44 Stories Of People Whose Families Have Been Destroyed By DNA Test Websites

44 Stories Of People Whose Families Have Been Destroyed By DNA Test Websites

atlascompanyFreepik @atlascompany

Be careful what you ask for. This is a warning that something you desire might prove to be problematic and possibly have unpleasant consequences. And so it happened to these families who were curious about their ancestry. Online DNA services like Ancestry.com and 23and Me.com have connected people all over the world to relatives they never knew.

How exciting to find distant cousins that you spark up communication with and make plans to meet. But sometimes the DNA information shocks you with unexpected news. Family secrets kept for decades can unravel any family. Discovering you have a sibling you never knew about or that you’re adopted and no one ever told you can be devastating.

44. Next Door Neighbors

45-rawpixel.jpgFreepik @rawpixel

I lived next door to my best friend and her family all through my childhood and young-adult life. We went to elementary school, middle school and graduated from high school together. Growing up we were never embarrassed to be friends even when kids teased us. She came to my football and hockey games and I went to her soccer games. She even became a cheerleader for our school football team.

One weekend after graduation my friend and I had a weekend bender to celebrate. We hooked up and started dating. We both stayed local for college and kept seeing each other. Fast-forward a few years too late November this year, we decide to try a DNA test for fun. It turns out she’s my half-sister on the paternal side. Apparently, my dad and her mom had been having an affair, and she got pregnant. Both parents are getting divorced, and we haven’t been able to look at each other since.

43. Black Friday

44-pexels-karolina-grabowska-5625067.jpgPexels @Karolina Grabowska

Black Friday, that crazy shopping day after Thanksgiving when everyone starts gearing up for Christmas gifts. As I was searching for sale prices on a new blender an advertisement for Ancestry.com. I was curious so I ordered the test. My mom had passed over a decade ago and my dad had died in the beginning of the pandemic. Having no siblings I was curious if I had any distant cousins, uncles or aunts I didn’t know about.

When the test results came back I nearly fainted. The test identified a person in another state that was my biological father. I waited a few days before trying to contact him. What was I going to say? Who was he? Well, I did call him and it turns out he was my mom’s boyfriend before my dad came along. I had no idea and my newly found father certainly didn’t either.

42. Screwed Up My Life

43-wayhomestudio.jpgFreepik @wayhomestudio

My older brother and I received DNA tests from his girlfriend for a Christmas gift. I knew my mother didn’t approve of her and she mumbled something about don’t believe that crap when we opened the gift. I had no idea the results would screw up my life. So, one weekend my brother said, “Hey bro, let’s take the DNA test and see if we have any distant relatives we don’t know about. Well in a few weeks we get the results back. My brother called me to come over to his apartment and sounded very upset. He hands me the results and I was stunned to see that we are half-brothers, sharing the same mother, but different fathers. WHAT?

After calming down, my brother called my mother for some answers. It turns out that my biological father was a longtime friend of my parents that she had an affair with. He is no longer living. The father who raised me didn’t know that I wasn’t his child. I didn’t have the heart to tell him since he is disabled from a stroke. I can’t stomach to look at my mother so I go to spend time with my dad when she’s at work and the health care worker is at the house.

41. My Lying FIL

28-rawpixel.jpgFreepik @rawpixel

Not me, but my wife. She got a match with someone that didn’t make sense. She reached out to them, and it turns out she has a brother that she didn’t know about. Turns out her scummy dad cheated on her mom when my wife was very young, and that produced a son.”

My wife’s mom and dad divorced when she was 5 from another cheating incident, so while surprising, it wasn’t at the same time. Everyone has met, and they are trying to get a relationship going, which I think is cool. It wasn’t my wife’s brother’s fault he was illegitimately conceived; the parents have been long divorced on my wife’s side, so the weirdness is largely minimized.


40. Coming Back To Haunt Her

13-jcomp.jpgFreepik @jcomp

Both sides of the family were affected by the results of the DNA test. My dad, who passed away 15 years ago, fathered a kid when he was 19 and never knew about it. My half-brother found out and reached out to me on Facebook. We’ve actually developed a neat relationship even though he’s 20-plus years older than me.

