If you don’t recount your family history, it will be lost. Honor your own stories and tell them too. The tales may not seem very important, but they are what binds families and makes each of us who we are.
A stem cell and reproductive biologist signed up for 23andme and was so into it that he also gave kits to his parents. And then he discovered an unknown half-brother. He was excited, he tells Julia Belluz at Vox, but the rest of his family had a different reaction.
Years of repressed memories and emotions uncorked and resulted in tumultuous times that have torn my nuclear family apart. My parents divorced. No one is talking to my dad. We’re not anywhere close to being healed yet and I don’t know how long it will take to put the pieces back together.
After this discovery was made, I went back to 23andMe and talked to them. I said, “I’m not sure all your customers realize that when they participate in your family finder program, they’re participating in what are essentially really advanced paternity tests.” People find out that their parents aren’t who they think they are. They have nearly a million people in the database. If there happens to be anyone in there you’re related to, they’ll find your match. This is a solid science….
I’m really devastated at the outcome. I wrestle with these emotions. I love my family. This is nothing I ever would have wished. My dream would be to introduce Thomas to dad, to incorporate a new family tradition, to merge families. We all get to broaden our horizons and live happily ever after. At least right now, that’s not what happened. I still hold out hope that in time we can resolve things. But I also worry that as these transitions happen there may have been some permanent emotional damage that may not be able to be undone.
23andMe’s way of protecting people is by giving users the chance to click that box to opt into the relative finder program. I think they’re trying to protect people from themselves. They believe in the power of information and of learning about yourself. Some people can’t handle the information. Some people don’t even know they can’t handle it.
Talking with genetic genealogists while researching my Harper’s piece last year, I learned the term “non-paternity event,” a very formal way of saying, basically, your dad (or another of your male ancestors) isn’t who you thought he was. These kinds of discoveries are a… if not very common, not at all uncommon outcome of DNA tests.
Non-paternity events — called NPEs in the field — are sometimes estimated at about 10%.
The Six Generations Project is seeking qualified individuals with experience in history, library science, genealogy, education and archive management.
All positions are for volunteers seeking life experience, resume experience, documentable volunteer hours, and/or education credits through third-party institutions.
Posirions on board of trustees, in admin, and handling presentations in schools and classes are available.
Email mee with inquiries: email@example.com
The Independent takes a look at a new book’s claims that DNA from a scarf, from a victim’s descendant, and from a descendant of one of the leading suspects identifies the notorious murderer.
An amateur sleuth with a book to sell and a scientist working in his spare time claimed to have solved one of the biggest murder mysteries in history by naming Jack the Ripper as a Polish immigrant in the 19th Century after discovering what they said was conclusive DNA evidence.
Aaron Kosminski, a Polish Jew whose family had emigrated to London to escape pogroms, is “definitely, categorically and absolutely” the man behind the grisly series of murders in 1888 that left at least five women dead and mutilated in the streets of London’s East End, said Russell Edwards, the author of the latest in a long line of speculative books on the affair.
I wish there were some website where black people could upload a picture of themselves and have their facial features mapped for the purposes of possibly linking them to certain areas of the Caribbean, Africa, South America, etc. That’d be dope. Idk what I’d call it though.