DNA Testing Reveals How Many Relatives Have Accidentally Married Each Other

By: Ben Campbell | Published: Apr 01, 2024

Online DNA tests such as those from Ancestry and 23andme have revealed a shocking trend of incest in the United States. 

Data collected from the sites suggests as many as one in 7,000 people are born of incest, which results in a plethora of birth defects, including cystic fibrosis and heart problems. 

Popular Online Genealogy Sites

Ancestry and 23andme are online genealogy sites that can help people better understand their family tree.

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They have become increasingly popular among Americans who are interested in better understanding their family’s ancestry. 

Incest Levels Higher in the U.S. Than Once Thought

According to The Daily Mail, however, the results of the genealogy tests, which cost around $100, have revealed some shocking statistics centered on incest in the U.S.

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Many of the tests, which third-party firms later analyzed, produced results that suggest incest is far more common than once thought. 

Children Born to Close Relatives

According to NDTV, extensive genetic testing through sites like Ancestry and 23andme has revealed numerous cases of children being born to close biological relatives.

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The shocking discoveries suggest that incest in society is far more common than Americans care to believe. 

Incest Levels Reach 1 in 7,000

In 1975, a psychiatry textbook claimed one in a million children were born of incest. 

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However, according to recent studies, the number is far more frequent and could be as low as one in 7,000.

Woman Finds Out She Had Relations with Her Brother

Speaking with CNN, one woman claims the results of a genealogy test led her to discover a disturbing truth. 

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Victoria Hill had been attending a high school reunion when she got chatting to an old flame about family trees. 


Former Lovers Receive Shocking News

Hill and her former partner noticed striking similarities in their family trees, so much so that he decided to take the test himself. 

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Upon receiving the results, he informed Hill of their worst nightmare, writing, “You’re my sister,” according to The Daily Mail.


'Anybody Could Be My Sibling'

Hill went on to explain the entire situation has traumatized her.

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“I was traumatized by this. Now I’m looking at pictures of people thinking, well, if he could be my sibling, anybody could be my sibling,” she said (via CNN).


Slept with a Half-Sibling

Further results revealed that Hill had several more siblings whom she didn’t know growing up. 

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“I have slept with my half-sibling. I went to elementary school with another,” said Hill (via CNN). 


Way More Than Anyone Could Imagine

A University of Edinburgh researcher, Dr. Jim Wilson, who took part in the study of incest in modern society, shared his thoughts on the one in 7,000 estimates. 

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“That’s way, way more than I think many people would ever imagine,” he told The Daily Mail


Greater Risk of Recessive Gene Disorders

When people who are closely related produce a baby, there is a much greater chance of the child inheriting a recessive gene disorder. Each parent passes on a copy of their DNA to the child during insemination.

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Typically, the harmful mutations referred to as recessive genes are canceled out by the dominant and healthy genes. However, those who engage in incest reduce the chance of genetic variation, meaning a recessive gene may become dominant in their child, which could result in many kinds of disabilities. 


Women Fearful of Having Children

Those born of incest are at a much greater risk of cystic fibrosis, cleft palate, lower IQs, heart conditions, and even infant death.

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Many women who were born of incest are fearful of having their own children as they’re worried about passing on the recessive genes.