What’s It Like Being A Twin

Learn What it’s really like to be a twin

Today we’re talking about adventures, stories and perks of being an identical twin. We share our journey of what it’s like to be a twin.

twin stories

Life as a Twin

When were were children, friends would ask “What’s it like to be a twin?” And we would answer, “What’s it like NOT to be a twin?”  For us, this is our reality, and we can’t imagine life any other way.

Even though we’ve been twins forever, literally, and have contemplated this question ever since we were conscious of our twinness, (is that a word?) this has always been a hard question to answer.

Growing Up

At the core is the fact that God created us with a built-in best friend.  When we were babies our parents tried to put us in separate cribs. That didn’t work. We would cry and reach our arms through the slats wanting to be closer. One day they came in to find one of us had climbed out and back into the other twin’s crib. (It was probably Jodie; she’s the more adventurous one!)


This was one of many thwarted attempts of my mother’s to try to separate us. She was afraid we wouldn’t develop our own independent identities.  It was hard to explain to her that being twins was just part of that identity. Regardless of her efforts we did whatever we could to embrace our union, much to her chagrin. We simply loved (and excelled at) all the same things.  We both wanted to do gymnastics, we both wanted to be cheerleaders, we both wanted to learn to play the violin. The list was endless, and our list of similar likes and dislikes was just as endless.

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Growing up as  identical twins was like being mini celebrities. We looked an awful lot alike and it did two things…..

  • It created quite a stir everywhere we went, and…
  • It annoyed us to no end when even our closest friends and relatives couldn’t tell us apart!!

Twin Stories

Perks of being a twin

There are certain perks of being a twin, and we’ve always considered it our responsibility to take advantage of these perks….in the name of twins everywhere.

Perk #1. Fooling people

This had far reaching opportunities and situations so I’ll mention just a couple of the best examples.

Switching Classrooms

April Fool’s Day, 4th grade, Mrs. Tobin and Mrs. Durlim’s classes.  It was fun.  The teacher knew but didn’t let on. The students knew (but didn’t think the teachers knew) so they didn’t let on. It was a charade that taught us that everyone actually could tell the difference, but most people just didn’t take the time to figure it out.

Switching Boyfriends

This became one of our favorite twin perks 🙂  This worked in our favor, as it allowed us to “double book” weekends! If the other was interested we would initiate a kind of “tag team” approach. The boys usually couldn’t tell the difference so no one really seemed to mind.

This was all fun and games when we were young, but our best “twin switch” story and the grand finale of them all was the night Julie met her husband.

The Grand Finale

It was October 10, 1988, and it was Jodie’s first night in Chicago.  She had just arrived to join Julie in their first post-college apartment together.  Julie had a date set for that night with a boyfriend she had seen a couple of times but called to cancel when she found out Jodie was arriving.

Instead of canceling, however, Greg asked if we could make it a double date as his friend was interested in coming too. So the two couples headed out on the town stopping at several different night clubs. It was about 1:00 am or so when we excused ourselves to the ladies’ room.

The Switch

We didn’t change clothes or exactly try to fool them. We figured we were in a better position to make sure the right person was with the right person. They hardly knew us and could barely tell us apart. Nothing was ever said. Not until 10 years later did we find out what the guys had thought at that moment. All we knew was Julie and Fred were meant to be together, and 28 years later the swap to end all swaps has passed the test of time.

Perk #2: Twin Telepathy 

Twins have a way of communicating like no one else. Our husbands complain that we speak in ½ sentences, out of context, and are constantly assuming that they can simply fill in the blanks! Oops!

Many twins develop a “twin speak” or secret language when they are young. We’re not really sure if we did this, but we did have our own unique experience learning our first foreign language, French. We became obsessed with wanting to learn how to speak fluent.

