Vanishing Twin Phenomenon (Syndrome)
VTlogo16Could you be a twin?

My purpose here is to provide a compact and convenient overview, with links to multiple resources, of the VTP and related issues. Parents who have lost or fear losing one of multiple offspring; womb twins newly discovering or attempting over time to deal with their loss, medical or psychological caregivers who must deal with the consequences of that loss, and curious laypeople will find here, if not answers, at least better questions to ask.  

Table of Contents
Could you be a twin?
Recent Articles

Medical Perspective
Reasons for Bleeding
Types of Twins
Teratoma or Dermoid Tumor
Fetus Papyraceus
Conjoined Twins
Fetus in Fetu
Higher Risk
Cerebral Palsy
Homosexuality & Single Twins

Psychological Perspective
Womb Twins
Validation – or Not
Parental Issues
Psychological Help
Neuro-Emotional Technique
Psychic Bond
Communication with Vanished Twin
Imaginary Friend
Information “Downloads”
Metaphysical Experiences of Single Twins
Body Sharing
UFOs & Extraterrestrial Contact
Dreaming of a Twin
Twins as Guides or Helpers

Ethical Issues
Multifetal Pregnancy Reduction
DNA Evidence & Chimerism

Caryl’s Personal Experience
Final Thoughts
Frequently Asked Questions
Vanishing Twin Phenomenon Discussion Group

Could you be a twin?

Physical signs for the mother of a possible Womb Twin

  • Cramps
  • Bleeding
  • Decreased hormone levels during the first trimester
  • Diethylstilbestrol  (DES) use during pregnancy
  • Often there are no physical symptoms at all.  Also, if there is a history of twins in the family and/or if a woman has already borne twins or is older, the chances increase for VTP incidence.

Physical signs of a possible Womb Twin

  • Teratoma or Dermoid tumor
  • Mid-line deformities (cleft palate, heart anomolies)
  • Excess fingers or toes
  • Different colored eyes
  • Left handedness
  • Cerebral Palsy

Psychological Signs of a possible Womb Twin

  • Imaginary friend
  • Hearing voices or schizophrenia
  • Feelings of incompleteness, loneliness or missing something or someone
  • Fascination with mirrors
  • Fascination with twins
  • Fear of sudden loss
  • Recurring dreams of a twin or “familiar” person
  • Sexual identity confusion
  • Enhanced psychic ability
  • Extreme emotional sensitivity


Dedicated to Mandi, who sent me the following email:

My name is Mandi… I am 11. A few years ago I told my mom that I had a twin, and I wanted to know where she was NOW I was kind of kidding but kind of serious. My mom looked at me and said “Um, yes, you had a twin…in my stomach. But she died.” I was shocked because she had never told me… Apparently when I was born there were two placentas, but just me.

I haven’t told many people about my twin (Lexie, is what I call her because that’s what my mom was going to name my brother if he was a girl, and she wanted to name me that, too) Because I told my step brother once (who is a twin, too) and he called me “Baby-eater” and said I ate her…that’s why I wanted to find out about Lexie.

About the voices in the head… I do talk to myself sometimes, but I never thought of it much until I read your web page.

About the genius thing…I took an online IQ test and I am 178… I am pretty sure that is genius…I am lonely a lot even with friends.

That’s all I have to say.



  • Womb Twin:  Someone who lost their twin (or other multiples) in utero.
  • Twinless Twin:  Someone who lost their twin (or other multiples) at birth or after.
  • Single Twin:  Womb Twins and Twinless Twins
  • Singleton:  Someone who did not share the womb

Recent Articles
One Person Can Have Two DNA Types? Chimera Said To ‘Undermine’ Up To ‘1 In 8’ DNA Cases In United States
Adventures in the Science of the Superorganism
The ghostly explanation for how a man’s unborn twin fathered his child
Wrap Your Brain Around This:  An Infant was Born ‘Pregnant’ … with Twins!
Is another human living inside you?
Twins interact with each other as early as 14 weeks in the womb

Introduction by Caryl Dennis

twinswombThe Vanishing Twin Phenomenon (VTP) or Syndrome, as it is known in the medical literature, is the identification of a multifetal gestation with subsequent disappearance of one or more fetuses.

It is explored extensively in the 1995 text Multiple Pregnancy: Epidemiology, Gestation & Perinatal Outcome.  With contributions from over 80 experts from around the world, this book offers a definitive and comprehensive examination of the subject of twins.  In it, Dr. Charles Boklage states: “In reality…losing one or both offspring from a twin pregnancy is too common to be called phenomenal, and occurs for too many different reasons to qualify as a syndrome.  There is little room to doubt that the question of vanishing twins and sole survivors of twin gestation represent issues of broad and fundamental importance.”   With the growing use of fertility drugs and in vitro fertilization, and as more women choose to begin their families later in life — thereby increasing their chances of multiple fetuses — the number of multiple pregnancies is soaring.

From the work of Dr. Thomas Verny, Dr. David Chamberlain and others, we now know that the fetus has consciousness and memory.  Dr. Verny declares in The Secret Life of the Unborn Child, “Birth and prenatal experiences form the foundations of human personality.  Everything we become or hope to become, our relationships with ourselves, our parents, our friends, all are influenced by what happens to us in these two critical periods.”

While it is important to note that some single twins experience no physical or emotional issues stemming from their twinship, my interactions with hundreds of twinless twins and womb twins tells me that the loss of a twin in utero can indeed have profound physical, mental and emotional effects, both on the surviving child and its parents — especially if it is unacknowledged.

Unfortunately, I found very few instances in which healthcare providers have discussed these potential problems with the parents, which can lead to unacknowledged feelings of confusion, loss and/or grief.  Also since our society has such a strong aversion to discussing death, parents are reluctant to tell their surviving twin of their twinship for fear of causing them grief or upset.

