Services like Ancestry.com and 23 and Me have sparked interest in our heritages. Where did we come from? Which of our ancestors were first to arrive and set-up shop?
Do we have any surprise, genealogical connections that we may not have known about? Is there a Princess Diaries level reveal waiting in the wings? If so, come on out, Julie Andrews? I'll happy take the tiara and take up Genovian pear juggling.
For many, taking the first step and submitting that DNA swab is intimidating. Discovering where you came from could alter where you are now. Fortunately, people that followed their family history answered Reddit user, r/sator8's question and shared their tales: People who have used DNA-Ancestry testing (ancestry, 23andMe) what were your results and was it worth it?
50. Ryan Merriman, Eat Your Heart OutGiphy
My aunt and uncle did one for themselves and for anyone who wanted one. I don't know who all did it, but I know their son-in-law did it.
So my aunt is fair skinned, red-headed, and covered in freckles. Her husband looks kiiiiinda like Lassiter from Psych but bald. Not your stereotypical leprechaun, but you can totally tell.
Welp, they got the results back and it turns out that neither of them are even a drop Irish, which is really weird because they even have "Mc" in their name. They're pretty much the McFakeirish family. But there son in law, turns out he's 1/16 Irish. He's just as much Irish as our side of the family is Native American. Yeah can kinda see that in our side if the family. If you know to look for it, the features are still visible is a lot of the family members. The son in law in the other hand.... He's black. We thought he was 100%, I think he thought he was 100%.
So yeah, my Uncle NotLassiter McFakeirish very often said the phrase, "If it looks like a duck, sounds like a duck, and walks like a duck, it might just be a duck." So my natural response when I learned all this was, "So if it looks Irish, sounds Irish, and thinks it's Irish, it might actually be less Irish than your black son-in-law."
49. Rich Cross Heritage
I did AncestryDNA and got my results a couple of days ago. It confirmed that I'm mostly African with some European. What surprised me was the percentage of indigenous ancestry. Only a small percentage of Dominicans have such ancestry, so that was a nice surprise. It's nice knowing which places in Africa my ancestors came from. It's also quite sobering to think of all that they suffered.
My aunt who was adopted at 9 months old by my grandparents did I believe ancestry. The weekend of my grandpa's funeral her daughter called to tell her she found my aunts birth father. They lived a few hours away and were driving through my grandpas town that weekend. It was a lot of emotions that weekend and she was worried we would be upset but we were all so happy for her!
She struggled a lot as a teenager with being adopted and I think she needed the closure of knowing why her parents didn't keep her. She now has more wonderful family members that have lovingly welcomed her. She has multiple brothers through her birth father. She hasn't found her mother yet but now knows who she is and why she was put up for adoption.
47. Sometimes White Is Made By Mixing Every Color
I'd say yes. Found out a significant chunk of my ancestors were from the Middle East and Africa, which was surprising given how pasty white and fair-haired my whole family is. The only reason I know they didn't mix up my DNA sample with someone else was because the test showed that a number of my known relatives to are, in fact, related to me.
Including my dad.
(Which is a relief).
46. A Warning For All Who TestGiphy
I've heard that the two companies have different data sets that they're working from, so people of African origin will get much more detailed results from Ancestry, while people of Asian descent will get more detailed results from 23andMe. For example, an African-descended person might get results from 23andMe that just tell you your ancestry is from that continent, while Ancestry might tell you a specific country or local region of Africa.
45. A Happy Ending
My wife was adopted. Never knew much about either birth parent. She did it more as an ethnic blend curiosity since she's mix race. Turns out her bio aunt had already done a DNA test so she got notified of the link. Once we had the aunts name we started Googling and FB stalking and found what we were sure was her bio mom. My wife messaged her her in a very delicate manner saying what we believed to be true.
And she replied back almost instantly. We shortly found out who bio dad was (unfortunately now deceased). For about a year all communications between were very friendly and sweet, but just written. Last summer we went and met her. Super nice family. They're coming to stay with us this October.
44. You Become The Thing You Hate
I know my lineage on my mother's side, but have always been ignorant to my heritage on my father's side. What little I know comes in the form of stories told by my paternal half-brother, who got them from our aunts and uncles.
One of those stories is about how my great grandmother had an affair with the Asian landscaper. Then, my grandfather was born. Everyone ignored that he was clearly Asian. I've never seen a photo of my grandfather, and none of his kids remember what he looks like (he died when my own father was a baby). Therefore, the only one privy to this information on his heritage were my great grandmother and my oldest aunt.
None of them looked particularly mixed, and what features they did have were mostly grown out of. My father's only noticeable differences are tan skin and semi-emphasised facial features.
Here's where it gets interesting; my father is racist. Like, "every Middle Eastern is a terrorist, kill them all" racist. He's never been so racist towards Asians, though, so it never much impacted me... until I took the Ancestry test.
Turns out 'Asian' was 'Arabic'. Man, I wish I could've seen the look on my father's face when my half-brother told him.
43. It's Like Solving A Mystery
I've been very involved in my Dad's side of the family, who came from Greece two generations before me. This family and heritage has been all that I've known about and I've identified very heavily due to my name being pretty Greek. My mom has a long strand of mental issues and, as a result, most of her family has exiled her and it wasn't until I became an adult that I was able to connect with that side of the family, but I had no idea what side of the family even came from.
So I get a DNA test and turns out I'm mostly English/Irish by about 30% and Greek was next at 17%. This wasn't too shocking considering a lot of the Greek traits weren't passed down to me (like olive skin, green eyes, and black hair).
I'm not too sure about other DNA sites, but 23andMe offer a service called DNA relatives and, if you opt-in, you can look through every person, who also opted-in, and request to chat with them. It'll show you what percentage of your DNA is related and what the algorithm thinks you two are (such as first cousins or second cousins once removed). This feature is the best part to me because I can connect with these people and learn more about my Mom's side of the family.
You can also opt-in to do some genetic research where you just simply answer questions about various things. I opted-in to a study about the role genetics play in depression and bi-polar disorder.
It's definitely worth it to not only learn about my family's history but you can also help researchers understand genetics more and more.
42. The Family Grows
I did it, and just last week I found out that my father was not by biological father, but that I was donor conceived. A guy calls me out of the blue to say that he thought he was my half brother. He asks if I am on 23 and me (I say yes). He says go and check out the relative section (that I hadn't looked at in years), and there are more than a dozen half siblings. Turns out I was #19.
I talked to my parents, and they confirmed it. Last week I found out I had a huge family, half of which is nearby. It was a huge deal!
41.The Plot ThickensGiphy
I was raised by a single-mother and never had a relationship with my dad, who lives in another country. I haven't ever had a desire to find him or make contact but did 23andme because I was curious about any medical issues I might be predisposed to. The report came back and I was connected to a long list of people - third, fourth, fifth cousins and further relations. Then there was the family I knew, who had taken the test.
The most interesting was a first cousin who I'd never heard of. We messaged through 23andme and it turns out that he was the son of my fathers sister. No one on my fathers side of the family knew about me...it was quite a shock to my new-found cousin. We messaged back and forth and it turned out we lived in the same state and I had a trip to his area already planned. My fiancé and I met with him and his family. He has four children who all hugged me as a greeting...it was the best feeling. We had so much fun hanging out with them and having the opportunity to chat. I'm grateful to have an expanded family.
