One of the biggest fears that the parents of identical twins might have is getting the two mixed up, somehow. Internet forums are chock full of people asking how to prevent it. Well, one way to do it is to assign a specific color to each twin. So, for example, you might dress Twin One a certain way and Twin Two differently to quickly tell them apart while they’re still small. Sounds simple, straightforward, and logical, right?
Well, some people don’t think so. In fact, they believe that parents choosing their kids’ clothes might be tantamount to ‘stifling their individuality.’ One redditor, a mom to identical twins, turned to the AITA subreddit to check whether or not she was in the wrong for dressing one of her twins blue and the other green. You see, a cousin of her husband’s had accused her of ‘forcing them’ to dress how she wants. In fact, she went ‘ballistic’ and thought it was unfair to them.
Read on for the full story and how the members of the AITA online community reacted to this rather peculiar accusation. Don’t forget to share your opinion in the comments. And if you happen to have twins (or know someone who raised a pair), we’d especially love to hear from you, Pandas.
Some parents of twins tend to color-code their clothing to easily tell them apart
Image credits: Joe Goldberg (not the actual photo)
However, when one mom did the same for her kids, a relative of hers gave her a lot of grief
Image credits: Анна Аверьянова (not the actual photo)
Like you probably expected, dear Pandas, the vast majority of redditors came out in full support of the mom. They stressed that it was nothing new for the parents of twins to color-code each kid. What’s more, they noted that, at that age, it’s important parents to, well, parent. It’s hard to talk about true, fully-fledged individuality and making rational decisions for oneself when you’re a year and a half old. (That happens slightly later.)
Some parents actually choose to use non-toxic nail polish to tell their twins apart. Meanwhile, others joke that it’s vital that the couple should agree to never ever prank each other by switching the twins.
Raising kids is a balance between parental guidance and respecting children’s privacy and freedom as they grow and mature. Being completely hands-off or overly domineering usually are paths best avoided (though either approach might work in some families). A mix of guidance, discipline, trust, and communication is usually the best.
Child independence expert Lenore Skenazy previously explained to Bored Panda why some parents are overly controlling and go the route of ‘helicopter parenting.’
“One thing many parents are choosing today is to keep their kids under constant surveillance, with the help of tech. Whether it’s being able to track their kids’ movements, read their browsing history, or even scan their texts, parents have all sorts of new tools to make them seemingly omniscient,” she said that it’s easier than ever before to keep track of kids, but this should be balanced out with a certain amount of respect for privacy.
“For the same reason you didn’t want your parents to read your diary, or to build a treehouse on the branch right next to your treehouse, children need some space to grow into their own person,” she explained to Bored Panda.
“Kids need to know they are loved, but they also need to know they are trusted. They can’t prove that if parents never actually let them do some things literally on their own, without constant surveillance.”
The best approach, in the expert’s view, is “talk, don’t stalk” in order to create trust between parent and child.
“Try to keep the lines of communication open with your kids, and gradually give them more freedom as they get older and earn it by being responsible. Taking all independence away for their ‘safety’ is a way to teach them that you don’t think they can handle anything on their own— how deflating!—and that you don’t trust them. Would you appreciate a spouse who tracked your every move? Would you feel trusted? Love requires some trust.”
Here’s how some members of the AITA community reacted when they read the story. The mom gave some extra context, too