Journalist and mother of twins, Marion von Gratkowski, is the publisher of a new, German magazine targeted to parents of twins and triplets. It’s a bimonthly magazine and is accompanied by a new website with free information in German.
Why have you launched this new magazine?
I’ve been in the “twin business” for more than 29 years. In 1988 I founded a twins magazine which I published until 2016. As we’ve lost many of our readers to the Internet, I can’t go on this way. But as there’s still a big demand for printed information, I’ll go on with this magazine and print on demand. And our books – written by myself and other authors – will still be published as well.
What about your website?
This site provides information in German about all aspects of parenting twins and triplets. It’s a concession to the new ways of information and communication. We expect to find new readers and new ways to finance our publishing activities, that will go on. Our concept was and still is to bring people together, to give them the possibility of exchanging experiences. This new website can bring experts together – and those real experts are the parents of multiples. Visit the German website.
What’s your own experience with twins?
I gave birth to fraternal twins in 1984. My boys Maximilian & Constantin were born 7 weeks early. I also have a third son, Nicolai, who was born in 1989. And as I worked as a journalist, I decided to combine both: my twins and my job.
What’s been your biggest challenge having twins?
In the beginning, the lack of sleep during the nights. Another big challenge had been their never ending competition and struggle. This was solved, when Max and Conny, as we call them, attended different types of schools. However, my twins are not typical. Other parents have told me about twins that work together, never struggle and are best friends.
In my opinion, the most important thing to focus on with twins is to help them achieve a feeling of uniqueness without cutting the bond between them. My twins never had this special bond. But as grown up’s, they no longer struggle and fight. All my boys are now best friends.
What did you do to help your twins achieve a feeling of uniqueness?
When Max and Conny were little, I tried to separate them whenever possible. I tried to find different friends for them. Later they found friends on their own.
I tried not to talk to them as an entity and I tried to find time for each of them individually.
What’s your conclusion after all these years with twins and literature for parents of twins and triplets?
Every phase has different challenges. You’ll overcome these challenges step by step and with lots of love. Never try to be a supermom or superdad. Things often work out regardless of your feelings of stress. And always remember: twins are twice as nice and no double trouble.