Two Bittersweet Birthday Cakes

This baby doesn’t look like us, he said, and off to the lab he went. The results of the blood work substantiated his fears: it was impossible for him to be his baby’s father. Same for mother’s lab results: she was not her baby’s mother.

The AP reported today:

PRAGUE, Czech Republic — Two baby girls mistakenly swapped at birth went home to their biological parents in time for their first birthdays, reports said Tuesday.

DNA tests confirmed that nearly a year before, in a clinic southeast of Prague, two baby girls had been involved in an unfortunate mix-up. Two sets of parents had taken home daughters who were not biologically their own.

Pictures from the AP of parents with their non-biological daughters.

Both sets of parents agreed to swap their daughters, deciding to do so on the girls’ first birthday–December 9th. In preparation for the transfer, the girls have been spending extended periods of time with their biological parents.

Can you imagine the angst and grief that such a situation invariably produces. These parents have loved and bonded with a child who they now understand really belongs to someone else. What would be your take on such a situation? Would you do as these parents did, or would you opt to keep the child you took home from the hospital?

You probably will be interested to know that the nurses involved in the care of these children have been fired.

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My devotional blog is here. 

6 thoughts on “Two Bittersweet Birthday Cakes

  1. What a terrible situation! I’m just glad the babies were young enough to, hopefully, adjust without residual effect. Like Helen, I would want my biological child. Not only because it is mine, but you never know what medical ailments would be faced further down the road that biological parents could better help.

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  2. How awful that something like this happened. I remember when I gave birth to our son, I tried to memorize his features , and I think I would’ve known if they had given me someone else’s child, but I’m sure it’s not always that easy.

    I’m sure that must’ve been a difficult decision for both parents to make, but it’s good the babe’s are still young and probably won’t remember any of this years from now. Wow! what a story!

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  3. Thank you R GUY and HELEN for your considered responses.

    Helen, I think your idea of both families staying “connected” is a good one, and seems workable to me.

    I have dear friends who have adopted children, so I know adoptive parents can love their children as though they were biologically their own. I probably agree with you R Guy, that had the children been older, it would be better if they stayed with the original parent.

    What a hard situation, for the parents, of course, love those girls they must now relinquish.

    The hospitals I visit here in the United States now utilize a tracking devise that is fastened around the baby’s leg. I think it not only is to identify the child, but to help prevent kidnapping.

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  4. I would want my biological child, but I think the couples would do a good thing for both children if they decided the couple who raised them the first year were aunt and uncles. I think the families have good reason to become “kin.”

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  5. renaissanceguy

    As the parent of an adopted child, I would certainly support a choice to keep raising the babies they ended up with as their own. If the girls had gotten much older, I think that they would have had to.

    Since the girls were so young, I think it is probably best for them to make the switch. Let’s all hope that there is no lasting trauma for the precious little ones.

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