Skip to comments.Could be that dad is not real father, report shows (Is that kid really yours?)
Posted on 08/11/2005 12:40:55 PM PDT by summer
NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Perhaps one out of every 25 dads could unknowingly be raising another man's child, a finding that has huge health and social implications, according to report released Wednesday.
Exposing so-called paternal discrepancy -- when a child is identified as being biologically fathered by someone other than the man who believes he is the father -- could lead to family violence and the breakup of many families. On the other hand, leaving paternal discrepancy hidden means having the wrong genetic information, which could have health consequences.
A UK-based research team reviewed scientific research dealing with paternity published between 1950 and 2004 and reports that rates of paternal discrepancy range from less than 1 percent to as much as 30 percent.
The investigation also showed that becoming pregnant at a younger age, low socioeconomic status, and being in a long-term relationship rather than being married seem to be linked to greater likelihood of paternal discrepancy.
It is generally believed that rates of paternal discrepancy are less than 10 percent. A paternal discrepancy rate of 4 percent means that one in 25 families could be affected.
However, soaring rates of paternity testing in North America and Europe means more cases of paternal discrepancy will be identified in the years ahead, Professor Mark A. Bellis, from the Center for Public Health at the Liverpool John Moores University, and colleagues point out in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health.
In the United States, for example, rates of paternity testing more than doubled between 1991 and 2001. The increasing use of genetic testing for diagnosis and treatment of disease as well as in judicial procedures will also yield more opportunities to uncover cases where a father, unbeknownst to him, is not the biological parent.
"Modern genetic techniques continue to open a Pandora's box on hitherto hidden aspects of human sexual behavior," the investigators write.
Exposing such situations will inevitably affect not only deceived dads but also their family and potentially the biological father. Leaving paternal discrepancy undiagnosed, on the other hand, leaves those affected with incorrect genetic information that could prove harmful.
What's urgently needed, the authors say, is guidance on how and when paternal discrepancy should be exposed.
At present, most cases that are inadvertently identified are ignored by whoever uncovers the situation.
"However, in a society where services and life decisions are increasingly influenced by genetics, our approach to paternal discrepancy cannot be simply to ignore this difficult issue but must be informed by what best protects the health of those affected," Bellis and colleagues argue.
Eventually, someone is going to come up with an inexpensive genetic test, and our whole society is going to fall apart at the seams.
Second mistake she made.
Anyone know the "out of wedlock" birth rate in the Afircan-American community? I have said for a long time that the current AA generation has no idea who the fathers are? I figure the childern in the next generation will have significant health issues relating to this problem because of sib's etc having childern.
You might be right!
I think in NYC, in some neighbourhoods, among some ethic groups this is true.
The sad thing is these are the lucky kids who HAVE fathers raising them.
The last I heard it was over 66% with more than 2 out of 3 black kids being born out of wedlock. These problems continue in every aspect of life, education, etc.
I read in a Sci-fi story once of a 'at home DNA tester' that everyone had, just like a thermometer.
And it was for situations just like this...bring baby home, test DNA, proceed from there.
And across the pond, Prince Phillip is another statistic ;->
sounds like the beginnings of a HUGE lawsuit.
know a guy in this situation. thought he was the father of the child, got the kids name tattooed in huge letters down his forearm. she ran off, hit him up for child support for a while, then in a fit of rage told him he wasn't the father.
he's suing for the return of all the child support.
Women are evil. I've never heard of a husband lying to his wife about a child's maternity. Only women do this!
eyespy ... anything you want to tell me?
Oh geesh, you're right. I couldn't believe how many kids he now admits to perhaps fathering. (He actually doesn't even know, but he knows he could be a lot.)
I meant: the total number could be a lot...
On the contrary, it will enforce moral codes if a love-child cannot be hidden. The stakes of adultery are raised.
-wink- I actually meant Prince Andrew
Takes two to tango, me bucko.