Xenophilia (True Strange Stuff)

Blog of the real Xenophilius Lovegood, a slightly mad scientist

Abigail and Brittany Hensel: My favorite conjoined twins.

Posted by Anonymous on April 10, 2008

The Hensel Twins turned 18 this year. If you know who owns the photos below, let me know and I’ll add the proper photo credit. Video here.

http://i.dailymail.co.uk/i/pix/2006/12/henseltwins3112_228x589.jpgA set of twins who share the same body have celebrated their 18th birthday in the United States. Abigail and Brittany Hensel from Minnesota …  have two hearts, and two spinal chords, but share the same torso have lived their lives side by side.

The teens who enjoy swimming, playing the piano and recently got their drivers’ licenses said they had no intention of being separated.

The girls have beaten the odds and doctors’ expectations to reach their milestone. It is believed there are only four sets of twins who share the same torso and have survived into adulthood. And they are on track to graduate from university, and hope to have a family of their own one day.

“We want to be mums, but haven’t thought how it would work,” Abigail said. The girls passed their driving exams with two separate licenses and two separate tests. Abigail worked the pedals, and Brittany used the indicators and they both held the steering wheel.

Their parents, nurse Patty, and carpenter Mike 48, decided not to have the twins separated at birth despite the risks. “From the first time we saw them we thought they were beautiful,” she told the Sunday Mirror. -telegraph

Like many twins they have very different personalities and tastes – even more so now they are teenagers. Abigail, the feisty, stubborn one, likes orange juice for breakfast while Brittany, the joker of the family, will touch only milk.

Abigail loves pink and all things girly but Brittany prefers purple, multi-coloured hair and wearing unusual hats, and now they have turned 16 they love to experiment with makeup and clothes and giggle about which boys they like.

But that is where the similarity with other teenage twins end. For Abigail and Brittany Hensel are conjoined, sharing one body fused at the torso. Each controls just one side of the body, and yet remarkably this has not prevented them leading a full, active and happy life.

Displaying an astonishing co- ordination which has stunned doctors, they play the piano -with Abigail taking the right-hand parts and Brittany the left – and enjoy sports such as bowling, volleyball, cycling, softball and swimming.

And on their 16th birthday they passed their driving test; a mind-boggling feat of teamwork with each twin using one arm to control the steering wheel. Brittany explains: ‘Abby does the pedals and the gear shifter. I take over the blinkers and the lights. But she likes driving faster than me.’ – dailymail

Two headed conjoined twins Abigail Loraine Hensel and Britanny Lee Hensel had a short documentary about their lives on The Learning Channel. It is not easy to be born sharing a single body with your other twin and they are incredible that they had tried their best in leading a normal life. Here are some photos of the Hensel twins which peers into some of the moments in their lives.

Photo source here. Photographer unknown.

But the girls are more than curiosities. Their smiling faces and apparent good health seem a rebuke to the current medical trend of trying to separate, via surgery, ever more complexly conjoined twins–a trend that often means sacrificing one child so the other can live “normally.” And their tale of lives unpunctuated by solitude has much to teach all of us about the real meaning of individuality and the limitless power of human cooperation.

Conjoined twins are a rare event in the world’s delivery rooms. They occur about once in every 50,000 births, but 40% are stillborn, and, curiously, 70% are female. Conjoined twins are always identical: the product of a single egg that for some unknown reason failed to divide fully into separate twins during the first three weeks of gestation. In the U.S. there are perhaps 40 live cases each year; ordinary identical twins are 400 times as common. – time

hensel twins 5 life photo at the pool

-

I ran into them recently in Grand Marais, MN. It was the most amazing. They bounced out of their van with several other kids, laughing, bouncing, talking, and just having a ball. They were obviously accepted as [one] of the group. They must have outstanding parents. I feel honored to have witnessed their lives.

Posted by: Dick Moore on May 17, 2004

About these ads

380 Responses to “Abigail and Brittany Hensel: My favorite conjoined twins.”

  1. Rose said

    How do these girls swim? Not as an offense at all, these girls are beautiful people who should live there lives.

    • Joel S. Davis said

      I’m sure they swim much as they walk– learned coordination. Entirely separate people learn intricate piano duets and coordinated dance routines; they’re in a far better position to learn such coordination.

