Meet Abigail and Brittany Hensel, the twins who share a body. Possessing only two arms and two legs between them, but two hearts and two minds, Abigail and Brittany are challenging society’s conception of individuality and human rights.
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Should both girls need to pass the test to be able to drive, or is it simply enough for one to pass and be in charge? Enjoy and fall under the spell of Abigail and Brittany Hensel – The Twins Who Share a Body.
If you were to hire Abigail and Brittany for a job, would you need to legally pay them separately – even if they were working on the same assignment? Born in 1990, the girls have been brought up in a small, tightly knit community in Minnesota, almost completely protected from prying eyes and inquisitive stares.
To their friends and family, they are distinct people with very different personalities, needs, tastes and desires.
But to the outside world they are a medical mystery — particularly given the fact that they can do virtually all the same things as their friends, including playing the piano, riding a bike, swimming and playing softball “Their personalities make them inspirational,” says their mother Patty.
“They never give up; anything they want to do, they go out and do it.” The medical world is keen to find out how two separate brains and nervous systems can work in such a perfectly co-ordinated way, but the twins and their family have always resisted non-essential medical tests.
“The family want to treat them as though they are just like everyone else,” says Joy Westerdahl, the girls’ doctor, who admits that it is a mystery how their unique physiology functions.
As they enter adulthood, the twins are likely to leave the haven of their home town and face the wider world.
In preparation for that time, they have taken part in this intimate documentary to show the world what it is like to be joined for life. It was filmed in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada and Zürich, Kanton Zürich, Switzerland.
The Suicide Tourist aired on Canadian Television (CTV), worldwide (all media) and on the Toronto International Film Festival.