Kerri Walsh’s Blog: Why We Chose ‘Irish Twins’

08/10/2010 at 09:00 AM ET

Kerri Walsh has taken home two Olympic gold medals in beach volleyball with partner Misty May-Treanor.

But she has two even bigger accomplishments to her name: Sons Joseph Michael, 14 months, and Sundance Thomas, 3 months, with fellow volleyball star Casey Jennings.

When Walsh, 31, delivered her second son this past May, just three days before Joey’s first birthday, many thought, “Two boys in a year? What?!” but as she explains in this week’s blog, that’s just how she and Casey wanted it.

Sundance and Joseph – Courtesy Kerri Walsh

A lot of people ask me why we decided to have our kids so close together and it always brings a smile to my face. Joey and Sundance are three days shy of a year apart — “Irish twins” — and that’s EXACTLY how we wanted it!

Some people assume it was an “accident.” Some think we’ve gypped Joey out of being the one and only far too soon. Some believe we’re simply crazy while others think it’s a beautiful thing.

There were several reasons behind our decision. Here are a few of them:

  • As a professional athlete the lifespan of my career is, unfortunately, pretty limited. I felt that having my children back-to-back would enable me to make the most of my time in the sand. I was fortunate enough to win gold in 2008 and a little shy of two years later, I have both my babies and am now getting back to the sport I love so much and the job which allows me to support my family.
  • Our volleyball careers require us to travel a lot and we never want our kids to feel alone or to be without someone to relate to.
  • Lastly and most importantly: Both Casey and I are very close in age to our nearest sibling and we each absolutely LOVED everything about that closeness.

For me, my brother Marte and I are 11 months apart, as close as can be and I wouldn’t trade this for the whole wide world. He was my best friend throughout every stage in life — still is! — and I took a silly kind of pride in telling people that we were Irish twins. I wanted that for my kids with Casey.

I honestly feel that my brother and I being so close in age is one of the very best blessings in all my life. He was always right there for me as a friend, protector, mentor, playmate and sparring partner. My childhood was beyond special and adventurous and hilarious because I shared it all with my best friend — my big brother. How could I not want to pass that along to my children?

It was my dream to have our children so close to each other and I feel so grateful and humbled that the big guy upstairs blessed us with the realization of that dream.

Kerri and Marte as kids – Courtesy Kerri Walsh

— Kerri Walsh

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xxx on

she’s right. Joey and sundance will grow up very close and that’s a good thing. But they could have been close too if they had been 2 or 3 years appart. I’m 19, my sister is 16 and we are very close and so are a lot of our friends with their brothers or sisters. All i’m saying is that she could have waited another year or two, at the end, brothers and sisters are always close and friends.

Sandy L on

My two kids are a little shy of 20 months apart. My daughter was a surprise, since we didn’t plan on trying for at least another 6 months! If I had a choice, I definitely would have waited longer to have my second. However, she is here and we obviously love her to death! It was hard having two under two, I can only imagine what having 2 under one would be like! LOL! Kerri seems to be doing a great job though, glad her dream was able to come true!

Lisa on

It worked out for me too, but the adoption route. I adopted a boy 3 and girl 4 about 18 months apart. They act just like twins and are inseperable. Now a year later, its the same, my daughter just turned 5 last week.

Mel on

It’s amazing to me that she has to defend her decision. I understand that people are curious, but what does it matter if they waited or not? They’re married adults, they can have their babies when they want to. One thing I’ve learned from reading the Moms & Babies site is that there’s a whole lot of people who don’t know how to mind their own business. Those little boys are here now, what does it matter if you think she should’ve or could’ve waited a year or two? And please, none of that “I’m entitled to my opinion.” Yes, you are. Doesn’t mean you have to express it.

Kerri: your boys are beautiful and here’s to raising two great little guys who will always have each other :o)

CL on

What a great way to do it. I had three boys that are all 15 months apart. They are friends and do fight alot at this stage (13,14,15) but when there were younger it was great because they always had someone to play with. My closest sibling was my brother who was 16 months older than me. We were the best of friends and ended up going through school together.

Alison on

Irish twins are children born within the same calendar year!! Example, one in January, and one in December, not within a year. Look it up, dah!!!

Emily on

Mel, I agree. She shouldn’t have to defend her decision. My kiddos are also very close in age and so many people just assumed it was their business to ask me if it was an accident!

That being said, I do get a little offended when people think that siblings not close in age aren’t close. My brother and I are four years apart and we’ve always had a great relationship and I consider him one of my best friends! On the other hand, some of our good friends are brothers that are 11 months apart and they don’t speak! I think it has more to do with how your kids are raised than anything else.

Sassy on

I always that that the term “Irish twins was derrogatory”.

JLD on

I have to disagree with some comments others have made about siblings always being close no matter the age difference. My brother and I are less than 2 years apart and we were only close for about 2 years that I can recall…he wanted a pony and got me instead! 🙂 My cousins are 5 years apart and while they have a great deal of love for each other, they don’t get along well at all (they went polar opposite in their lives) and in fact don’t usually speak except on holidays. I do also know people whose kids are under 1 year apart and they don’t get along that well either…I suppose it’s like anything else in life, no guarantees no matter how or what you try. You just do your best and leave the rest up to fate or God or whatever your belief system is. Best of luck to them and congrats on their beautiful boys!!

Maisy Dougherty on

I am shocked, isn’t “Irish twins” an outdated term, almost a slur? I think it means: Irish Catholics don’t use birth control so they accidentally get knocked up immediately after having a child. Am I wrong? I thought that was the origin of that term. I’m Irish-American and offended by it because not all Irish are Catholic and ignore modern family planning and accidentally get knocked up repeatedly.

Kat on

While I would never want to take that on, it is her family by choice or fate. Plus I’m sure she can afford help, unlike most of us, which make it less a stress of having multiple children who are very young.

Cynthia on

Being a mom of twins, I understand your decision. I’m so glad that my children have each other, and being that I have a boy/girl set. I got the best of both worlds.

Donna on

My children are 3 days short of a year apart too. I never knew that was called “Irish twins”……. I also planned them that way and they DID grow up very close and still are and they are a boy and a girl.

Lorah on

@mel: loved your comment! people need to realize that thy don’t need to voice their opinions about everything 🙂
when i decide to have children, i hope they will be close in age! my brother is 18 mo older and my sister is 10 years younger. i love them both but the relationship with my sister is a little more motherly on my end lol!

Mary on

Well @Maisy, I’m offended because you took offense! Gawd people, not everything is a racial slur–get off your high horse. And kudos to Kerri and Casey, I think your family rocks!

kerri on

My sister and I are “Irish Twins” and I wouldn’t change it at all. We have the same birthday, 1-year apart (and we’re Irish too). It was great to grow up with someone so close that you can share experiences with. Even now with kids of our own we are very close. My last two kids are only 18 months apart and I love that they get to grow up together as well.

Jill on

Irish twins are born in the same calendar year OR within 12 months of each other….maybe you should look it up.

kerri on

@ allison: I did ‘look it up’
The term “Irish twins” is used to describe two children born to the same mother within 12 months of each other or born in the same calendar year.

patti on

My sister and I are 8 months and 18 days apart. ( I was a preemie) and we are best friends!!

Katie on

In complete agreement with Kerri! What beautiful reasons.

I’m the youngest of 8. My parents WANTED 7 (crazy, haha) and so they had 7 kids in 9 years!! I came along 5.5 years after my brother. I was always so jealous how close they all were growing up, while I was always “the baby.” My husband only has one sister, who is 9 years younger than he is, so we both agreed we wanted our kids close in age. Our boys are 14 months apart, and I’m currently expecting #3- a little girl 🙂

Maeve on

My parent’s started having children in 1980 with my oldest brother being born on September 24, 1980, I was on September 12, 1981, my sister was born on October 8, 1982 and my younger twin brothers born on January 2, 1985… my parent’s are from Ireland and yes, they are Catholic. We had a great childhood in Montana… we remain very close today. If I decide to have children, I will probably try to do something similar.

Jen S on

My kids are 13 months apart. I absolutely love the age difference. The first year is kinda hairy, so it definitely isn’t for the faint of heart.

momoftwo on

Good for her, you have to do what works for you as a family. With her schedule it does seem easier to do all the “baby” stuff @ one time and then be done with it. My boys are 5 years apart but that’s what worked for us. And they are close, they older one is very protective and a great example for the younger one.

zp on

I’m 11 months younger than my sister and she loved it, I HATED it! She overshadowed me, bossed me around, some things too awful to print, things my parents had no clue about — kids need their space and parents need to figure out how to deal with their professional lives while giving them the space they need to grow and prosper.