  2. Oksana said

    You have a greeat blog here! I love the content!

  3. diablo 2m said

    Great work.I really appreciate your blog .thanks for sharing this post

  4. Sujarno Mahavero said

    even there conjoined it doesnt mean there less beautiful and honestly if they were 1 person people just say they good looking girls,to get back to the point there still beautiful girls nomatter what and they could have a great life together and meet the man of there dreams

  5. Donna G said

    Legal issues are due here. One man cannot marry two women. The twins have “shot themselves in the foot”. They consider themselves to be two people so marriage for them would be bigamy for the husband. Then there is the awful subject of rape. If one does not consent then then what happens? Their parents live in a fantasy world. The girls may live a normal life,but they are not
    normal. They cannot be sheltered by society, forever. It is not our obligation to make exceptions for them. They “made their bed now they must lay in it”.

    • My Xi Hu said

      Wow.
      Congratulations on being the only person I’ve ever heard compare attempting to live normally with a congenital condition as terrible and difficult as Parapagus fusion to “shooting themselves in the foot”.
      I happen to be a Law student, and in fact, laws are bent around specified situations -so- often that instead of speculation about their hypothetical sex life, one might be more efficient by teaching oneself a bit of humility and empathy, or basic respect for others in general.
      And, for the record, assuming someone can’t live a normal life because of the way they look is bigoted and close-minded. A quadruple-amputee recently swam across the English channel. have you done that? I doubt it.

      • Dear Xi Hu,

        I like your comment I did not know that the person you mention swam across the english channel. How are you getting on with your law training, would you like to come to Al Murray’s evening of entertainment held anually at the effingham golf club in Surrey linked with the charity of which he is a patron in July. My e mail is sarah.mackintosh900@gmail.com

        Best Wishes,

        Sarah Mackintosh.

    • Jason Rogers said

      You are an extraordinarily idiotic person. How exactly have they “made their bed,” you stupid bitch?

    • David Francis said

      Donna G, you live in a fantasy world if you think the Hensel’s haven’t already thought of these issues. Legally they are two people. For example they each had to take a separate driving test. Legally, I would image, they can each have a husband. For either to marry, a very special man would need to be found. Doesn’t every woman want a special man for her husband? No one can work these things out better than Abbey and Brittany. They did each have their own prom dates. Why not their own husbands? The fact that they share genitalia isn’t strange to them at all. It’s the only life they’ve known. It’s only strange to those of us “normal” people who haven’t faced their challenges. Apparently the fact that they’ve done so well so far is reprehensible to some. Do you wish to further complicate things for Abby and Brittany by forcing them into a single identity? Or are you sore that their mother gave birth in the first place? Why would you rather look for something to blame them for instead of marveling at what they have over come? How could they have “shot themselves in the foot” or “made their bed”? They didn’t choose this life. Their bed was made for them and they’ve made the best they can of it. They are beautiful. You must be a bitter woman.

    • NosmoKing said

      Judging from your post Donna; I think people have been making “exceptions” for you for some time now. These girls are extraordinary people and should be applauded for their accomplishments…NOT ridiculed as you have done. Just how do you think they’re responsible for being conjoined?

    • JJ said

      well Donna, don’t you feel like a shithead now.

    • zackius said

      brings up a good point on the rape thing what if one wants to have sex and the other dose not etc though i suppose if one was aroused the other probably would be what with the whole chemical changes part of arousal

    • Travis G. said

      The good news, Donna? There’s no cure for stupidity — but that doesn’t mean that you too can’t live a normal life!

  6. FYI, nude”>Pix of the Hensel twins nude and partially nude were leaked, probably by someone at their college. My guess is the pix were taken and leaked for money, but they made it to the web.

    • Pinky212 said

      Exactly why was it important that you let everyone know about this? Do you get your kicks by spreading rumors? Disgusting little person!

    • Xeno said

      The photo you saw was a doctored fake. There are before and after photos showing that it was a Photoshop job. False accusations can mess up people’s lives and, as I am now learning, this kind of thing can open you up (and me as the blog owner) to defamation lawsuits… I think that only applies if you claim it is true and know it isn’t? Or if you think it is but it turns out it isn’t… But you just said it was your guess… actually I’m still not very clear on what is defamation and what isn’t.

