A Built-In Buddy

Features Uncategorized
by Eva Shimkus, Features Section Editor
Anna and Ari Zeren

Freshman Ari Zeren said that sharing many of the same friends has driven him and his twin sister, Anna, to participate in many similar activities.

“We still have our separate things that we’re doing without our friend group, but there are certainly parts of us that are focused inward because of what we do in our everyday lives,” he said. “Your friend group ultimately dictates what you do [and] what you’re interested in.”

Both Ari and Anna said that being in intersecting friend groups has fostered competition with each other. 

“We see each other a lot, so we can get really annoyed at each other,” Anna said. 

“I wouldn’t say it’s a want to feel better than your twin, but I think it’s a want to not be worse than your twin,” Ari said. “There isn’t much to be competitive about except board games, not to mention yesterday I crushed her in one.”

Renee and Adela Cronk

Freshman Adela Cronk said that the best part about being a twin is having someone to help her with homework.

“And just having a friend around,” her sister Renee added.

Getting along is where things often get difficult, they said.

“Our personalities just completely split, and they keep splitting as you get older,”  Adela said. 

“I feel like they split the most in middle school,” Renee added. “We have yet to see for high school.”

The twins, who are fraternal, are not often mistaken for each other, Adela said.

“A lot of kids don’t know that I’m a twin,” Adela said. “We’re each our own person throughout the day. I like that.”

Adele and Sylvie Spitz

Both coxswains on their respective rowing teams, identical sophomores Adele and Sylvie Spitz are no strangers to competition.

Last year, the two shared three classes, which Adele said increased their competition with each other.

“You always have a competitor, especially when we were in the same classes. We would see our grades, and one of us would be doing better in something,” Adele said. “You’re always together and always doing the same thing.” 

“It’s really easy to compare us because we’re the same almost, in a physical sense and in a mental [sense], and if you’re going to compare two people, it’s easiest to compare people who are the same from the outside,” Sylvie said. 

 This year, without classes together, they said they have grown individually and expanded their friend groups.

 “It’s better that we’re not in any classes,” Sylvie said. “We don’t see each other all the time every day, so when we get home from school or rowing we have more to talk about, and we’re not all together all the time, which is nice.”

“Because we’ve had different opportunities and we’ve done different stuff, we’ve grown apart in that way,” Adele said. “But also because we’ve done different stuff, we’ve been able to grow together and have more to talk about and relate to.”

Clara and Lucy Dutton

Aside from both being members of the science team, fraternal twin juniors Clara and Lucy Dutton said that they do not share many similar interests. 

“I’m a STEM person, and Lucy’s a humanities person. Sometimes we take different levels of the same classes. And I’m part of the DaVinci program, so [we] can’t be part of the same classes,” Clara said. 

Lucy said that the twins had more in common when they were younger.

“Once we reached high school, there were just so many more opportunities for what you can do,” she said. Our interests have really branched out.”

Lucy said sharing grades with her twin can be awkward.

“If someone does better than the other person, then it’s like you’re not as good at something, but we’ve tried to work around that,” she said. “We try not to share grades that often.”

For Clara, being a twin is all about being supportive.

“It’s like having a really good friend and getting to talk to them a lot,” she said. “We’ve been able to talk and share our experiences more.”

Itamar and Noa Nadler

Junior Noa Nadler said there have been a lot of instances in which people were surprised to find out she has a twin brother, Itamar. 

“They were like, ‘Oh my god, you’re twins with Itamar? That’s so crazy,’” she said. “It was funny; it was like people who I went to middle school with who just genuinely did not know.” 

Itamar said being twins hasn’t affected their experiences at South. “It’s not like we’re explicitly being compared to each other,” he said.

“It also has to do with the fact that we’re taking different classes and we have different interests. I always lean toward more humanities, and Itamar really likes programming and a lot more of the STEM stuff,” Noa said.

Itamar said that he thinks being a multiple is without downsides, besides the occasional argument.

“We’re in the same grade, we’re having the same experiences, and like I said before, we’re friends with some of the same people. Also that relatability aspect,” Itamar said. 

“And we have a little sister, who’s a sophomore. We’re not just siblings;” Noa said. “We can also be friends.”

Hannah and Sarah Kim

Fraternal twin and senior Hannah Kim said it is annoying to be compared to her sister, Sarah.

“People just automatically assume that I like the same things she does, or that I have the same personality traits,” Hannah said.

Sarah said that the comparison mostly happens in school. 

“Some teachers think of us in terms of our differences, and they don’t necessarily compare how one of us is doing better in a class, but it’s more like, ‘Oh you guys are different in these ways,’” Sarah said. 

Sarah said that she appreciates when teachers make an effort to see them as individuals.

“If a teacher can’t tell us apart, I definitely dislike them because we’re fraternal, so it feels rude if they can’t take the time to get to know us separately,” Sarah said. “For the most part, we’ve been pretty lucky with teachers who have taken the time to tell us apart.” 

Despite the comparison, the twins say that they feel no pressure to compete against each other, especially not in school. 

“I don’t want to get a bad grade, but if she gets a good grade, like a better one than me, I’m not going to be angry at her. Our parents have made it so it’s like ‘don’t compare them ever,’ because that’s just terrible,” Sarah said.

As seniors, the twins know that leaving home and going separate ways will be difficult.

“I can’t imagine going to college without her, and that’s going to be hard. It’s normal growing pains: you fight with each other in middle school, but we’re really close now,” Hannah said. “You kind of have a built-in buddy, and it’s really nice especially when we’re somewhere new, so we don’t have to feel alone.”