High school isn’t all bullies and cliques, but it isn’t all fun and games, either. It can be tough! And surviving high school with a twin can be even more challenging.
In a new interview conducted among high schoolers, sets of twins were interviewed regarding their experience growing up. To ensure the twins weren’t able to influence each other’s answers, these interviews were conducted separately.
So, was growing up with a twin really like it is in the movies?
“For me, it wasn’t anything special; he was just my brother; it is nice having someone your age and to have your back all the time. He’s always there for me and I am always there for him,” answered fraternal twin, Carly O’Leary.
For identical twins, it seems the only factor was that teachers would mix them up occasionally. Fraternal twins were sometimes told that they weren’t twins since they didn’t look alike so a little convincing was needed to prove that they truly were twins.
However, there was one common thread among all the twins who were interviewed. In each case, every twin said that they argued more like children, whether they liked growing up together or not.
By the time they reach high school, most twins are able to carve out an identity separating them from their sibling. As twins begin to experience some of the typical conflicts throughout high school, these challenges can become a bit more difficult.
An estimated one-third of adults claim they had a rivalry or distant relationship with their sibling growing up. High school is often where these rivalries come to a head. Individuals begin to explore friendships, romantic relationships, and begin to form a sense of identity outside the family realm.
While around 80% of those rival sibling relationships do improve, navigating high school can seem impossible while you’re in the thick of it.
If you’re worried about surviving high school with a twin, here are some tips and tricks to getting through with your twin unscathed.
Don’t get wrapped up in social media
It’s estimated that 72% of teens use Instagram, a popular photo-sharing app that has nearly one billion monthly users. While this app and other apps like it are great for the occasional laugh and post, using them too often can be dangerous. More and more teens are getting bullied on Instagram as friendships come and go and rivalries are established between siblings, friends, and more. It’s estimated that 59% of teens have experienced bullying online and more than one-fifth of these teens have been bullied on Instagram for seemingly innocuous reasons.
Whether it’s because of an embarrassing comment or a mean friend who wants revenge, social media can be a blessing and a curse. Expecting a fledgling teen to craft the perfect Instagram page is a shot in the dark.
Don’t put too much pressure on romance
It’s estimated that between 40% and 50% of all marriages in the United States end in divorce. This sad fact may hurt to hear, but it’ll help when you experience your first break up.
High school relationships don’t have to last forever, and the old adage of a high school sweetheart is becoming increasingly rare. Don’t be afraid to break up with someone who isn’t right for you. Luckily, you can remember that your twin will always have your back when you need a box of tissues.
Find positivity wherever you go
Relying on your twin as a point of positivity in high school can be a great option when you’re stressed out. Having separate groups of friends is both healthy and common, but it’s always nice to know that someone has your back during times of duress.
If your twin isn’t available, try finding creative outlets to inspire positivity. In a recent report at the Cleveland Clinic, over 60% of patients felt less stressed when the hospital introduced a contemporary art collection.
Try hanging your favorite photos in your locker and creating a safe space with contemporary art in your home to unwind and relax. Taking care of your mental health in high school is essential.
Keep in mind stress is normal
Stress is a normal part of high school. Whether you’re experiencing the first issues of sibling rivalry with your twin or you’ve recently gone through a break-up, high school has many twists and turns that will make you a better person in the end.
Try to enjoy high school with your twin to the best of your ability. Even though it might not be as cool as the movies make it out to be, surviving high school with a twin at your side can be a gift. And hey, it’s only four years.
Then you can start stressing about college.