My mom’s sister found out that my grandfather (now deceased) was not actually her dad a couple of months ago. She’s actually been kind of accepting about it and has reached out to her biological father’s family. On the other hand, my 90-year-old grandmom is absolutely devastated and embarrassed that a mistake she made 50 years ago has come back to haunt her.

39. Ho Ho Ho Merry Xmas

39-pexels-karolina-grabowska-5725860.jpgPexels @Karolina Grabowska

My brother and his wife have three teenage kids who decided to take the 23 and Me test. They were expecting the results to come via email around Christmas. Well, on Christmas morning instead of rushing down to the living room to unwrap holiday gifts one of the kids decided to check her email first. They were shocked to find out that the oldest child, a daughter was only related to them on their maternal side.

It turns out that my sister-in-law was having an affair when she was engaged to my brother. Now it makes sense why she talked him into eloping and canceled their wedding plans. My nieces and nephews want nothing to do with their mother and my brother filed for a divorce. Merry Christmas! That’s some gift.

38. Is That My Uncle Wearing a Wig?

38-studioredcup.jpgFreepik @studioredcup

My father purchased a kit from Ancestry.com. He didn’t find anything unusual in the results, which was exactly what he thought it would be. But something weird did happen after he checked the box to allow “close matches’ to contact him. Well, soon after he gets contacted by a woman he had never met who lives over a thousand miles away from him. She told him that her results showed that are cousins.

My dad was even more confused when she shared that three of her siblings had different test results than hers. Her parents were no long living so there was no one for her to ask. They kept communicating by email for a while. One day they discovered that they were both born in the same city. She sent my dad a picture and he swears that she looks just like his Uncle Ralph with a wig.

37. Decades Later

37-wayhomestudio.jpgFreepik @wayhomestudio

We grew up in the same neighborhood as my father’s brother. There were four kids in our family and four in theirs. We were about the same ages. It was great living so close to your cousins and growing up together. Unfortunately, things went sour in my uncle’s marriage and with my parents and they ended up getting divorced. My dad and uncle stopped talking to each other and no one knew why.

We cousins all stayed in contact and made time to do things together. One night we all decided to order the 23 & Me test, all eight of us. When the results came back there were no surprises. I happened to mention it to my dad and he was like “Wait, Hailey’s test results show that she is your first cousin?” I was like . . . yeah dad. What did you expect? It turns out that his brother had accused him of sleeping with his wife and having a child. All those years of a grudge that wasn’t true.

36. Divorce My Cousin

36-Racool_studio.jpgFreepik @Racool_studio

My wife and I have been married for twenty-three years. We have two beautiful daughters who are thriving in college. We were researching our family history and the results freaked out my wife. We found out that we’re sixth cousins and share a single common grandparent. She was so revolted that she immediately ran to the bathroom and started throwing up. There was no calming her down. She packed a suitcase and left to stay with a sibling.

I’ve repeatedly asked her to come and see a counselor with me, but she refuses to move on from the news. I keep telling her it doesn’t matter because we are so far removed being sixth cousins. Our daughters are healthy and we’ve had a strong marriage for over two decades. I feel the damage is done and things will never go back to normal.

35. Truth Serum

35-stockking.jpgFreepik @stockking

My dad called me one night, very distraught and crying. He told me he had some family related news to share. He asked my brother and I to come to the house that night. When we got there, he showed us the results of our Ancestry.com tests. My brother and I were not his biological children. We were all shocked by the news. My parents had divorced years ago and neither had remarried. Obviously, my mother had been having an affair or affairs while they were married.

After we took a minute to grasp the situation my brother and I decided to confront my mother. At first, she said that test results are wrong you should get your money back from the company. We pressed her for a while and she finally admitted to having an affair with her boss and she didn’t know he was our biological father. My brother and I have no interest in building a relationship with me as we don’t think of him as our father.


34. The Hospital Paid For It, Literally

34-pexels-isaac-hermar-12116876.jpgPexels @Isaac Hermar

A few years ago, someone I know found out that the parents that raised him weren’t his real parents. That shock came with the results of a DNA test the family did together. They wanted to check their ancestry line and possibly connect with distant cousins. He was an adult and was furious that his parents never told him he was adopted. The funny thing is that it was a complete surprise to his parents too. They claimed he wasn’t adopted and were sure he was their biological son.

