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Old Yesterday, 06:10 AM
Location: Loudon, TN
5,910 posts, read 4,918,278 times
Reputation: 19959


I'm going to meet my "new" half-sisters in person this November! It's scheduled. We've been texting and calling occasionally, and it's weird because the older one (3 years younger than me) and I can just talk for hours like old friends. The younger one I've only talked to once, but have texted several times, and talking with her is awkward and almost like we don't know what to say. It's pretty weird.
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Old Today, 11:48 AM
Location: NJ
10,840 posts, read 21,488,643 times
Reputation: 9125
Originally Posted by BOS2IAD View Post
Unless you've had something similar happen to you, it's difficult to understand what a shock it is to learn such things.

Before there were DNA tests, my brothers and I discovered that we had a half brother. When my mother met my father, he was separated from his wife and he had a son with her. After the divorce, he married my mother. When the half-brother was 9 and I was 2, half-brother's mother remarried and his step-father adopted him. Both my parents thought it was a good idea to keep all this info from my brothers and me.

Well...right after I graduated college, half-brother set out to find his bio dad. Then my father had to come clean. We never knew we had a half-brother, let alone that my father had been married before. And, yes, it was a shock to hear all of this. One of my brothers took it really hard. I firmly believe that if half-brother never found us, my parents would have taken this secret to the grave.
I don't doubt they would have taken it to their graves because that's how it used to be.

While my dad was fighting terminal cancer I found out there was question over my paternity which I found hard to believe because I was the blond hair with gray blue eyes version of him. We also have a few of the same genetic disorders like back issues. I was very close to my dad; worked with him from age 11 until 28. I was also his favorite.

I was going to donate stem cells to him, told my mother I'm going to be a match because he's my father; she said "I don't know". She said that 3 times but refused to tell me more. My father denied me a DNA test, he said he didn't need it and no matter how much I cried and begged he said no. He eventually had a change of heart but it took a month to get DNA Diagnostics out. They were supposed to come 2/7 but on the morning of 2/6 I knew he'd die that day so I called them begging them to find someone to come out and they did at 7:30 pm. He died a few minutes before 10pm.

I believe they both and my maternal aunt would have all gone to their graves with the info.

Originally Posted by BOS2IAD View Post
Back to DNA testing --- I had my test done as did my husband. What I discovered was that I had a second cousin. I got in touch with her. Once I found out that she was related from my father's side, I gave her all the surnames in the family. I figured we would find out where the connection was. Wrong! She gave me a totally different list of surnames. So...somewhere there is a skeleton in the closet

I also discovered a first cousin once removed, again from my father's side. Her grandmother was one of my father's sisters. Her father was my first cousin. Apparently, before first cousin got married, he had an affair which produced first cousin once removed. Since she was interested in the family tree, I passed along all that info.

The strangest message I got --- A woman who was an 8th cousin was looking for her bio dad. She had been adopted as a baby and when she did DNA, I was the only hit she got. She gave me what info she did have---enough to figure out that it was from my mother's side. Her bio dad lived in the same city as my family. Sadly, everybody from my grandparents' generation and my mothers' generation had passed at the time I heard from 8th cousin. If anyone had been alive, they may well have had some info as both ethnic groups were tightly connected. The best I could do was wish her well in her search.

All that said, with DNA testing becoming more prevalent, more skeletons in the closet will be coming to the fore. IMO, it's best for all to be honest with their children at some point so there aren't any shocks down the pike.
Agree 100% that with DNA and the databases being so large that there are no secrets.

Has your 8th cousin uploaded to My Heritage, FTDNA and GEDmatch for free family matching? If not they should. They should also do 23 and me when it goes on sale. You can give them the link to my thread Family tree and DNA general instructions, scroll down to now to the DNA

Originally Posted by Ulysses61 View Post
I'm in the same boat and found out through a DNA test in November, 2017. There is a Facebook group which you can join with 7,000 other members who got this shock. It's helped me tremendously. The name of the group is "DNA NPE Friends." Hugs to you, I can understand and have lived through the pain you're going through.

And for the people who say "why does it matter?" maybe keep those thoughts to yourself. Try to imagine spending your entire life believing your father was your father, when he actually was not. Would you like your siblings that you grew up with to suddenly be half siblings? What about suddenly having several new half siblings? Would you like to deal with having a deceased mother who lied to you your entire life and you'll never know why?

It's traumatic and agonizing, so have some compassion for those of us going through it.
Yeah, people that haven't had it happen are clueless. My paternity was questioned; thankfully my dad turned out to be my dad; but I live with the pain from their lying. What if this guy my mother cheated with tried to find me and knocked on my door one day? Now if he does I'm prepared with the paternity test. It's very possible he'll try to find me one day because he was prepared to go to court to fight for custody of me. Back in 1965 there was no DNA test. My father said I looked enough like him that he thought I was his but growing up I know it really bothered him until I started working with him at age 11. I'm sorry he didn't live to see the results. I wish I knew if it really did not matter as he said or if he was afraid it would say I wasn't his.