  7. keara said

    wow amazing
    i feel bad but i am glad they r so strong about it

  8. Miss Coco said

    amazing! i’ve seen two documentaries about them (one when they were aged 11, the other when they were 16) and always wondered how they were doing. they really have grown up to be strong, beautiful women! that kinda experience – sharing your personal space 24/7 with someone – must really develop you as a person. i have no idea how their romantic relationships are going to work out but it is none of MY or anyobody else’s business. i wish them all the best.

  9. Susanne Ferrante said

    Amazing. Imagine that your legs are tied together (Your friends legs are tied together too) and then you and your friends waists are tied together. Then try to walk. That is what they do every day.

  10. Tomáš Cyprián, Czech republic said

    If they will born baby, which of them will be mother?

    • Xeno said

      They share one uterus, so both would be the mother if they decide to have a child. It may be possible with genetic tests to choose one as donating the most genetic material, but since they both would carry the baby, I don’t see such tests as useful.

      • bargle0 said

        They are identical twins. What do you suppose a genetic test would show?

      • k Foster said

        KF
        There are subtle DNA differences between identical twins. But this is all “un-charted territory”, if Brit. is married to the father, she will be the legal mother. I don’t see any judge trying to dispute that. Why would either of the girls or the father try to. Clearly the girls have discussed this, Abby must like the guy enough to be willing to bed him. They ARE different people with differing tastes in food, clothes, etc. As to him being special, Oh yah, almost as special as they are.

  11. Seriously? Why does everyone assume marriage has to be about sex? I am in love with a gay guy (and I’m a girl) and we’re engaged. He knows I’m in love with him and I know there will never be a romantic relashionship between us. We’ve known each other since second grade (third for him) and we’re best friends. We have a very easy relashionship and are both completely happy and comfortable with the future we’ve made. We have the same interests and the same ideas of what kind of house we want. I have always wanted kids and that’s no longer an option and it hurts, but you know what? He’s worth it. These girls are strong and indepentent people. When you get married, you are not supposed to try changing the other person. True love is about agnowledging a persons faults or disabilities and accepting and loving the person regardless. We chose not to have sex, but the choice is up to the two girls and their husbands when they get married. They will have to figure this out for themselves and it is none of our buisness what this descision will be. I made my choice and I’m happy with it. When these girls make their choices, they are the ones who are going to live that life, not anyone else, and that is the only way they will be able to lead a happy life.

    • koldobika2020 said

      >I made my choice and I’m happy with it.

      You are fooling yourself. You are also incredibly selfish, forcing a gay man to enter into what amounts to a monogamous relationship with someone he is not sexually attracted to; if you truly loved him you would not do this to him.

      I think you are both very confused people who do not know what you actually want out of a relationship, and are settling for each other out of convenience and a fear of the unknown.

      Your relationship will end with infidelity, by one or both. That or some other tragedy.

      • Wow, really? Where did you get “forcing” from? Do you realize that you made that part up yourself based on your projected feelings?

        Speaking of your projections, while you may allow your life to be governed by your genitals, but some of the rest of us let our hearts have that job.

        and by the way, the Hensel twin’s sex life is none of our business, and it is rude to discuss it in a public forum. (again, sex on the brain)

    • C. Ocknose said

      Sex really is a very important part of marriage (unless you are both asexual). You will understand this when you are older and more experienced. I am sure the twins will find an arrangement that works for them.

  12. Nathan Cole said

    I haven’t been here in a while and hope I can find my old posts and keep going where I left off. I haven’t heard anything about the twins in the last year. Hope all is well with them. I assume they are still in college??

  13. Raj Kumar said

    may i get the residential address of the twins, where lives?

  14. Raj Kumar said

    i wish to know the residential address of Abigail and Brittany Hensel?
    may i get it?

    • Xeno said

      No, don’t be a Cyberstalker. The current US Federal Anti-Cyber-Stalking law is found at 47 USC sec. 223. Wikipedia lists their residence as St. Paul, Minnesota, USA and the latest news is this: “Bethel University juniors and conjoined twins Brittany and Abby Hensel took part in a student teaching stint last week at Centennial Middle School.” – link.

