NPE

Severance Magazine by Katy Barbier-Greenland

It was my pleasure to be interviewed by the amazing journalist and editor BK Jackson for a new online magazine that launched last month called Severance Magazine. The magazine has been established as a platform to discuss issues and experiences faced by adoptees, NPEs (non-parent expected), donor-conceived people and others who have found themselves with unanticipated, misassigned or unknown parentage. In the piece, I talk about the psychological cost of keeping and discovering family secrets, and what kinds of impacts there can be on the parent and the child where one wants to be open and one wants to maintain the secret….such a complex scenario!

This was a great opportunity to share some of my thoughts and reflect on some of my research findings. Thinking through the subjectivities of it all - whose truth is the secret and how can we navigate when authenticity and privacy come into conflict? How much is our identity wrapped up in our family and ancestry, and how important is it to have access to our own biogenetic information? Openness, privacy, secrecy…all such important issues in families and in particular, for people in the adoptee, NPE and donor-conceived communities.

Follow Severance Magazine on Twitter and Facebook, and please do visit the Severance website which is in my opinion already one of the very best resources available in terms of information and links, and I am sure it will enable community for people who have been affected by these experiences as well. Loads of essays, articles, resources and links and more added all the time and I encourage you to read Telling Family Secrets: Proceed with Caution if you or someone you know has discovered a family secret.

Media articles on my research by Katy Barbier-Greenland

  • I spoke with The Times about the impacts of DNA discoveries on people’s lives, and the resulting article was by Mark Bridge was published on Saturday 7th September. A subscription is required, although the good news is that you can sign up for a free month.

  • Tony Trueman from the European Sociological Association published a longer article about my research on August 23rd, sharing a few family secret discovery stories and looking at the consequences for people’s lives. Tony’s article is published at Medical Xpress and you can check it out here.

  • Journalist Katie Grant at iNews published a great article on August 22nd about my research. You can check it out here. She also included a couple of other stories of family secret discoveries - very complex, difficult and interesting experiences.

  • Yvonne Bolouris of The Scottish Sun shared the details of her own surprising non-parent-expected (NPE) experience, with discovering her biological father was not the man she thought it was her whole life. Like so many who purchase a home DNA test, Yvonne was just curious about the ethnicity of her and her daughters, and she has generously shared her story. Her piece was published 15th September.