If a surviving twin never learns of the loss of its companion, (s)he can be left with no context within which to process psychological problems that may ensue, nor be aware of the possible physical issues that could affect their health.

As early as 1945, the Text of Obstetrics mentioned the possibility of many more twins being conceived than born, but the VTP received its current name in 1980 at the Third International Congress on Twin Studies held in Jerusalem.  When the subject was raised, one of the congress participants cried out, “Vanishing twins!”  In 1995, Lawrence Wright published an extensive article, Double Mystery, in the New Yorker magazine which gave the VTP some public exposure.

althea picThe field has made a lot of progress since that time with special thanks to, Althea Hayton from the UK who did a comprehensive job, before her passing in 2014, of researching, documenting and educating both professionals, as well as lay people, of the psychological implications in her Womb Twin Research Project. Althea’s research is published in book form in a comprehensive review of the entire womb twin survivors project, Womb Twin Survivors and many resources are available on her website.  Her Womb Twins Kids Projects, offering age appropriate information is another valuable resource.  She also created some very educational slide presentations available HERE.  She will certainly be missed in the field.

charles boklageDr. Charles Boklage, author of How New Humans Are Made: Cells and Embryos, Twins and Chimeras, Left and Right, Mind/Self/Soul, Sex, and Schizophrenia (2009), is another pioneer/maverick in the field.  He describes himself as a “classically-trained philosophy- and theology and psychology literate behavioral and developmental geneticist.”  He is a Professor of Genetics and Pediatrics; Adjunct Professor of Biology at East Carolina University. HERE is a video presentation on the History of Twin Studies, where he outlines his research, including some of the common misconceptions about the twinning process.   His message seems to be – everything you think you know about twinning is wrong.  Fascinating research.

Multiple Pregnancy: Epidemiology, Gestation & Perinatal Outcome (cited above) is the earliest medical text I found that addresses the VTP in great depth.

Medical statistics suggest that 1 in 8 people begin life as a twin.
75% of the women pregnant with twins only deliver one baby.

Dr. Charles Boklage studied reports of 325 twin pregnancies and found that 61 ended as twins, 125 as singletons and the remaining 186 as a complete loss — a measure of how risky twin pregnancies are.  “Somewhere in the vicinity of 10 to 15 per cent of us — that’s a minimum estimate —  are walking around thinking we’re singletons when in fact we’re only the big half”, according to Boklage.  He estimates that for every set of twins born alive, there are at least six singletons who are survivors of twin conceptions.  Due to improved ultrasound technology and earlier detection of pregnancy, we are now able to see and document a phenomenon that has been occurring all along.

Medical Perspective

Mainstream medical opinion is that “vanishing” fetuses are “resorbed” by the surviving twin or the mother, usually with no adverse affects to the surviving twin or the mother.  The mother may experience a little bleeding or cramps and continue with a normal pregnancy. The psychological affects are rarely addressed.  Parents are encouraged to focus on the remaining twin and move on.

Boklage Article

Reasons for bleeding during pregnancy (other than the VTP):

A printable list of possible medical implications
Another perspective
7th month twin loss

Types of Twins
howhumansmade cover“Common knowledge” has been for decades that twins can either be monozygotic (“identical”), meaning that they can develop from just one zygote that will then split (like a zipper) and form two embryos, or dizygotic (“fraternal”), meaning that they develop from two different eggs, each are fertilized by separate sperm cells. Fraternal twins can be either the same or opposite sex.  Dr. Boklage’s research challenges those beliefs.

“Double ovulation has never been observed or demonstrated to be the origin of even one pair of dizygotic twins, nor have any of the necessary direct predictions of that hypothesis been verified. The ‘double ovulation’ origin of naturally conceived dizygotic twins is entirely hypothetical. It remains unsupported by observation, but also remains in general unchallenged, accepted and handed down as if it were established fact.” (Boklage)

“There is no mechanical “split” that causes monozygotic twinning. Eventually there must be a separation between two groups of cells which will become the two separate bodies, but this is a consequence of the twinning process, not a cause.” (Boklage)

“We also now know for a certain fact that dizygotic twin embryos sometimes arise from a single embryogenic cell mass. We know this just because monochorionic dizygotic twins exist. We know this because there are people whose bodies are built of two or more types of cells which are different in too many ways to be the result of a single mutation. These people are called “chimeras,” or “chimeric.” (Boklage)

“Whatever is odd about the embryogenesis of monozygotic twins is just as odd in the embryogenesis of dizygotic twins, in the very same ways.” (Boklage)

Some of his publications are available HERE and HERE is a video presentation on the History of Twin Studies, where he outlines his research, including some of the common misconceptions about the twinning process.  HERE is a technical paper he wrote that describes his concepts and sums up his book.

Identical Twin Formation-First time ever witnessed The Cleavage of a Blastocyst – 2007
Semi-identical twins discovered
Mirror Mirror: Examining Nature’s Copy and Paste
Twins in the Womb – short video
Human Embryogenesis – Charles Boklage

Teratoma or Dermoid Tumor
Occasionally the remnants of a twin are found in the placenta or, more rarely, in a teratoma or dermoid tumor, which may contain hair, bone, teeth or other fetal tissue, and which may occur inside or outside the surviving twin or in the mother. According to a leading obstetrician I interviewed, the “resorption” explanation is only viable before the second trimester, and does not explain the cases I have  encountered in which the fetus disappeared as late as seven months into gestation.

What is a teratoma?

Fetus Papyraceus
fetus papy
A fetus papyraceus is a fetus in a multiple pregnancy which has died and become flattened through mechanical compression in the womb. The result resembles a scrap of parchment paper. Depending on the gestational age of the fetus, various developmental features such as limbs may be distinguishable. Such fetuses usually emerge during the process of labor alongside their siblings; a fetus papyraceus does not usually pose a risk to the other baby or babies involved in the pregnancy.

Fetus Papyraceus
Final Diagnosis — Fetus Papyraceus
A Midwife’s Muse

Conjoined Twins
Conjoined-twins-1200-450x300“Births of conjoined twins, whose skin and internal organs are fused together, are rare. Conjoined twins occur once every 200,000 live births, and their survival is anything but assured. Approximately 40 to 60 percent of conjoined twins arrive stillborn, and about 35 percent survive only one day. The overall survival rate of conjoined twins is somewhere between 5 percent and 25 percent.

For some reason, female siblings seem to have a better shot at survival than their male counterparts. Although more male twins conjoin in the womb than female twins, females are three times as likely as males to be born alive. Approximately 70 percent of all conjoined twins are girls.” MORE

It was always thought that conjoined had to be identical twins that didn’t completely “split”, however, conjoined twins have been born that were joined at the top part of their bodies and they had different genitalia, which supports Boklage’s research that dizygotic twins come from the same egg.

Facts About the Twins

Fetus in Fetu
Fetus in Fetu
“Fetus in fetu (or foetus in foetu) is a developmental abnormality in which a mass of tissue resembling a fetus forms inside the body. There are two theories of origin concerning ‘fetus in fetu.’  One theory is that the mass begins as a normal fetus but becomes enveloped inside its twin.[1] The other theory is that the mass is a highly developed teratoma. ‘Fetus in fetu’ is estimated to occur in 1 in 500,000 live births.”  Wikipedia

Medical mysteries fetus in fetu – video
Man With Twin Living Inside Him — A Medical Mystery Classic
Fetus in fetu: A report of two cases
Am I carrying my own twin?
Pregnant baby: Girl in Hong Kong born with absorbed fetuses in condition called fetus in fetu

Higher Risk
Twins and higher-order multiples appear to be at greater risk of neurological and cognitive problems than singletons, as well as a vast array of physical problems.  To name but a few:  malformations of the cardiovascular, gastrointestinal and central nervous systems, kidney and organ misplacement, auto-immune disorders, clubfoot, extra fingers or toes.  Also, current studies are confirming a previously suspected link between cerebral palsy and the twinning process.

Cerebral Palsy in Twins

“Twins are at higher risk of CP than a baby born singly (singletons). Triplets and quadruplets are at even higher risk.   For every thousand singleton births, about two have CP.  For every thousand twin births, seven to ten have CP.  And for triplets, about twenty to forty in every thousand have CP.  Thus twins have about four times the risk of CP as singletons. Twinning is on the increase, mostly because of infertility treatments. In Europe, twins accounted for 4% of CP thirty years ago, but now account for about 10% of CP.” MORE

“Another finding in the study was that twins who survived a fetal death of their co-twin were 108 times more likely to have CP than single children and 13 times more likely than twins whose co-twin survived.  Three out of four of these children were from identical twin sets and were normal or nearly normal in birth weight. The risk of CP was similar in twins of like gender or unlike gender pairings.”  MORE

Study Links Twin Births to Cerebral Palsy (1993)
Risk of Cerebral Palsy Found Higher for Twins
Cerebral Palsy
Cerebral Palsy
Vanishing Twin:A Possible Cause of Cerebral Impairment


Chimera Cat

Chimera Cat

A curious phenomenon of the twinning process is the chimera, an individual with different cell populations derived from more than one fertilized ova.  According to Lawrence Wright’s Double Mystery article,  “Charles Boklage cites (speaking of the chimera)…though it has rarely been detected, it may not be at all uncommon.  ‘Possibly some of us are twins who are walking around in a single body,’ Boklage says…Occasionally, blood donors are found to be carrying two different blood types:  it could mean that fraternal twins merged in the womb.  Of course, there is no way to determine whether identical twins have merged, since their genes and blood types are the same.  In those cases, the twins don’t vanish; they amalgamate.”

There are two types of chimeras:  Microchimera & Tetragametic chimera

Microchimerism is the harboring of small numbers of cells that originated in a genetically different individual.

  • During pregnancy some cells traffic from the mother to the fetus and from the fetus to the mother.
  • Surprisingly, a small number of the mother’s cells persist in her offspring, including into adult life.
  • And a small number of cells from prior pregnancies persist in mothers many years later.

It has only recently become apparent that naturally-acquired microchimerism is common in humans. A number of medical research teams are currently investigating both good and bad consequences of microchimerism in human health and disease.

Tetragametic chimerism is a form of congenital chimerism. This condition occurs through the fertilization of two separate ova by two sperm, followed by aggregation of the two at the blastocyst or zygote stages. This results in the development of an organism with intermingled cell lines. Put another way, the chimera is formed from the merging of two nonidentical twins (although a similar merging presumably occurs with identical twins, but as their DNA is almost identical, the presence would not be immediately detectable in a very early [zygote or blastocyst] phase). As such, they can be male, female, or have mixed intersex characteristics.

Signs of Chimerism:

  • Having a hitchhiker’s thumb (hyperextension of the thumb) and a straight thumb
  • Eyes of slightly different colors
  • Patchy, uneven skin pigmentation or hair
  • Differential hair growth on opposite sides of the body
  • Distinctive marks on the back resembling that of arrow points pointing downwards from the shoulders down to the lower back; this is one expression of pigment unevenness called Blaschko’s lines, a tiger like striping of the skin
  • Hermaphroditism/Intersex condition in which an individual is born with ovarian and testicular tissue
Blaschko's Lines

Blaschko’s Lines

hitchhikers thumb

Hitchhikers Thumb

Wikipedia: “The existence of chimerism is problematic for DNA testing, a fact with implications for family and criminal law. The Lydia Fairchild case, for example, was brought to court after DNA testing apparently showed that her children could not be hers. Fraud charges were filed against her and her custody of her children was challenged. The charge against her was dismissed when it became clear that Lydia was a chimera, with the matching DNA being found in her cervical tissue.