Now this was a dilemma that his parents were going to find solve. His dad promised he would prove the test was wrong. It turns out that the DNA test was correct. Upon further investigation the family found out that he was switched at childbirth at the hospital. They raised him as their own, and their biological child was raised by someone else. Needless to say, they sued the hell out of the hospital.

33. Refusing to Accept It

33-8photo.jpgFreepik @8photo

My mom’s adopted coworker took a DNA test and found a full sibling match (one of four siblings, actually). My coworker contacted her newfound siblings but couldn’t piece together the story. The sibling decided to put her in touch with her biological parents, their parents. When she contacted her biological parents, they both flat out denied that she was their daughter and freaked out.

After a few go-arounds with the parents, the dad admitted to my coworker that she was, in fact, their daughter, but the mother had gotten pregnant super young and they weren’t ready to start a family. Her parents sent her to a home where she gave birth and immediately put the baby up for adoption. Then the two of them decided it never happened. They lived their lives, got married and had kids like they didn’t give their first-born child up for adoption because of societal pressures. But the worst part is that the mother actually believes she never had this first daughter because of some psychotic break and cannot accept her own reality as truth, such a shame.

32. Three Different Fathers

32-pexels-rodnae-productions-6709048.jpgPexels @Rodnae Productions

Two of my cousins found out by Ancestry.com that they had two different fathers. One is in their late 40’s and the other one is in her early 50’s. All their life, they thought they were half Italian. They both did Ancestry.com, but when they got their results a few days apart, some discoveries were made. My cousin who was in her late 40’s came back as half Cuban & European, while my other cousin (the one in her early 50’s) came back as British, Irish and West European.

The crap hit the fan when they confronted my aunt (their mom). While my uncle, their dad growing up, was overseas in Vietnam fighting in the war, my aunt had two different affairs and had both of them by two different men. Things have quieted down since then, but when it first happened, I felt like I was on an episode of Maury. By the way, my uncle does have a daughter with my aunt, so it’s three of them with three different fathers.

31. No One Believed Her

31-cookie_studio.jpgFreepik @cookie_studio

My aunt is over sixty years old now, but when she was 18, she claimed she was assaulted by her uncle, and that he got her pregnant. No one in the family believed her, so she moved away and lost contact. She’s my mom’s half-sister, same fathers, different mothers, so she has absolutely no blood relation to my maternal grandmother’s side of the family.

Well, my aunt had the baby and when that baby girl grew up she decided to take a DNA test to find out about her family history. The test revealed that she’s related to my grandmother, who also took the DNA test. It confirmed that my aunt was, in fact, telling the truth and no one believed her. That baby was related to the uncle that had assaulted her mother.

30. More Than A Dozen

30-pexels-nataliya-vaitkevich-7236024.jpgPexels @Nataliya Vaitkevich

We thought there were four of us kids in the family, when the truth is we are thirteen kids. Our dad got around and it didn’t help that he was a narcissist; fours of his kids have his first name, two of which are female. Many are the same age or younger or older than us so it’s obvious that a lot of cheating was involved. He even had a daughter who is OLDER THAN MY MOM.

I made it my mission to meet them all and let me tell you, nature had way more influence than nurture. I wouldn’t have believed this until I met my siblings who grew up in different countries, speaking different languages and with all kinds of different upbringing. But we had the same laugh, the same taste in food/music/film/fashion, the same sense of humor and the same general level of success. We even had the same mannerisms, the same intelligence, and the same quirks. We are the same people . . . amazing!

29. The Secret Keeper

29-8photo.jpgFreepik @8photo

My 75-year-old grandmother just found out her dad was not her biological dad. It turns out that her mom had an affair with their family doctor and never told a single soul. Not only did she find out that her family doctor was her real dad, and the one who birthed her, but and all of her own children.

The DNA test confirmed that he had been sleeping with a lot his patients because the results listed many new siblings. She now has a bunch of new half-sisters and brothers, some of who knew who their real dad was and some of them didn’t. My great grandmother was quite the secret keeper.