The story is still somewhat developing but he told my dad the story and my dad said he'd written to me and never received any responses. He asked my cousin for my contact info and we are talking, albeit timidly. It turns out that he had always wanted to be a part of my life. I always felt that you don't miss something you've never had but I'm excited for the opportunity to have him in my life.
40. Survey Says...White
I did it out of genuine interest for my family background. Like most white people, I had heard from older family members that we had Native American ancestors. My results actually showed that I may be the whitest human being on the planet. My largest portion showed 32% likeness to French, German, Belgian ancestry. 2nd was Irish/Scottish/Wales with 24%. 3rd largest was British with 24% and at 4th, with 11%, was Scandinavian.
Then they referred to the other 9% as low confidence regions, where I shared similar genetics to people from Italy/Greece and Eastern European Countries (Russia, Hungary, Czech Republic, Ukraine, etc.). Someone in the family, at some point, was a lying piece of crap. If I were a super villain, my name would be Mega Honky and I would have skin so pale that it blinded people. My weaknesses are my inability to season food properly and my likeliness to develop diabetes.
39. The War Caused Many Problems
My grandmother was raised in the foster care system, so she always felt a mix of "I'm fine on my own" and "I do want to know where I came from". So I took it into my own hands to test her DNA (with her permission).
A few years later, we ended up finding her great nephew, who in turn introduced us to his grandmother--her younger sister. Her sister ended up explaining to us the whole story of our family and why my grandmother and her three brothers were put into the foster system. The 1940s were...quite a time.
Anyway, it was definitely worth it. My grandmother is so excited to have a sister, siblings, etc. etc. Even though our family history is not very pretty to put it mildly, it's still family and my grandmother finally has that sense of peace.
38. Hinga Dinga Durgen
A question I can answer!
So, I haven't directly done it, but both of my parents did so I suppose it sort of counts?
Anyway, my dad was adopted and didn't know anything at all about either one of his birth parents. Just from how he looks, as well as my brother and I, we sort of figured we weren't 100% Caucasian. And because my dad was doing it, my mom figured "what the hell?" And got one too.
The first thing that surprised me was finding out that siblings don't necessarily share the same makeup. I might be 56% A and 44% B while my brother might be 52% B and 48% A. Just rough numbers to illustrate the point. I'm not sure why that surprised me as much as it did. I guess I just assumed if I was half A he'd be half A too and genetics don't work like that.
It also definitely shatters any illusions you might have over being proud of your heritage. On my mom's side, we can trace back at least 4-5 generations pretty accurately, and we expected her to match up with what we knew to be true based on that. Turns out, people like f*cking a lot, and lying a lot too. Go figure.
It's been a while, so I don't remember the exact numbers, but the results ended up being:
Dad: Primarily Irish with a heavy Native American side dish. Also, a dusting of West African on the top. He also has one of the highest Neanderthal profiles on the site. I'm not sure if it was a gene or the amount, but they put him in the 99th percentile of people who have it.
Mom: Super-white, coming in with Germania frontrunner, with Scandinavian as a close second. I guess we descended from Vikings, and I'm totally okay with that.
All in all, it was a fun experience. The Neanderthal thing was probably the most interesting part. I did have fun imagining my Native/African ancestors and trying to figure out what they'd think of me as their relative. However, it's not really useful outside of being able to answer the "what's your heritage?" question. Because he was adopted, we were never raised with any sort of strong ties to any other people. A lot of German recipes handed down from my mom's side, but that was about it on the "cultural heritage" front. I'm glad we did it, but it hasn't changed anything.
37. Cultural Vs. Genetic Identity
So i'm east african. my parents are, my grandparents are, etc etc. we don't have records of most things, but the oral history tradition is strong.
I'm currently dating a white man and i've always wondered if i would want to have biracial children. nobody in my family really has even had the opportunity to date outside their race, since we're from rural farmlands. my identity is super strong and i am of a dying ethnic group with a dying language, so i always wonder how i want things to play out.
When i got my results back, i found out i'm not even genetically east african (tho i think this is a consequence of the weird timelines the test uses and migration) and i'm 4% a bunch of other stuff. i'm 2% unassigned, but the rest is a mix of european, middle eastern, asian, and even native american. the last part is especially surprising since we immigrated to the states when i was a child. but it changed the way i think about myself and my potential progeny.
Anyway. i paid $0 since it was for a study. but now i really want the rest of my family to do it since it'd be fun to see who got what.
36. Saddled With A SecretGiphy
I have a few stories.
Story #1: My grandfather never knew much about his own father. His dad was in the Navy (always gone) and was killed in WWII when my grandfather was 9 years old. My grandfather had always idolized his dad (he chose to get married on his dads birthday, and chose to become a pilot which is what his dad was). I had him do the 23andMe test and he had quite a few close DNA matches that all listed this same village in Russia as a place of ancestry. There were even matches from Russia and Kazakhstan. Anyway I reached out to some of them and was able to learn that his dad had immigrated to the United States as a young boy from Russia. It was fulfilling to be able to piece that together and share it with him.
Story #2: I have a first cousin that I had never known about. One of my closest DNA relatives on 23andMe is someone I have never met. I thought at first it might be one of my cousins and the account was just under an unfamiliar name. I did a search of the persons name on Facebook and saw that she was a mutual friend of one of my aunts and her son. The girl is my age and my aunt is 10 years younger than my dad. My aunt would have just been starting college when the girl was born. I never told anyone in my family. I didn't tell my aunt either that I knew. I figured that if she wanted to share it with me or the family then she would have already.
I felt a lot of things. Her Facebook picture looked so much like my grandfather (a man I respected quite a bit). She also worked in a profession that required talents that my grandmother has in spades. I wanted to meet her and tell her all about the people she came from. I wanted her to know where she came from and feel proud to have a connection to it. At the same time I felt deep sadness for my aunt and for her. My aunt is a woman I have a lot of respect for and is a genuinely caring person. I sincerely hope that my cousin is happy and has been able to find some peace in meeting my aunt and her son. It is not really my place to make a move. I will just keep this under my hat and pray for healing for everyone involved.
35. An X-Man In My Gene Pool
let me preface this my saying I am pale, blonde and blue eyed. I was not expecting the results I got: 62% British and Irish 23% French and German 12% Italian 6% Spanish 2% Scandanavian .5% Middle Eastern .5% North African .1% East Asian (of the Yakut people) .1% Native American .1% Unassigned obviously, the above was enlightening since I was previously told I was 100% British (and to be perfectly honest, I think it's cool that I'm such a mixture) so that was worth it. But I also did the health tests, and that was also worth it. now I know all I have to worry about is late onset Alzheimer's and age related macular degeneration, which just means my eyes will get bad when im older.
My BIL (brother in law) also did it, because like my husband and I, he too is adopted. he is almost 100% south African, and also tested positive for late onset Alzheimer's. we agree it's helpful to know it's possibly coming, so you can prepare.
just as an aside: the test also made me really curious as to how north African, native American, east asian and middle eastern made it into my family tree. I think there must be an interesting story there.
edit: the hubs said I should add that I am more Neanderthal than most and have the muscle composition most common in elite athletes which is probably why I was able to get up and walk around immediately after waking up from back surgery. I also heal quickly but nowhere in my DNA report did they mention I am related to Wolverine.