Cat Girl on

My boys (7 & 8 yrs old) are one year, two weeks apart. People ask all the time if I’m crazy or if it was an accident. The truth of the matter is, we had a hard time getting pregnant the first time and not so much the second time…to our relief. Having them so close has turned out to be an amazing blessing. They are best friends. I think if more people realized what a beautiful and special thing it is, more people would CHOOSE to do it that way. Personally, I wouldn’t change it even if I could go back in time. It really is that wonderful.

Vickie on

A number of derogatory terms incorporating stereotypes about the Irish began to emerge, including “Irish confetti” for thrown bricks and “Irish kiss” for a slap. Irish twins fits into this vernacular, and is actually insulting on multiple levels.

Firstly, the term pokes fun at the stereotypical fertility of Irish Catholic families, which traditionally do not use birth control. In addition, it implies that the Irish lack the ability to plan ahead or control themselves, having children in quick succession rather than responsibly spacing them. Finally, it suggests that the Irish do not understand the medical definition of twins, which involves two children conceived and born together.

Just a fun fact…

Cec on

My sister is less than 2 years older than me and one year apart in school and we were and are still best friends, like twins. She is the one person in the world I feel completely comfortable with and I think the feelings and thoughts we share are similar to how strong bonds between twins are. If she lived near me I would probably have never bothered to make other friends or even date anyone. My husband has 2 daughters exactly 2 years apart and 2 yrs in school apart and they hate each other and have never been friends. I am having my first child in December and would love for an Irish twin for my daughter, but I fear finances will keep me from that.

jane on

I am 11 months older than my sister (AND we were born in the same year). We always had someone around, but we fought constantly. There is no guarantee kids will be close even if they are close in age. But if she can handle it, more power to her.

Elizabeth on

Those boys are adorable! I think Kerri’s decision was very smart given her unique circumstances. I wish her and her family the very best.

littlelady on

@Mary– actually, Maisy is right, in that the origination of the term came about in the 1800s for the very reason she gave (after large families with many young children immigrated to the US from Ireland). And it was derogatory, at the time. However, 150-200 years later, I’m fairly certain people mean no offense when they use the term and are simply describing siblings born 12 months apart or less. I’m Irish and I’m Catholic and I take zero offense to the phrase, but that may just be me.

LRU11 on

My sister and I are 10 months and 15 days apart…we always had someone to play with!

MomofTwins2 on

MomofTwins – I hear you on that one! Having each other to play with and be there for each other is a very special thing (even though many people think they are Irish Twins (fraternal boys)).
I don’t think people take the term as it was meant 50 or so years ago.
Good for them! This allowed them to have their children close in age (which they wanted) and still be able to focus on her career.

Feggie on

Grow up people. I’m Irish, and not offended by the “Irish Twins” term. Betcha anything these people worried about the stereotyping are far leftists. Live and let live. Stop looking for things to be offended about.
Stereotypes are often true. That is why people noticed the fact in the first place.
Kerri’s motives are no ones business but her own.

Angela on

I’m with Mel. It’s nobody’s business how close or far apart her kids are in age, or anybody’s for that matter, as long as they are being properly loved and cared for.

We will have three kids three and under within the next couple of weeks (daughter turned three yesterday, son is 18 months, and newborn daughter – and the last two were unplanned). I get looks of pity when I am in the grocery store with two toddlers and a huge pregnant belly. I got a comment last week that took the cake where a man asked me if I was trying to set a record. Difficult, yes, but I wouldn’t change a thing.

mumof4 on

I have 4 under 5 and my middle two are ten months and nine days apart, only one out of the four was planned. Right now its not something I would recommend but to each there own. I’m sure things will get easier, hopefully!! But the amount of people that stare and whisper thinking we can’t hear them is huge. People need to quit being so damn negative, and remember people need to be lest to there own decision making. But atleast she had both those babies with someone she knows and loves and it wasn’t just two random men.

Emily on

I can’t believe how many people wasted the time to whine about whether or not the term “Irish twins” is a racial slur. It is pathetic how offended people get about everything! I swear, some people just enjoy being mad and feel the need to complain or argue about something. Shame, shame. How about we take the time to argue when it actually matters?!

Kerri–your boys are beautiful! Congrats! I’m sure life is crazy, but I bet you’re having lots of fun, too.

M&L on

Closeness with a sibling has nothing to do with age difference! In fact I think there would be more sibling rivalry with kids super close together (and them both being BOYS on top of that!)

laura k on

I live in Ireland and have never heard of that term.The majortiy of people in Ireland like to wait 2 or 3 years or longer to have there next child. That is how it is in my family and all my friends.So basically if its used in the US it seems a inapporpriate term to use and is clearly based an a americans outdated view of Ireland.

Kate on

I am the oldest of 6 born in 7 years – I was 6 when my youngest sibling was born in May and turned 7 that July. Three of us my sibling are Irish twins (triplets?) born 11 months apart. We had a wonderful, fun-filled childhood- and years later the memories are irreplacable. Kudos to Kerri and Casey for a great plan – and best wishes to the boys who are so lucky to have each other!!

Molly on

I fully understand where you are coming from, Kerri. My son was born on February 1, 2008 and we welcomed my daughter on January 29th, 2009. I ADORE the age gap we have with them and I look forward to them getting the chance to grow up so close together. My older sister is just shy of 11 months older then me, and we grew up likes twins. It was wonderful and it’s been a dream for my children to do the same. 🙂

AJ on

@littlelady – The term “Irish twins” is still derogatory, though people might not understand that when they use the expression. Just because it doesn’t offend you doesn’t mean it isn’t offensive. It would be nice if inaccurate stereotypes were not perpetuated by using phrases like this, whether the speaker is using them innocently or otherwise. Using a phrase like “Irish twins” is akin to using phrases like “Indian giver” or “jewed”.

Kerri’s use of the word “gypped” is also derogatory. It is obvious that Kerri does not use these words/phrases in a demeaning or hurtful manner, only that she is uneducated about their derogatory nature. The reporter should have mentioned it to Kerri or left those quotes out of the story.

Anonymous on

I to am a Irish twin My brother wasnt even ! yet when my mom had me .He was 6 weeks from being 1 and my mom is from Irelannd

AJ on

@Feggie: It’s not about being “far leftist” or being offended, it’s about education. Kerri obviously doesn’t realize that this is a derogatory term, and someone should let her know. It is an inappropriate phrase that demeans people. It would be easier to “live and let live” if we didn’t demean each other.

Ann on

I don’t know why people are often openly critical of someone else’s choices. Just because “Irish Twins” aren’t what they want doesn’t mean it isn’t right for you. I wouldn’t even listen to that stuff.

I don’t have kids yet, but people will openly tell me I better hurry up before my eggs dry up. And “you’re not getting any younger”. Some people are just rude and could use some manners!

You have adorable boys by the way! And it is cool they are Irish Twins. You shouldn’t even have to explain your choices!

Jami on

How bout we all get to go back to a simpler time where we could call each other names …you called me one thing I called you another and we learned to thicken our skins and get over it. Whiney whiney whiney WHINEY people … In the words of Depeche Mode “words are meaningless”

Seriously would rather have someone sluring me than the other crazy crap people do to each other …slur away !

Anne on

I also hate the term “Irish Twins.” If you were to change the word “Irish” for any other nationality or race, it would be misleading and/or offensive. How about “African Twins”, or “Polish Twins”? There’s a reason why we don’t call conjoined twins “Siamese Twins” anymore! Just because it’s referencing white people instead of a contemporary minority doesn’t mean it’s ok. To me, the term is small minded and needs to go.

bschoon on

I was the middle of 5 children all born within 7 years. We loved being close in age. There was always someone to play with and talk to, you were never lonely. The spacing of children is an indivdual choice and what works for some doesn’t work for others. There is no guarantee that siblings will be close no matter what the spacing.

The term Irish twins has been used regarding my sister and I born 10 1/2 months apart. I never felt it was derogatory, but I’m only a bit Irish, so I don’t know what others think.

Congrats Kerri on your beautiful boys.

Jo on

It is a racial slur. I hope she is Irish.

LizAnn on

Just because you’re Catholic doesn’t mean that you ignore all birth control methods and get ” knocked up on accident”. That’s rude and one of the worst stereotypes I have ever heard. She obviously chose to have her children close together, it isn’t necessary to make negative remarks to tear her down. Think about things before you make ugly remarks like that. How would you like it if people made offensive remarks about your religion or your life choices. You dont’ even know if she’s Catholic, that comment had no place on this blog.

CM on

I’m surprised no one has commented on her use of the term “gypped”, which is derrogatory. I realize this is sometimes commonly used, but it’s essentially the same thing as “Jew– ’em down” which would be gasped at. I actualy never realized the origin and connotation of the term until a few years ago and know a lot of people don’t make this connection, but the Roma people have been through A LOT and thought it right to say something on their behalf.