      I recommend you leave a message for them here. I’m guessing they will see it some day. ;-)

  15. reddit_knows_BEST said

    [Link to fake photo removed]

    Just these two sucking a little bit…

  16. Corey JL said

    They should play the drums!! since their arms and legs are both controlled separately by each they would be able to create some crazy Beats!!

  17. faseeh said

    those are amazing peoples on the earth

  18. Dawn said

    I think these girls are not only lovely-looking, but have fantastic personalities which have positive, uplifting effects on others. I’ve only seen them on tv, but they’re adorable and I definitely see them as two distinct entities, even though they share many body organs. They are individuals for sure. What they have accomplished is amazing, and I hope they live very long, healthy and happy lives – I think they’re definite optimists. God bless them in all their endeavors.

  19. Keven said

    I love these girls! :) They have a great outlook, are funny- and gorgeous to top it all off! Best of luck in everything to them!

  20. Mary W. said

    Well I’m new on here, but honestly as far as it goes, technically these two are separate as far as having their own heads, minds, etc, but since they do share a very vital important part, then if one has sex, then so does the other. And the most difficult and obvious thing is that they will be literally having sex with the same guy at the same time, and if those two somehow marry different guys, these guys will be having sex with the same vagina that belongs to two different girls. If any babies come out of this, each baby will have to have dna testing to prove who the true mother and father is for the birth certificate and for all legal documents from then on. :/ As far as the law goes, I don’t want to wish them to never marry. In fact I wish them all the happiness in the world and to lead as normal lives as they can, but I’m hoping that all legal issues can and will be dealt with, so that if any other conjoined twins live and choose to marry, they will have a true path to follow with no obstacles.

  21. Mind Boggles said

    My mind boggles. My bad.

    What if one does something illegal? Can the other be incarcerated?

    I wish them the best.

    Incredible story.

    Still boggling…

  22. Gamini said

    I find those twins are pretty and gorgeous like one there in Adam’s family and i find it also she look sexy when they grow up already.

  23. Justin Boggs said

    All bigoted ignorance aside, Ive followed the twins story since i was young and i have stood in awe for years at thier magnificence. I admire unique people, and these two are very unique. I think theyre some of the most beautiful people on earth, I would love to know them personally. I think if i got to know them Id fall in love. All I have to say is, whoever gets thier hands in marriage, or any relationship is amazingly fortunate and blessed.

  24. Rachel said

    Wouldn’t adoption be possible? That seems like an ideal fix for at least the children part of the marriage and family question. That way, though they both have to be present and cooperate in order to care for any children, they could legally adopt their own–perhaps with a father. It would sort out all these birth certificate and legal issues on that end. If they took separate dates to the prom, it does seem that rationally they go for different guys, and that part makes some sense. Sexually, I can’t comment on. That’s totally tricky and sad. :( And I have no idea what the law would say, or how the men who married them would feel about such a situation. I’ve heard of twins marrying twins. I guess if they are legally two different people, maybe the law doesn’t care, and it’s just up to the four individuals who would be involved, and what their preferences were. Perhaps marry two men who were REALLY comfortable with one another. :P The marriages might be doomed not to last, too. The guys might get to freaked out. I dunno.

  25. Darren Bent said

    Do the Hensel Twins have an e-mail, Facebook or Twitter page? I have been trying to communicate with them for years now.

  26. josar said

    LAS AMO. ME QUIERO CASAR CON ELLAS.

  27. Joseph said

    These girls are not that much different than everyone else or a single person who has had to overcome some physical limitation. People, relationships, jobs, marriage should all be flexible enough to accommodate them with little difficulty. Life is diverse and tries one of everything.

  28. Cheri chase said

    I would totally love to meet them and get it on with them. they could moan in harmony

  29. First of all I would like to say wonderful blog!

    I had a quick question in which I’d like to ask if you do not mind. I was interested to find out how you center yourself and clear your thoughts before writing. I have had difficulty clearing my thoughts in getting my thoughts out there. I do enjoy writing but it just seems like the first 10 to 15 minutes are lost simply just trying to figure out how to begin. Any recommendations or tips? Many thanks!

