Perception…The Story of Twin Boys


Excerpt from:  This River Called Life, A Letter to My Children

This is based on a real-life study that was done with twin boys. The story was passed on at a work meeting.


Identical twin boys had grown up to become completely different men with completely different lifestyles. The lifestyle differences were so drastic that a study was done to find out how such a dramatic difference could have happened. One boy grew up to have an admirable lifestyle and was happy. He was married with a family, a successful job, a great lifestyle and admiration in the community. The other boy couldn’t keep a relationship going, had several jobs but kept getting fired, was in and out of jail, became an alcoholic, and basically turned out to be a loser.


The boys were raised by their natural parents. They had the same treatment from both parents, the same opportunities in life, the same environment…there was nothing that could be found that was significantly different about the way they were raised. Their mother was a loving person who expressed her care and love for the boys. The father was an alcoholic who had a lifetime of problems. He couldn’t keep a job, mistreated their mother and the boys.


All members of the family were interviewed as well as other people who knew the family, and nothing could be found that would give a definitive answer as to why the boys had turned out so differently. Finally, the boys (now grown men) were asked why they felt they had grown to have such different lifestyles, and they both gave the exact same answer. The answer:

“Well look at my father, how did you expect for me to turn out?” Perception…