Not Normal Families

Video-conjoined-articleLarge-v2In Sunday's Magazine section, Susan Dominus writes about two little girls in British Columbia who share a brain. The mother of these little girls explains that her family was never normal, so they accepted their daughters' differences better than other families. 

Simms has always appreciated what she characterizes as her mother’s easygoing ways. It was Louise who paid for her first facial piercing, at age 12, and who accepted the news easily when she learned her daughter was pregnant three years later. “We were never normal,” Simms says, and “that was O.K.” She thinks that in some ways it was easier for her family to accept the idea of conjoined twins than it might have been for a family that was more conventional. They did not have to reinvent their sense of themselves, the image they presented to the world. “In my house growing up, everything didn’t have to be perfect,” she said. “I never had to be like everybody else, look like everybody else.”

It's definitely easier to accept the fact that your kid doesn't fall within a bell curve, if your identity isn't caught up with being normal. If you long to be the SUV driving mom with the honor roll stickers on the bumper, then your child's dyslexia will be a bitter pill to swallow. I love that this face-pieced, single mom has so much grace. 

One thought on “Not Normal Families

  1. I agree to a point–but I wouldn’t say not batting an eye at anything your children do ever isn’t the opposite of being a conformist suburban mom. I think plenty of parents could be unhappy their daughter got pregnant at 15 without feeling that way because they want to be normal. I also think that being lovingly ignorant/neglectful of the twins is going to be a huge problem. The girls have a serious eye problem that could be treated by wearing glasses, which they are not (and at risk for going blind), and at 4, one girl’s teeth are so rotten she needs to have surgery. It’s nice the girls have such a loving family and have a relatively normal childhood so far, but neglecting health and hygiene is going to create serious problems in the long run.

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