34. More Details Necessary
It was interesting to see the results, but there was one thing that I really did not like about it. Ancestry categorizes all Native American tribes together. I understand that it is not exactly easy to find living relatives for most of those tribes, but it irritates me that they have "Eastern European" and "Western European" but the entire Americas are just "Native American". As someone who turned out to be 20% 'Native American' and whos parents know little to nothing about their heritage, it would have been nice to know exactly what tribes I decended from, their cultures can be vastly different.
Besides that it was interesting to see the minor results that only make up like 1% to 5%.
33. We're All From Everywhere
I was a bit miffed to find out I was 45% "Europe West" from AncestryDNA...Europe West meaning French/German/Dutch/Belgian. I get that they're somewhat geographically similar but those four cultures and peoples are extremely different so it'd be nice to know which of the four I am.
What was interesting was that I came out with zero Great Britain lineage, however my aunt is big into family tree stuff and can trace my family back to a man who settled in America from England back in 1632. A quick search of my last name online theorizes that my ancestors were one of the German clans that invaded England in 547. This would make my aunt and AncestryDNA both correct and that they were just taking samples of our lineage from different points in time.
Am I English because my ancestors came to USA from England and lived in England for ~1000 years before that, or am I German because my ancestors were originally from Germany way back in 500 AD, or am I African because all of humanity came from Africa way back before that? AncestryDNA made me think about these things and ultimately come up with the conclusion that I'm American and figuring out where your ancestors came from hundreds and hundreds of years ago is ultimately pointless, seeing as people migrated around over the millennia so it's not like your family just originated at this one place and was there since the beginning of time.
32. Haha Yikes And More Yikes
My birth mother and my half siblings are raving racist loonies. One half sister defended slavery by saying she always takes good care of her pets. I'll let that sink in.
My bio uncle, birth mother's brother, took a DNA test.
We knew we were Native Hawaiian, which was somehow okay because we were related to 'royalty'. (No we weren't, great uncle so and so was a secretary or something in the palace.) We all look white, thanks to the impossibly pale Irish genes that my bio grandfather inflicted on us.
Turns out we're also Hispanic, black, Native American (likely Apache), and a whole variety pack of random things like Korean, Portuguese, etc because everyone slept with everyone back in Hawaii.
You ever get the satisfaction of texting a dyed in the wool violent racist 'one drop rule' and then listening to the furious self hatred vitriol that comes out? It's....well.
I didn't know my father very well, was always told he was half Mexican half Spanish. Then my white mother always said she was British and "black Dutch". After looking up that term, I came to find out in the south (we live in Texas) that's a common misnomer, typically it was what people with Native American or black mixed heritage would call themselves to try and avoid persecution in more racist/xenophobic times.
Sure enough, I get my 23andme test back and not a trace of Dutch. 33% British/Irish, sprinkles of French/German, 22% Native American (I assume mostly Mexico or South America) and 22% Iberian/Southern European. And even 2% west African!
It was pretty cool seeing my doubts about what my mother told me come to fruition. My mom was very interested in what I was able to teach her, and she's waiting for her test now!
23andme also recently announced they are adding 120 reference populations to further break down your results, all future tests and eventually all previous tests will be given these additional results. I am very excited because there's a bunch of South American countries, Mexico, and Spain included in these new populations which should give me a lot of insight.
Highly recommend the test to anyone, very worth the investment.
30. Light And Dark Hair
I did the 23andMe Ancestry+Health kit.
Things I learned:
- Zero Native American in my dad's side of the family despite their strong claims otherwise (they still argue)
- A surprising amount of African on my mom's side
- I'm mostly Northwestern European (not surprising at all)
- A bunch of silly trait things I'm inclined towards due to my DNA (e.g. having cheek dimples). Not terribly important stuff, but it was fun to compare how I am to what my DNA shows me as inclined towards (inclined towards light hair, but my hair is naturally quite dark)
Things I'm hoping eventually come from this:
- More detailed ancestry breakdown (my report should be updated soon)
- My mom was given up for adoption as a baby. She has met her bio mom and keeps minimal contact. Everyone on that side of the family does not know my mom exists. My mom knows quite a bit about the family she's never met - she has a half brother as well as a number of aunts, uncles, cousins, and I believe nieces and nephews... but she is her bio mom's dirty little secret. She can only hear about them through the occasional email or letter from her bio mom. The "evil-ish" side of me hopes one of my close relatives from that side does the test and sees me in their relative list (I know someone on that side has been doing Ancestry, but I haven't done their test yet).
- More health information. As 23andMe gets more approvals about releasing DNA info that may impact one's health, my reports will be updated to give me that information. I've already run my raw data through Promethease, so I have an idea what kinds of things my DNA might show, but there's still a lot of progress to be made in DNA/genetics testing.
29. Politics Do Affect Heritage
I did it with my wife and kid. My wife's results were fascinating. There were bits from all over the world and it was neat to see which parts of Africa and Europe her family was from. There was even some Native American in there.
My results? Japanese. And I was, like: oh, right, my ancestors are from a tiny island nation with nearly 500 years of isolationist policies.
Seriously, though, I still find it neat because they told me things I have a genetic propensity for. And they're continuing to find more information.
28. Love Is An Open Door
My mother, sister, and I did 23andMe 5 or so years ago to see if any of us had any markings for cancer since my grandma had breast cancer. Her Dr told her that it was the fastest way for us to find out. Luckily, none of us have the markings and it proved that her cancer was from hormone treatments at menopause.
Last year, I received an email from another 23andMe user saying we shared DNA. I went to the website and saw that we shared 1/2 of the same DNA. My half brother had done 23andMe because he was adopted and was curious about his health and ancestry. He was not expecting to find us. My other siblings and I had already known we had another brother out there somewhere, so we were hopefully optimistic that this would be a good thing.
He and his family came to visit a couple of months after finding us. He is fantastic and so are his kids. We are so fortunate to have them in our lives now. We all get along great. His parents are wonderful and his mom calls our mom often just to chat. She had been telling him for years to look for his bio-Mom.
So, thank you 23andMe. Without it, we wouldn't have a new brother and a new niece and nephew.
27. First Impressions May Not Be Correct
Late to the party, but this is a fun one.
Initially I was a little disappointed with my test results; I'd been hoping for a clue on a native american great great grandmother and found out... I'm white. I'm more English than most people living in England. It was supremely boring. (Hispanic MIL thought this was hilarious.)
BUT, eventually I was contacted by a a woman I'll call Teri about a possible match. It was distant (second cousin level), but her mother had been adopted from a tiny, tiny rural town in Montana around 1918 and had never been able to find out information on her biological family. Mystery time! So I rolled up my sleeves and started digging.
The first step was the tiny town, and found out that both my grandfather's maternal and paternal lines had lived there, briefly. I printed out photos of the mystery adoption lady and took them to the family reunion that happened to be around the corner, and they were all intrigued, as it was probably had to do with the oldest living's deceased uncle or aunt. The facial features suggested my grandfather's maternal line.