  • Another case was that of Karen Keegan, who was also suspected (initially) of not being her children’s biological mother after DNA tests conducted on her adult sons for a kidney transplant Karen needed seemed to show she wasn’t their mother. 
  • The Dutch sprinter Foekje Dillema was expelled from the 1950 national team after she refused a mandatory sex test in July 1950; later investigations revealed a Y-chromosome in her body cells, and the analysis showed that she probably was a 46,XX/46,XY mosaic female.[14]
  • In 1953 a human chimera was reported in the British Medical Journal. A woman was found to have blood containing two different blood types. Apparently this resulted from her twin brother’s cells living in her body.[15] More recently, a study found that such blood group chimerism is not rare.[16]
  • Another report of a human chimera was published in 1998, where a male human had some partially developed female organs due to chimerism. He had been conceived by in-vitro fertilization.”  Wikipedia

DNA & Chimerism
A Simple Video Explanation of Chimerism
Adventures in the Science of the Superorganism
The ghostly explanation for how a man’s unborn twin fathered his child
Wrap Your Brain Around This: An Infant was Born ‘Pregnant’ … with Twins!
Is another human living inside you?
The Twin Within: Chimeras

“Semi-Identical” Twins Discovered
Human Chimeras
Chimera Website
Why You Might Have Someone Else’s DNA – excellent video
Excellent Video on Chimerism

Homosexuality & Single Twins
Could Chimerism be an explanation for homosexuality or sexual identity confusion in single twins?  Probably not in every situation, but there appears to be significant research to back up the perspective.

Althea Hayton says, “After ten years of research into the physiology and psychology of womb twin survivors, I have come to the astonishing conclusion that all homosexual individuals are womb twin survivors. That is to say, it would appear that in each case their homosexuality is connected in some way to the life and death of their womb twin.”

Chimerism & Homosexuality
Homosexuality and Chimerism, Rethinking Our DNA
Excellent discussion on Chirmerism & Homosexuality
The Chimerism Theory of Male Homosexuality
On the Origins of Homosexuality

Diethylstilbestrol (DES)
Between the early 1940’s and 1971, a drug called Diethylstilbestrol (DES) was given as a miscarriage prevention measure to between 5 and 10 million pregnant women who were, usually, bleeding vaginally.  Bleeding during pregnancy is known to be a sign of the VTP, when there are any signs at all.  It is also known that twinning rates increase after a period of sexual abstinence.  The post-World War II “baby boom” came after just such a period.

I suspect that many of the women given DES at that time were experiencing the VTP — hence the bleeding.

More about DES
Diethylstilbestrol-exposed monozygotic twins discordant for cervicovaginal clear cell adenocarcinoma
DES Pregnancy Drug Caused Cancer, Melnick Sisters Charge In Trial


A number of sonographers at a convention I attended in 1995 expressed frustration about a situation that apparently occurs too often:  early in her pregnancy, a mother receives a sonogram.  The sonographer and/or the doctor spot two fetuses. Subsequently, however, one “vanishes”.  By way of explanation, the busy doctor may tell the mother that the  sonographer made a mistake — hence the sonographers’ frustration — or merely dismiss the whole thing with a remark like, “It happens all the time.  Be glad you’re only having one!”  Potential psychological issues are usually not addressed.


Women Can Make New Eggs After All, Stem-Cell Study Hints
This isn’t directly pertinent to the conversation, but I came across it during my research and found it fascinating.  Another bit of “common knowledge” that isn’t true.  We must keep our minds open as the new technology brings us new perspectives.

Women may make new eggs throughout their reproductive years—challenging a longstanding tenet that females are born with finite supplies, a new study says. Scientists discovered a new type of stem cell in the ovaries that—when grown in the lab—generates immature egg cells. The same immature cells isolated from adult mouse ovaries can turn into fertile eggs.

Scientists at the Jiao Tong University in China tested the findings, by implanting germ line stem cells from healthy and reproductively whole mice into mice whose eggs had been chemically destroyed as part of the experiment. New eggs did, in fact, form in the mice that received the implants, lending even more credibility to the commonsense theory shared by many members of the contemporary medical community that all mammals can, and do, produce new eggs during adulthood.

Full article
Do ovaries produce eggs?


Psychological Perspective

Womb Twins
It is clear to me from my research that many surviving twins are suffering greatly from their in-utero loss.  It is now known that multiples interact with one another physically in the womb as early as 8 weeks into gestation.  Apparently, relationships can be established very early on, the termination of which may be quite traumatic to the survivors.  Due to a deep longing for some undefined, missing part of themselves that, it seems, no mate can quite fulfill, single twins may experience problems with relationships, and/or with their sexual identity.  They may feel guilty for no discernible reason.  They may be haunted by feelings that they’re “parasites”.  I’ve heard from more than a few single twins who for one reason or another felt they’d “eaten” or “killed” their twin. Troubling, recurring dreams of their twin, fear of sleeping alone, fear of sudden loss or abandonment, profound loneliness, eating disorders, “hearing voices”, extreme emotional sensitivity and even schizophrenia or multiple personality disorder can afflict survivors of the VTP.  If they are not aware that they are twinless twins, they have no context in which to place these disturbing and very confusing emotions.  The good news is that, if the survivor is aware of what happened, the trauma can be processed and overcome, sometimes quite rapidly.

Elizabeth Noble says, “…unlike cases of survivor guilt from accidents, the experience of twin loss (in utero) is not part of the conscious mind and therefore is unavailable for discussion, rationalization, and integration without assistance…Twins from whom information about a twin’s death is hidden or who are not allowed to express their feelings about the loss suffer most.”

