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Encore: Twinning - More Than a Sibling

Courtest of Doug May
Don and Doug May pose with their blue ribbons from this year's "Twins, Triplets and More" contest at the Iowa State Fair

Having a sibling is one thing, but sharing the womb with your sibling is something else entirely. 

For Don and Doug May, that bond has always made them feel unique.

"Our mom used to take us around to twin contests. It was clear to us pretty early on that we had a special relationship," Doug says. "We got a little bit of the 'Well, you're cuter than your brother,' and whatnot but we dealt with it. Being a twin is special. Everybody wants to feel special."

The May twins shared a room all the way through high school, moved away to college and now both teach in Osceola where they coach baseball and football together. They were the blue ribbon winners of the Iowa State Fair's most-alike category for twins 18 years and older at the "Twins, Triplets, and More" contest. 

During this Talk of Iowa conversation, Producer Lindsey Moon talks with the Mays about growing up and living life as a multiple.

Then host Charity Nebbe talks with author Joan Friedman, who has an identical twin sister and is the mother of twins. She's spent her career studying twin relationships and is the author of the book The Same but Different: How Twins Can Love, Live and Learn to be Individuals.

Since 1980, the rate of twin births has risen by 76% according to the Centers for Disease Control. Friedman says its important for parents of twins to allow twins to form individual identities. 

"If twins never have the chance to branch out on their own, sometimes its really hard to transition to live as a singleton," she explains. "All siblings have these issues, but its different for siblings who are the same age."

Editor's Note: This show originally aired on August 25, 2015. 

Lindsey Moon served as IPR's Senior Digital Producer - Music and the Executive Producer of IPR Studio One's All Access program. Moon started as a talk show producer with Iowa Public Radio in May of 2014. She came to IPR by way of Illinois Public Media, an NPR/PBS dual licensee in Champaign-Urbana, Illinois, and Wisconsin Public Radio, where she worked as a producer and a general assignment reporter.
Charity Nebbe is the host of IPR's Talk of Iowa