And then I found out one of the uncles during that time had died of the flu, fall 1917. Spanish flu, maybe-- my great-great grandfather on another branch had died of it around the same time. Teri's mother was born in Spring 1918. Facial features were a match. So Teri got her grandfather's name and picture (he looked a lot like her), and the most probably explanation that he'd had gotten his girlfriend pregnant, died when she was ten weeks along, and left her in a really bad situation. It also made Teri my second cousin once removed.
Teri was thrilled. We also have things in common besides genealogy (she's a librarian, I write fantasy books and she loves my work) so we keep in contact. It's not the most dramatic story, maybe, but digging up answers out of old archives is amazing.
26. Justifying Your Love For Coffee
My husband and I and our first child did 23 and me before they got sued for giving medical advice so we got the full panel
Overall it was fairly amusing, but not revelatory. I am more native American than we thought, but that's because lots of native American women who entered white society said they were only half so they could have more rights.
Also they said I should have curly hair based on my genes. Which is HILARIOUS. I have pin straight hair. I wish I had some hair texture. I'd settle for wavy!
Oh, and both my husband and I are coffee addicts, and the test said we were less susceptible to caffeine negative effects, so no wonder we love coffee!
25. Like Something Out Of Greek MythologyGiphy
I'm adopted and did both ancestry and 23 and me. I found my maternal great aunt on ancestry and my paternal uncle contacted me through 23 and me.
I've spoken to my uncle a couple times and my great aunt a couple times but that's it. I've seen my bio mom and Dad via Facebook and that's enough for me. If you find yourself really uncomfortable and not wanting to go any further, don't let anyone push you into a meeting or relationship you're not ready for or comfortable with.
To me, it's like opening Pandora's box. You have no idea what could happen or who these people really are, so just remember that you have all the power and should be able to control where you and your bio dad go from here. I wish you the best of luck, it's a very very strange situation to find yourself in.
24. Partial Princess?
My sister did this, and we found out we were even whiter than we realized (she had believed we had some Native American in there. We do, but it's way less than she thought)
I've been into genetic genealogy almost as long as it's been a thing (since 2006), and I can't tell you how many white Americans believe they have some significant Native American ancestry somewhere. Many, many families have the clichéd "Cherokee princess" legend that they heard from their grandparents. DNA testing shows that these tales are almost always false, usually to the testee's profound disappointment.
23. Bragging RightsGiphy
We did this for my grandma for her birthday a few years ago, it was really interesting! She knew she was mostly Italian, but we found out that she is actually (genetically) more Italian than most people who currently live in Italy.
She got a kick out of that.
22. Your Wife Might Not Be Just Your Wife
I was adopted as a baby, never knew my birth parents. For my wedding, my wife's best friend got us both Ancestry kits. At the time the joke was it would be funny if we found out we were related. We weren't. Flash forward to about a month ago when I got an email in Ancestry from someone saying we may be related. Ancestry classified the connection as very high probability of parent child relationship. So I found my birth father. Trying to figure out how to go forward now.
Since this has come up a lot. My wife and I were not related. 3.5 years after taking the test my biological father reached out to me and said Ancestry.com says we're related and would I like to find out how we were related. I think he was unsure if we were father/son or grandfather/grandson. After a few additional emails back and forth he provided information that confirmed he was my biological father. We are going to meet for coffee at some point in the near future.
21. The Family Castle!
Found out that my 16th great grandfather owned a castle in wales that is still there today! He was [beheaded] though
20. Knowing Your Past Can Change Your FutureGiphy
My mom is super into her family tree. She is 99.9% Rusyn (a specific kind of eastern Slavic from the Carpathian Mountains). She was born and raised in North Eastern Pennsylvania and had a feeling that her parents had to be distantly related somehow.
Got both of her parents DNA tests for Christmas this year... and they are indeed distant cousins.
19. Who Am I?
Turns out my neither my mother nor my uncle are related to my grandfather. And my mother and my uncle are half-siblings. So yeah, worth it
18. When You Are What You Hate
I just got mine today. I used Ancestry but because I'm Korean all I got was 100% East Asian (wow so insightful! /s). Anyway then I uploaded my raw data to Wegene that pinpointed my DNA better. I was SHOCKED. I expected Chinese, Mongolian and Korean.
- 55.43% Northern Han Chinese (this makes sense because my dad's side is North Korean and my last name can be traced to Chinese ancestry).
- 44.21% Japanese (the surprise)
- 2.8% Other (stuff they couldn't figure out)
- 0.32% Korean (I don't know if I can classify myself as Korean after that low percentage..... lmao)
So I found out I'm very not Korean and my mum was the most shocked because she absolutely hates the Japanese... and the Japanese dna is most likely from her side.
17. Excuse Me?Giphy
The chair of my department at work told me his story recently. He has a brother (we will call him Jeff) and a family friend (we will call him Henry) who was best friends with his brother growing up. Henry's sister did one of those DNA kits. Her results came back saying she had a first cousin in the area, who happened to be Jeff's first cousin.
After more investigating they found out that Jeff and Henry were actually switch at birth in the hospital. My department chair's biological brother is actually Henry.
His mother remembers there being some confusion with the babies in the hospital but never thought anything of it again after that. This is probably one of the craziest stories I have ever heard.
16. Sounds Like A Crazy Doctor's Office
I have a crazy story. The ancestry results were definitely unexpected in this case.
My friends mom did the ancestry test. She loved the whole thing and got her dad to try it, too.
The results showed he wasn't her father. They weren't connected via the site. She performed a paternity test (saying it was part 2 of the ancestry test) and confirmed that he is not biologically her father.
Then she nonchalantly brought up her (late) mom being pregnant and her father said that they had difficulty getting pregnant so her and her brother and sister were all conceived via artificially insemination. This was like the 1950s. Freezing sperm wasn't a thing then and her father claims to have been there. So there's probably only one to two other men in the room - the doctor and maybe an assistant.
Idk what happened in the doctors office 60 years ago (for three children) but secrets were definitely kept.
15. A Little Certainty
There were a lot of very interesting tidbits I picked up about my DNA that I wasn't expecting, and a lot of it made sense too. For example I found out that, according to my DNA, I metabolize a certain drug too quickly... And guess what? My mum has been on triple treatments of said drug for months with no result.
The reason I wanted to do it, though, was because my granddad on my mum's side was abandoned as a baby and never knew where he came from. Looks wise, he was clearly foreign and that passed through to my mum and to me (my brother looks more typically Irish, like my dad). So I wanted to find out where that part of my ancestry traced to. The results were a bit confusing and didn't outright say... But according to my results, my maternal haplogroup is a pretty rare one that is most common among the Sami people of Scandinavia. Looking at photos of traditional Sami people they look /a lot/ like my granddad and my uncles, so it kind of fits - but I'd still like to know with certainty.
14. Having A Good LaughGiphy
Brother did one. Turns out the family rumor of Irish/Native American descent was in fact incorrect and we are 98.9% Welsh, with the rest being a mixture of French and German.
13. Old Photos Take On New Meaning
My dad never knew who his father was; I've spent my adult life helping him search with what little information we had (which all turned out to be total red herrings) and it's basically been my life mission to find this person while my dad is still alive.