Validation – or Not
Absolute validation that one is a womb twin can often be elusive.  Often the mother has some spotting, cramping or no signs at all.  We so much want medical confirmation or at least for our mothers to confirm it for us and that frequently isn’t available.  I have received so many letters and emails through the years discussing this frustration and heartache.

I suggest they trust their intuition.  Single twins think everybody thinks they are twins. That has not been my experience – twins think they are twins!   If you have some indication you might be a twin, you fit much of the profile and you deep down, some how, “know” you are – trust it – the statistics are so high – you probably are!  Sometimes we just have to settle for that inner knowing.

Twins interact with each other as early as 14 weeks in the womb
Twinless Twins Support Group
Children’s Books

Parental Issues
The parents of VTP survivors may suffer confusion and unresolved feelings of great loss if the VTP is not carefully explained to them and allowances made for the grief a parent feels upon losing an offspring, whatever the circumstances.  Unfortunately, busy doctors and our society’s general attitude toward death (ignore it as much as possible on the personal level, while often obsessing about it on a cultural level) more frequently than not result in both parents and child being left in the dark.

It is important that a parent’s grief be acknowledged, but that must, of course, be balanced with the needs of the surviving child and that’s where it gets tricky.  It’s important to remember that the surviving twin is feeling everything the mother is too.

I particularly like Althea Hayton’s Womb Twins Kids Projects which offers age-appropriate information to assist parents in helping single twins deal with their loss.  It is so important that your single twin know of their twinship, for physical, as well as psychological reasons. Althea has authored numerous books and publications targeting single twins, parents and professionals, available HERE.

Vanishing Twin Syndrome and the 7 Stages of Grief
The grief of a lone twin
Parents of Multiples Forever

Psychological Help

Neuro-Emotional Technique (NET)
Scott Walker, D.C., (a single twin) has developed a process of psychological kinesiology and spinal adjustments known as Neuro-Emotional Technique (NET), which he has taught to thousands of chiropractors.  Dr. Walker incorporates information on the VTP into his training;  many people are discovering their twinship through the NET process.   I have communicated with many of these people, as well as some of the chiropractors, and found that a desire for more clear, accessible information about the VTP is widespread.

Dr. Brent Babcock’s NET/Vanishing Twin web site – great resource
Using NET with Single Twins

Vanishing Twin Natural Healing Techniques


  •     a non-invasive, interactive process of change with a proven record of success for over 20 years!
  •     a simple, yet powerful process to change limiting beliefs that are self-sabotaging
  •     a unique blend of various tools for change, some contemporary and some ancient, derived from scientific research in brain dominance theory, neuroscience, as well as ancient mind/body wisdom
  •     a ground-breaking approach to facilitating change at the subconscious level where at least 95% of our consciousness operates.
  •     a process that transcends the standard methods of visualization, affirmations, will power, and positive thinking; especially effective in the areas of behavioral/habit change, wellness and stress reduction

Personal Note from Caryl – Rob Williams, the creator of PSYCH-K, is a personal friend and I have experienced this process with him and I can tell you, it is powerful and fast.

Hypnosis can be an effective way for a single twin to establish contact with their missing twin and get the “proof” they so often desire, if it is not otherwise available.  Some people have “issues” with information gathered in this manner, but I have personally found it to be very effective and helpful.

Other Resources
Ripples From the Womb
 by Althea Hayton  A beginner’s guide to the womb twin work:
A guide to how therapists can help the sole survivor when a twin dies before birth.
Free E-Book
E-Books for Professionals by Althea Hayton
Join our Vanishing Twin Yahoo E-group
Raising Survivors of Multi-birth Loss:  What Parents can expect  – Excellent Article
Vanishing Twin Syndrome- Awareness in-utero – Craniosacral Therapy

Psychic Bond

There is certainly no shortage of anecdotal evidence of the existence of a special psychic bond between twins or among other multiples.

The “Jim twins”, identicals who where separated at birth and raised apart, made sensational headlines when they eventually found each other.  Both had been named Jim, both had married a woman named Linda and subsequently divorced her.  Both remarried, this time to women  named Betty.  One twin named his first son James Alan, the other James Allan; both had owned a dog named Toy; both worked part-time as deputy sheriffs; both had been employed by McDonald’s and both had been attendants in filling  stations.  Both spent their holidays at St. Petersburg Beach, FL, and both drove Chevrolets to get there.  Both bite their fingernails and drink Miller Lite Beer.  Both built a white bench around the trunk of a tree in their respective gardens.  These are but some of the astonishing parallels in their separate lives.

One has only to attend a “Twinless Twin” conference and hear the attendees tell of knowing when their twin died, of feeling their pain and of communicating with them after death to see that there is something unique — beyond coincidence — about the bonds between twins, and that it may not end with the death of one of them.

The Association For Prenatal And Perinatal Psychology And Health

Communication with Vanished Twin
In my research and personal experience, communication with a vanished twin is possible and actually quite common.   The first step is to simply acknowledge the twin lost in utero.   If (s)he has no name, provide one; this can help to personify the lost sibling.  Ask (and give) permission to communicate, then listen for responses.  Meditation (quiet, focused listening) is probably the best way to receive whatever communication ensues.  Being in nature can often be helpful.

Imaginary Friend
Young, single twins often have what is known as an “imaginary friend” with whom they play and converse.  They may insist on a place at the dinner table for their invisible pal, as well as a place to sit in the family car, and so forth.

In light of theories emerging in modern physics and cosmology, we cannot summarily dismiss the possibility that this phenomenon is in some cases a genuine connection between a womb twin and his or her “vanished” sibling.  Parents are well advised to indulge children in these apparent fantasies, just in case they’re not fantasies!  It is becoming increasingly apparent that life extends well beyond the small part of the spectrum visible to our five senses.

