Going to college comes with all kinds of adjustments. There’s learning to balance study time in library with going out Collegetown; the task of refraining from eating too many dining hall french fries; and, of course, getting used to the five miles or more of walking it takes just to get through a day of classes. But some people are also living without their other half for the first time. No, not their boyfriend or girlfriend–their twin.
Many twins end up attending different colleges, and often people don’t stop to think about what a huge adjustment that is. For pretty much all of their childhood, twins share everything. They shared birthday parties and sat next to each other in class because it’s arranged by last names. In fact, they’ve often grown accustomed to being referred to collectively as ‘the twins’, instead of by their individual names.
But if you’re a twin and you go to a separate college from your other half, suddenly you’re not ‘the twin’ anymore. You’re just you. When you meet people, you automatically turn to your right only to realize there’s no one else to introduce. When you get a test back, there’s no one else you have to immediately compare to. On your birthday you get all the attention from people that you previously had to share.
And it feels weird.
Sometimes it feels like they don’t even exist anymore, so you have to work them into conversations just to acknowledge their presence. During the first semester, whenever people ask you to tell an interesting fact about yourself, you’d say “I have a twin” just to make sure that they still exist in the separate world you now live in.
But going to college without your twin isn’t all bad. You’re no longer in someone’s shadow. It’s a time when you can explore what you like and what makes you an individual without automatically being associated with someone else.
You and your twin also get closer from being apart. You realize how important they are in your life, and you start to cherish the time you spend with each other instead of fight.
Being a twin is part of who you are, but in college, it no longer defines you. It’s a time to find yourself when you and your twin are apart, and share experiences and grow closer when you’re together.