I bought him one of those ancestry DNA kits for his birthday last year, which brought up some "connections" that didn't make sense; first, second cousins we couldn't figure out. Luckily one of the people he connected with was really into geneology and had done a lot of groundwork themselves. They went through their photos and found one of a man at his wedding, said "Hey, you look a lot like my uncle"; the resemblance was totally uncanny but we didn't want to get too excited.
So from that, the children of the man in the photo did their own DNA tests to corroborate what we thought we were looking at. Yep - turns out that the man in the photo was my dad's father. He now has a whole new extended family he never knew about (he was an only child) and can finally finish searching for this piece of his life puzzle.
So yes, worth it.
12. Welcome To The Family
I signed up for 23andMe, primarily to do research on possible markers for some hereditary health concerns that run in my family line (all is good there). While I was there, I started digging into the ancestry side of the site. That is when my life split open.
Turns out I have a half-sister. My mom gave birth to a baby girl a few years before marrying my dad, and put her up for adoption. I had no idea about this, and I actually kinda doubt that my dad knew either.
You can imagine that this kind of new can really rock a family. With us, it's all been positive. Both of my parents have passed away, which eliminates a lot of the possibilities for awkward or problematic fallout. Basically, it just means that my brother, sister and I have another sister that we just have never met. All good! She has now met my (our) sister, and she is coming out to visit me in a couple months.
For her, it's been quite a ride. She has been searching for family for her whole life, and she finally found us! Of course, she was also very interested in finding out about her father. My mom never once mentioned old boyfriends to me, so I really didn't know how to help her, but now she had a bit more info to go on, and her search continued.
But wait, there's more! So, when she visited our sister, they were digging through old photos, and they came across a dated one of her with a guy, that was more than likey taken right around the date she was conceived. So she manages to track this guy down (she's been searching for decades, and apparently is damn good at it by now). She gives him call, and learns that the photo was taken at a party at one of his friend's house.
11. Getting Told, "NOPE."Giphy
I grew up being told I was primarily Cherokee Native American among many other things. My aunt and grandmother collected Cherokee artwork and artifacts to honor our heritage. Got my test results back... NOPE! I'm all white.
10. Doesn't Make Sense
I have believe my whole life that I was half Native American and half German. My father is Lumbee Native American and he and I both are registered and enrolled in the Lumbee tribe. I took a DNA test and the results came back that I was 88% European and 12% Sub-Saharan African. No Native American whatsoever. It kind of feels like my whole life was a lie.
This especially affected my father, because he grew up with this tribe in North Carolina and they've been fighting for federal recognition from the government for years. Just doesn't make sense.
9. What If You Hailed From Thor?
I won a test for free in a competition. There had been rumors in the family of Australian indigenous and American indigenous ancestry. Turns out they were incorrect as that didn't show up at all. What did show up was mostly as expected. Around 10% Pacific islands (Maori great-grandfather), 10% European Jewish, and the rest was mostly British isles.
The only unexpected thing was like 10% Scandinavian which we had no clue about. I'm not sure if that might've been random like Viking ancestry or something lol.
8. Show Me The MoneyGiphy
Apparently, I'm a fourth degree relative of Te Atairangikaahu (Maori monarch) family line on my father's side, and a very distant relative of the Norwegian Royal Family on my mother's side
So, technically, I'm part of the goddamn royalty. I'm still waiting on the gold, land and peasants.
It was worth it honestly. I am half African-American... so searching for your historical roots is a hot mess of a situation. Records are scattered around. There were always rumors in the family about where we originate from... but when I did the DNA testing it was... I don't know how to describe it -- a relief? To see where my ancestors came from in Africa, to see there were people that I share blood with.
As an African-American, there is a strong community to other black people, but to see on paper that at one time, long ago, you belonged to a region, to a group of people... and that they are still there, it is just... powerful. Also found some cool stuff on the white side of me (German/English ancestry I didn't know about). Would recommend especially to people of color.
6. What Was Your Dad Getting Up To?
Found out that my best friend growing up is actually my half-brother.
My Dad had a lot to explain that day.
5. Was It Worth It?Giphy
Yes, in a couple of ways.
Finding out I have a significant percentage of Jewish ancestry I knew nothing about got me major points with my Jewish mother in law.
I was also able to take the raw genetic sequencing data to my doctor to find out I have a genetic mutation causing my chronic fatigue. Something called MTHFR (because it makes a mess of your life) that makes it hard for your body to absorb folic acid, which in turn makes it hard for your body to process essential B vitamins. I now take a really inexpensive over the counter supplement called methyl-folate and avoid energy drinks and BAM! Chronic fatigue almost completely gone literally overnight.
4. Covering All Your Bases
I did a mtDNA (mother's direct female line) years ago because I had hit a wall. This line is more likely British.
Had my male cousin do my mom's father's side, yDNA (direct male line). I knew they were Jewish, but discovered that this direct male line is from Siberia. About 8% of Ashkenazi Jews are this group. It's been worth it because I'm able to see we are related to other families with same and different surname. One would have expected the surname to be the same.
I sent my Chinese mother-in-law a test. One of her grandmothers was adopted and the family is uncertain of her ethnicity. Hoping the test may provide some information.
I just sent in a sample for a total breakdown of my ethnicity for fun.
I think if you are doing the work of genealogy it's a great tool. It can't provide all answers, but it can verify or disprove some information. As more people do testing, the more precise the information will be. Also, finding cousins is a help as they may have information and documentation.
3. House of Lies
Quite worth it, confirmed some of the family legend and opened a whole shocking new chapter.
"Russian" as written in the passport and by name of both parents, but as it turns out Hungarian (but again, less than 10% while we thought it would be at least 25%) - that is what we knew, Ashkenazi Jewish - that is what we also knew (but less than 10%, and we thought it was about half), and a whole bunch of specific ethnicities and places in Western Europe (about 80%+) - that which we did not know.
2. When Parents Come To Blows
Well I am an orphan. All I knew is that I was Italian.
I am 98% Italian.
Mom side has been in America since 1910s. Help run the American Mafia and fight the prohibition. My family name is found with some of the worst American mafia members.
Dad side corrupted a part of the Italian police force. The corruption is still going on. My family helped put a communism leader in office and when he turned his back on my family, they took him out.
I have no surviving family members in America. I got a couple cousins in prison for robbery and money laundering. I got a grandfather in Mexico hiding from the American police. He is a wanted suspect for the Manson murders.
Not a fun read. I read so many police records it made my head spin.
1. Sigh of ReliefGiphy
I found my biological father and 4 half siblings, so I'm going to go with yes it was worth it. I also found that I don't have any of the incredibly obscure genetic diseases 23andme looks for - nowhere near as informative as I hoped, but okay.
Story - my actual father couldn't have kids but my mother wanted them, so they went the donor route. I've known this my entire life, so it's no big deal to me. I also grew up knowing that I could never find out who my biological father was, because anonymity is built into the donor process. Well... turns out he wanted to find any potential offspring and put himself out on a couple DNA testing websites. I found him in March. It's been a pretty interesting few months!
Y'all know that one Hannah Montana song? “Everybody makes mistakes! Everybody has those days!" That's the song I sing to myself every time I accidentally burn myself while making ramen. It comforts me to know, however, that there are a lot of worse mistakes out there than some spilled ramen. Who knew?
