The term consanguinity is defined as having a communal ancestor, close relationship, and blood relationship (Dictionary.com). You can be related to someone who shares a shared ancestor. Families are separated for many reasons, divorce, war, and death. Women who are impregnated through sperm banks produce offspring who could share the same sperm donor. There are two types of consanguinity, lineal and collateral. Lineal consanguinity is the direct blood relationship between two people who share the same ancestry, for instance, uncle and niece. Collateral consanguinity is the relationship between you and the descendants of your grandparents siblings.
Two people who are lineal in relationship, father and daughter, uncle and niece, or first cousins cannot get married. When two people who are consanguinity related do marry they are breaking state and religious laws. In many states it is a third degree felony. The most efficient and conclusive way to discover your relationship to another person is DNA testing. A DNA test will not only confirm if you are related but how. There are several types of DNA testing today, paternal and maternal, sibling, twin testing will determine if twins are fraternal or identical, and genetic mapping.
One reason to determine blood relationship with another person is in the case of marriage. The risk of birth defects, including mental retardation is high between a man and woman who share the same faulty genes. The risk is higher between close blood relations. First cousins may run a higher risk than second or third cousins. A DNA test for genetic abnormalities can determine if problems are expected.
Order the DNA test kit from one of the testing facilities available online. Alternatively, your doctor may be able to help you with DNA testing to determine your consanguinity relationship with another person. You do not need to draw blood to test DNA. A cotton swab swiped on the inside of the cheek is sufficient.
Use the swabs as directed and seal in the provided container. Complete the information contained in the kit for yourself and the other person, if required. Pack the kit as instructed and mail back to the lab. Ask the post office for a confirmation that the lab received the kit.
Wait for the test results to return. DNA testing for consanguinity relationships can take a few weeks. Invite the other person to be present when you receive and are ready to open the results. Discuss the results and what steps to take next.
Select an online ancestry search service. Register with the service, provide a user name, password, and your credit card. There are several services available both on-line and at the local library. Records uses include census, death, marriage, birth, and military.
Verify your email if asked. Sign into your account and begin by entering your name and birth date. If you are a married female, provide your maiden name. To search for a consanguinity relationship between you and another person, provide their name and birth date.
Other Steps to Take
The DNA Diagnostics Center offers genetic reconstruction. A genetic reconstruction will not only provide a consanguinity relationship but ethnicity. You may wish to trace your ancestors and learn more about your family tree.
Genetic counseling is an option with DNA tests. Genetic counseling can help you with deciding to have children should there be a genetic abnormality. There are many diseases that are genetic, some are life threatening, while others cause abnormalities of the body and mind. Babies born in the United States receive a blood test at birth to determine health issues, genetic abnormalities. Tests include sickle cell anemia, a disease found primarily in African-Americans; phenylketonuria (PKU), congenital hypothyroidism, and other tests that early detection can help treat.
The Legacy Tree is a source to discover if you are related to someone famous. Through the search criteria you can determine the consanguineous relationship with royalty if your family is descended from Europe. There is a possibility of finding relatives in another country, distant cousins from your great-great-great-great-great grandfather or grandmother on your father's side of the family. Maybe even your mother's side of the family.
Sources and Citations
The DNA Diagnostics Center
Ancestry by DNA
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