28. Got Some Explainin’ To Do


My spouse found out his dad wasn’t his biological father. The DNA test showed a different match. His judgmental, holier-than-thou, Catholic mom had some explaining to do. He lost an immense amount of respect for her, especially when his biological dad tried to reach out to him.

At that point, she was still in contact with the married man she had an affair with over four decades ago. He refuses to speak to his new father and has limited contact with his mom. He has a strong relationship with the man who raised him and respectfully calls him dad.

27. Bad Things to Come

27-pexels-vincent-peters-5350024.jpgPexels @Vincent Petes

I’m dreading the day my kids want to take one of these stupid DNA tests. The only reason they’ve gotten so popular is because Americans are absolutely obsessed with ethnicity/nationality. One of my sons is genetically not mine. His dad assaulted many women when he was alive; his mom is a victim.

We’ve hidden this from him for almost a decade now, and now it’s painfully obvious it will all come crashing down. Every time I see one of those commercials I tear up. The Christmas one where the family members have the percentage shared DNA on display is especially brutal. He’s my son. I’m his father. I don’t ever question it outside of DNA. I love him equally as much as my other child. I would die for him; he doesn’t deserve the heartache that is in store.

26. Quite The Floozy

9.jpgFreepik @master1305

My mother found her true biological father through one of those DNA tests. My grandma had been married and divorced many times and never told any of the kids who their real father was in order to keep the kids tied to her emotionally (without a dad, she’s their only support system). She was, apparently, quite the floozy – to the point that the men she claimed were the kids’ dads weren’t even sure.

I had always been raised with a grandpa who was supposedly legitimate and a few step-grandparents. My mom took a DNA test and tracked down some potential cousins and was able to force the real answer out of my grandma. He passed away 10 years ago, sadly, but it turns out he was a special effects pioneer in Hollywood, which is pretty damn cool.

25. Better Than LinkedIn

25-pexels-askar-abayev-5638732.jpgPexels @Askar Abayev

My dad knew that his father was not his biological father, but never wanted to know the details. He took a 23AndMe test about six years ago and, since then, has discovered 35+ half-siblings. Their biological father was a urologist doing research on artificial insemination in the ’50s (with his clients’ consent, of course), and many had no idea that they did not grow up with their biological father; it was definitely a difficult time for some when they found out.

Since then, they’ve had multiple family reunions and stay in touch via a Facebook group. It’s pretty wild. They all have the same jawline and are successful in their chosen fields: they’re all doctors, engineers or academics of some sort. I actually wound up getting my current job via a referral from my favorite new half aunt, I often joke that 23AndMe is a better networking tool than LinkedIn.

24. German Roots

24-rawpixel.jpgFreepik @rawpixel

My friend’s mother just told her that she miscounted how long a pregnancy is and that her dad is not actually her dad. The mom was in the military and slept with a military man somewhere in Germany in the ’90s, and then a month later, slept with her fiancé. My friend wasn’t sure if she should believe her mom, so she got an ancestry kit. She just found out that her dad isn’t her father.

So now she’s on this search to find her biological dad and her mom is pissed. The mom thinks she should just accept her dad as her dad and how dare she expose her mistake like that. My friend’s younger siblings are also taking the mom’s side, when she just wants to meet the guy and see if she has any relatives or siblings.

23. It Wasn’t An Affair

41-master1305.jpgFreepik @master1305

I learned my father was not my biological father. He died a few months before I took the test but apparently, he knew and didn’t want me to know. I didn’t get the chance to tell him that it didn’t matter. My mom doesn’t even know my biological father’s name either since it’s been over 30 years.

It wasn’t even an affair because she met my dad a month later. The math of the pregnancy had always been tight so it makes sense. But now, I wonder what to do since 23AndMe has three close family connections, none of which are from my mom’s side. I wonder sometimes about opting in.