Kerri on

The term “Irish twins” is defined as 2 babies born to the same mother either in the same calendar year OR within 12 months. While it is a derogatory term in origin, it has become a generic term used to refer to 2 siblings born closely together the same mother. It is not used in Ireland as it is still considered derogatory by the people of Irish descent.

Kerri, your boys are adorable! You are truly blessed. 🙂

Anonymous on

I’m Irish and I’ve lived in Ireland all my life and this was the first time I’ve ever heard of the term “irish twins”. I do find it quite offensive but I do also understand that many people don’t realize its a derogatory phrase used towards Irish immigrants.

littlelady on

@AJ, I see your point and don’t disagree that the use of the term is really stemmed from a lack of education about its history. Which is probably why the reporter didn’t tell Kerri or omit it from the article: the reporter is uneducated about it as well. My degree is in journalism; I can assure you “Ethnic Slurs to Avoid” was not a class offered. And I do realize that it could be offensive, as I said, “I’m not offended, but that may just be me.” Basically, you and I are pretty much on the same page, I just didn’t convey it as well as you. You sound really well educated, so take solace in knowing that your children won’t grow up using offensive terms 🙂

Erin on

For all of you who want to turn this into a racial, religious or cultural debate, get a grip! I am an Irish Catholic and think the term is fun. When did people get so darned sensitive and politically correct about eveything? Find battles worth fighting! There are plenty of hungry children, abused women and impoverished schools to keep you busy for a lifetime! We Irish are pretty tough and can laugh at ourselves. We don’t need defending by the likes of you! Congratulations to Kerri and her husband!

jackie on

Holy smoke….she had 2 kids…no ones business just feel bad for her that she felt she had to justify herself for doing so. I guess thats part of the price for being in the spot light! As for the “Irish twin” terminology saga……seriously there are children dying in the world and people have the energy to get “offended” by it! Get a grip on reality ladies and go get a hobby that doesn’t offend you!

catherine on

forget about Irish twins, please don’t use the term “gypped” It is so incredibly cruel if people knew how the Roma people are treated in Europe they would never say it.

Amanda on

I had my first two a year and a half apart and there are positives and negatives, just as there are between my second and third who are three and a half years apart. I think that my first had to ‘grow up’ too fast. They are still a baby until they are at least 2 years old, they are dependant on their parents for everything and they need the attention a baby should get. And between being pregnant, preterm labor and then a newborn I do not think my oldest got the attention she needed and deserved, and that’s just being honest. I also don’t think age gap means anything as far as how close siblings end up, it all depends on their personalities and how their parents raise them. I see a lot of people with closely spaced kids comparing them often which definitely does not foster a good relationship between siblings. I understand the various reasons for all different spacings but nothing is guarenteed. I barely remember that first year, which makes me sad for both of them. I’ve enjoyed a bigger spacing much more and I think my oldest two have as well and they absolutely adore their baby brother.

Mandi on

The term “Irish twins” is used to describe two children born to the same mother within 12 months of each other or born in the same calendar year.

Kathy on

I come from a large family and have two Irish twins (one to the day and the other three weeks shy of a year) and there is another set in my family too. We are all super close and it was alot of fun growing up. People thought we were a camp during the summer since we all looked the same age and were having so much fun. Definitely the way to do it!

Avery on

My daughters are 11 months apart. It wasn’t planned that way and it was absolute craziness the first year… but it was worth it. They are 3 and 4 now and are the best of friends…. and into the same things.

Merin on

You know, if the term was “Mexican Twins” or some other group, the internet would be up in arms. I understand this term is quite old, and pokes fun at the stereotypical fertility of Irish Catholic families, which traditionally did not use birth control when they Immigrated to North America. There’s also the implication that the Irish lack the ability to plan ahead or control themselves, having children in quick succession rather than responsibly spacing them (try thinking like the very prudent protestants who used to think this way). There is also the suggestion that the Irish do not understand the medical definition of twins, which involves two children conceived and born together.

I think it’s a term better left to the history books.

Alisha on

Love your blogs, Kerri! Thanks for sharing.

Kandis on

I am the youngest of nine children, we are all within an 18 year time span. I am closest with two of my sisters whom are 14 and 8 years older than myself. I don’t think it matter how close in age they really are to how close they will be. I have a brother and sister 11 month apart, who to this day argue like cats and dogs!

Livia on

Good for her that she had a great brother. Mine is only 15 month older than me and we have never gotten along. Even now we only see each other once every few years.

If you want to have your children close in age, that’s great, but I hate the assumption that you have to have them close if you want them to BE close. Or that you have to have a second child in order to “give” your first a sibling. Our daughter is our only child and we are all happy that way. She gets to choose who she spends time with instead of being saddled with a younger sibling all the time. And she has a full social calendar! Plus, at home, she gets our undivided attention and love- and no sibling rivalry, jealousy, etc.

Ellea on

People are so sensitive. I’m failing to see what was so offensive. There was a time not so long ago, where irish catholic families could easily have 8 or 9 children not far apart. So close together that they could practically be twins. The term “Irish” in the early part of the twentieth century was considered offensive in itself.

Meanings of words evolve and change, get with it. There was a time when the word “negro” wasn’t offensive but, it is now. So its just as plausible that a term and lose its harshness as time goes on. Especially when she is of irish origin herself, she can use the term however she wishes. Just how black people can say the N-word. Obviously she’s not trying to insult herself.

Shel on

I can completely relate to Kerri’s decision to have her kids so close together. My kids are 14 months apart (my daughter is 5, my son is 4). My husband and I planned it that way. Like with Kerri, it was always my dream to have my kids very close together. I was blessed to have that dream come true. And while some people thought we were crazy to have our kids so close together (2 in diapers, 2 on bottles, etc), it happens to work well for us….and it works for our kids. They are extremely close and the best of friends….and get to go thru their stages of life together (school, church, sports teams, swimming, dance, etc). It also makes things, like going to Disneyland easier, because they can go on all of the rides together because they are the same size. And because they are the same size, people often think that they are twins (my kids actually like it when people think they are twin….I enjoy it, too, because I always wanted twins ;-).

Unfortunately, I also had to deal with the annoying questions from people (mainly, strangers) who wanted to know if their being 14 months apart was planned or an accident. Even almost 5 years later, we still get asked (“sigh!”). Congrats to Kerri on her 2 kids….and her happy and blessed life! =)

Pam on

I am less than 2 years apart from my brother and we’ve always been very close. I love that for a couple weeks every year he teases me that he’s two years older, then it’s my birthday. I wanted my children to be very close in age and it didn’t work out that way for medical reasons – they’re 4 years apart and that has turned out to have many blessings as well. I think closer would have been better for their relationship though. Kudo’s to Kerri and her beautiful family and her choice in family planning. Whatever you decide – as long as you have a plan, who cares. 🙂

VL on

There is a lot of misinformation about the true origin of the word “gypped”. It comes from the Greek word “gyp” for vulture, not from the word “gypsy”.

Gyp (Jip, Gip, Gypsy, Gippo, Gypper, Gypster)

A person who cheats or swindles people. A trickster. A person who is not quite honest. Gyp is the Greek word for vulture. In the 19th century, the Universities of Cambridge and Durham in England provided servants, who attended one or more undergraduates. Students called the servants “gyps” because the gyps found many ways of obtaining ale and tips from them and preyed upon the students like vultures. Gyps made beds, ran errands, helped their young masters over the college walls late at night, and provided other services. Sometimes they ran away with everything they could lay their hands on.

Jordan Almond, Dictionary of Word Origins: A History of the Words, Expressions, and Clichés We Use, Citadel Press, New York, 1985, page 113.

So, while the term “gypped” comes originally from the Greek word for vulture, the word “gypsy” may in fact be a word that may cause legitimate offense to some. The word “gypsy” was coined in England in the 16th century when they mistook a people of Middle Easter/Indian descent for Egyptians due to the color of their skin. The word “Gypsy” comes from the Egyptian word for “Little Egypt” which the English gave these wondering people, who themselves prefer to be called Romani, due to the fact that they thought it made sense to call a smaller sect of people from what they thought was Egypt, a name which meant Little Egyptians.

jen on

My kids are 10 months apart and both born in the same year…jan and nov.

Sarah on

My sister and I are “Irish twins”…we’re 11 months apart. A welcomed surprise, not an accident. My b-day is Aug. 1st and her b-day is July 3rd the following year, so we’re always the same age for the month of July!! It’s crazy, but we’re used to it.

