Twins Separated at Birth Later Marry Without Knowledge of Their Relation



A pair of twins  adopted by separate families, later married without any knowledge of the biological relation to each other, a peer told the House of Lords.  A  British court granted the couple an annulment after the ill fated couple  discovered their true relationship.


The peer, after hearing of the case from the judge  involved remarked that the twins felt an “inevitable attraction.” He said this case highlights the importance of children having access to records involving their adoption and biological parents. Details regarding the identities of the twins involved are being withheld, but Lord Alton said the pair did not realize they were related before their marriage.


The crossbench peer, a former Liberal Democrat MP, raised the couple’s case during a House of Lords debate on the Human Fertility and Embryology Bill in December saying “They were never told that they were twins,” he continued “They met later in life and felt an inevitable attraction, and the judge had to deal with the consequences of the marriage that they entered into and all the issues of their separation.”

He also stated on a  BBC News website that “their story raises the wider issue of the importance of strengthening the rights of children to know the identities of their biological parents. 

“If you start trying to conceal someone’s identity, sooner or later the truth will out,” he said.”And if you don’t know you are biologically related to someone, you may become attracted to them and tragedies like this may occur.”

Pam Hodgkins, chief executive officer of the charity Adults Affected by Adoption (NORCAP) said there had been previous cases of separated siblings being attracted to each other after being separated and she further went on to explain why children raised together do not feel this way.”We have a resistance, a very strong incest taboo where we are aware that someone is a biological relative,” she said.”But when we are unaware of that relationship, we are naturally drawn to people who are quite similar to ourselves.”


To,however, fortunately,   adopted children grow up with a greater knowledge of their birth families – and organisations try to place brothers and sisters together.


“This sad case illustrates why, over the last 20-30 years, the shift to openness in adoption was so important,” Ms O’Reilly added.