The having-been-ness and the being-in-the-world of twin survivors : a thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Arts in Nursing at Massey University

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Massey University
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This study uses Heideggerian interpretive phenomenology to examine the experience of being a twin, then being a twin survivor in the world. Heidegger's terminology is selectively used to shape the interpretation of the twins' narratives. The phenomenological method focuses on participant descriptions of their everyday life; there are no conclusions and no scientific results. While there have been many scientific studies using twins as subjects, there seems to be very few published studies using twin narrative. Every participant wished to be part of this study because they felt that it might help others in similar situations. They described their life as a twin, their reaction to the death of their co-twin, and the intense loneliness that they have felt ever since. In describing their experiences, they have managed to portray a picture of twinship seldom made so explicit. The intense reliance on each other that results from living together closely since conception, has a particular impact on their being-in-the-world. Many of those interviewed felt that half of them had gone forever after the death of their twin, and struggled to develop their own sense of identity as a lone twin. As survivors, the participants now view the world differently, and although others may see them as a singleton, they will always remain a twin.
Twins, Bereavement, Alienation (Social psychology), Death, Psychology