Kristen on

Irish twins aside, I still can’t believe she named her son Sundance!

Jessie on

I have irish twins in my family so it’s not a big, but personally I would have waited a year or two more because the first one is still a baby and i would want the previous one potty trained so i’m not buying two sets of diapers, lol

Luna on

While I respect and appreciate your decision Kerri, I couldn’t do it myself. More power to you!

Fifi on

I always wanted my children as close together as possible. Unfortunately, I had such severe PPD after my daughter, that I had to postpone plans to have a second child until I was well again. I was finally back to normal, and med-free, when she turned one, only to discover that I now have a fertility problem! Hopefully she’ll have a little sibling soon.

sally on

I completely support her decision, and however she chooses to space her children is just fine with me, but does she have to use an offensive term to describe the small age gap between her kids? It was a phrase that was created to be derogatory, and it is still insulting.

Tami on

My brother and I are 17 months apart. I wasn’t even walking yet when my mom got pregnant with my brother. I can’t even imagine what a handful we might have been for my poor parents — two children in diapers. LOL. The only saving grace is that they were young enough — still in their twenties — when we came along. So, I guess they had the energy to keep up with us somehow.

Of us four children, my brother and I were the closest in age, and we remain close to this day. He’s the only one of my three younger siblings that has made me an aunt. Yes, I go to their house to play with my nephews & catch up with my sister-in-law (the perfect mate for my brother). But, I always enjoy seeing my brother. I don’t know why, but it calms me. A safe haven of sorts, if you will. We know without mouthing the words that we have always had each other’s backs, and we always will.

Mish on

My two daughters are 15 months apart, and are now 21 and 22. They fought from day one, and never really liked each other. They were only one grade apart on school and competed with each other over EVERYTHING! They are both pretty, and thin, and fought like crazy. Sad, because I never had a sister, and I had always hoped they would be close, but alas, they were not, and still are not. It doesn’t always work out the way we wish it would. They are as different as night and day, and I don’t ever see them being close. Sad. Glad it’s worked out for the rest of you.

Momof3 on

I am a mother of Irish triplets. Wouldn’t change a thing !

ABC 123 on

i have adopted cousins that are irish twins kaitlyn was born in january of 1999 and halle was born in december of 1999.

Kerri on

@AJ — I noticed that she used “gypped,” as well. You’re correct, both terms are derogatory.

Jane on

My daughters are 16 months apart. They have a very close relationship. Even got married in the same year! Now one has a child; the other wants one, too!!They are 32 and 33.

Jeanne on

I’m Catholic and my parents are both from pretty big families, with kids being close in age. My mom and her three older brothers were born within six years. Her oldest two brothers are only 15 months apart from each other, the older one terrorized the younger one and they’re still not terribly close to this day.

My dad is one of seven and had a sister who was almost exactly 11 months older than him. She was the only sibling he liked and trusted, and continued to have a relationship with after he left home. They had a rough childhood and they got each other through it.

So siblings being close really depends on the situation and personalities involved.

Melisa on

Good Lord!!! Those babies are loved, happy and healthy… who cares what everyone else thinks/or is offended by. Who cares how close they are in age… as long as they have a mom and dad who love them endlessly. It is guaranteed that someone is going to take offense at everything you do or say. Why stop living life in order to please people? Way to go Kerri and Casey!

Kit on

Yep, it’s her choice. But thank God it’s her and not me!

Shar on

This is fabulous and really thoughtful of Kerri.
I grew up as an only kid and boy life sucked – sure, you could have a ton of stuff but what I mostly yearned was love of a sibling. When my daughter was born – a week before her second birthday, my son arrived. They do everything together – there’s never a dull moment -they’re liked joined by the hips, he wants to do everything she does and he’s quite as accomplished as her although he’s like 2 years younger. They do everything together and I’m so happy that they’ve goteach other ..meanwhile, their sister came along four years ago and well… she drives the two crazy….they love her but its not the same…

Congrats to Kerri on the beach and at home….

Jazzy on

OMG! The terms “Irish Twins” and “gypped” are both SO derogatory! I thought very highly of Kerri before this…yeesh. Some celebs should keep to themselves and not have to defend their choices. She was higher in my classy list before this!! That aside, the boys are adorable and her life is her choice. I hope they have a wonderful upbringing…and I hope she learns to reconsider some terminology!!!

Allee on

My birthday is May 6 1997 and my sisters is May 30 1996. We are the same age for 24 days. I think its cool being an irish twin. Also my mom is an irish twin too.

Jennifer on

This is a very offensive blog. “Irish Twins” is derogatory to Irish (obviously), and “gypped” is an outdated reference to gypsies.

Poor taste, People!!!

Bonnie on

If she had used a derogatory term for any other race it would be headlining news. But because she used the racist term for Gypsies it went completely unnoticed because for some reason it’s a socially acceptable term. That is disgusting to me. Just because a race is small, doesn’t make them irrelevant or unfeeling. I feel she owes an apologies to Rom everywhere for her complete at total disregard of them as a people. For any naysayers, do your homework. One of the reasons there are so few Rom left is because they were one of the groups Hitler targeted in the Holocaust. In addition, they are people, too. All humans deserve equal treatment.

Laney on

I have two children that are 11 months apart. A son and daughter, I feel that its no one right to ask questions “was that planned” It was a wonderful gift and my children will always have friend beside one another. Sure they fight (they are 2 and 3) but any kid at any age fight. Keri, Good for you for having two healthy, happy children and never feel like you have to explain your personal choices that you and your hubsand chose. Most time, I find, those who make comments are either jealous that they couldn’t imagine having two children back-to-back or just plain rude for asking such a personal question …Do I ask you about your sex life? All the best

Kayla on

Wah wah wah…that’s all the majority of you guys have done on this entry…big ‘ol crybabies. WHO CARES if she used the terms “Irish Twins” or “gypped”?? SUCK IT UP. It’s her explanation (which wouldn’t have been necessary if it weren’t for you crybabies about her decision to have her children so close!) and all of you need to walk a mile in her shoes then come back here and complain!!

Great post, CBB & Kerri! More power to you for having 2 beautiful baby boys so close in age!

Carli on

I have two cousins who are eleven months apart and yeah they get along, but they also get along well with their other brother who came 2 1/2 years after the second one. I agree that it’s nobody’s business as to why siblings age differences are the way they are, but just because siblings are close in age doesn’t mean they are guaranteed to be close and loving while growing up.

Patrice on

It’s really unfortunate that Kerri feels that she has to justify her family planning ddecisions to ANYONE much less complete strangers on a blog…I would never justify too anybody why/how my children came to be.

Staci on

I feel bad that everyone is attacking Kerri for using certain terms.
I never knew either to cause such bad feelings (and I am university educated). Stop jumping down her throat-thank you Kerri for giving us a glimpse into your life.

Sydney on

Whinge, whinge, whinge. That’s what I see from reading these comments. It’s such a shame too as I enjoy reading about other peoples experiences.

Kerri has been kind enough to share her life with us. She didn’t have to. If you don’t like Kerri/her blog/her kids names/ her life choices – it’s very simple, don’t read about them!

Haleiwa on

It was actually an Irish boss of mine who called my boys Irish Twins. I had never heard the term in the Black community. My grandmother called them “stair step” babies. I thought the term Irish Twins was cute.

LEA on

I am one of 4. My little sister and I are 18 mo. apart, while my brothers were 8 and 10 years older than me. She and I are very close, but there is nothing better than having big brothers watching over you, our own protectors. I adore them and thank God every day for them. When I lost my big brother to cancer 4 years ago, I found out that he had a “talk” with the guys I had dated in high school. What an awesome gift! I also realized I was special to him as well.

Becky on

Wow, what a bunch of whiners..I work for a guy that is Jewish and he uses the word gyped a lot, so what does that make him? I have never heard the term Irish Twins, so I’ll have to research that one..But as another poster said, when did we all get so freaking sensitive to BS? I don’t really care for the name Sundance, but hey, not my child..Also as others have mentioned, she doesn’t have to explain anything to anyone about why they had two children so close in age..

Kristan on

My brother and I are 13 months apart – I’m older and we’re not close. Apparently we were until I went to school and he didn’t get to go but that’s just the way it is. My parents didn’t do it on purpose and I think given the choice, they certainly wouldn’t choose it but if it works for Kerri and Casey – AWESOME!!! I wish them and their boys nothing but the best. Some siblings get along, some don’t and I’m not sure how far apart in age they are has too much to do with it. But if their future is anything like the picture, Joey and Sundance will always be close!

Ann on

My grandfather is Irish and I’m 1/4 and I don’t find that term offensive. I think people are being too sensitive. You’re supposed to be focusing on the topic.

