Ever since they were children, conjoined twins Abby and Brittany Hensel have captured the hearts of people around the world. They first gained international attention when they appeared on The Oprah Winfrey Show. But when they got their own television special, Joined for Life, people got to see their personalities and fall in love with the Minnesota conjoined twins. Because their appearance on Joined for Life was so popular, they were offered their own short series called Abby & Brittany. But now the Hensel twins are making a shocking announcement. And the 27-year olds can’t wait for the world to know.
Although they were celebrities with their own television show, the conjoined twins live a low-profile life today. Together Abby and Brittany got a degree in education at Bethel University. And now they both teach a fifth grade classroom at a public school just an hour from their hometown.
Already being extremely rare, conjoined twins occur just about once every 189,000 births. But Abby and Brittany are special conjoined twins being dicephalic parapagus twins which means they have two heads but one torso. They are among just 11 percent of the conjoined twins born into the world.
On the top half of their body, they have double the usual organs. This means they’ve got two hearts, four lungs, two stomachs. This allows them to remain healthy and lead vigorous lives. But on the bottom half of their body, they share many of their organs – including their reproductive organs. Each twin controls her half of their shared body.
Although two individuals share the same body, they manage to function in the world. They passed their driving test – each twin needed to pass independently. Now they share driving responsibilities. Abby controls everything on the right side while Brittany controls everything on the left. They work as a team to steer the car.
Sharing everything is a way of life for Abby and Brittany. But the world is clamoring to know about their shared sex life. But little is known about this unique world.
Conjoined twin expert Alice Dregar told The Atlantic what she could about the topic back in 2012.
“Based on what we know about the significant variability of one conjoined twin to feel a body part (e.g., an arm) that putatively ‘belongs’ to the other twin, it’s hard to guess how any conjoinment will turn out in practice. Nerves, muscles, hormones, and psychology all probably factor in to who feels what … Whether or not both are ‘having sex’ with the third person in the equation depends on how you think about ‘having sex’ … From my studies, I would postulate that conjoined twins probably end up having less sex than average people, and that is not only because sex partners are harder to find when you’re conjoined. Conjoined twins simply may not need sex-romance partners as much as the rest of us do. Throughout time and space, they have described their condition as something like being attached to a soul mate. They may just not desperately need a third, just as most of us with a second to whom we are very attached don’t need a third — even when the sex gets old.”
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