Information “Downloads”
I have interviewed a number of single twins who feel their twin “downloaded” information to them they previously knew nothing about.  These incidents occurred at night, during meditative states or full waking consciousness. Often, the information concerned ways of restoring or “saving” the planet and/or healing its inhabitants.  I personally had this experience when my twin “downloaded” the information for my book, Colorology, The Science of Color in 1987.

Elvis Presley had a twin who died at birth and it is common knowledge that he said he communicated with his twin throughout his life and that Jesse helped him on stage.

My friend Patricia McGivern, author of Angel Babies, explores the spiritual communication between the mother and miscarried and other early-loss babies, offering awareness, hope, reassurance and comfort to those who have experienced this incomparable loss.  She also is a Hypnotist who works with people to retrieve hidden memories, information or experiences.

With the popularity of mediumship (communication with the dead) in television shows, books and movies, the possibility of  communicating with the deceased has been more widely accepted, although plenty of research and anecdotal evidence has been on the record for many decades.  Communicating with a vanished twin is certainly no less credible.

A risk of misdiagnosis of Borderline Personality Disorder? Althea Hayton discusses the possibility of misdiagnosis for single twins.

Metaphysical Experiences of Single Twins
In my research with single twins I have found that they frequently have “metaphysical” experiences, such as seeing ghosts, divas, angels, fairies and demonstrating various psychic gifts.

I have been told by my twin that this can be a by-product of the twin connection, facilitated by stimulating the pineal gland to “raise one’s frequency” to a vibration similar to that of the dimension in which one’s twin resides.  I wrote about this extensively in my 1996 book, The Millennium Children.

Body Sharing
My research turned up numerous single twins who feel as though they share their body with their lost twin.  “She experiences 3-D through me,” one twin claimed.  “She loves the taste of food, the emotions and sensations of sex, and the experience of nature.”  (I can personally relate!)

A woman came up to me after a presentation and said, “Now I know what’s happening to my husband; this explains it!”  It seems that at times her husband was “different somehow. He looks the same, but there is something wrong.” (She could always tell when they made love.)  One day she asked him if he really was her husband.  In what she described as “a different, robotic voice”, he forcibly responded, “We will not speak of that again!”  It scared her so much, they never did!  She said, “They’re switching him, now I know it for sure.”  He was supposed to have been twins according to his mother.   Who is switching them is another question.

UFOs & Extraterrestrial Contact
I have interviewed approximately 100 people who say they “went to school at night” on a UFO, or that they encountered an “ET” here on earth who “downloaded” information to them, just like the reports from single twins who believe the information was “downloaded” from their twin. Could one group or the other simply be utilizing the popular metaphor of “ETs” to describe an experience so fantastic they don’t have the vocabulary, knowledge or science to understand otherwise?

Jack and Jim Weiner were part of the “Allagash Abduction” made famous by Raymond Fowler, during which four young men were taken aboard an alien craft on a camping trip in northern Maine.  The abductors were particularly interested in the fact that Jack and Jim are identical twins.  The twins also report having visions of “ghosts” as children.  HERE is an excellent video on the case.

It is absurd to believe that we are the only sentient species in the Universe.  If indeed there are other civilizations “out there”, it is reasonable to imagine that if they discovered us, that they would be curious about us and want to do some research.  Twins are the perfect research subjects – experiment on one, use the other as a “control.”  Humans have done exactly that for centuries, and continue to do so.

William J. Baldwin, D.D.S., PhD., author of Spirit Releasement Therapy: a Technique Manual, discovered the VTP in his research with “entity attachments.”  His perspective is that the missing twin astrally “attaches” to the survivor, communicating with him/her and influencing his or her life.

Dreaming of a Twin
“Pre and perinatal psychotherapists maintain that experiences in the womb and around birth leave some kind of impression in the mind of the foetus that remains throughout life. (Chamberlain 2007) These impressions are timeless, for there is no sense of time or chronology in the womb. They are formless, for they are formed before cognitive functioning is fully developed. They are confused, because there is no context within which they can be understood. They cannot be described as ‘memories’ exactly, so I have called this mix of vague impressions, feelings, beliefs and attitudes the Dream of the Womb.” MORE

My husband, Parker, and I had a joint dream where we both saw and interacted with my twin in the same way.  Actually, it is what finally convinced me that I had a twin.

My youngest brother was a mirror identical twin whose twin vanished.  Near his death of AIDS at age 35, we talked about his twin (something he had previously refused to do).  He said he had often dreamt of a familiar man throughout his life.  He interpreted those dreams as evidence of his homosexuality.

The Dream of the Womb

Twins as Guides or Helpers
I have heard numerous reports of womb twins acting as a “Guide” or “Helper”, assisting in avoidance of danger, making decisions or comforting.

One twinless twin reported hearing her familiar twin’s voice telling her not to enter the bank where she had just arrived.  She obediently waited in her car and two minutes later a robber ran out of the bank with a gun.

Raymond W. Brandt, Ph.D., founder of the Twinless Twin Support Group International, lost his twin at age twenty.  He told me the hair-raising story of how his twin helped him escape from prison during the Korean War, guiding him through a maze of hallways to safety.

Other Healing Modalities & Help
The Lost Twin in the Therapy Room
Healing steps for a solitary twin
Vanishing Twin Syndrome- Awareness in-utero – Craniosacral Therapy
MONITORING SURVIVORS by Dr. Elizabeth A. Pector
Intrauterine Memories of Twinship Experiences – Primal Therapy
Multiple Births Foundation was founded in 1988 and has become a national and international authority on multiple births. They are the only charity internationally which employs healthcare professionals dedicated to supporting multiple birth families and educating and advising professionals about their special needs.