Plus even if it were still considered derogatory the unwritten rules seems to be that if you belong to the group of people the word is used about then you are allowed to use it. (Not sure I agree on that point, but that seems to be the working rule at the moment)

Now get back to the topic people!

Linda on

I have two children that are 10 months and 2 days apart. It was stressful at first. now they are insepertable.

soph on

Haleiwa – “stair step” babies, I’ve heard that before…I like it a lot better than “Irish twins”

Irish Twin on

I have three brothers. My one brother and I are 364 days apart and I’m am closest to him out of the three. We had a lot of the same friends growing up and we just bonded much more since we were so close in age. I think they did a GREAT thing!! Good luck!

Shaunie on

I’m in agreement with those who said:

1. She shouldn’t have to explain to people why she chose to have her children so close in age. Why do people even feel they have to right to ask that?!

2. That being close in age is no guarantee that they will have a close relationship.

Myself and [one of] my sister(s) are only a year apart in age and we have NEVER been close! It wasn’t that we didn’t get along. We never fought with each other, there was never any rivalry, we never hated each other…we were just very independent & different than one another. So we always just “did our own thing”.

Ironically the sibling I’m closest to is the youngest of my siblings…there’s a twelve year age gap(and four other siblings) between us!

shocked on

I’m shocked that half the posts on here are of people who are offended. NEWS FLASH: YOU ARE NOT A VICTIM. Geesh people. Your grandparents would be embarassed. Oops… did that offend some of you?

Allison on

Why does everyone assume that having children close together automatically makes them closer as siblings? That depends solely on their personalities, not how far apart they are in age. Kerri and her brother were lucky to be as close as they were, but that’s not always the case. My sister and I are 5.5 years apart and are extremely close. However, I have a friend whose sister is less than 2 years younger and they can’t stand each other.


My oldest (boy) is 10 1/2 months older than my second (girl) and my third (boy) is 20 months younger than my second. Yup, 3 kids in 3 years! Our second was a surprise and then I thought what the heck. It’s crazy, but they are all close, at least for now. My oldest has a rare disease and is delayed and I think it has really helped him in his speech and social skills…only time will really tell. Right now, they are 46 months, 36 months and 14 months…and just until recently they were all in diapers too 🙂 We also have 2 dogs, so the house is NEVER quiet, but wouldn’t change it for anything!!

Sam on

My children are 11 months and 3 weeks apart. I LOVE it. They are as close as can be now and I hope that continues as they age. My brother and I are 18 months apart and we’re still close. Kudos to Kerri and I know why she feels like she has to defend herself. I got the same kind of comments from people. Some people DO conciously choose to have kids that close together!

Karen on

Your boys are adorable….they will enjoy the ride you take them on w/ your careers!

torgster on

Maybe, like me, Kerri has moved waaaaaay beyond giving a damn if people are offended by what she says and how she says it? If you don’t like it, don’t listen, simple as that.

Lorus on

While siblings close in age can relate to each other since they are going through the same struggles I think their friendship through the years is more based on personalities. Some children are very passive and rarely argue/fight while others are very stubborn and are high needs.

My older sister and I are 20 months apart and were quite close growing up as we did really only have each other when it came to going back and forth before divorced parents’ houses. However once we hit elementary school she became “too cool” to hang out with her little sister. Now that we’re adults we rarely talk and I’m a lot closer with my 4.5 year younger sister.

I hope that Kerri gets her wish and her boys are best buds as I can’t imagine dealing with fighting between kids who are 11 months apart.

Nadia CANADA on

CONGRATS Kerri! That’s ALL anyone should be saying in reference to this article. Jeez GROW UP people.

Jenn on

I wanted my kids to be 1 year apart and my husband wanted them 2 year. So we compromised at 18 months. But we got pregnant way easier than we expected and my son was a preemie. They ended up being 15 months apart. My oldest is a girl and my youngest is a boy. Despite the differences in sex, they are best friends. They are 4 and 5 now and it’s going to kill them to not be going to the same school this year. Luckily my son is only 1 year behind. We love that we were out of diapers quicker, done with bottles quicker, and that they are so happy playing with one another. I would recommend Irish twins to everyone!

Lindsey on

Thanks for sharing your story and pics! You are a strong woman! I don’t think I could’ve had another baby a year after my first. It sounds like you have a great attitude and support system. Love your blog by the way!

Camille on

I am a mother of four and my two oldest children are 6 days shy of being a year apart. Planned or not, it is nice that they are so close. They are still young and enjoy it. Can’t say how they will feel as they get older, but for now they have a constant playmate that is on their level.

Jennifer on

My kids are 3 year and 3 mo. apart and I love it. I have a boy and a girl and it was so nice having one out of diapers and in a big-girl bed when the other came along. As far as closeness goes…they certainly love one another and look out for one another. I think as parents you show your children how to treat each other and be close by setting a good example. So…for us, this worked. I couldn’t imagine being pregnant 2 times in one year. It was nice for me to enjoy that one-one time with my first child before having #2. But, it sounds like Kerri is doing great. BTW, my sis and I are 4 years apart and best friends. You just never know!

Jenny on

I have 3 kids…ages 3 and under!!! Although we did not plan for this, we did not NOT plan. Our oldest child and middle child are 16 months apart and our middle child and youngest are 12 months apart. This year as my youngest turned 1, I realized that it was the first 1st birthday for a child of ours that I was not pregnant (or nursing)> Yes, it is challenging at times, but I wouldn’t change a second of it for the world. So when people comment saying “You have your hands full” , yes I do (but I love it!)!!! Congrats to you for giving your oldest a sibling (no matter how close or far apart they are). My sister (18 months younger than me) has been, is and will always be my best friend and I thank God every day for that! I hope that our kids will feel the same way when they are older!!!

Sage on

I have never heard anyone say that Irish twins were a rcial slur. Also I think iy’s dumb to say that Kerri is uneducated because she use those terms, when a majority of Americans would think they were harmless or not even care when they are used.

shalay on

Question to those ladies who are offended by “Irish twins”:

Do you get offended when someone refers to you and others as “you guys”? I mean, you’re not literally guys, so do you find it demeaning that your gender would be overshadowed in such a disrespectful way?

Some people are just ridiculous. You know why the term is offensive to you? Because you CHOOSE to be offended! Do you seriously think that when people hear the term “Irish twins” they assume it’s an old-fashioned Irish Catholic family, who breeds like crazy? Come on. I didn’t even think of that until it was pointed out. It was just another term, like sitting “Indian style” or “French kissing” or having a “Mexican beer”.

I feel like anytime there’s a post on CBB, people grasp at straws to find something, anything to be offended by or mad about. Get a grip.

Georgina on

Irish twins seems to be an american term, Ive never heard anyone this side of the pond let alone Ireland say it.

And saying “Im Irish AND Catholic and it doesn’t offend me” really doesnt help. Just because you dont understand your being insulted doesn’t mean you’re not being insulted.

Nikki on

I’m shocked that people would even THINK, much less VOICE an opinion that is totally irrelevant to their lives! It’s NOT anyone’s business why stable, self-sufficient people choose to have children when they do! Honestly, people need to MIND THEIR OWN BUSINESS!!!!!!

Diane on

My sister and I are 10 mos and 10days apart. Yes, we fought a bit during the teen years – but we’re best of friends and always have been. Those boys will love that they’re the same age for a few days! Congratulations – lovely family and I look forward to following you in 2012! Although, I’ve got to pull for any Canadians you come up against:)

Anna on

I think it’s great she is so cloase with her brother and she wants the same for her kids. But it might not happen even though they are close in age. My sister and I are only 18 months apart and we have never been very close. It’s all about personalities and different interests.

Devon on

Gypped, gypped, gypped.

Irish twins, Irish twins, Irish twins.

Get overyourselves and get a life.

Polish on

My mom had five children in six years, and I wouldn’t change a thing. We (four girls and a boy) are extremely close, as are all of our children — 11 of whom attend the same schools! It’s no one’s business how close or far apart a couple’s kids are in age. Best wishes to to Kerri, her husband and their darling sons.

Tee on

Kerri, both of your sons are simply gorgeous! I am so glad that you are blogging on CBB. I really look forward to reading more about your family. While I don’t have any children, I have six nieces, five of which are less than two years apart from each other… Ashleigh will be ten in three weeks, Abigail just turned eight, Cecilia and Penelope are six, and Calla-Grace is four. (Penelope was still-born but we still include her in the “line-up!” Only little Vivian decided to throw things off and she was born when Calla-Grace was almost four. People wonder how my sister and brother in law do it but it’s easier than most people think. Having them so close in age is easier in the long run, at least in my opinion. Due to our religious beliefs, birth control is not allowed, so who knows if Vivian will be the baby much longer!