22. NO Regrets

22-master1305.jpgFreepik @master1305

I ordered 23andme to try to figure out “what” I was, not to track down any long lost family members. I had known since I was a teenager that my dad who raised me wasn’t my biological father. I used to ask my mom if I was adopted because I don’t look like anyone in my family. My mom is almost 100% Irish and my dad (who raised me, he is and always will be my dad) is also Caucasian and I look a bit ethnically ambiguous. Olive (but fair) skin, dark hair, and green eyes; no one else in my family looked like me. My mom finally told me the truth when I was 16. When I got my report back, I was mostly European by my breakdown, I was still confused. I had several cousins show up, but contacting them didn’t interest me at all. One day, I got a notification that I had new relatives and a half-sister popped up. This caught me completely off guard and I didn’t know what to do because I wanted to contact her. For the first time ever, I wanted to know more. I messaged her, not telling anything about myself, just that if she’d like to know more about me, I would be open with all that I knew. I never got a reply, this kind of broke my heart if I’m being honest, but I accepted that she probably knew nothing of me and that the revelation of my existence may have hurt their family horribly. A few months later, a second cousin popped up and she was shown to be the first cousin of my “half-sister,” this confused me even more. Why was she my second cousin and my half-sister’s first cousin? She contacted me because she thought I may have answers for her, I told her that I had tried to contact my half-sister but heard nothing and apologized for not being able to help her. (Her story is oddly similar to mine.) She also told me that she had communicated briefly with her first cousin, but after bringing me up, she cut off contact with her. That made me feel horrible. But through our brief interaction, I realized that the three of us were connected through my “half-sister’s” maternal bloodline. I know my mom is my mom, there’s no question there, so I started thinking, how could this be? Then I realized that my “half-sister” was actually my aunt, my biological father’s sister. Half-siblings, aunts and uncles, and grandparents all share 25% of their DNA, all the connections on these websites are based on probability.

I messaged her again and told her that I thought she may be my aunt and I told her more about myself — my birthdate and where I was conceived, and that if she had a brother who was in that area at that time, he was my biological father. She messaged me back in no time. It turns out that my paternal grandfather had passed away years ago and when she got the first message and saw the half-sister connection, she assumed her father had a child that none of them knew about. I’m younger than her and her siblings, obviously, so I would have come along after them. She didn’t contact me because she didn’t want to hurt her mother, and I’m sure she was hurt by this too. I understood, completely. She then went on to tell me that they all knew about me but didn’t want to disrupt my life. She said my biological father never forgot about me. I had always thought I was his dirty little secret. (He and my mother were both married to other people when I was conceived but that’s another long story.) Anyways, my husband, children, and I have since met them all. I actually have three half-siblings that also knew about me. It was so strange to finally meet people who I resemble. I’m a spitting image of my paternal grandmother when she was young, they were all blown away by that. We stay in contact and I couldn’t be happier that I bought the 23andme kit.

21. I Don’t Have The Heart

21-rawpixel.jpgFreepik @rawpixel

My aunt is super proud of her rare AB+ blood type. But there is one problem: my grandparents had the blood types B and O.

Considering she cared for both of them in their twilight years until their deaths, I haven’t the heart to tell her. Now I’m curious and I wonder who her parents are.

20. Helping Through Tough Times

20-halayalex.jpgFreepik @halayalex

About a year ago, my co-worker’s husband bought her one of those tests as a Christmas gift. Shortly afterward, he died in an accident at work. She got her test results back a few weeks after his death and found out that her dad had fathered two daughters with another woman.

She was mildly shocked, but since she was feeling particularly alone after the loss of her husband, she made contact with them. The three of them have been close ever since, and it’s really helped pull her through the tough times this past year.

