Saturday, November 14, 2020

Who Are NPEs?

child's hand in parent's hand
Mystery matches found in DNA results are more common than you think. Known as NPEs (non-paternity event or non-parental event), many people with unknown or questionable parentage have been testing during the past few years with the hope of finding their true birth families. The unknown names showing up in your cousin match list are attached to stories and histories woven into your own ancestral past.

How does someone get labeled as an "NPE"? Some were born out of wedlock and given up for adoption. Others may have been taken in or adopted by a close family member other than their original birth parents. An NPE can also be the consequence of an extra-marital affair, resulting in a different (and often unknown) father than the man who raised the child. And more recently, NPEs can be individuals born as a result of a sperm or egg donation, now searching for their donor parents.

Whatever the reason, persons born as a result of a non-parental event are making themselves known with increasing frequency due to today's popularity and easy-access to DNA testing. Not just a name in a long list of cousins residing on your AncestryDNA page, you can be certain that every NPE sharing your DNA is part of your family's history. And each mystery cousin seeking the truth has a unique personal story that has often been obscured beneath layers of secrecy.


children of questionable parentage



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