University Years

At college we often met for lunch.  We would say,  “Ok, for the duration of the lunch we’re only going to speak French.” There is nothing unusual or unique about this except for the fact that we really didn’t have the grammatical skills to do this yet.  At the end of our sophomore year we decided to apply for a year study abroad program in France.  After our interviews the team of professors asked Julie and me back in together. They explained that we had created a very unique pattern of grammatical errors, essentially creating our very own “version” of French!

Luckily we were accepted into the program and as predicted, we were able to correct the bad habits as soon as we started living in France.

Best Twin Telepathy Story

We were 7 years old. We did most everything together, but on this rare spring day found ourselves playing separately. Julie was invited to a friend’s house and Jodie was playing with neighborhood friends, climbing trees down the street from home. Suddenly, in the middle of the play date Julie got a panicky feeling, dropped what she was doing, jumped on her bike and raced home with a feeling of unexplainable desperation. Something was wrong with Jodie.

At that very moment,  on a dare Jodie tried a gymnastics move in the tree. A failed attempt landed her head first in the middle of the street, a fall of about 15 feet. Embarrassed she brushed off her hands and rode her bike home.

Meanwhile,  Julie arrived home and was frantically searching all over the house for Jodie, whom she eventually found curled up on the bed. Both Jodie’s arms were broken. Julie never told Jodie about the “feeling” that she had gotten that had so clearly and deliberately directed her to search out her sister. At that young age it hadn’t made much sense to her, but as she got older she understood the magnitude of what she had felt!

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Twin Adventures

New York City,  “Double Mint” commercial audition.  The opportunity presented itself, and we were all in! (This should be on every twin’s ‘must do’ list!)  Unfortunately, we didn’t get the gig, but it was still an experience to remember. We were in high school at the time. The experience taught us a lot.

• Planning for the audition

As we tried to prepare for the day, how to wear our hair, do our make-up, and dress, we quickly realized how different we had become, even if these were small details. Our journey to become individuals had already begun.

• Walking down the streets of Manhattan

We watched heads turn at every moment and realized that to the outside world we would always appear much more similar than we were different.  Getting a taste of our own medicine we arrived at the casting studio where we met about 10 other sets of twins.  Introducing ourselves around the world it was an experience we never forgot!  Meeting each pair felt like shaking the same person’s hand twice! We blinked our eyes; it was like seeing double, and for once we sampled what it was like for others to meet us.

What is it like to be an Identical twin?

• It’s never feeling completely whole without the other.

• There is someone who knows you as well as you know yourself.

• And someone who loves you more than themselves.

• It’s the feeling of never being completely alone; there’s always someone on your side.

• Being a twin doesn’t feel like there is another “you.” Instead it feels like together we make one; that we complement and complete each other. We are the Yin to each other’s Yang!

• It’s having a teammate for life. What a blessing!

jodie & julie

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What's It Like Being A Twin
Article Name
What's It Like Being A Twin
Today we're talking about adventures, stories and perks of being an identical twin. We share our journey of what it's like to be a twin.
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The Design Twins
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  1. Bethany says:

    What a great post!! It’s like all the questions us “singles” want to ask but don’t. ?? y’all are super sweet & adorable, thanks for the peek into your lives!!

    • jjdesigntwins says:

      Bethany, Well that’s perfect! It’s just what we were hoping for! We are so glad you took the time to visit and to comment. It really means a lot to us. we are going to go visit your blog for sure. Thank you again–we hope you will visit often. Blessings from us both, J & J

    • jjdesigntwins says:

      Bethany! You’re so cute. We’re so glad you enjoyed it! It’s funny…I think when we were young people asked a TON of questions. But now that we are older it seems people are more “polite” and shy away from asking the questions as much. We love being twins and love sharing about it! Even more than when we were little. Thanks so much for stopping by and for you sweet comment!! xoxo Jodie & Julie

  2. Aly says:

    I want to see pictures of you guys as kids!!!! Love y’all! Blog looks great!

