Larraine Asks:

“I have twin boys born 15 minutes apart. There is a profound difference between them—why?”

Patrick Asks:

“A question from the confused. I am a twin…I was born at 14:00 hours…and my sister was born at 13:50 hours. She is very different. Birth chart [interpretations] seem to be so generally tailored that it has not been meaningful to us both.”

Kevin Answers:

Larraine and Patrick,

The astrology of twins is very interesting. Certainly, each twin is an individual, most obviously in the case of fraternal twins like Patrick and his sister. And since twins are usually born more than 4 minutes apart, they most often have different degrees on their Ascendants, and slightly different house cusps. On the one hand, there’s no denying that twins come as close as you can get to having identical birth charts, so it would make sense that they respond and behave in similar manners. But on the other hand, as Larraine points out, twins can also be very different.

It’s very possible for twins born even as little as 10 minutes apart to have significantly different charts: they can have different rising signs, and different Moon signs. While this is not very common, it will account for very significant differences in the behavior of each twin—these are planets and points in their charts that they don’t have to share, and so they will frequently emphasize their differences and individuality in this way. As far as the rest of the chart goes, and in situations when the twins have the same Ascendant and Moon signs, what usually happens is that they divide up the chart between them. One twin will express the Sun, the other the Moon; one may express the Mars, while the other expresses the Venus energy. It’s not that they don’t each have the ability to experience all of the planets in the chart; but while they are living together, they tend to stick to the planets that they “own.”

When twins grow up and start living apart from each other, they begin to express the whole chart—they no longer feel the need to share it with their sibling. But when they are together, their behavior patterns tend to revert, and they will once again split the chart between them.

As Patrick has discovered, cookbook or written birth chart interpretations aren’t likely to resonate too strongly with twins; the twins, more than anyone, are the most aware of their differences, and it’s simply not possible to express these in a written interpretation. In order to gain a true understanding of how each twin experiences their natal chart, they would have to have an interactive counseling session with an astrologer who can see how the dynamic of the relationship has effected what planets each twin “owns” and what planets they seem to “share” or give away.

I think that one reason that many twins, particularly identical twins stay so close through their lives, is that they don’t fully realize that they can own and express their entire natal chart; they have gotten so used to only being responsible for half of the chart, and relying on their sibling for the other half, that they may be afraid that they would not be able to exist without the support of their twin. My Grandmother and Great Aunt were identical twins, and had a very intense love-hate relationship with each other. They were always extremely close, and depended on that connection, but at the same time, I think that they also resented it as well. My Great Aunt passed away two years ago; my Grandmother, however, decided to stay, and lived for another seven years. She lived in a nursing home, with advanced Alzheimer’s, and I’m not sure how much she remembered or understood. But I do suspect that she stayed because for the first time in her life, she had the freedom to be a complete individual, to experience and her entire birth chart, without having to share any of it with her sister.

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