In fact, some mistakes are so astronomical that they're remembered for decades afterwards, leaving the one who made the mistake a legacy of being a dumba**. Here are a few of them!!!
Some may argue that the existence of the Universe was a mistake. I disagree. It was clearly Zayn leaving One Direction. But these next few were pretty bad too.
If you do the math, this is also the reason why Hentai exists.
I'll say the wrong turn Franz Ferdinand's driver made that went right in front of Gavrilo Princip.
EDIT: yes I'm aware war may still have broken out even if Franz Ferdinand wasn't assassinated
Imagine you're Gavrilo Princip. The assassination plot you and your friends had been cooking up for about the last year or so has been a complete and total disaster, just a monumental f*ck-up of the highest degree. You're staked out at this deli thinking maybe, just maybe the car will pass by, and by some stroke of sheer luck, it does.
If you're Princip, this is nothing short of serendipity.
Petition to return to the ocean.Ocean Surf GIFGiphy
"Many were increasingly of the opinion that they'd all made a big mistake in coming down from the trees in the first place. And some said that even the trees had been a bad move, and that no one should ever have left the oceans."
"In the beginning the Universe was created. This has made a lot of people very angry and has been widely regarded as a bad move." - Douglas Adams
This was, in fact, a monumental mistake.
Sears not beating Amazon to the punch.
Blockbuster not buying Netflix.
You thought THOSE were bad? Well gear up for their next few, because they are 100% accurate. Except the one about Cats, that movie slaps.
I don’t know sports, but sure.
Seahawks not running it.
I used to wear a Seahawks jersey whenever I took a test because I knew I would pass when I shouldn't.
CATS is great, y'all are just boring.Giphy
The Emoji Movie.
That live action movie about Cats is also up there.
Very fair point.
Humans are not wired to have that many social interactions and maintain that many relationships. Plus the echochambers it allows people to create for themselves, no matter how conspiratorial or vile their beliefs, means that stupid/evil people are no longer shunned into changing their mind.
Not sure it was worth being able to see what a celebrity had for lunch or what new "dance" your younger cousin and her tween friends are doing.
But in all seriousness, some horrible things may now have happened if the right thing was halted at the right time.
Washington called it.George Washington Disney GIF by Hamilton: An American MusicalGiphy
Voting for people based on what side of the political spectrum they're on. George Washington himself advised against political parties because he thought they would cause too much division in this country. Unfortunately for everyone, he was right.
Big oops on that one.
Barack Obama mocking Donald Trump at the Correspondents Dinner might have led directly to his 2016 run....
"Now, I know that he's taken some flak lately, but no one is happier, no one is prouder to put this birth certificate matter to rest than The Donald," Obama said. "And that's because he can finally get back to focusing on the issues that matter — like, did we fake the moon landing? What really happened in Roswell? And where are Biggie and Tupac?"
Then he turned serious: "But all kidding aside, obviously, we all know about your credentials and breadth of experience. For example — no, seriously, just recently, in an episode of 'Celebrity Apprentice' — at the steakhouse, the men's cooking team did not impress the judges from Omaha Steaks. And there was a lot of blame to go around. But you, Mr. Trump, recognized that the real problem was a lack of leadership. And so ultimately, you didn't blame Lil Jon or Meatloaf. You fired Gary Busey. And these are the kind of decisions that would keep me up at night. Well handled, sir. Well handled."
This is the best Star Wars and no one can change my mind.
I'll take 'Star Wars Christmas Special' for $100.
That atrocious pile of manure gave us Boba Fett, so without the Christmas Special there won't be The Mandalorian.
Wow, in this article, I openly admitted my love for Cats AND The Star Wars Holiday Special. So maybe my existence was the biggest mistake of all.
ANYWAY, I hope you enjoyed, and I hope you all feel a little bit better about yourself. Because when push comes to shove, at least you didn't accidentally start World War I
When I was younger, it seemed every adult believed that you couldn't swim for several hours after eating. Why did they all believe this? I fought them on this all the time, by the way. I shouldn't have had to, just because I'd eaten some barbecue during a pool party. Guess what, though? That belief is unfounded.
After Redditor MelonInACat asked the online community, "What is a common myth that has been debunked that too many people believe?" people told us about the myths that are still around despite credible evidence.
"Do you know how many wellness checks..."
You must wait 24 hours before reporting a missing person.
- 24 hours from when? The time you realized they were missing? The time you estimate they went missing? The time of the initial report to police?
- Who is the legal timekeeper? If this is a law, it must have a designated timekeeper for official records. City police? County sheriff? Do I hire a private attorney to file a time-keeping motion in court?
- If the most likely time to find a missing person is the first 24 hours, why would you wait 24 hours?
- If the person dies or is severely injured because the county/state refused to initiate a search, doesn't that put some liability on their office? It seems like that would've been tested in court by now.
There's no law governing how long you have to wait before notifying the police of a missing person. It's nonsense. File a report as soon as you suspect the person is missing or in danger.
Do you know how many wellness checks officers go on in a day? Call it in, man...
CALL IT IN!
Why would you wait so long? It's absurd and wastes valuable time. And in the event something has happened, you could very well be saving someone's life.
"Popping your knuckles..."
Popping your knuckles is actually harmless and the "study" that claimed it caused arthritis was heavily flawed. Studies now show that it has nothing to do with causing arthritis.
I heard this one all the time.
I didn't crack my knuckles anyway because I didn't understand the appeal. Why were all the first-graders so fascinated by this?
"That if you get too close..."
That if you get too close to a baby bird, the mother will smell human on the baby and abandon the nest.
You probably should still avoid touching baby birds for other reasons like disease or risking injury to the animal though.
"That waking a sleepwalker..."
That waking a sleepwalker is dangerous for them. They might wake up confused, but they'll be fine unless you scream at them or something.
"That your hair and fingernails..."
That your hair and fingernails still grow after you die. It's mainly an optical illusion. Your skin decays and shrinks, causing hair and fingernails to look like they've grown.
I grew up hearing this.
There are entire generations of people who believe this.
"We all know the story."
The War of The Worlds broadcast in 1938. We all know the story: Orson Welle's broadcast War of The Worlds over the Columbia Broadcasting System (CBS). But people only tuned in partway through and heard the radio announcing that machines were landing in the country and were advancing and attacking. People panicked in the streets and thought aliens really were invading. There was hysteria on the streets, people were looting and traffic jams backed up as people tried to escape.
But it turns out, that isn't really true. It turns out barely anyone actually listened to the broadcast, and the few that were listening knew it was Orson Welles and knew it was just a broadcast of War of the Worlds. If there was anyone that did tune in and mishear it and panicked, it was nowhere near the hundreds and thousands that have been reported in this myth.
This one is definitely a popular urban myth by this point.
Cool story, but nowhere near as exciting as you might have heard. If anything, that mythos probably helped Welles get full artistic control of the projects, like Ciitizen Kane and The Magnificent Ambersons, that made him a star.
"You don't have to wait..."
You don't have to wait 3 hours after eating to swim. Every summer I have to fight my in-laws about it.
"Do you really think..."