19. Traumatized

19-wayhomestudio.jpgFreepik @wayhomestudio

I just found out a few hours ago and my girlfriend and I are currently a mental wreck. Quick background: My girlfriend (I’ll refer to her as Sarah) and I have been dating for almost a year and our relationship has been going very well. We both happen to come from the same town and met each other in college after being introduced by a mutual friend of ours. Last year for Christmas, Sarah decided to come over and stay with me at my apartment for the holidays. I also had decided not to go home for the holidays either. Plus, all my other roommates were back home visiting family, so we had the whole place to ourselves. It was perfect. Christmas day rolls around, and Sarah had bought both of us 23andme DNA kits. The thing is, is that we were both conceived by in-vitro fertilization via donors. Both of our fathers were infertile so our parents had no choice. Deep down, both of us were hoping to find our biological fathers through the service. Fast forward less than a month later to today, and both of our results are in. Sarah comes over to spend the weekend and we go through our results together on our laptops. We compare our ancestry and health reports and nothing seems off. I even found out I’m 2% Native American. All was well until we arrived at the “DNA relatives” section. Sarah tightly holds my hand and says “I hope we both find our fathers.” Then I open mine up… At the top of my screen, I see Sarah’s name… “27% DNA shared, half-sister.” Sarah starts hysterically laughing and tells me to stop joking. I don’t react to anything she says, and just stare at my screen in disbelief. I then abruptly grab her laptop and open up her “DNA relatives” section. We see the same thing. My name at the top… “27% DNA shared, half-brother.”

At this moment my brain just completely short-circuits. Yes, I’ve been making out with my half-sister. Holy crap! My mind starts going a 100mph and I began hyperventilating, going into a state of shock. I can’t even remember what Sarah was doing at this time. It’s pretty self-explanatory by now, but for those of you who don’t understand how we could be related, it turns out our moms were probably both fertilized by the same seed sample. What are the freaking odds, right? The fact that we’re from the same town certainly increased the odds but still. There are no words I have to express what my mental state is now. To put it in simple words: I feel traumatized. Part of me still won’t stop thinking about how much I love Sarah and then I realize our entire relationship was incest. I honestly feel disgusted standing in my own skin.

18. Spreading His Seeds

18-pexels-nadezhda-moryak-8685309.jpgPexels @Nadezhda Moryak

My wife had a sister who was contacted on Facebook by someone claiming to share a father (we learned this all on Mother’s Day ironically). We did a lot of digging and found pics, etc. They definitely look like family. Turns out, my wife’s dad had been giving his seed to a nearby University because he’s Mormon and a big Brigham Young fan and wanted to “spread his seed” and this was the only way he could do it. His wife didn’t know he had been doing this at all and we’ve discovered several more siblings. This dude has been setting up franchises for 20 years.

The worst part is he’s maintained a relationship with all his kids while mistreating and ignoring his “real kids,” all behind his wife and “real family’s” back. It’s pretty sad but this guy’s a creep anyway so we were not shocked.

17. What A Nightmare

17-jcomp.jpgFreepik @jcomp

I invited my sister out to lunch and had a discussion with her to find out the truth. I told her that the results were in and I knew something had happened between a relative of ours and she needed to tell me the truth because her daughter would find out soon enough. I manage the account and my niece has been asking me for updates around once or twice a week because it’s nearing the end of the 7-week mark since we sent the saliva samples in. I never believed I’d be saying all of this right now, but you all were spot on. My brother is the biological father of my niece. However, it’s not the brother I mentioned in my first post.

Apparently, my parents had a son when they were teenagers and placed him for adoption. When he turned 23, he came to our house searching for his/my/our parents and they weren’t there, but my sister was. She was home from work when he came by. My sister would’ve been 18 at the time this happened and was in college, the same college he went to. They recognized one another and got close. She did move out into her own place a few months after this happened but we thought nothing of it. They continued a relationship for a few years because they just “connected” so well (according to my sister) and that’s how my niece was conceived. He ditched her as soon as he found out she was pregnant and he hasn’t been heard from since then. He only gave our sister money to stop the pregnancy and that’s it. Our parents have no idea that my sister and I know that we have an older brother and I’m not sure we should inform them of this, but my sister and I plan on telling her together. I volunteered to go with her for support. Due to this, I’m certain my parents will inevitably find out that their son is the father of their daughter’s child. What a nightmare this will become.

16. The Truth Comes Out

1_16-jcomp.jpgFreepik @jcomp

When my aunt was a teen, she got pregnant and gave the baby up for adoption, but the guy reconnected with our family a few years back. He found out who his father was through his mom and got in touch with him. They were both interested in genetics and had their DNA profiles done already so they decided to compare. Turns out my aunt lied about who the father was.