Unrelated Look alikes – Doppleganger
twin strangersI am fascinated by the idea of unrelated look alikes or what some call doppelgangers. How can this happen?  People who are not related in anyway that look so much alike.

“In fact there is a 1 in 5 chance that your neighbor (or your wife/date) and you are from same family fewer than 10 generations ago. ……..Humans worldwide are about 99.9% genetically similar, a much higher percentage than many other species. (source)

“Another way to look at it is that there is after all only One Genome, a supersystem comprising all of the DNA base sequence genomes of all species of living organisms on Earth as subsystems. We have abundant evidence, providing very good reason to believe, that Sustainable and Reproducible Life began on Earth only once, and that every living thing on Earth today has descended from that one single common ancestral source. Every species yet examined on Earth today holds some of its gene DNA sequences in common with some of those found in most other species.

With a few so far unexplainable variations affecting a very small fraction of the total system, the Genetic Code is “universal.” What that means is: With a very small fraction of partial exceptions that we cannot presently explain in full and exact detail, the same specific three-base sequences in the DNA call for the same amino acid to be put in the corresponding place in the sequence of a protein, universally, in every species of living organism yet examined.

Some people have been saying for a while that normal humans differ from one another by less than half of 1% of their DNA sequences, and “less than” may actually be “much less than.”  Boklage

Why do some people who are not related by blood look alike?


Ethical Issues

In vitro & ART [assisted reproductive technology], Artificial Insemination
The first successful birth of a “test tube baby”, Louise Brown, occurred in England in 1978. Since its introduction in the U.S. in 1981, IVF and other similar techniques have resulted in more than 200,000 babies.  It is still not clear what physical, mental and emotional impact these procedures may have on these children, however studies are taking place.

“Children born after IVF treatment have a greater risk of complications ranging from preterm birth to neonatal death, according to a major study into the health of newborns. Doctors found that single IVF babies were nearly twice as likely to be born early, to be stillborn, or to die within the first 28 days of delivery compared with those conceived naturally. But the study, based on more than 300,000 births in South Australia between 1986 and 1992, did not look at whether IVF treatment was to blame, and leaves open the possibility that the IVF babies fared worse for other reasons, such as health problems, or older age, that caused couples to be infertile in the first place.” source 1/2014

There also seems to be a link between cerebral palsy and neurological problem and IVF – just like there is with twins…hmmmmm???
Study Shows Parents’ Infertility Is Not Linked to Risk of Cerebral Palsy Among Children Born via IVF
IVF increases risk of cerebral palsy, study suggests
Study Clarifies Link Between Fertility Treatments and Neurological Problems In Kids

Bottom line – we really still don’t know the “unintended consequences” of these procedures.

Infertility and In Vitro Fertilization (WebMD) – great information

Multifetal Pregnancy Reduction
The increased use of fertility procedures is presenting doctors and potential parents with new moral and ethical problems.  Because an infertile couple spends about $10,000 per attempt, there is a tendency for doctors to implant multiple fertilized eggs, often resulting in multiple viable fetuses.  Because of the greater odds against bringing multiples successfully to term, doctors may resort to a procedure known as multifetal pregnancy reduction (MFPR) in order to increase the probability of producing at least one healthy child.  This of course places parents in the difficult position of deciding whether to abort one or more of the new lives they have struggled (and paid dearly) to start.  MFPR may also place the entire pregnancy in danger (although risks are being reduced with practice).  The  trauma of the procedure may itself (for the parents and surviving siblings) create devastating psychological problems, just as an attempted abortion that unknowingly takes only one of a set of twins can mentally and emotionally scar the survivor, leaving him or her with the same psychological issues as a twinless twin.

Altering the Primal Environment: Health Effects Associated with Assisted Reproductive Technologies
Study discusses ethics of multifetal pregnancy reduction

American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists – perspective
Multifetal Pregnancy Reduction: Evolution of the Ethical Arguments


DNA Evidence & Chimerism
With advancements and increased use of DNA testing, more chimeras are being discovered.  This discovery is bringing into question the use of DNA testing in criminal cases as absolute proof of guilt or innocence.   Here are some cases we cited earlier that have already come to light.

“Chimerism can hardly be less frequent than 10% to 15% of the population. This conservatively estimated frequency of chimerism has serious implications for forensic considerations of parenthood and of criminal identity. Everything necessary for dealing properly with the fact of frequent chimerism is in place in the forensic system, except for the acknowledged understanding that chimerism is in fact there to be dealt with. While chimerism has a definite aura of mystery, it nevertheless has a straightforward and well-defined biology, which generates well-defined genetic patterns in the standard forensic DNA profile and in parentage testing.” (Boklage)

DNA & Chimerism
WHO’S YOUR DADDY:  Don’t count on DNA testing to tell you


Caryl’s Personal Experience
I began researching the VTP in 1993 after discovering that not only am I a surviving twin, but my fraternal twin siblings probably began life as triplets, and my youngest brother was a surviving “mirror” identical twin.  I also have a cousin who is a “mirror” identical twin (her twin vanished); her organs are on the opposite side of her body.  To further complicate matters, my mother was prescribed DES when she was carrying me, due to bleeding during the pregnancy.

I have traveled extensively since 1993, researching and lecturing to hundreds of people on the VTP.  I’ve heard many fascinating and often heart-breaking stories.  My web site, which generates emails from surviving twins from around the world, has been up since 1997.  Numerous guest appearances on national radio and TV programs have also generated a good deal of correspondence from Single Twins and their caregivers, as well as health and educational professionals.