For those of you that are saying that Kerri should not have had to defend her choices to have her sons so close together, I didn’t get the impression that she was defending herself. I think she was simply explaining why she and her husband made the choice they did.

There is one thing I honestly don’t understand and I’m hoping someone can explain it to me without biting my head off. Why is the word “gypped” demeaning? I’ve never heard that before so I am just curious why people are upset over it.

what of it? on

Thanks for the insight Kerri! It’s interesting to hear how you arrived at the decision to try for two children so close together. I’m happy it worked out for you. I imagine you’ll be having quite an adventure with your two boys. I look forward to hearing more about your experiences.

Rebecca Jayne on

I really don’t know why celebrities bother blogging on here. No matter what they write, people just attack them. Ladies, if you are so very offended by the content of this blog, simply close your browser window and stop reading. Personally, I find it interesting to get a glimpse into these celebrities’ lives, which I believe is the point of But these comments sections are a drag, and to follow my own advice, I believe I will cease reading them.

Jen on

I chose to space my kids. One adopted and one “birthed”! I don’t think it matters what my opinion is on how other people plan their families. For me I wanted to give my kids individual attention. Maybe other families are able to do this, even with them close in age.

My brother is 6 years younger than me and he is my best friend. We rarely fought as kids, and we don’t fight as adults. None of my friends are close to their siblings, so I do not think spacing has much to do with it.

I find the term Irish twins offensive. I agree it was based on the notion Irish persons do not practice family planning.

Again, what does my opinion matter? Not at all. Just sharing my two cents for another perspective. People know what is best for them, and work it out amongst them selves when the make a less than great choice.

Meghan on

I had never heard the term ‘Irish Twins’ before, so I didn’t realize that it would be offensive to some people. However, I am actually offended that one woman made a reference to Catholics not using birth control and getting “accidentally knocked up repeatedly”. Catholicism is definitely not the only religion that asks its followers to obstain from birth control.. And every Catholic I know does use some form of birth control. I don’t know any one Catholic family that has more than 3 kids. 😛 I don’t want to get all embroiled in some stupid internet fight, so don’t jump all over me for saying I was offended about something, I’m just sayin’. Lots of Catholics, including this one, use birth control. 😛

R on

This is lovely and all, but I’d just like to point out that “gypped” is an ethnic slur that refers to gypsies cheating others out of someone. It would be similar to using “jewed” as in “I jewed him down.” It would be nice if and Kerri Walsh did not choose to perpetuate an ethnic slur.

jojogojo on

I’m an Irish twin. I was born May 18th 1970 & my brother was born July 16 1971. And ironic enough – we are of Irish heritage. But because of a dysfunctional household we grew up in (parents divorced by the time we were 9/10 & both parents had multiple drug addictions) the two of us were NOT anything as to being close. We never had this bound of closeness. We never played together. He did his stuff & I did mine. Even now as adults we live 25 mins from each other but only see each other for one holiday get together each year.

However, when it came time for me to have my own family I really wanted to have an experience of being able to raise each child with my full attention to them. Thus my first born is in the process of turning 17 yrs old & my second born will be turning 3 yrs old here shortly. The surprising thing about giving them this length of space between their ages is that they really do adore each other. One is always with the other. Seriously. They love to hang out in the older boys room and watch cartoons. They both like to take the dog for it’s daily walk with each other. They have the best sibling relationship for being almost 15 years in age difference & both being brought up with individual attention.

I don’t think it’s the age difference that makes siblings relationships close or not. I think it depends on the parents ability to love each kid independently and being able to show them that family love has no boundaries or conditions. Age differences really aren’t that big of a factor, IMO!

Taina on

Honestly, I believe it is her choice when she has kids. However, the term she uses “irish twins” has a bad connotation…
“The term “Irish twins” is used to describe two children born to the same mother within 12 months of each other or born in the same calendar year. Given that it is a somewhat derogatory term, it is generally not used in print or in polite society. As is the case with many terms with derogatory origins, some people use it without thinking about the implications of the deeper meaning. Learning about the roots of these terms and the meaning behind them can help people to decide whether or not they are appropriate for common use.”

mama too on

It’s okay, lady! I have no idea who you are but from reading this entry I can see that you feel you have to defend your choice. You don’t! I am sure you take great care of your babies so just enjoy them and don’t feel a need to defend your choices 🙂

Sophia on

Wow, there’s definitely a strong family “look”! Kerri and Marte as kids look just like Joey and Sundance! Cute!

Momof3girls on

Isn’t all that matters is that the family is happy?

CanadianGirl on

In all of the comments, I am quite surprised no one has mentioned the fact that she choose to have 2 kids so close in age for her profesional life instead of chosing to breastfeed and use natural timing between her kids.

I understand that some breastfeeding moms do get their cycles back shortly after giving birth, but in most cases it’s 6-9 months post-partum. I think that deciding to use formula to get her cycle back faster and have another baby is sad. But I guess looking good in a bikini is more important that her baby’s health.

momof 3 on

yay! congrats! ours are 13 months apart and Best friends, its HARD! our 2nd and 3rd son have a 3 yr span and that was too long!

Alecia on

I love reading about families everywhere online. I was reading comments and realized there was a lot of confusion on what Irish Twins meant and where the term came from, here is a site I found that it explained it some

Becky on

I know a woman that gave birth to a boy in Jan., then in Dec. of the same year, she gave birth to triplets, so what did that make these sibilings? Not to mention that when she had the first son, she already had a 3 year old at home…

erica on

I completely understand her need to have babies close in age for professional reasons. I considered doing this, too, but decided to keep breastfeeding instead of weaning before the 12 month mark. My SIL weaned her daughter at 6 months and was pregnant 2 months later. Maybe it’s more common than I think to become pregnant while breastfeeding 3-6 months post-partum, but that wasn’t the case for me. I’ve now missed my window of opportunity, and it looks like my son will be at least 4 if not 5-6 years old before he (hopefully) has a sibling. Not having children in rapid succession will also make it difficult for me (age + career) to have more than 2, which is too bad.

I’m happy it all worked out for Kerri. Goodness knows plans rarely work out perfectly.

Kat on

Wow…people these days are so pathetic. If a celebrity uses one term you don’t personally care for, it’s offensive, racial or somehow evil…NO ONE can be 100% politically correct all the time. It’s a WORD…it doesn’t actually physically hurt you…so grow up and move on. There are so many more important things in the world to be upset about than one persons use of a simple term. World hunger, AIDS, the sex slave trade, for example.

My cousins are Irish twins, but only because the youngest was born several months premature. My family is Irish…and it’s not a big deal. No one in my family has had more than 3 children, and yes, we know what birth control is. None of us are Catholic either, so the antiquated ideas don’t even apply.

She is a married woman and she and her husband MADE THE CHOICE and wanted to have kids close together and she got her wish…it doesn’t personally affect or change your life, no matter what word she uses to describe their ages…get over it and stop being so petty. Why do people feel the need to pick on every little thing a celebrity says? Grow up.

Jay on

Wow, apparently it’s a lot more common than I thought! My twin nieces and my nephew are exactly 12 months apart. He was born in June of 2006 and the twins were born in June of 2007. I didn’t even know there was a term for this…derogatory or otherwise…but I guess they would be considered “Irish triplets”.

Anita on

I’m of Irish decent, had never heard the term “Irish Twins”…and certainly didn’t take offense to it. People are just too friggin sensitive these days…it’s as if they look for something to be offended at. It may have once originated with a derogatory connotation to it, but it is NOT a common term, unlike much worse ones that are still used to this day. Even Kerry referred to her own relationship with her brother affectionately with this term…relax people!!!

Mandy on

@ALison…it’s within a 12 month period OR within one calendar year…get YOUr facts straight before you throw snide remarks.

@Sassy…get over it. don’t be one of those people who look for the negative. grow up.

To Kerri: people are naive and sensitive to all aspects of life. You do what you ahve to do for you and your family, and screw everyone who puts you down! Karma’s a B!+ch and they will get theirs. LIVE YOUR OWN LIFE EVERYONE!

Karen on

My children are 13 months a part and I am so glad we did it this way. Although they are 10 and 11 now and tend to fight a little more, they were the best of friends when they were little. And even now, when no one is watching, they are very sweet with each other. They experience things around the same time and always has someone on their level they can relate to.

i agree... on

yeah, i agree with everyones comments that being born close in age absolutely is NO gaurantee you will be close. my brother is 14 months older than me and we rarely speak and were not really close as children. we were sort of forced to be close cause his freiends would be ‘friends’ with me too and he eventually found that very annoying and resented me for ‘always being around’…it was easy to un-include me when we were little and he didn’t want me there, but when we were older and his friends wanted me there, he couldn’t really un-include me…so its all about personality, not age.

i intentionally waited 3 years before giving birth to my 2nd, cuz i didn’t want my son to resent his younger sibling and i wanted them to be friends….every person has thier own experience they bring to the table…

and yeah, i also agree using the term ‘irish twins’ is kind of offensive and maybe they didn’t need to keep saying it through out the article.

just a thought.

