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Thursday, May 26, 2005

The Dark Side of Genealogy

From Science Daily:

Experts: Genealogy can be traumatic

LONDON, April 24 (UPI) -- British Genealogists say that researching family history can be traumatic, uncovering secrets like bigamy, adoption and crime.

The Society of Genealogists and other organizations suggest that in some cases counseling or psychotherapy may be needed, the Sunday London Telegraph reports.

"Burying secrets causes problems, and you have to be incredibly sensitive when dealing with such issues," Else Churchill, a genealogy officer at the society, told the newspaper.

One woman, who did not want her name used, started her research by getting her own birth certificate and discovered that the man she thought was an uncle was her father and her cousins were actually half-siblings.

[snip]

But there is another side to it. A survey last year by a genealogy Website found that 10 percent of those doing research are hoping to find a bad apple or two on the family tree.

[Read the whole story]
So long as they're on the upper branches. . .

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