazine.
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The rate of twin births has risen 79 percent over the last three decades, and continues to increase. A mom of fraternal twins and a national guru on having two, Natalie Diaz launched Twiniversity, a supportive website with advice from the twin-trenches.
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Accessible and informative, What to Do When You’re Having Two is the must-have manual for all parents of twins.