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15 August 2014

Friday Question from the Book of Questions You discover that your wonderful one year old child is, due to a mixup at the hospital, in fact not yours. Would you want to exchange the child for the child that is biologically yours?
As a non-mom, I think this is a wrenching question. I tried to imagine what I would say about my niece/nephews. I think my answer would be yes, not just for my own family but for the other one, but of course I'd want to keep close ties to the non-biological child too. But I think this is incredibly hard to answer -- love is not necessarily tied to biological links.
posted by bearwife 15 August | 13:33
No, but I'd want my biological child back. I'd want both kids. Greedy greedy greedy!
posted by ThePinkSuperhero 15 August | 14:16
This was the plot of the recent Japanese movie Like Father Like Son. It made the point that the family that raises a kid is just as valid as the blood one.

posted by brujita 15 August | 18:01
Yeah, I think I'd want both too! If that wasn't possible, I guess I'd want to make the swap - I think the long-term wondering 'what if' and stressing over whether I'd made the right decision would be too much for me.
posted by dg 15 August | 18:16
The Solomon like solution is to chop both sets of parents in half and distribute them to the children.
posted by arse_hat 15 August | 20:02
I'm thinking that it would be a pretty dicey decision, given all the research that has been emerging about the first 36 months of life being so critical in terms of later outcomes - temperament, intelligence, attachment, security, perseverence. I would know that I had given the other family's kid the best possible care I knew how, and would know all about its life experience so far, and I would be wondering what the other child's experience in the other family had been.

Still, I do not think this would make it an easy decision to keep the child I was invested in and had grown attached to. After all, it would be the same type of bond and level of attachment adoptive parents have to babies who are not their genetic offspring. If I didn't re-swap, I would certainly want to always know what was going on with the other baby.

All I know about this issue in real life is that it has happened on at least a few occasions, and, based on the thin evidence of This American Life shows, it seems like a lot of women, when they knew, chose for various reasons not to re-swap the babies. Which is really very interesting.
posted by Miko 15 August | 20:35
I'm with TPS. Subjugate the other family and take both children.
posted by Eideteker 19 August | 09:17
3-point weekend update. || How to make links open in new tabs.