Genealogy, Adoption and DNA
On January 23, 2012, the New York Times released a story titled “With DNA Testing, Suddenly They Are Family”. The story written by Rachel L. Swarns, is the tale of an adoptee who used DNA testing to find living blood relatives.
In her story, Swarns writes, “A growing number of adoptees, now in the thousands, are turning to DNA testing companies in hopes of piecing together the puzzles of their beginnings.”
The subject of the story Khrys Vaughan, tells how at age 42 she discovered that she was adopted, a revelation that made her question her identity. Having seen an advertisement for DNA testing she signed up and five weeks after submitting her samples, she was informed of her results. Results, which came with the names and e-mail addresses of distant cousins, many who had submitted their DNA samples for genealogy research. This month Mrs. Vaughan met a new third cousin for the first time.
Of the experience, Mrs. Vaughan states, “Somebody is related to me in this world,” she said. “Somebody out there has my blood. I can look at her and say, ‘This is my family.’
With genetic testing growing in popularity and the costs for testing dropping, more and more people are opting to take this route; both for genealogy research and as adoptees hoping to identify blood kin. Additionally, DNA testing companies are beginning to amass enough data that they are now able to help adoptees find family.
Some adoption experts criticize the practice stating that quite often; the relationships are somewhat of a stretch. Adoption expert, Elizabeth Bartholet of Harvard Law School is on record stating,
“Adoptees would be better served by nurturing the relationships they already have.”
Many comments left on this story by adoptees, show strong disagreement with Ms, Bartholet’s opinion.
Visit With DNA Testing, Suddenly They Are Family to read the full article and comments.
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