Originally Posted by TwoByFour View Post
That whole thing is creepy. Yes it is good to catch murderers but this is a slippery slope leading to all our DNA being gathered by the government in order to solve crimes. But what happens if they discover a gene responsible for deviant behavior of some sort, will they then start watching those people or rounding them up? Who gets to say what deviant behavior is? It makes me really nervous that DNA databases are becoming available to the government. It is bad enough that private companies have DNA databases to be mined for whatever purposes they can cook up to sell us more crap but having the government in on it too is intolerable. IMO.
Did you know that most states have their own DNA registry from the heel sticks they do to newborns? They also use biopsied skin. California has a huge DNA database from what I've read. See the article DNA of every baby born in California is stored. Who has access to it?

GEDmatch, the DNA site that LE have been using is a public site. The good thing is that they decided to make an "opt in to LE matching" that you have to actually click on the "cop" icon. It is off by default when you upload.

The other database being used by LE is the private company FTDNA. They allowed LE to upload at some point in 2018; they didn't tell us. It was someone else that spilled the beans. I don't think FTDNA was planning to tell us. My 2nd biggest gripe with them is that "opt in to LE matching" is on by default when you upload your DNA (uploads are free). I had uploaded my cousins DNA a few weeks ago; I knew to go to settings to turn off LE matching.

In the beginning when it came out that FTDNA did this; many people deleted their DNA samples which is pretty extreme to do because all you had to do was turn matching off. Some of them paid $200 or more for male specific Y-DNA or the female line mtDNA.

The good thing about GEDmatch and FTDNA are that both sites also allow an organization called DNA Doe Project to upload DNA from Jane and John Does to hopefully find a family match. The new "opt in to LE matching" at GEDmatch has hurt them because everyone in the database has "opt in to LE matching" turned off. Think of all the people that do not have access to their accounts any more for reasons such as the person dying. They have cases that they were working on that had say 3rd or 4th cousin matches that they can't even see now; so they're waiting for more people to enable opt in to LE matching. I did opt in at GEDmatch because they've been a decent company and not at FTDNA because of their tricks.

Originally Posted by jet757f View Post
We have found out verbally that our grandfather may not have been our real grandfather. My father has already passed away. I don't think he knew that it might not have been his real father. I think they should have told him at some point.

We are on Ancestry but it is hard to verify especially when the key players have passed away.
My dad passed in 2006. I was able to get his brother to do Ancestry DNA and a Y-DNA test at FTDNA. From there I used his Ancestry raw data (after it was done processing) to upload to the 3 main free sites, FTDNA, My Heritage and GEDmatch where they all give free family matching. I've also had my mothers brothers son do one at ancestry, I uploaded his at the 3 sites. All you'd need to do is get as many relatives as you can from both sides. Get your mothers and if you can't do that, someone from her side; then you want as many as you can get from your dads side so that you can easily tell where matches are coming from. My maternal cousin helped me solve a father/son match I've had for 4 years. They weren't matching any of my known matches from either of my parents sides. It turned out that they were in fact from my mothers side.

Originally Posted by Mightyqueen801 View Post
That's a possible dark side that I certainly wouldn't rule out.

Currently, at least, it's unlikely because even with the crime-solving, it costs money to run this research, and not every department and jurisdiction has the funding to get it done. I listen to true crime podcasts, and every so often you hear of one where someone is raising money to have a genealogical search done, but even with the money, they have to have the cooperation of law enforcement.

I don't know about the technology, but I don't think it's as easy as popping one's spit into a database and having instant profiles full of all the information about an individual returned. At least not yet.
In order for DNA Doe Project (DDP) to get DNA from a Jane or John Doe they need a piece of bone or teeth that gets sent to a special lab to extract DNA; then I believe it's 2 other labs before it can be uploaded to GEDmatch or FTDNA.

With LE they also have to send the rape kit or whatever to a lab to have DNA extracted and it's probably just like what DDP goes thru. It's $4,000 to $7,000 I believe
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Old Today, 04:47 PM
Location: Carolina Shores NC
6,791 posts, read 8,143,710 times
Reputation: 5265
I ordered one of the DNA tests just for curiosity. My orthopedist told me that my hand afflictions were apparently linked directly to the Vikings. As it turned out a lot of my DNA came from Scandinavia(Norway and Sweden) No big surprises really, but it was interesting just to know.
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Old Today, 07:24 PM
Location: Moore, Ok
92 posts, read 72,395 times
Reputation: 326
Originally Posted by Poggly Woggly View Post
I ordered one of the DNA tests just for curiosity. My orthopedist told me that my hand afflictions were apparently linked directly to the Vikings. As it turned out a lot of my DNA came from Scandinavia(Norway and Sweden) No big surprises really, but it was interesting just to know.
Would that be dupuytren's contracture? My husband has that.
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