There was a big kerfuffle in my family because of course this guy feels cheated and betrayed, because he’s been getting close to this guy he thought was his bio-father and it’s actually just some dude, and my aunt is refusing to discuss the subject at all or even talk to her son about it.

15. His Second Family

15-atlascompany.jpgFreepik @atlascompany

My grandma’s dad left her mom when her youngest brother was 3 years old. The jerk just got up and took off one day from their small Ontario, Canada town and left his wife and 4 kids and nobody had any idea where he was except “he traveled west.” Today, my grandma is 90 years old and she took the DNA test about a year ago. She found out that not only did her dad marry someone new (illegally since he was still married to her mom), but he had a whole second family with another 4 kids out in British Columbia.

For me though, the weirdest part is that he named a second son Gordon. So, essentially, he must have liked the name Gordon so much or he was so confident that nobody would find out about his two families that he felt safe and comfortable naming two different sons Gordon.

14. Alive and Doing Well


At 50 years old, my mom found out her biological father is actually alive and lives in Minnesota. Grandma is giving the Shaggy defense claiming anyone can put anything on the internet, not truly grasping that it’s the same technology that convicts people for crime.

Fast forward a few weeks, we meet him, and we’re crushed because he’s a really nice guy who never married or had kids. He retired the year I was born from, oddly enough, my very specific line of work. I’m glad we have time to spend with and welcome him into our family.

13. Oh No Grandma!

13-nakaridore.jpgFreepik @nakaridore

I made the horrible decision of buying my mother-in-law’s side of the family a 23andMe kit and… Turns out Grandma had a side piece that no one knew about and one of her daughters doesn’t have the same father.

The crap is about to hit the fan at Christmas dinner this year. Honestly, I’m excited but damn, this feels insane to be in the middle of all this. My head is spinning right now.

12. An Unpleasant Surprise

12-user18526052.jpgFreepik @user18526052

I met a guy with a VERY interesting 23AndMe story. He was adopted, and had taken the test a couple of years ago. To his surprise, he had something like 10 half-siblings from his father’s side, from all over the country.

After contacting them, he learned that his biological father was a serial criminal who was wanted in many states but had never been caught.

11. Sister or Mother

17-azerbaijan_stockers.jpgFreepik @azerbaijan_stockers

I was adopted by my grandparents and didn’t know until I was older. I had no reason to think I wasn’t their biological child. When I looked at photographs of my mother when was younger, we looked like twins. I had no idea she was my grandmother.

When I was in college my roommates and I sent for DNA test kits. I was shocked to find out the person I grew up with as an older sister was actually my biological mother. My mom/sister had become pregnant as a very young teenager and my grandparents decided to raise me as their own.

10. The Plot Twist

10-kelly-sikkema-V106bb1a9BY-unsplash.jpgUnsplash @Kelly Sikkema

When my birth mom was pregnant with me she was too ashamed to admit who my father was. She was too young to be a mom and so she gave me to my current parents when I was born. I love my parents and don’t care who my birth father was, but I wanted to see what I was made of.

Everyone was pretty pissed when we found out that my dad, the one who adopted me, was my actual birth dad. My adoptive dad cheated on my adoptive mom and adopted me.

9. Grandpa’s Not So Godly


I have a friend who found out that his family-first, godly Christian grandfather had fathered four children outside his marriage with three different neighbors.

The youngest child was born to a 17-year-old girl, the same year the grandpa died. And that’s just the ones they know about so far.

8. Seed Donors


We found out that two family members have been seed donors. One has over forty children, is unmarried, and likely lost his last serious relationship after she found out. She was probably upset because he donated a lot, even after he didn’t need the money anymore, like he was trying to make a clan or something.

The other only has one donor kid that we know of, but he’s married and has a family. His wife was not happy, but the donation was over 30 years ago.

7. Closed Family Doors

7-jcomp.jpgFreepik @jcomp

My wife has a cousin who was adopted. He was finally able to find his biological parents and he had several full siblings. As an only child, he was so happy and reached out, only to be told he wasn’t one of them.