That not turning your airplane mode on (smartphone) can interfere/jam communications.
Do you really think if a smartphone might endanger a whole plane with passengers they would let it fly?
"No amount of reasoning..."
That cats kill babies.
I've run into this so many times since having kids. And it's not the older grandmas making these statements. I've had 20-year-olds tell me that you can't have cats if you plan to have babies because "they'll steal their breath" or some other variation. No amount of reasoning or rationale will dissuade them of this belief.
"Maybe it's just one of those things..."
YOUR. BLOOD. IS. NOT. BLUE! Seriously tho, I was told that everyone's blood was blue on the inside when I was younger, and I honestly don't know why my Mom thought that. Maybe it's just one of those things that you only believe because your family has been saying it since your Grandma's Grandpa's Grandma's Grandma's Grandpa or something like that.
Here's some valuable advice, guys:
Google is your friend. It's very easy to debunk this stuff. I remember being taught that the tongue had taste zones––we even had to fill out a worksheet labeling the tongue's different zones. That's totally wrong, in case you haven't figured it out.
Have some myths you've heard you'd like more people to know have already been debunked? Feel free to tell us about them in the comments section below!
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As much as we're not supposed to feel satisfaction upon observing the struggles of other people, it can be hard to resist a silent, internal fist pump when some blunder occurs immediately after we tried to help the person prevent it.
It is all a result of stubbornness.
The person we're trying to help is stubborn. They think they know the best way to do something, or the exact information required for a given moment.
And, on top of that, they think we're being stubborn when we try to intervene.
So all of our attempts to help fall on deaf ears. And the results can be as calamitous as they are satisfying.
TenaciousBrit asked, "What's your 'I told you so' moment?"
Many people chose to talk about the times their friends or family ended up producing some truly entertaining physical comedy.
And the laughter was only enhanced with the knowledge that they'd just predicted the whole thing.
"Was picking beans with my sister and mom. To this day I still don't know why the fence was electric but it was. I touched it and I got zapped. It wasn't too bad but it hurt. I jumped away and my sister saw me, I said that it was an electric fence."
"Of course she just thought I was pranking her. I was trying to tell her the whole time we picked beans but she didn't believe me. Right at the end she touched the fence and she didn't see it coming at all... Her face was just like, 'Oh shi-' "
"Loved the car ride home, 'I told you... Idiot.' "
No Babies, Two Hurt Backs
"My sister and I were out sledding when we were kids at this place with a really steep hill. I had unknowingly gone down a sled path that had a jump in it, and when I landed it really hurt my back."
"So when I got back up to the top of the hill I told my sister 'don't go that way, the jump really hurts.' She called me a baby and didn't believe me that it really hurt so she decided she would go down that path on her sled."
"Well, she hit the jump and didn't get back up, turns out she fell so hard she had broken her leg. When we finally got her back up the hill and to the car, I got to tell her 'I told you so.' "
"This dumb a**hole woman wouldn't leave the llamas at our petting zoo alone, even after I warned her."
"Eventually they had enough and spit alllll over her. Green goopy spit from head to torso."
"She threw up a bunch and I laughed. Until I smelled it and then I was retching too."
Others recalled the times they trusted their instincts, only to be gaslighted by medical professionals.
But they did, eventually, get the help they needed. And the mixture of pride and frustration toward the other doctor was palpable.
"Had a weirdly dark freckle. The color of chocolate. I showed spouse and he called me a hypochondriac and if I go to a doctor, I'd be wasting their time."
"I went to the dermatologist. It was melanoma."
Years of Itchy Apples
"Since I was 14, my throat got itchy when I ate apples. I told my mom but she thought I just didn't want to eat apples and forced me to eat them."
"Went to the doctor's office and got a test for allergies."
"Turns out, I'm allergic to apples, peaches, and many other fruits."
This Was a Baby We're Talking About Here!
"My newborn baby was projectile vomiting after every feeding. I took her to the doctor several times, always ended up being sent away with suggestions to try a different formula. I tried like 4 different ones, no change."
"The 4th or 5th visit, they sent me away again with the same recommendation even though I pleaded with them to figure out what was wrong with my baby. I left the office and drove to the ER instead. She ended up having emergency surgery that day."
"The surgeon said she would have starved to death (or maybe dehydrated?) had she gone much longer without the surgery. I gave the doctors in that office a piece of my mind."
Dirt: Not Always the Answer
"Went to the doctor on and off for breathing problems to no avail. A lot of 'rub some dirt on it' mentality. Wound up in the ER as a result of an asthma attack. Kept the bracelet on and everything when I went back the next week to see him."
"Not as satisfying as I would've hoped."
And some people discussed the times they knew or predicted a piece of information, but couldn't seem to persuade someone else through dialogue or conversation.
But, of course, the truth always comes out.
Chose the Wrong Partner
"Lawyer here. Fired a partner who I found some real irregularities in their spending habits vs. what they were making after he couldn't provide a good answer to where it came from. Other partner left and started a new firm with them because they disagreed with my decision and refused to look at the evidence."
"Turns out he stole 500k of a clients money, got disbarred, and is now facing prison time. I told her to look at the evidence and she didn't listen. 🤷🏼♂️"
"Someone started talking about a bottle of Newman's Own salad dressing while at dinner with my family and I said something like 'I'm pretty sure that was started by the Actor/Race car driver Paul Newman.' to which one of my siblings replied 'No it was someone else.' "
"I grabbed the bottle and turned it around and started reading the label out loud. The first sentence was 'Paul Newman's career was acting, but his passion was auto racing.' I stopped reading after that."
He Knew Immediately
"Bed frame wasn't properly lashed down while moving, partner insisted the weight of the frame would keep it in place."
"Flew into the middle of a major intersection on a left turn. We dodged four lanes of oncoming traffic to collect the pieces."
"I fixed my partner with a look that could peel paint, and he said 'I know, I know, you told me so and you're right. I'm sorry.' "
"I still give him sh** for it every time we move something. It's funny now, but god damn was I pissed at the time."
We can draw a couple of lessons from this list.
First, know that, at the end of the day, you can only do your best to share your opinion. You need to accept that they're going to do what they're going to do.
Second, when someone tries to give you advice, maybe take a moment to listen.
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One of the most upsetting aspects of the Covid-19 pandemic––which is saying a lot, frankly––is the number of people who have been so affected by misinformation and disinformation. You know the ones to which I refer: These are the people who are convinced the virus is a hoax despite the lives it's claimed and the devastation it has wrought on society at large. Disinformation kills––there are stories of people who remained convinced that Covid-19 is a hoax even while intubated in the ICU, even up to their last breath.
After Redditor asked the online community, "Doctors of Reddit, what happened when you diagnosed a Covid-19 denier with Covid-19?" doctors and other medical professionals shared these rather unsettling stories.
"The one that sticks out in my mind..."
I'm a doctor working in acute internal medicine. I've seen lots of COVID over the last 12 months, probably 300+ cases. The one that sticks out in my mind the most was a 70-year-old lady with COPD. She refused to have a vaccine because she didn't trust it despite the fact she was eligible for one for weeks beforehand (in the UK). Subsequently caught COVID and was admitted to hospital. She repeatedly doubted this was the diagnosis. She refused to go to our COVID High Dependency Unit despite quite significant respiratory failure. Of course, she deteriorated over a number of days to the point where she was on maximal oxygen on the ward and at that point finally accepted treatment in HDU with high flow oxygen, although continued to doubt she had COVID. Died within 24 hours of her HDU admission having refused to go to ICU.
