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One of the ‘Sweet Valley High’ twins just had a baby thanks to an egg donation from her sister

After aggressive cancer treatment made having a child difficult, Brittany Daniel, one half of the 1990s TV duo, turned to her identical twin for help


by Lauren Heskin
07th Jan 2022

Brittany Daniel / Instagram

One of the ‘Sweet Valley High’ twins just had a baby thanks to an egg donation from her sister


If you’re of a certain age (
cough*mid-thirties*) you will be very familiar with Brittany and Cynthia Daniel, if not by name then by face. The identical twins played Jessica and Elizabeth Wakefield in the hit 1990s TV Sweet Valley High, inspired by the iconic books of the same name. 

Since the four-season show ended in 1997, Brittany has continued as an actress starring in It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, Dawson’s Creek and The Game, while Cynthia began a career in photography. However, the two are in the news this week, but not because of a SVH reunion (although, we would be here for that).

Brittany recently gave birth to her first child Hope, announcing that her twin Cynthia donated her eggs to help make her a mom. After being diagnosed with stage IV non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma in 2011, Brittany underwent chemotherapy and later learned that having a child on her own would be unlikely as a result. 

Married to her longtime partner, Adam Touni, and ready to start their family, her identical twin agreed to step in, donating one of her own eggs for IVF. Cynthia already has three boys other own with husband, actor Cole Hauser. “I saw it as such a simple gift I could give to her,” Cynthia told People. “I know Brittany would do it in a split second for me. And we’ve always shared everything, so why not this?” 

However, three failed rounds of IVF later and Brittany thought that maybe her chances of becoming a mom were gone. “I thought I might have to wrap my head around not being a mom in this lifetime,” she recalled. “I fought so hard to get there, and I was so scared it wasn’t going to happen.

Opting to try surrogacy instead, they used Cynthia’s egg and Hope Rose Touni in October 2021. “It’s been a long road to get here,” she wrote on Instagram announcing Hope’s birth, “but we always remained hopeful that we would one day become parents.” Cynthia describes meeting her niece for the first time as “one of the brightest moments of my life.”

Now that is what we call a sisterly bond.