Neither Ilse and Berta nor Helga could share sufficient information about the course of their now separated lives. With the outbreak of war, even the possibility of correspondence by letter was destroyed. All that remained was the writing of Red Cross letters, the content of which was limited to 25 words and visible to all. While the birth of Helga’s daughter was mentioned, the deportation of grandmother, aunt and uncle could only be made clear by omitting their names.
The twin sisters were prevented from seeing each other for more than eight years. It was not until 1948 that the surviving family members met for the first time in England. While Ilse already had some successes as a writer, Helga did not decide to become artistically active until the 1960s. She drew, worked with printing techniques and wrote poetry – however in English. She published her work under the name Helga Michie, since she had briefly been married to Donald Michie in 1958. Both twins repeatedly dealt with the topic of separation.