Saturday, January 12, 2008

Unwitting incest a 'tragedy'

The following story is an example of what can
happen when children grow up without knowing
who their fathers are. Food for thought for
those lesbians and single women considering
IVF to pump out children to fulfill their needs
in the process denying the child of the right to
know and have a father.

The Age (Melbourne) 12 January 2008

Reuters - Twins who were separated at birth and raised by
families met later and married but were forced to
break up when they
discovered their true identities, a
British legislator said on Friday.

"It's a tragedy for the couple who are involved, a terrible
Everyone's hearts will go out to people caught
up quite unwittingly in a
case of incest of this kind," David
Alton, a member of Britain's upper
House of Lords, told
BBC radio.

Alton first raised the case during debate on a proposed
new law on in vitro
fertilisation (IVF). He says it highlights
the need for children to know
who their parents are.

He fears that under the new law, the biological identity of
one parent of a
child born as a result of IVF could be removed
from the birth certificate,
creating the potential for similar tragic
mistakes to occur.

Alton told parliament last month he had heard about the twins
from a High
Court judge who had dealt with the case.

"It involved the normal birth of twins who were separated at
birth and
adopted by separate parents," said Alton, who has
no party affiliation.
"They were never told that they were twins."

"They met later in life and felt an inevitable attraction" and they
married, he said.

"When they did come to know their true identities it led to their
having to
separate and also to a lot of heartbreak," Alton said
on Friday. News
reports said their marriage was annulled.

No further information was available about the twins or where
they were from.

"This isn't a regular occurrence but it could become one
with large numbers
of people now being born by IVF and
not knowing their true identities,"
Alton said.

The Human Fertilisation and Embryology Bill, now working
its way through
the British parliament, recognises same-sex
couples as legal parents of
children conceived through the
use of donated sperm, eggs or embryos.

"The government ... have not accepted the argument that
you should have the
right to know who your biological father
is on the birth certificate,"
Alton said.

"It would be a terrible act of deception, with the state
colluding in that
deception, to remove the biological identity
of your father from the birth
certificate," he added.

Pam Hodgkins, head of a group that helps adults affected
by adoption, said
the story of the twins was very tragic.

"It is a lesson that we need to learn and apply to the situation of
donor-conceived children," she told Sky News.

"Whilst ... nowadays it would be most unusual for siblings to
be separated
... the risk of secrecy affecting the lives of people
born as a result of
egg and sperm donation is exactly the same
as the risks that have affected
adopted people in the past," she said.

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