    • jjdesigntwins says:

      Hi Aly! Thank you so much for stopping by and saying HI! I know…we totally want to have pics from the past. It’s on our LONG list of things to do, but they will come for sure. (Still love watching your stories!! You totally crack us up.) Love, Julie & Jodie

  3. LYNN KRUGER says:

    Oh what lovely reading this has made.. Not only are you both superbly talented but the Twin Thing just made my day. As a mother of Twin Daughters and a Nanna to Twins Grandaughters and a mother in law to. A Twin I feel so connected. ?Having identical twin Aunties who lived next door to each other and always dressed the same from day one I know how special the Twin Thing is. Twin cousins tops the list off for me and everyday it’s usually double EVERYTHING! Now to the decorating. Just absolutely inspiriational.!!! Such beautiful decor and themes. Thank you for sharing. Just Wondeful ❤️❤️

    • jjdesigntwins says:

      Lynn, Wow! What a very special twin-filled life you lead! That is amazing. So for not being a twin yourself I bet you really understand twins about as much as it is possible to do so! It is indeed special. And I think the older we get the MORE we are able to truly appreciate it and appreciate each other. Thank you for sharing your thoughts with us and sharing a bit about your amazing twin world! We are so happy you came to visit! Your words of encouragement mean so much! xoxo Jodie & Julie

    • jjdesigntwins says:

      Oh my sweet Lynn! We had no idea you had so many twins in your life. How fun! And it’s just one of the many ways we know we feel connected to you! Thank you for your amazing comment! You can’t know how much your loving support means to us!! Suffice it to say, it means A LOT!!!! God bless you dear one! Muah! XO ~ Julie & Jodie

  4. Pollyanna says:

    This was so much fun to read! I’d be happy to just have a sister, LOL! Seriously – you’re both adorable and thanks for the peek into the life of twins! XOXO!

    • jjdesigntwins says:

      Pollyanna, We are SO glad you enjoyed reading this! We sure had fun writing it. It was a trip down memory lane of course! We appreciate your reading, following, and especially your kindness. As we embark on this new journey it makes it all worthwhile to feel we are embarking with friends! Much love and gratitude, Julie & Jodie

  5. Alice says:

    I’m an identical twin and I love reading about other twins. Growing up there were 4 sets of identical twins on our block! Everyone used to joke there must have been something in the water, but all the sets of twins moved into the neighborhood from other areas of town. My twin and I live together and love being twins. I loved your list and will have to show it to my sister!

    • jjdesigntwins says:

      Alice, I LOVE it! I love that you found us and I love hearing about your love for twins as well. Growing up we had 4 sets of twins in our graduating class of 350 and we thought THAT was a lot! We have always been drawn to other twins. Twice we dated twins and once had a set of twins as very good friends of ours. Thanks for sharing your twin-love with us! We hope you will share with your sister and come back to visit us often!
      xoxo Jodie & Julie (Ps. What’s your sister’s name?)

      • Alice says:

        My sister’s name is Candice. I’m older by 5 minutes and we are the last of 6 kids in 6 years (3 boys followed by 3 girls).
        Good night!

        • jjdesigntwins says:

          Hi Alice! We are so glad you found us! We love meeting other twins. We’re sure you have many of your own stories to tell. One story we didn’t tell is that we realized when we were in high school that we had the same recurring dreams! Our own words to describe our dreams were coming out of each other’s mouth, and it was freaky!! Wondering if other twins have the same experience…So glad you made it to our blog. We hope you will sign up and become a regular visitor. Blessings, Julie & Jodie

  6. Liz says:

    Hi Jodie and Julie. I look forward to seeing you girls every day. I feel like I’ve know both of you a long time. Both of you bring Joy to all of us. When people ask my sister and me if we are sisters , we giggle and tell tell them we are twins born two years apart. Ruby and I are so close. We can finished each other’s sentences. Love being together. We live about twenty mins apart. Talk every day I hope that I’m doing this post right. Love talking to both of you here. Blessings to each of you.
    On another note. The Histroical Flood of 2016. We didn’t flood, but many friends did. I admire these people so much. They are rebuilding. Keep praying for them. They lost everything in their homes The homes are all gutted now and I pray that they can recover from this. Many people from many states came to help. Homes are being repaired.

