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One and the Same    by Abigail Pogrebin order for
One and the Same
by Abigail Pogrebin
Order:  USA  Can
Anchor, 2010 (2009)
Hardcover, Softcover, e-Book

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* *   Reviewed by Mary Ann Smyth

Abigail Pogrebin's One and the Same is subtitled 'My Life as an Identical Twin and What I've Learned about Everyone's Struggles to Be Singular'.

At one time or another, many of us are sure they have an identical twin somewhere in the world. The single child dreams of having one. Some one to talk to, to listen to, to accept you no matter what, to be your confidante, to share victories and failures. To be your bulwark against the world. Maybe that dream isn't all it's stacked up to be. Reading One and the Same gave me a different perspective on being a twin. Twin-ness can be all consuming. Always part of a whole. Never a single entity.

The twins interviewed by the author exhibited great delight in their situation, but also found that having someone just like oneself can be a burden. This book is well researched with many sets of twins participating - most agreeing that the twin came first before parents, spouse or children. Twins who lost a twin at birth or in utero always seemed to feel incomplete even though they never met their twin. Something was always missing in their lives.

There is too much information in this enlightening work to summarize. There are some unpleasant paragraphs about what could go wrong while carrying twins. And information about IVF births that would make me think twice before attempting that method of pregnancy. Feeling great pleasure at being a twin while still coming to grips with the psychological aspects to twosomes must be daunting. Whether you're a twin yourself, have twins, or are expecting twins (as is my granddaughter) this is an informative book.

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