Thursday, May 17, 2012

Adoption, DNA & Secrets

At Forbes, an example of how DNA technology explodes the idea of secrecy in adoption:
But another 23andMe user got quite a surprise when she went looking for relatives on the site. She discovered a full brother. Via the Wall Street Journal:
Neil Schwartzman, a 52-year-old 23andMe customer who lives in Corte Madera, Calif., took his DNA test in 2010 to learn more about his medical background and as a last-ditch effort in a decades-long search for his birth family. An adoptee, Mr. Schwartzman received a message last spring from another 23andMe customer that said, “I think you’re my brother.”
The writer, Jolie Pearl, indeed shared the same mother and father as Mr. Schwartzman, though she hadn’t known her mother had given up a baby for adoption.
Ms. Pearl confronted her elderly mother, who confirmed the adoption, and the three eventually met in person.
Technology has this amazing way of unearthing secrets.
Moral of the story: Stop trying to keep secrets in adoption.

2 comments:

Truly Blessed said...

'Moral of the story: Stop trying to keep secrets in adoption.'

Yep.

Neil Schwartzman said...

Excuse me but, the moral of the story is that I always KNEW I was adopted, was raised by a loving family, and the woman who gave me up at birth did so in the face of crushing poverty and illness. The adoption was a private one, so in fact there were no records, and it was no-body's fault, they did the best they could in the 1960s.

The secret, such that it was, was held by my biological mother, for 50 years, due to the shame, in her mind, for having done what she did. I don't fault her, and am glad that we were able to reunite.

The moral of the story is that there isn't one.