    Love from Baton Rouge and Denham Springs , La. ❤️❤️

    • jjdesigntwins says:

      Our darling Liz, What a friend you have become! Your true support means more to us than we can possibly say. We love that you identify with our “twinness” even when you are not officially twins…you have a twin-like bond with your sister, and that is the most important part. You are blessed as we are! God is so good! We are so grateful that you are on this journey of growth, friendship and inspiration. Much love always, Julie & Jodie

  7. Tracy Park says:

    you two are great so glad your sisters..

    • jjdesigntwins says:

      Welcome to March Madness, You sweet thing you! I’m about to do my 6-step morning ritual but I saw you pop up here, and just wanted to say hi. Thank you Tracy, for your love and support. It means the world to Jodie and to me. You bless us with your spirit, your kindness, and your humor. We hope you will continue to travel with us on this amazing journey of growth, inspiration, and friendship. With love, Julie & Jodie

  8. Kristine says:

    I found this so interesting you sharing your twin story, I remember in high school having friends who were identical twins and shared similar experiences. My nephews are not identical but fraternal twins. The one twin was diagnosed with leukemia at the age of 5, the other twin questioned if he would get it too because his twin brother had it. They are 11 now & still share the same bedroom with 2 twin beds pushed together to make 1 big bed. So whether identical or fraternal, you all have been blessed with something special that not all of us will ever experience.

  9. Stacey says:

    This post almost made me cry! I am twin and it is the greatest thing having a built-in best friend. We are fraternal twins, but I always wished we were identical for these reasons you talked about (switching places and twin telepathy). That is the coolest story of how Julie met her husband. You two have done so much together and your close bond is rare. I am super close with my twin and we did a lot of the same activities. But y’all being identical takes it to another level. I am so glad you wrote a post about this!

  10. Tracy Park says:

    I have no siblings as my mother gaes I wish I did I dont want to be alone. Maybe thats why I Have 4 kids!! happy March madness

  11. Brenda Hixon says:

    I enjoyed your description of “twinness” . It is similar to what my sister and I experienced growing up. I felt lucky to be a twin, I’m 70 years old and just lost my identical twin sister. I have lost other loved ones, including my daughter, but I can’t describe for others what it was like to lose my twin sister. It is like losing part of me. Thank you for articulating the bond twins have for non-twins.

    • jjdesigntwins says:

      Dear Brenda,
      We are so sorry to hear of your loss. We can only imagine what a huge loss it is. We believe you when you say it is like losing a part of you. Of course a twin is a part of you. We are happy to hear that our article gave you some comfort. We understand. Even though your twin sister is no longer physically with you, you will always carry her with you. We pray your heart heals. Remember how lucky you are to have enjoyed all those years together. God bless, Julie & Jodie

  12. […] It’s the feeling of never being completely alone; there’s always someone on your side. Being a twin doesn’t feel like there is another “you.” Instead it feels like together we make one; that we complement and complete each other. We are the Yin to each other’s Yang! It’s having a teammate for life. via […]

  13. Shana says:

    I absolutely love this, especially that you felt a “responsibility” to take exploit the perks of being twins! This was humorous, nostalgic (as I remember life growing up with identical twins in the house, as friends, and at extra-curricular activities), and very appropriate as a reading text for a student of mine who is a twin. Thanks for sharing!

    • jjdesigntwins says:

      Aw thank you so much, Shana, for the kind reply. Yes this was a very honest recounting of how we felt throughout our lives. So happy you enjoyed it. XO ~ Julie & Jodie

  14. Jessica says:

    I’m an identical twin and I would not change it for the world. Thank you for sharing your story.

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