Why do twins understand each other?

There are many twins around me. They often talk at the same time and it really surprised me. It seems that they can understand each other’s minds. They seem to have some connections between them, which others can never understand.

Beautiful redheaded twin babies under blanket

Beautiful redheaded twin babies under blanket

People call that “twin language”. Sometimes in movies, there would be a type of language which belongs to a secret agency that only the agents understand the language. The same thing applies to twins babies. According to the research, as baby twins develop their ability of talking, they tend to put random words together to represent something that they would understand but others don’t. These words seem to be the tool, similar to codes, for twins to communicate with each other. Although they have their own language, only a small percentage of twins have trouble talking in real English with their parents or other people. Most of them have the ability to switch back and forth between their “twin language” and social language.


According to the research above, there are some correlation between twins and twin language. But correlation does not equal to causation. Being twins does not mean that all of them have twin language. This research is observational so that sometimes it might due to chance. It is also possible that two people stay together for a long time so that tacit understanding is cultivated. We can also see something like twin language between people who are not twins.


Overall, large placebo experiment might need to be done to understand the correlation between twins. It is still possible that twins have a “second language” between them.

4 thoughts on “Why do twins understand each other?

  1. John Luken

    I find this article to be very interesting because growing up, I had a set of twins in my classes and they always seemed to be laughing with each other even if they weren’t verbally communicating with one another. This always confused me because I thought that there was no way for them to communicate and it was perplexing. I found that twins may be able to have a separate language and this is called Cryptophasia. Personally, I think that they can communicate in their own way because identical twins have the same genes so they are wired the same way, I think that this would make them think the same and have the same ideas about things. Cool post!

  2. Amanda M Mitchell

    Your blog post is very interesting. To take the idea that two people who already share so much, which we know through common knowledge, can have deeper connections that scientists are still discovering makes for a great blog. I feel that your blogs overall hypothesis, which I believe is that if you are a twin, you could then have possibly developed a certain language with the person you shared the womb with, could be strengthened by deeper research. After reading your blog general questions that raced to my head where
    -Is there a greater chance in developing a twin language with identical and fraternal twins?
    -What makes this language development different than when close siblings or childhood friends create a language?
    -What exactly will a large placebo experiment look like to find a correlation between twins and a certain developed language?
    After following your hyperlink to the website you received your information from I am able to understand the message of your blog better. There are many aspects of “twin language” mentioned in the article that you do not address or expand on. Things such as delayed phonology, lack of communication with others, and long run effects of twins that do actually develop a language between themselves all could have enhanced your post. Finally after reading the article that sparked your blog I am intrigued by the idea that twins that do only communicate with themselves can fail to communicate with others in developmental years. Dorthy Bishop and Kathy Mogford published a book “Language Develop in Exceptional Circumstances” where they address the possibilities of twins development delays, how twins interact with others and each other and what sets their language apart from others. Their ideas would be great for a follow up blog on your article since you slightly mention that twins have an ability to switch from social language to twin language in your blog.


  3. Shannon Elizabeth Kress

    I think that the idea of twins having a special connection makes sense, although its hard to say why or if they do for sure. Is it more than just sharing a family bond? When I think about the really close bond my step-sister have who is 5 months older than me, it makes sense why twins would be so close. The science behind why twins could have a special type of connection is very interesting. This website was very interesting and even goes a little more into the history of this idea of “twin telepathy”. I have always wondered about this, and would love to find more studies on this.

  4. elb5372

    All throughout my life two of my best friends are twins. Though sometimes they would get alone with each other, for the majority of the time they interacted just as you should think siblings would. Now some of the similarities that they hold can be largely in part to the way they were raised, for it was very identical. I agree with the conclusions you made about your research and thought that it was a thought provoking, good read. So for that, I thank you.

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