In their joint memoir Sisters First: The most prized piece in my wardrobe was a raspberry velvet Jessica McClintock dress with an attached pearl choker — my favorite feature. She also explains that although she had a "very real obsession with vamp nail polish and Courtney Love," she never actually took action on her mischievous, rebellious inclinations. Can I get a shout-out to my fellow aspiring "bad girls," since we all liked the idea of being "bad" but were too scared to actually do anything?
High-fives of docile solidarity all around! As she notes in Sisters First , her parents had decided before she and Jenna were born that the girls would be named after their grandmothers, and that they would be named alphabetically in order of birth the firstborn would be Barbara, and the second would be Jenna.
This was, of course, well before her grandparents were world-famous public figures. As she explains in Sisters First, since so many men in the family were named George, it made sense to have family names for the women too.
She was, as she notes, a little girl with a big name. She lost her high school boyfriend to suicide Getty Images As if an adolescence in the public spotlight isn't hard enough, Bush also experienced an incredibly painful loss during her teen years: Until I was 34, every wish that I ever made, on the flame of a birthday candle or on a star, was a wish that Kyle would go to heaven…. He died when I was seventeen, so by now I've made half a lifetime of wishes. She brought a photo of Kyle and "didn't say anything, I didn't even tell [the healer] my name, I just showed [her] the photo.
She looked at it and matter-of-factly said he had hanged himself in his closet…. She told me, 'He has followed you everywhere, and he's so proud of all that you've done. You've been all over the world and he's gotten to go on this journey with you. On weekends, I love running across the Williamsburg Bridge, running around in Brooklyn and then back to Manhattan across the Brooklyn Bridge.
She also studied Spanish throughout high school and college, and chose to spend her junior year of high school at the St. Stephens School in Rome. When it came time to apply for college, she knew she wanted to head East, so she applied to nine schools including Princeton, Columbia, and Yale. Speaking to Elle magazine , Bush explained that seeing "thousands of people lining the street waiting for drugs that they needed to live, that we had in the United States, was something very hard for me to wrap my brain around.
She founded a global health non-profit organization Getty Images After college, Bush continued to pursue her increasing interest in global health. When she finally got together with them, they "started brainstorming about global health issues and ended up talking about the fact that Teach for America had been an amazing way to catalyze dialogue and engagement around the need for education.
Are you going to be happy leaving this on your to-do list forever? She's an outspoken advocate for same-sex marriage Getty Images While her sister Jenna is known as the more outgoing, gregarious sister, Barbara is an outspoken advocate for the causes she believes in. In , she recorded a PSA video in support of gay marriage , saying that "New York is about fairness and equality. And everyone should have the right to marry the person they love.
Thinking that since those videos didn't make a huge splash, hers wouldn't either, she was surprised when it became a newsworthy item. What surprised me were all the people who said: Betraying your family like that. And that is unique and incredible. It's a silver bullet, if you ask me. If you hear Bush and her sister Jenna tell it, though, there's really no contest.
Asked point blank by Chelsea Handler, Jenna tossed out her twin's name without a moment's hesitation — and Bush's own revelations about her relationship with their dad didn't exactly contradict Jenna's claim. Apparently, Bush wakes up to a text from her dad every single day.
Like her sister, she doesn't identify with any one political party Getty Images Given their family's long-reaching past with the Republican party, the presumption that the twins would follow in those conservative footsteps has always been ripe for the picking. However, the women aren't afraid to set the record straight: Maybe it's the current climate, but our parents raised us to have our own opinions and emotions and be curious independent thinkers.
As long as we are living a life well-lived and have formed our own opinions, they're proud of us," Bush told Vanity Fair of the twins' political inclinations. However, Bush has also been open about her support for the election's Democratic presidential candidate, Hillary Clinton, and the platforms Clinton champions.
Shortly before the election, a photo of Bush alongside Clinton aide Huma Abedin began circulating on social media. The snapshot , which also included outspoken Democrats like actress Dakota Fanning, was captioned with the Clinton-slogan hashtag werewithher though the hashtag was later deleted. Her sister tried to set her up with Prince Harry It's practically a law of the universe that siblings exist for the sole purpose of embarrassing you.
This is a subject in which Bush boasts the kind of personal experience most of us will be lucky enough to avoid in our lifetime. And, well, Jenna seized the opportunity. I have a single sister and she feels the same way," she told Harry, pausing slightly before adding, "Listen, she's available.
Yet, the Yale grad has another passion to fill any spare minutes she might have: Not surprisingly, it's another pastime that Bush shares with her family, telling People that she and sis Jenna "like to read at the same time, so that we have someone to talk to about where we are in the book, and what might be going on.
Curious about what type of tome this former former daughter likes to read? She once got detention for flipping the bird in a school photo Bush was always seen as the studious or soft-spoken twin while her sister Jenna has often been referred to as the wild one. As it turns out, though, Barbara did a little hell-raising of her own. In a surprising reveal on Chelsea Handler's Netflix show, Bush confessed that she once found herself in serious hot water after flipping off the school photographer during class pictures.
Yes, you read that right. To set the scene, Bush was in eighth grade at an episcopal school and had hatched a plot with four other girls to give the camera the proverbial bird. And then they had to get an air-brusher to airbrush my middle finger out of every photo, 'cause they'd already printed it. Scraping gum of the sidewalks after school.
She prefers being outside of her comfort zone The expression may be cliche, but you really can't judge a book by its cover. Discussing her decision to attend Yale, Bush said, "I chose to go to a school where I didn't know anyone, because I like being out of my comfort zone in that way.
When asked who was the better cook, neither had to think long before bestowing the title upon Jenna. Putting up zero fight, Barbara backed Jenna's suggestion, saying, "Maybe we would know, but we don't know. You can put food out nicely," Jenna said. Ultimately, they agreed the cooking of food is best left to Jenna, while Barbara does the buying and the placing. She used to think that everyone's granddad got an inauguration It can be hilarious to look back at the things you misunderstood in your younger years.
And then there was Bush, who clearly didn't quite comprehend the whole concept of a presidential inauguration. We went to D. I did not know that it was because you were president. Rather, for an indeterminate amount of time, little Barbara went to school and asked her friends when their grandfathers' inaugurations would be held. She hurt her back crowd-surfing at a Pearl Jam concert If you ever needed further evidence that Bush is an overachiever, look no further than her bad behavior.
Even when she breaks the rules, she goes all out. I was about 80 pounds. And while she bears no physical scars from the crowd-surfing gone awry, Bush insists she is still haunted by the incident to this very day. That Pearl Jam concert. So it may come as a particular shock that not only did they branch away from each other during their formative years, but it was Barbara's idea.
And then she would come and visit and everything became more real, because she was there and got to see it too. Sister friends are the best, especially when they consist of two empowered women like the Bush twins who support each other in their similarities and differences.