September 28, 2011

Ich bin Rina - uberlebender Zwilling

Hallo ich bin Rina, 33 Jahre alt. Ich bin ein WTS, ein Womb Twin Survivor.

Was ist das ?

Das heisst, ich bin ein überlebender Zwilling, aber als Einling geboren und als Einzelkind aufgewachsen.

Am Anfang waren wir zwei, ein Junge und ein Mädchen, zweieiige Zwillinge, wir waren wie eine Einheit, irgendwie verbunden. Aber mein Bruder starb, starb direkt neben mir, so nahe und trotzdem konnte ich nichts tun. Auf einmal war ich alleine, muttterseelenallein.

Wie fühlt es sich an, wie lebst Du damit?

Hm. Lassen Sie es mich zu erklären versuchen. Es ist als wärst du nur halb, als fehlt ein Teil, wie ein halbes Foto wo jemand in der Mitte zerrissen hat.
Ich bin halbiert, fühle mich zerrissen, spüre seit ewig eine Sehnsucht wusste aber lange nicht nach was.

Ich habe das Gefühl doppelt zu müssen, doppelt so viel zu leisten, doppelt so viel zu tun um Anerkennung zu finden, und ich bin immer auf der Suche nach irgendetwas. Es ist wie eine Sucht.

Sei es ein Programm, eine Webseite, ein altes Foto, eine Neuigkeit, was anderes, ich suche und suche und verliere mich selber darin. Doch was ich wirklich suche, was sich dahinter versteckt, werde ich nie finden. Meinen Bruder.

Das tönt nicht einfach.

Nein, das ist es oft auch nicht. Es hat so viele Symptome und Auswirkungen auf mein Leben, meine Art, es hat viele Ängste hinterlassen, die sich oft erst nach länger Zeit benennen lassen.

Fortsetzung folgt ....

September 15, 2011

2011 Womb Twin Conference: press release out today!


A highly unusual international conference will be held in St Albans in Hertfordshire on Saturday November 19th 2011. This will be the fourth annual conference for Womb Twin, a voluntary organisation dedicated to helping womb twin survivors around the world. They started life in the womb as a twin but their twin died during the pregnancy or around birth. All their lives, they carry a sense of something missing, of having been a twin.

September 13, 2011

A Womb Twin 9/11 by Monica Hudson in the USA

My inner 9/11 is a loss which looms just as large and digs just as deep to me as the outer 9/11...yet there is no coverage of the lone witness, made more so by society. Odd stares of judgement were my only funeral for decades. Such devastating alienation added to the aloneness incomprehensible to a twin and entirely inconceivable to a singleton, whose death rituals and symbols need no explanation among the rows of shoulders to cry on for lesser losses.

As the world mourns 10 years since 9/11/01 with all its remembrance pageantry and public acknowledgement of sorrow, it is painfully clear to me that memorials are only for certain deaths.

The lone tower standing without its twin, ready to fall down and die at any moment, is me.

The tower jumpers mirror the death of a twin who couldn’t implant and fell away to an unknown abyss, to its surviving twins' horror.

The sickening vagueness in the lack of evidence and desperate need for closure by 9/11 survivors is the birthright for womb twin survivors who can’t even remember any different.

Although the tragedy of 9/11 feels equal to my inner loss, the difference is that my Ground Zero is Ground One – Individuality. Instead of a grim void littered with smoldering wreckage, my aftermath is a lifetime of being without my twin/triplet/quadruplet.

Here at Ground One there are no ambulances or camera crews, just a lonely incubator and the pressure to function in a world that didn’t welcome my cherished others. Here at Ground One, any kind of non-self-made ceremony would’ve helped yet nothing would’ve ever been enough.

The aching indelibility of this inner tragedy makes me a walker between worlds, never able to be a twin or a singleton, forever trapped falling from my twin tower with no place to land, among the oblivious who could be witnesses.

Imagine a world where 9/11 happened and nobody paid attention or cared. It just happened and then it was no longer happening and nobody was affected but you. And every Sept 11 you had to put on your birthday hat and smile to fool the world you weren’t dead inside, unable to articulate because there was nobody to hear. You had to be the keeper of this memory inside and if you ever said a peep, others would look at you strangely and think you should be over it by now while judging you for being affected in the first place. Now imagine those same people invite you to their dog’s funeral so you can witness a tree-planting in a dog’s memory and you must comfort their loss and not mention 9/11. This is the life of a womb twin survivor and we thought it was normal because we knew no different.

My 10 second fall lasted 44 years until I’d had enough of the ghostly invisibility of silence. Now I won’t shut up. Coming out of the closet, finding and connecting with other survivors has been my anti-terrorist task force.

Recognize my glory, I am a newly constructed tower that gleams and cannot be ignored, standing taller and taller all on my own.

* * * * *
The tragedy of 9/11 resulted in 2,976 deaths – 40 of which were twins who perished and left their twins twinless.

By comparison, the tragedy of womb twin loss affects 600,000 people - most of whom don’t even know but are walking around with an inner 9/11.

September 08, 2011

Social before Birth: Twins First Interact with Each Other as Fetuses

Every mother knows that newborns are social creatures just hours after birth. They prefer to look at faces over objects, and they even imitate facial expressions. Now a study sug gests that the propensity for social interactions exists in the womb. Twins begin interacting as early as the 14th week of gestation.
Researchers at the University of Turin and the University of Parma in Italy used ultrasonography, a technique for imaging internal body structures, to track the motion of five pairs of twin fetuses in daily 20-minute sessions. As published in the OctoberPLoS ONE, the scientists found that fetuses begin reaching toward their neighbors by the 14th week of gestation. Over the following weeks they reduced the num ber of movements toward themselves and instead reached more frequently toward their counterparts. By the 18th week they spent more time contacting their partners than themselves or the walls of the uterus. Almost 30 percent of their movements were directed toward their prenatal companions. These movements, such as stroking the head or back, lasted longer and were more accurate than self-directed actions, such as touching their own eyes or mouth.
The results suggest that twin fetuses are aware of their counterparts in the womb, that they prefer to interact with them, and that they respond to them in special ways. Contact between them appeared to be planned—not an accidental outcome of spatial proximity, says study co-author Cristina Becchio of Turin. “These findings force us to predate the emergence of social behavior,” she says.
The fact that fetuses can control their actions in the womb is not a surprise. Co-authorVittorio Gallese, a neuroscientist at Parma, and his collaborators previously showed that fetuses display skilled movements by the fifth month of gestation. Becchio speculates that the presence of a twin may accelerate motor development.
In the future the team plans to develop diagnostic tests by systema tically tracking the motion of a large number of fetuses. Patterns of activity in the womb may predict later motor development or impairments in social cognition, such as autism, Gallese says. “The womb is probably a crucial starting point to develop a sense of self and a sense of others.”