June and Jennifer Gibbons, the twins who only talked with each otherThe psychology of twins has always been an interesting area of research for many scientists. Soon after their birth, their family moved to Haverfordwest, Wales. While growing up both sisters became inseparable. While growing up, the twins were the only Black children in their community. Due to their race, they were bullied at school.
Silent Twins: The Haunting Case of June and Jennifer Gibbons
June and Jennifer Gibbons
They became known as "The Silent Twins" since they only communicated with each other. They began writing works of fiction but later turned to crime. Both women were admitted to Broadmoor Hospital where they were held for eleven years. The Gibbonses moved from Barbados to the United Kingdom in the early s, as part of the Windrush generation. The family soon relocated—first to England , and in , to Haverfordwest , Wales. As the only black children in the community, they were ostracized at school.
Sunday, February 04, 2007
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Metaphors sustain us. For most of their lives together, they refused to speak to anyone but each other—a refusal that led to their emotional exile, their institutionalization, and, eventually, to the misguided appropriation of their story by activists and theorists who used it to pose questions about the nature of identity and the strange birthright that twins are forced to bear. It is a cold, gray day, the kind of day that Americans, reading English novels, imagine being far more picturesque than the reality. The long train hugs the coast, close enough for me to see the gray-green water rolling and lapping—almost close enough for me to reach out and touch it. As the train approaches the Haverfordwest station, I see June Gibbons, the only black person on the platform. She spots me, too, the only black person on the train, and she nods as I disembark. She is wearing jeans and a white T-shirt and black boots and a large blue jacket, in which her thin frame seems to swim.
In fiction there are lots of scary twins. Just think of those creepy little girls in The Shining. In the real world, most twins consider themselves lucky to have a companion who shares their genes and their history. But for some twins, like Jennifer and June Gibbons, that unique bond becomes more of a curse. In the end, June and Jennifer decided one of them would have to die so the other one could go on living. It was an investigative journalist for the Sunday Times named Marjorie Wallace who first brought their story to the world.