First there were two, then four, then six… Everywhere I looked twins grinned and burbled and rolled on the ground. Such is the norm in the world of LGBT parents.
This weekend we took the boys to an LGBT family picnic at the Lambeth County Fair. Gathered around a proud rainbow flag, we adults bonded over the joys of our children. Our children entered into the communal spirit by stealing each others’ toys and, in A’s case, trying to flirt with other babies by spitting half-chewed pitta bread at them. There were plenty of non-twins at the party, including one gorgeous baby girl who was the recipient of A’s charming attempt at flirting. But there were also many more twins than you would think a gathering of young families would bring.
When we were having fertility treatment, the clinic offered us the option of having only one, rather than the usual two, eggs implanted. We went for two as it increased the chances of my getting pregnant, but of course it also increased the likelihood of our having twins. And as the average LGBT couple cannot conceive without some form of medical intervention, it isn’t surprising that so many have twins.
Now I admit I am biased, but I find twins inherently charming. The ease of their interactions, developed literally since before birth, and their little identical habits – even amongst non-identical twins – are delightful. I can’t help but smile, for example, as A and R simultaneously stretch and launch themselves at my glasses so that they can pull them apart. So at the picnic I was thrilled that twins were everywhere, cooing and crawling around (in R’s case, moving pretty fast as he hurried to get away from the delicious ice lolly that we cruelly made him try). I was less thrilled, however, when the gay dads of older twins older than mine told me that the fighting between their boys never ceased.
As A and R develop their ability to stand and move independently, I fear for their safety and mine. But at least I know that there are plenty in the LGBT community who can advise me on how to keep them apart.