  30. Right now it sounds like Expression Engine is the preferred blogging platform out there
    right now. (from what I’ve read) Is that what you are using on your blog?

  31. Useful info. Lucky me I discovered your site unintentionally,
    and I am surprised why this accident didn’t came about in advance! I bookmarked it.

  32. Heya i’m for the first time here. I came across this board and I to find It truly useful & it helped me out a lot. I hope to offer one thing back and help others such as you aided me.

  33. Janelle said

    Let’s see what all gets covered under a motor insurance -. For instance, if you have a new automobile and you did not create a 20Percent deposit, you want to get GAP automobile insurance. At this time this has to be understood that the sum of insurance plan differ from time to time simply because insurance providers also have to abide by the state insurance plan legal guidelines.

  34. Keven said

    we seemed to have strayed from the subject- to reiterate, these are absolutely beautiful girls- and I wish them all the best in the future! You’re my new crush, Brittany and Abby! :) Best of luck to you both!

  35. okeh, we might be Red Auerbach, Julius Erving, Rebecca Lobo,
    Jeremy… http://www.paydaylendersfox.co.uk/ These websites will give you many
    details in sexual intercourse cash help service through which citizenry can avail total ranges from �100 to �1500 for the pliant refund continuance of 14 to 31 days.

  36. This is so amazing, its hard to believe, they have amazing parents who wouldn’t save one and keep the other but chose to keep them both and let them have normal lives..

  37. ELYSE said

    I think it would be unable to live in the same body with my brother.

  38. july7nyc said

    Writing fail. Trying waaaay too hard. Not to mention, has nothing to do with the discussion.

  39. Xeno said

    Yes, the rambling nonsense post (now deleted) you commented on was not posted by a person. It was harvested elsewhere on the web and re-posted here by spammer’s software to get past WordPress’ automated spam filter. This crap is much like “spam” email, but the goal of spammer’s here is just to get the spammer’s web site ( which may try to spread malware or a virus ) seen before I delete the junk comment. The web address is not usually in the content of the comment but is part of the fake poster’s info for the comment.

    Blogs are getting hit with many of these. It is so bad, in fact, that if you leave a very general comment that could apply to any blog or any posting i may delete it, just in case it is spam.

    When doing this they are forging IP addresses, using proxies, and registering under fake names. I’d like all bloggers to track them down and get them arrested. Then they should be given a fair open trial. If guilty, during their jail time, they should be put in an accessible place where bloggers can go and talk to them to explain our feelings about their behavior which wastes our time.

  40. july7nyc said

    But what is the point? How do they harvest IP addresses by posting? I don’t get it. Is it only if someone clicks on the link? I didn’t even notice a link- not that I would have clicked on it anyway. What do they do with an IP address anyway? I can’t stand spam and I’ve never understood why it is so prolific.

  41. Soviet said

    jail times a biiiiiiit much dont you think?

  42. Xeno said

    Answer: M o n e y. The goal of spam gangs is to steal your money or to take over your computer or your email account to use to steal other people’s money. ( See http://www.spamhaus.org for a good list of the biggest spammers. )

    They don’t harvest IP addresses, they conceal their own IP address to avoid detection.

    There are many different scams. One recent type of attack is a fake anti-virus program that asks for your credit card. It even seems to do a scan of your computer but it is all BS. When you first get a pop up message in your browser telling you that you have a virus, you don’t yet. That’s the fake out. That’s where they get you to install the evil program. The Feb version of Microsoft’s malicious software removal tool is powerless to even detect this, but a good program called Spybot Search & Destroy will find and remove it.

    To be more sneaky, the evil web address in these blog comment spam attacks is only something a few curious people might visit by clicking the (fake) name of the person posting.

    Not every site is trying to give you a virus. There are also people paying marketing firms to get their web traffic up, for some legit sites and the firms resort to these tricks.

    In other cases people get money from selling ads on a web site. They come here to post a comment to get you to go there because the advertisers pay more for more web traffic.

    Make sense?

    Sent from my iPhone

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

 
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 904 other followers

%d bloggers like this: