The Daily Telegraph - Saturday

‘When their dad moved out, the girls turned to each other’

Marla Ezer, a Pilates teacher and single mum, lives with her twin daughters, Tia and Lottie, 18, in north London

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“Twins tend to have a unique relationsh­ip. The girls have a very strong bond, and they spent their early years doing everything together. I remember being in the park when they were little, watching all the other mums chasing their toddlers around, and my girls were side by side getting on. They just didn’t need me as much.

Even so, they have very individual characters. Lottie is more competitiv­e and self-sufficient. Tia is less confident, but their difference­s are a positive as they are not striving for the same things. There were occasions when Lottie would get humpy if she felt I was paying more attention to her sister, but because Tia is so relaxed, the drama never escalated.

When they hit their early teens and the hormones kicked in, things ramped up. They’d always shared a bedroom, but Lottie announced she wanted separate rooms. That was a period of more arguments, and there were times when they didn’t like each other and wouldn’t speak for days. My solution then was to separate them to relieve the tension; these days I just let them get on with it. They are old enough to sort it out.

There is no way that two females growing up so closely are not going to fight. We’ve had screaming, slapping and mini cat fights, but few tears. They are both pretty tough. When their dad moved out 18 months ago, it was an emotional time for us all, but I noticed the girls really turned to each other. Lockdown has had a similar effect.

On the whole, they manage conflict pretty well. They might sulk for a while after a row, but they respect each other and will apologise. I’ve always told them how important it is to have each other’s back. If they ever became estranged, I’d be devastated. I am not particular­ly close to my own siblings, which saddens me. Perhaps I’ve subconscio­usly worked hard to keep my girls close. I do believe having that special bond makes for a happier life.”

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