Mandy on

@Canadian Girl…if you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say it. who and what gives you the right to put down people who formula feed? does that make you a better mother? screw you!

To everyone else who finds it necessary to write ridiculous and uncalled for things putting this woman down……live your own life. This article is non-life changing to you. NO one is happy…people put the Duggars down for having 20 kids, people put mothers down who have “change of life babies”, mothers put othe rmothers down for not being stay at home moms or choosing formula over breast feeding, people put down gay and lesbian parents for not having a “traditional” household….if these children are being born and raised into a loving environment…THAT is all that should matter. Everyone else can go take a hike

i agree... on

actually, i thought irish twins was a cute saying, till you actually consider what the origin meant…its a put down. whether you want to admit it or not…it means back in the day irish catholic wives were just standing in the kitchen barefoot and pregnant their whole adult life….

its like the term ‘cotton picker’…its just a saying people use in a cutesy way…but if you think about the origin of it as a put down…you wouldn’t use it.

sorry, its true…irish twins is not a nice term. use it if you want…its not really true NOW…but the origin is negative in spirit.

meghan on

@R Thanks, but twelve other people pointed that out before you.

@Tania Thanks, but twenty five people offered that definition (nearly word for word) before you. Did you all Google the same definition?

(I love it when people post information like they’re the first to inform us.)

@Jo I’m sure I don’t have to point out that Irish is not a race, it is an ethnicity.

Everyone needs to grow the hell up. Kerri Walsh (an Irish name for what it’s worth) is so generous offering a glimpse at her beautiful sons and this is what she gets? The PC Police on her ass calling her a racist (despite Irish not being a race) and offering googled definitions of Gypped and Irish Twins to back up their arguments and saying that their opinion of her is diminished. She’s hardly John Rocker for gods sake.

Mary on

My mom has three babies in three years! All girls, so we were never short of playdates! On my oldest sister´s third birthday, my baby sister was two weeks old.

Crystal on

@Canadiangirl-Uhhh RUDE MUCH!!! It is none of your business how she has decided to “feed” her children. In fact none of her decisions are your business! Get over yourself! Natural planning isn’t for everyone and I BELIEVE IN BIRTH CONTROL (the kind you either put in your mouth, put on your body, or have it inserted into your body). Does that make me irresponsible? Does it make me a future bad mother??? Ugh! This site has become unbearable!

Kerri-You are doing a wonderful job with your children. You do not have to defend your kids timing to anyone and I look forward to seeing you back on the sand very soon.

As to everyone else who is offended by certain words Kerri used- STOP IT!!! SERIOUSLY!!! You are whiny, spoiled babies who need to get over yourselves! I am super proud of Kerri and all of her accomplishments on and off the sand and I wish her the best of luck with everything! 🙂

Lisa on

I was born in January 1993 and my brother was born 11 months later in December of 1993.
Can’t get any closer than that! hahaha

Marisela on

CanadianGirl, for a person who seems to know better than everyone, I’m shocked that you don’t realize that breastfeeding is not an appropriate form of birth control. While it may halt the cycles of some women, they are few and far between.

Also, you are not a better mother because you chose to nurse your children. In all honesty, I feel bad for your children or future children because they’ll have to suffer through life with a petty, judgmental woman.

Lauren on

Well, this Irish Catholic who uses birth control is not offended in the least by the “Irish twin” term. Guess something is wrong with me? Perhaps I’m not “educated” enough to know the origins of the term? Or maybe it’s just the fact that I have too much going on in my life to be bother crying on an Internet forum about how “judgmental and offensive” the term is, despite the fact that its current, accepted cultural meaning is not offensive in the least.

I really do wonder how most of the women on this site manage to get on with daily life activities-dealing with the opinions of others, going to work, interacting with their children, etc. If they get this pathetically childish over the goings-on of people they will never meet, I would really love/hate to see how they tackle the real world. Kerri wrote such an articulate, interesting blog post and got a rush of pseudo-intellectual criticisms in response. What a joke.

aindreas on

ahhh cute cute cute

momofthree on

i am very sure that Keri didn’t want to say anything derogotory/negetive etc….she is saying what she really feels. lets be thankful that she has healthy children!!!! speaking from a mom who has a child with spina bifida. you wait all your life to have children then you find out that your baby has a hole in their spine and fluid in backing up in their head!!!! just be plain thankful everyday that we are able to get pregnant and have their lives to enjoy. My next 2 came 9 yrs later.

Elizabeth Hollman on

I don’t understand why Kerri needs to defend herself on the issue of when she had her children. We all follow our own path and do what is right for us in our situation and our own time. Most of us can appreciate that she is an elite level athlete and has very small windows of time to have a family. I’m just so happy that she was able to and there were no fertility issues. So many people who plan their families these days, seem to run into issues, as we have. We conceived our son naturally at the beginning of 2005 and he was born that November. We waited a year and tried for a second and, after 2 1/2 years passed with no luck, we ended up going the fertility route. We began the arduous process in September of 2008 and had many painful, stressful months. I wanted to give up. Finally, in May of 2009, we were successful. This past February, I gave birth to fraternal twin boys, healthy and happy, thank God. Strangely though, people always ask if they are identical(they are not and look totally different..and are 3 lbs apart). When we say no, they are fraternal, everyone seems to think it’s okay to explore further. Everyone asks about our fertility process and procedures! I mean, is nothing sacred? I don’t mind discussing it, but I can’t believe that people think it is open for discussion. Children and childbirth are very private things and the decisions about both are up to the parents involved and are not public issues. I just wish people would have the decency to leave Kerri alone. Her decisions, her childbirth, her joy. God bless her and her beautiful family! 🙂

Becky on

This blog is out of control! Bonnie…you think she should apologize?! Are you serious?! My gosh!

Great post Kerri! Don’t be offended or tunred off from this blog because of all these people with nothing else to do but pick on others because they are so unhappy and miserable! Just laugh them off and skip to the comments from the people who apprecaite you and stick to the true message of your post. I give you props Kerri! I could never have 2 babies in diapers. I would go crazy, but that’s me and everyone is different, If that’s what you wanted and you weren’t gypped 😉 out of your plan for 2 babies back to back, great for you! Cute boys!! Are you going to have anymore?

no name on

I am 100% Irish and I don’t find the term offensive at all. If she planned it that way then so be it, I think that it might be fun to be an “irish twin”. I think that people should just chill out, if this mother can handle it than good for her.

ShakingHerHead on

Just because some of you find the term “Irish Twins” cute does not mean others cannot voice their opinions. It’s okay if people don’t want to embrace a word that was used denigrate a group of people. Why do we need little phrases to describe siblings who close in age? Siblings or brother/sister should suffice.

I have three under 3... on

LOL@Canadiangirl, thanks for giving canadians a bad name… I breastfed exclusively and ended up having my two 13 months apart. Now I’m having another one 16 months later. But it’s all good, I parent each child individually, and coming from a family of 5 kids I fully realize that it’s personality, not spacing that dictates whether siblings will get along. Right now though my daughter and son have an absolute blast and get along great, if that changes I will not force them to “get along”. I find there is nothing more annoying than a parent dictating how kids should relate to each other, haha.

I honestly didn’t realize people would take so much offense at the term “Irish Twins” until reading the comments… I’ve bandied the phrase about myself quite a bit. I thought it was a cute and a handy way of referring to kids less than a year apart, although I know better now. I’m sure she also had no intention of hurting anyone’s feelings!

EM on

I have a brother that is 2 years older and we are good friends and went through school togther hanging out with many of the same people. My sister is 8 years younger than me and growing up, I was more of a babysitter and keeper, but as adults we are best friends. I don’t think there is a right or wrong way to do it..

Lynn on

My girls are 22 months apart and 2 grades apart in school, like any siblings, they have their good and bad moments, iwas blessed to have them close together like that….It saved on clothes and the are really close………..I think the only downside to it was having them both in diapers at the same time

MiB on

Many women concieve in spite of breast feeding, it’s not a proven contraceptive, yes, full nursing can delay the next pregnancy, but the majority of the women I know who have had children between 9 and 18 moths apart were still brest feeding their first when they became pregnant with their second, several of them hadn’t gotten their period back in between and hadn’t realized they could get pregnant.

