The Vanishing Twin Syndrome

vanishing twin syndrome
An ultrasound photo of identical twins at 12 weeks

A few years ago I read in a Dr. Ruth type column about a woman who was having twins and then the one baby just disappeared. I never heard of this before, so I went onto a medical site to find out more. Apart from being told to see a doctor immediately – I was not pregnant! – I was given the information I needed.

Apparently, it is quite common in multiple pregnancies for one fetus to be ‘absorbed’ back into the mother’s body. Here is the link to an excellent article about the causes and effects of the vanishing twin syndrome: http://americanpregnancy.org/multiples/vanishing-twin-syndrome/

So, why am I telling you this?

Reading about the vanishing twin syndrome made me think about the psychological adjustment of the surviving twin. We all know how close twins, especially identical twins, are to each other. Research has shown that twins feel each others’ emotions, etc etc, and if one should die, the remaining twin suffers more than when a non-twin sibling dies. But what about if one twin dies invitro, like in the vanishing twin syndrome? Would the survivor later in life ‘feel’ the loss of the twin who died before birth?

How does this all tie in?

I explored this concept in my Moragh Saga trilogy. In book 1, A Convenient Marriage, Nicole is a handful at the best of times, but a lot of her behavior can be attributed to the inexplicable ‘sadness’ she often suffers from. Something vital seems to be missing in her life, and she tries to fill the void by any means possible – partying too hard, men, drugs – until inevitably she falls pregnant by a man other than her fiancé.

But the vanishing syndrome had a devastating effect on her mother, Moragh, too. She couldn’t deal with the idea of one of her babies dying inside her, and she blamed the survivor, Nicole, for it. It became impossible for Moragh to bond with her living child. Even after her death, Moragh haunts her daughter in nightmares Nicole suffers from in times of stress.

When her fiancé, Joshua, out of the blue brings a complete stranger home as his wife, Nicole’s stress levels went through the roof, and her nightmares takes on a whole new dimension. Only then her father tells her she started life as part of a twin, and that the other baby died before birth – Nicole is the survivor of the vanishing twin syndrome. 

And Beyond?

Nicole’s story continues in book 2, Poppet Nicole. Having been thwarted by Joshua, and then promptly disinherited in favor of Joshua when both her parents die suddenly and unexpectedly, leaving her a penniless orphan.

She wants revenge for what Joshua has done to her, and she has to reclaim the inheritance she has been brought up to expect. And then Ned, the father of her unborn child, returns to the scene.

Desperately in love with Ned and carrying his child, she demands that Joshua marry her for her to reclaim her inheritance. She has no regard for his brand new marriage, because she doesn’t believe he is really married, anyway.

The question is, how far will Nicole go to get her own way? For how long will Ned stand by while she tries to ruin another man’s life?

A Convenient Marriage-spooky paranormal romance

You can find A Convenient Marriage here: http://tinyurl.com/zsy7ktw

Poppet Nicole - spooky paranormal romance

And pre-order Poppet Nicole here: https://tinyurl.com/y32d6p3l

Poppet Nicole will be released on June 13, 2019