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People Share Their Dark Family Secrets

40. There Was Never a Twin

At twenty-one, when I asked my mother why I had no siblings, she confided that I had actually been born a twin and my brother had died because I “choked him” with my umbilical cord. She said I must never tell anyone or mention it to my father because he was still upset “that it was the boy who had died”.

I had wanted a brother or sister all my life so was deeply sad and felt incredibly guilty to the point where I unsuccessfully attempted to end my life. (There was other stuff going on too – death of my boyfriend of five years – so I was already in a dark place.)

Years later when I was carrying my own twins I began to realise that parts of her story seemed unusual and looked into my birth records. And here’s the darkest bit – it turns out there never was a twin. I never confronted her.


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