Anyways, I am not surprized that she had her children so close, she is a professional athlete, and needs to plan her children around the olympics in order to be able to compete. If you look at active female olympics you will see that many of them either have children close to each other, many within the first two years after an olympic game (in order to let the body recover and to be able to train before the next olympic game) or with a four-five year age gap.

Jane on

wow people who have kids close to each other are brave allot of work and expensive.I could never do something like that.I grew up in a very big family and i hate sharing everything all the time. I have a son i want him to feel special without sharing us yet. So his father and I agreeded 4 years or more part. So I want our son to have everything without having to sure everything and more. I do not think its fair to the other kids being so close in age. I am also close in age to my siblings i hated it i love my siblings we just should not be close in age that is why i live far away from everyone.

momofthree on

just plain and simple-let’s all be happy for them!!! they are going to be happy,healthy,loved kids!!!!!

momofthree on

jane, you sound very mean and unapriciated. it’s called sharing. it’s called being respectful. it’s called being a snot-like you. your kids are going to grow up whacked.

CLM on

My family is Irish and my cousins are 11 months apart. My brother & I are 16 months, 1 day apart and growing up, everyone thought we were twins. We all went to school together, and my brother and I attended college together, graduating 1 day apart. I love the fact that we’re all close in age – 3 of the 4 of us also are redheads!

Sam & Freya's mum on

Much as we love our two, we didn’t want two under two yrs, let alone under 1yr! I don’t envy the amt of lack of sleep, hard work and chaos that must involve on a daily basis. It’s what they wanted but I’m happy with my 3 year, 3mth gap, thanks! I also think it’s nice for eldest kid to have at least the first few years of having mum and dad to themselves, ideally (of course age can dictate people having kids close etc). No guarantee they’ll be great pals as others have mentioned. My own get on fine, over 2 1/2 yrs later, thankfully. Son’s very protective, caring & sweet-natured towards his sis, so it really depends on child’s personality, not the age gap.

Also avoided two in nappies, and have our older child at school and one at home at a time mostly, and time to enjoy both of them, lot less stressful! Kudos to Kerri, but really don’t understand the small planned gap to be honest?! A busier woman once Sundance is mobile but if it works for her – and of course as they grow she won’t have known any diff – but all the best!

MB on

I applaud Ms. Walsh’s honest and thoughtful decision-making in when she chooses to have her children. It would be nice if everyone put that much thought into it instead of, “oops, here comes another!” like they don’t know how babies get here, lol.

As far as the endless debate on when to space your kids and how they will get along, I really think age doesn’t make much of a difference– it’s just going to depend on the kids’ personalities. My mother had seven kids in 20 years, so we have all kinds of dynamics between us. I’m closest to the one 4 years older than me and the one THIRTEEN years younger! (Believe me, it is definitely a trip to attend your 10-year high school homecoming game with your sister who is now attending!) On the other hand, the set of twins that are five years younger than me don’t get along at all.

MG on

I’m kind of in the same boat that just because you have your kids close, doesn’t mean they’re going to grow up close. My older sister is 4 years older than me & my younger sister & exactly 1 year & 1 week younger than me. My older sister felt she was too old & wanted more to do with her friends than with us. Me & my younger sister fought like CRAZY. My mom dressed us in the same outfits, did our hair the same way & everywhere we heard, “How cute, are they twins?” We were a grade apart in school but had some of the same classes, spanish teachers would refer to us as, “Las Gemelas” or the twins. Because our b-days were a week apart, they were always together & family members just bought 2 of the same thing. Growing up, it created kind of an idetity crisis & was really difficult because we were so close in age, but we wanted nothing to do with each other. We actually didn’t start getting along until we were in our Junior/Senior year of High School. We’re in our twenties now & still remain pretty close. People still ask us if we’re twins. We’re handling it better as adults than we did as kids. It’s more fun for us now.

I don’t think that Kerri should have to explain herself to anyone. This is how she wants her family, so who’s place is it to question it? I’m more offended that people would question whether or not babies born so close in age were an accident than using the term “Irish Twin”.

Rhi on

Awesome to them, nothing wrong with it. But I do get a bit tired of this idea that you can somehow guarantee closeness between siblings by simply having them close together. There’s so much that goes into ensuring sibling closeness – their individual personalities, overall fairness (not picking favorites or having one rule for one and one for the other), the overall affection and tone of the household, etc — not simply birth order or times. This idea that women constantly push that simply having kids back to back gives them some sort of boost of sibling spirit backfires. I’ve seen far too many other women who can barely parent the one child they have use it an excuse to have another because haven forbid you have more than two years between them.

Penny on

My oldest 2 daughters are 11 months and 17 days apart and then my 2nd daughter and my 3rd daughter are 9 months and 21 days apart. My 3rd and 4th daughters are 2 years 1 month and 4 days apart and our youngest 2 are 17 years and 4months and 21 days apart. We have several sets of “Irish Twins” and they think it is so cool. I think it’s cool that our oldest is 24 and our youngest is soon to be 3. I just wonder how long we would’ve had to keep going to finally get a boy. Oh well, I love, love, love my 5 girls…….

ora on

I get annoyed with hearing this statement “Tehy will be best friends”….I am a twin and we fought CONSTANTLY! Now that we are older we get along but it was always a competition. We are also the last of 11 and although I have an odler brother and sister who are 15 months apart who get along great, I have another set of sisters 20 months apart who also fought constantly…..having them close in age doesn’t mean they will get along…and for the recors, I work as a nurse an OB’s office and having babies that close together is incredibly bad for your body! They say you should wait at least a year or 2 for your body to go back tonormal or you could have risks.

Fran Kelly on

Congratulations Kerri and Casey. What a beautiful family you have.
I am a mother of 10 living, grown children born to an Irish Family of five boys and five girls during a fifteen year period which included three miscarriages. Unbeknown to me I named my boys according to the old Irish custom of naming sons. First after paternal grandfather, second after maternal grandfather, third after father, fourth after paternal uncle and last but not least the fifth is always named Patrick. When I named the boys and the girls I was not following an Irish custom but what my heart wanted me to name them. Today they are grown, some have grandchildren and the bond is so strong that some of the sister and brothers children a like clones of each other. Two of my great grandchilden, from different sibling families, are spitting image twins same age same color hair and same personalities. Another is a replica of an Irish Leprechaun and was born on the same day as his cousin, mothers are sisters, one on the West coast one on the East coast, same weight and same length and exactly the same time. Now I call that The Luck of the Irish and thats no Blarney.

Blessings to both of you and just enjoy your awesome sons and Good Luck and Much Love in your Life and in Your Professions.

There is nothing more nourishing to the soul than family life.

Betsy on

We know a family who started the adoption process, and then, to their surprise, found out they were expecting. Abbey and Jordan are four months apart–and I never can remember which one is adopted.

Diane Haese on

My brother and I were Irish twins, by accident, I’m sure, but we were inseperable and my Mother always said what one did’nt think of, the other one did. Our sisters were 13, 10, and 5 years older, respectively and pretty much treated us like annoyances, so we were’nt close to them at all. While I was the older, and a girl, he was always my hero and I hung around him and his friends and he always saw to it that they included me. I can’t imagine what my childhood would have been without him. We were a family unto ourselves and I wish my son and daughter who are 4 years apart, would have been closer together to share that kind of closeness–they barely tolerated each other. I find that very sad. Congratulations to you and your children for this very wonderful gift!!! I lost my brother to the Vietnam war when he turned 20—I’ve felt a part of me has been missing for most of my life…

irishtwinmommy on

my babies are 9 MONTHS APART!!! yes, REALLY as close as you can be for nearly full term babies. we wanted it that way too, they both can be in the same grade and they play together and keep each other company. i have a boy and a girl, and while it would be “better” or “easier” maybe had they both been the same gender (hand-me-down clothing and such) they still get along great.

we thought it was better to get diapers/formula/bottles/binkies/whatever else out of the way all at once! its not anymore expensive, but you are just getting all the expense out at once. i wouldnt want to have a 10 year old, using the toilet, eating, talking, going to school and then have a newborn and feel like i really am starting all over again. i wanted it all out of the way at once. besides, you are already in that diaper changing/late nights/early mornings kind of mode so why not just keep it going. lol. for me, i think it would have been harder to have an older toddler or preschooler and then really have to start from scratch and have a newborn. irish twins all the way 😀 it is a lot of work though, so if you dont want to plan it that way make sure you get your birth control after your first child because i had a difficult time getting pregnant with my first, but not my second!

Rae on

Awe! Our Irish twins are also three days shy of being exactly a year apart. I wouldn’t have it any other way. And congratulations.

Vito on

Its a wonder micks have so many kids with them having little dicks and not being able to get it from being drunk all the time.