And of course, what did her family say? They were convinced she never had COVID and even went as far as accusing us of withholding life-saving treatment from her. Unfortunately, there's no treatment for stupidity.
Indeed there isn't.
A completely avoidable tragedy.
"My worst experience..."
My worst experience was when a 2-year-old kid got diagnosed with COVID. His mother had brought him with c/o fever and diarrhea. The child was severely dehydrated and so we had to do a mandatory swab test since we planned to admit him. It came positive and the mother refused to admit it. We were ready to perform a repeat test and we even advised the parents to get tested. Her defense was "The child never left the house. It's just me and the father who go to work daily. The grandmother babysits while we are away. How can he even get COVID without leaving the house." She had called her husband, he came with 10-15 relatives in a car, they broke a few chairs and then left with the baby. We just informed about the case to the COVID control centre.
"Only one patient ever accused me..."
Infectious disease doctor here. Seen about 450-500 COVID patients in the hospital since it all started. Only one patient ever accused me of using the nasal swab to give him COVID (along with a microchip). A handful have ranted nonstop about China. Everyone else has been sick enough to accept it, but lots still refuse the idea of vaccination even after being in the ICU.
"I had a lady who was maxed out..."
I had a lady who was maxed out on high flow (the next step is breathing tube) who still refused to believe she had Covid and was holding a negative test in her hand that she had taken a week prior.
The denial is so strong here.
It would be sad if it wasn't so horrifying.
"I'm an attending physician..."
I'm an attending physician at our Triage Unit. On a Friday, an older gentleman (60 + years) came in with his entire family (wife, sister, BIL, 2 nephews, and 3 children), none of them with a face mask. All had mild COVID symptoms except him, he was saturating 80% with evident shortness of breath. We insisted on doing PCR and a chest CAT scan looking for COVID but he and his wife refused, saying that COVID wasn't real and it was just a bacterial infection. The more we talked with him the more agitated he got to the point that his face was red. We suggested hospitalizing him to stabilize him and start treatment, but they accused us of exaggerating his symptoms and that we only wanted to hospitalize him so we could steal the liquid in his knees (a stupid rumor that was going around when this whole thing started).
They both cursed at us and said they were going to a better hospital to get antibiotics. Fast forward 24 hours later on Saturday, I get a call from the hospital next county over telling us that they intubated one of our patients because he went into respiratory failure when he arrived and they had to transfer him here because they don't have the appropriate equipment. We transfer the patient on Sunday only to find out on the CAT scan he had 90% of lung damage. He passed away on Monday morning.
Just before the family took the body away, I gave the widow the death certificate (that I filled out) and before walking away, she turns around and waves the certificate yelling "See! I told you it wasn't COVID! It says here: "Death due to pulmonary pneumonia due to SARS-CoV-2! I knew it was a bacteria!" I told her: "SARS-CoV-2 is COVID-19, ma'am."
The lengths people are willing to go to stay in denial astound me.
Basic critical thinking appears to have gone out the window here.
I'm a family doc who mostly does outpatient.
I live in a pretty conservative area with a good proportion of COVID deniers, so I've been seeing COVID deniers since this mess became politicized (I've lost a few patients over the mask mandate).
Anyway, I'm pretty pleased to say that several of my COVID denying patients have completely turned their attitude around when they (or a close family member) contracted COVID. Even if their case wasn't severe, the sudden terror that they could wind up on a ventilator overnight really puts the fear of God into people.
Unfortunately, I still have some patients who are still pretty obnoxious despite their covid diagnosis. They mostly dig deeper into paranoia. If not about the virus itself, then about the circumstances surrounding them contracting it.
"If Fauci had done his job from the beginning, it never would've hit this town."
"It's the entire fault of Obamacare that I can't get the experimental immunoglobulin treatment!" (It's not, your eligibility for the infusion is dependent on a list of risk factors).
And, probably my favorite...
"So I have COVID and it's completely your responsibility to fix it. I need you to send Hydroxychloroquine, Zinc, Vit D, Lisinopril, and azithromycin to the pharmacy..." Then they proceed to get pissed at me when I don't.
"During our peak time..."
I'm an emergency department physician in the US. I work in an area that had the highest death rate for a solid couple of weeks in the country.
During our peak time when we had national news crews here covering how we were a s***show, saw numerous people screaming their Covid disease wasn't real despite being hypoxic and on large amounts of oxygen due to Covid. That was an unpleasant time as this was still early (May/June) and it was extremely political like people apparently plotting to kidnap our state governor due to lockdowns.
Saw a lot of people refusing Covid testing who needed admission for non-covid purposes because the swabs would give them covid or put some sort of tracking device. They weren't pleased when they then had to be admitted to our full-blown Covid floors. Our Covid floors resembled a warzone because they were understaffed and relative s***hole conditions as we basically converted hallways into covid floors.
Also saw a lot of people young people who weren't exactly deniers but thought you basically couldn't sick if you were young. Lots of people with their lungs permanently scarred or at a minimum a couple of weeks of misery and/or spread it to their loved ones who got extremely ill.
"The willful cognitive dissonance..."
Physician here. The willful cognitive dissonance is real. It never ceases to amaze me how many patients will refuse assistance from me to register to get vaccinated, make claims that vaccines are harmful, but then accept my medical care on anything else that suits their whim. Patients absolutely have the autonomy to refuse care, but why would you continue to see a physician and accept their medical advice and care if you think they would simultaneously recommend something to you that would be harmful?
I've posed this question to patients who are vaccine-hesitant: "Why would you let me manage your diabetes and hypertension if you think I would harm you by recommending vaccinations?" You cannot get any kind of thoughtful response aside from, "I just don't want to be vaccinated."
"Some denier patients lived..."
RN here with most of 2020 spent in COVID land. I never had anyone refuse treatment when things got serious. I know some of the MDs I worked with got yelled at, like the rest of us...but honestly, that happens frequently anyway.
Some denier patients lived, many of which had accepted reality by the end of their stay after seeing what we all were going through to treat them.
Some died telling me I was a sheep or an idiot or a liar between gasps of air.
COVID didn't care.
This comment is strangely poetic.
Covid definitely doesn't care. The virus lays waste to people and... that's it. Good luck with your games of Russian roulette.
"People are crazy."
I work on a COVID unit and I ran into a patient like this. They'd tell me over and over again about how they weren't really sick and about how I didn't need to be gowned up in PPE. They even tried to take my face shield off. If you test positive for COVID two times then you have COVID! People are crazy.
Covid disinformation is a very serious problem and it's costing people their lives.
What can be done about it?
News literacy matters: It's important to get information from verifiable sources. Scientists and medical professionals are trustworthy. Those with backgrounds in public health know what they're talking about. Some conspiracy theory you received from your distant cousin on WhatsApp or Facebook Messenger is not worth your time or consideration.
Have some of your own Covid denial stories to share? Feel free to tell us about them in the comments below!
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