In 1997, with my husband, Parker Whitman, I published The Millennium Children:  Tales of the Shift, which contains a large section on the VTP as well as my personal story:  how I discovered that I had a “vanished” twin (I named her “Karyl”), and how I integrated that knowledge.  That book offers a great deal of material concerning the increasing number of children born with exceptional intuitive, intellectual and physical abilities — children who speak of past lives, of  “being in spirit”, of “imaginary friends”, and of extraterrestrial contact.   Much of the information on the Millennium Children was gathered in the course of my research into the VTP, and the book generated a lot of correspondence from Single Twins.

November 2015 Update from Caryl:
I’M BACK!  Familial duties and other projects have distracted me from the Twin research for the past few years.  Recently though I spent seven days on the beach, meditating for many hours at sunrise and sunset.  As I have for years at watershed moments in my life, I asked my twin, Karyl, for clarity concerning my next move.  Her message was loud and clear, “Go back to the Twins!”

Confirmation immediately began to flow:  I came across several articles in mainstream media — all posted relatively recently — that dealt with the Vanishing Twin Phenomenon in one way or another.  The work of Althea Hayton, who unfortunately passed away in 2014, was a marvelous discovery; Her books, research and website provide a wealth of information on the subject.  I particularly love the Womb Twin Kid’s Project.  What an empowering resource!

Karyl also helped me create a Survey to post on my website, designed to get the conversation going again; responses are piling up!

I have re-activated the Yahoo E-Group which now has over 540 members from around the world.  Please join and add to the conversation.

12/11/15 – I received today in my Inbox an email from OpenMinds.TV sharing a documentary on the “Allagash Abduction“.  The four participants, including identical twins, bravely share their perspectives of the experience.  Unfortunately, they don’t mention their abductor’s interest in their twinship, as they did in the book.  They all passed polygraph tests and each described extremely similar details under hypnosis.  Another “coincidence”! I think not.

I will continue to research and update this website.

I also secured the domain name  (I couldn’t believe it was still available!)

I would love to participate in a Twin conference in the United States (most of them have been held in Europe), so I will also be looking into that possibility.

Another serendipitous turn of events occurred in 2015: letters my mother wrote to her mother in 1956 came into my possession.  In them, Mom revealed that, when she was pregnant with my sister who is six years younger than I, her doctor told her on two different occasions that she was probably going to have twins.  That did not happen, and my mother mentioned nothing else about it in her letters, nor did she ever mention it to my sister or anyone else, as far as I know.  Both of my parents have passed, so I have been unable to pursue the matter any further, at least through “regular” methods.  My sister’s reaction to the news I found quite interesting, however:  she claimed to be unmoved, and upon re-reading my VTP webpage, said she still felt no relation to the phenomenon.  While that may not PROVE anything one way or another, it does offer more confirmation that whatever is going on, not every surviving twin has “issues” with it!

I recently read Dr. Boklage’s 500 page text book,  How New Humans Are Made: Cells and Embryos, Twins and Chimeras, Left and Right, Mind/Self/Soul, Sex, and Schizophrenia. When I did my initial research in 1993 (before I had access to the internet), I could only find his published statistics of 1 in 8 people begin life as a twin – his book didn’t come out until 2009 with his revolutionary research about how twins are really created.  It made perfect sense and put more of the pieces of the puzzle together for me.

Here is a very active  Vanishing Twin Facebook Page.  Please join the conversation.

Please join our E-Group for updates and continued conversation.  Please feel free to contact me if I can be of service to you.

Final Thoughts

After researching this subject for twenty three years as part of the process of integrating my own womb twin, I have concluded that life, to paraphrase Einstein, is stranger and more mysterious than we can imagine. The astonishing processes involved in the creation of life and consciousness are ultimately beyond our attempts to fully understand and describe them.

The complex journey from fetus implantation to birth has many perils; given the many things that can go wrong, it is miraculous that so many of us make it here intact!  As our scientific and spiritual knowledge and skills expand, more ethical and genetic questions and challenges arise.  There is still much to learn.  Chimerism (and its implications) is just one example of the gestation process that we are still struggling to fully understand, along with its many implications.

The psychological implications of the VTP still fascinate me the most.  I believe that I can and do communicate telepathically with my twin, Karyl, although she departed when we were still in my mother’s womb.  The voice that I began hearing in 1987, in response to my loud and tearful demands to the universe for help, is the same voice I hear today when doing my Psychic Readings.  That “voice in my head” consistently provides practical, helpful, accurate information my clients can use in their lives.  Because the voice always sounds the same, though, I cannot claim to be a “medium”.  I can’t be truly certain who or what is talking to me; we understand a lot less about consciousness than we do about the birth process.  I can only judge the tree by its fruit.  I always tell my clients, “If you don’t like what I tell you, you have the choice — it’s called free will — to make changes and create a different future.  I see probabilities, not fate.”   Karyl’s help in seeing them may manifest through the simple raising of my “frequency” and the lowering of hers; it’s a dance at which the two of us have become quite adept.  The quality of my connection with Karyl has changed over the years – more integrated, stronger.  She felt more “separate” in the beginning.  While I am profoundly grateful to have her as a conscious part of my life, many questions remain.

The information on this page will, hopefully, answer some of your questions.  It will certainly stretch your imagination and expand your mind.  I invite you to embrace what you find helpful, what resonates or “rings true,” and leave the rest in the “grey basket”.

If you are a single twin, be gentle with yourself — integration and understanding is a process which comes with education and time.  Blessings on your journey of discovery.

Caryl Dennis

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Vanishing Twin E-Group
Vanishing Twin Phenomenon –  Dr. Brent Babcock’s site – Excellent resource
VT Video
VT Video
VT Song
Beverly Banov Brown, M.S. videos
Twinless Twins Association – Annual Conference & info
Interesting Articles
Twin Babies Think They’re Still in The Womb !!
Vanishing Twin Facebook Page
Twins World – Statistics and information
Vanishing Twins & Womb Twin Survivors
A short history of twin research
Nancy L. Segal, PhD