He was dropped off for adoption because he was born after the parents’ divorce and no one wanted him, including his siblings. It was really heartbreaking to hear about because he’d always wanted this big family and they wouldn’t accept him.

6. TV Appearances

6-pexels-koolshooters-6976103.jpgPexels @Koolshooters

Mine actually went really well. I found out my biological brother went to the same university as me; we had the same major and minor, and we loved the same things. I also met my birth mother a day later, and the day after that I met my birth father. I got to know almost the whole family soon after and we ended up on TV because of our story. AncestryDNA then sent me on the trip of a lifetime to Benin, Africa because of it.

However, when I met my birth father’s extended family, my grandfather bought everyone in the family a DNA test kit. My brother’s fiancé took the test and when it came back, she found out her dad wasn’t her biological dad. It turns out her mother had a one night stand in Hawaii on vacation and never told anyone. Feelings were hurt, but so far it hasn’t ended their family.

5. An Unexpected Name Change


It turns out that my last name didn’t come from Ellis Island, as my family had always thought. My great grandfather changed it when he married my great grandmother, to hide the fact that he had walked away from his other wife and their eight children.

So now, my grandfather has eight half-siblings and we’re just finding out about it now, about 80 years later. I have a lot more cousins than I thought.

4. The Popular Option


My aunt married a guy who underwent cancer treatment as a young man that left him unable to have kids. My aunt then used the same donor to have two kids, my cousins G and B. I took my 23AndMe, and then a few months later, my first cousin G did as well. When we were looking over her results, I showed up as expected labeled as a “first or second cousin” genetically. But there were also these other people showing up as “first cousin or closer.” I’m 100% her first cousin, so I said to her “G, these people are more closely related to you than I am. They could be siblings!”

This was not totally unexpected, but intriguing, so G proceeded to look into it. We found out that she has not just one or two, but HUNDREDS of half-siblings! Apparently, the particular donor that her mother used was WILDLY popular in the early ’90s, and despite the fact that they’re not supposed to do so, the donor company used him over and over and over again. There’s a Facebook group of this man’s offspring; they have meetups, and somehow, one of them even found the guy and contacted him! He has since moved to Switzerland or somewhere and started his own family, which is probably for the best.

3. While He Was In Korea


My grandmother cheated on my grandfather while he was in Korea. She had a baby girl and put her up for adoption all before grandpa came home from the war. They then went on to have five boys.

None of them knew they had an older sister. My dad’s cousin matched with my newfound aunt on 23AndMe and since she only lives an hour away she stops by once a month to get to know the family.

2. Forging New Relationships

2-Drazen-Zigic.jpgFreepik @Drazen Zigic

23AndMe showed me that the dad I knew as a child (he left us so there’s no real relationship) wasn’t my biological father. About a year later, my sister on my actual biological dad’s side (I thought I was an only child) reached out because 23AndMe told her about me.

Now, I have a biological dad, a brother, and a sister. They are all really nice and we are all trying to forge a new relationship. They are all coming over in about two hours, where my wife and daughter will meet my father for the first time; they’ve already met the brother and sister. I have nothing but good things to say about what 23AndMe did for me.

1. He Took It For Fun, But…

1-pexels-mufid-majnun-7604586.jpgPexels @Mufid Majnun

Not me, but my best friend since literal infancy spent his whole life thinking he was 3/4 white and 1/4 Japanese. 2 years ago he took a DNA test for fun and to see if he was at risk for anything genetic. Turns out he is 0% Japanese, and 47% Native American. Turns out his mother (a chemistry professor) cheated on his dad with her old research partner. He moved back to America (this being England) before she found out she was pregnant and just never told him. His parents got divorced over it, and he no longer in contact with his mother, but he’s still close to his “father.” Because of this, no one in the Japanese family even knows. His (Japanese) great grandmother (who’s 98) always talks of how much he looks like her father when he was young, making family events very awkward.

Anyway, he found and reconnected with his biological father, who didn’t know he existed and never had any other kids. He’s now married to another man and they’ve both been very excited to get to know him. He’s also been initiated into his tribe with a big ceremony and everything. He’s spent every summer with them since. All of this has unfolded over the last 2 years and it’s been quite insane to witness second hand.