Knowing Me Knowing You
Woman & Home|January 2020
From secret languages to sensing the other’s thoughts, the bond between twins will always be special. Three sets share their stories
Stephanie Clarkson

‘LIFE IS DEFINITELY RICHER FOR BEING A TWIN’

Davinder Youngs, 49, is a civil servant based in Hertfordshire. Her twin sister Muninder is also a civil servant and lives in Middlesex. Both are married; Davinder has a daughter aged 27 and a son aged 24, while Muninder has three girls aged 15, 11 and 10.

Davinder says Muninder and I are very similar to look at, but we can’t be sure if we are technically identical. It’s not the type of thing our mother discussed with us and mothers expecting twins weren’t scanned as they are now, so she may not have known either. As kids, we had real fun with it. Our parents dressed us the same and we had long plaits, so we’d pretend to be each other to fool people.

By the time we got to senior school, we wanted to go our own way. There were definite expectations of us, and although we were dressed the same and always referred to as if we were one entity, ‘the twins’, we weren’t expected to take the same paths through life. At school, I was studious and academic while Muninder was more sporty. Our parents believed I would go off to university while my twin would not be as academically successful as me. But we did the opposite. I flunked my A-levels and was lured by earning money, so I didn’t go back to education. I got a job, married and had children while Muninder went to university to do teacher training, and traveled. But although our paths diverged they have come back together. We are now both happily married, raising children and doing well in our careers. Our lives have been different yet the same – at times we’ve lived vicariously through the other – but life is definitely richer for being a twin.

Muninder says When Davinder and I were little we had our own language. We had a special dictionary that showed sign language and we adapted it to suit our needs. We were very cheeky and would use our own sign language to chat about family and so our baby brother didn’t know what we were doing! In fact, we can still do it now.

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