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'My twin daughters were born with a rare condition – people gawk at them in street'

A mum whose twin daughters were born with albinism said people “gawk” at them in the street.

Alex Burnham, 31, gave birth to her twins, Aubrie and Andie, 10 months, in April 2023.

Alex and her husband, Joshua Burnham, 33, a transportation manager, say they didn’t realise their daughters had albinism until they were born as it was not picked up during the pregnancy.

Alex said a doctor came into the room looking concerned and she thought there was something wrong with the tots.

The doctor told the worried parents that Aubrie and Andie had albinism and Alex said she was “relieved”.

Alex said the twins have issues with their vision so require special glasses, and have fair skin and bright blonde hair.

She said she would often be stopped in the street so people can comment on the twins.

Alex, a marketing manager, from Charlotte, North Carolina, US, said: “Every time we go out people will see the twins and go ‘oh my god’.

“Adding the fact that they have bright hair people are fascinated.

“I choose who I tell they have albinism to – I just let people gawk at them.

“I don’t have the patience or time to correct people.”

Alex found out she was pregnant in September 2022, but didn’t discover she was expecting twins until October.

She said: “I was shocked and a little anxious, I have always been the person to say I wanted two kids.

“When I got pregnant with their big sister, Averie, three, I would say how I would love to have twins with her so I was one and done with the pregnancy.

“I went through my feelings, I was nervous about all those things but they have been the biggest blessing to my family.

“I love my girls more than anything in the world.”

Alex said she had a “completely normal” pregnancy despite being high-risk because she was carrying twins.

The girls were born on April 27, 2023, via c-section at 37 weeks, just two minutes apart weighing 6lbs 11oz and 7lbs 1oz.

Alex said: “As soon as I got to hold them any worry I had was completely diminished.

“I felt so confident and I was ready to tackle this new venture and being a twin mum.”

Alex said when the twins were held up she was shocked to see their bright blonde hair but didn’t suspect anything abnormal.

She said: “I did all the genetic testing you have during the pregnancy.

“Nothing was flagged on my tests.

“I remember them being held up for me to see, I commented saying they’re toe heads.

“Because they had super bright blonde hair.

“When I was born I had super blonde hair and my family called me a toe head.”

A few hours after the pregnancy, Alex and Joshua were visited by a doctor who looked concerned.

She said: “The paediatrician came in with a pack of paper, I thought there was something wrong with the kids.

“They had very fair skin, their eyes were pink and she said she suspected albinism.

“To me when I got the news, I was like ‘oh my god, they’re fine’.

“I expected such a bad diagnosis.”

Alex said the twins are thriving at home but have issues with their vision.

She said: “The big one we have noticed is their vision, we’re still navigating what this means for Aubrie and Andie.

“We have special glasses for them but trying to keep them on them is like and Olympic sport.

“I haven’t noticed any other issues with their skin or anything like that.”

Around 10 months on from their birth, Alex says Aubrie and Andie have developed very different personalities.

She said: “Aubrie is fearless, independent and such a confident girl.

“She is not scared of anything and she will go anywhere and climb on anything – she is a huge daddy girl.

“Andie is my girl, she is cautious but curious and very careful with what she is doing.

“When they were younger they were similar in personality but as they have got older they’re so different – it is fun to watch their personalities develop.”


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