People Who Got Surprise Results From A DNA Test Share Their Stories (30 Stories)

Just about all of us have done one of the DNA tests going around. I did one early on just because I wanted to see what percent Neanderthal I am. Turned out to be more than I like, but I guess that’s what happens when you take one of these test. You bite off more than you can chew.

On Reddit, folks are sharing the surprising things they found out when they took an Ancestry or other DNA test.

Can I just say I love when racists find out that they’re actually some percentage of the race they hate? It’s poetic.


“My bio-dad left his family and two daughters in Washington and married my mom in Los Angeles 5 weeks later. I found his first marriage certificate but nothing about a divorce. I’m pretty sure he was a bigamist.” — khegiobridge


“I found out that my dad is not my biological father. Turns out the family friend I grew up calling ‘grandpa’ is. Oh yea, and he was also my mom’s bariatric surgeon. Felt weird man.” — agrajag159


“My wife is adopted (but found her bio mom) and did one of the genetic tests. Someone matched with her and asked if she knew such and such a name. She found out her bio mom’s husband wasn’t the bio dad, it was the bio mom’s boss. Ooops.” — valeyard89


“I was adopted and always knew I was adopted. My parents told me that I came from a family that had already had all of their kids. They lived several towns over. I was a surprise. Three years ago my wife decided to take some DNA tests. I figured what the heck? Maybe I’m part Zulu warrior. That’d be cool.

When the tests came back, I found out I had a first cousin. They had listed a public email. I emailed them, started comparing notes, and wham! I was in for quite a surprise. First, I was not born into a traditional family. Instead, my bio mom was single. Second, I was not a late addition. I had four sisters and one brother. I was the baby, but only by a couple of years. Third, most all of them lived nearby. Finally, nobody knew I was alive!

My biological mom had passed. She had kept the pregnancy secret from everybody else. Before she died, she had confided in one of my bio sisters that she had a baby a long time ago, and she had put the baby up for adoption. She told nobody else. When my sister told the rest of the family? They didn’t believe her! So when I finally looked them up, she was like, ‘See! All those years! I told you so! We have a baby brother!’ It was an amazing experience. I had no idea what I was getting into when I sent that DNA test off.” — ExistentialismFTW

Art Design GIF by dualvoidanima - Find & Share on GIPHY


“I have an uncle that was put up for adoption. He contacted my grandma and she thought he was going to extort her (they’re well off). Turns out he’s a multi, multi millionaire on his own. They still have limited contact, though my dad has reached out and formed a relationship. Apparently they look exactly alike and have the same personality (which sounds kind of stupid now that I’m writing it out, but they’re only half-siblings).” — RolandDPlaneswalker


“On the flip side — my dad used to say my mom slept around and none of the 3 of us were his kids. Welp, thanks to the test, we know all 3 of us are!” — sparklypiggy


“Found out I have a different father. My dad also took a DNA test at the same time and found out his father, of 52 years, was not his biological father either. As it turns out, I come from a line of bastards.” — Benevolent_Burrito


“Not me, but a friend never knew who his father was (mom had a weekend fling in college and never contacted the guy after) and his wife helped him use ancestry.com to try and track him down. My friend reached out and the guy was obviously surprised, but flew across the country to meet him. They have a great relationship now, the dad attended his wedding, and they try to get their families together a couple times a year or so.” — djsquidnasty


“A full 100% older brother. My mother got pregnant by my father before the were married. Scandalous in 1960. So, with my father’s knowledge of the situation, mom left town, and lived with my aunt until the birth. Mom gave the baby up for adoption, and then returned home.

A couple years later, she married my dad and had three more children together, including me. Fifty five years later, after both my parents had died, my aunt let it slip that me and my siblings that were not the only children of our parents. To paraphrase from Star Wars, there is another. My sister took a DNA test, and a couple of year later she got a hit. Soon thereafter, we met our new big brother and his family (wife, kids) and have become quite close.” — Freeagnt

Dna Sequence GIF by Massive Science - Find & Share on GIPHY


“My ex-husband’s family were proud of their Dutch heritage and claimed to be one of the founding families of the historically Dutch Holland, MI. His ancestry results didn’t show any Dutch ancestry. Instead, he had primarily English/Irish ancestry.” — faye_okay_


“So, I did the health DNA one 18 months ago because I wanted to see if I had the breast cancer gene, as there is several incidences on both sides of my family. Got my results and became very confused, it claimed I had no Italian despite my father’s grandma literally coming over from Sicily in 1920.

It took me a few minutes to realize what that actually meant. My parents have been together since my mother was 14, I was born when she was 17, and my father joined the military and married my mother. Called my mom and she literally said ‘that’s interesting.’

Then she asked me not to talk to my father and she would explain everything the next time I visited. She did not, and just refused I talk about it. Honestly, I was just shook. I did not see it coming and it was never even presented to be a possibility to me.

My sister ended up doing a DNA test and it showed that we were half siblings. I went no contact with my mother 4 months ago, due to this incident and several others. I haven’t told my dad but I realize at some point the truth is going to come out, my sister matched with some of my fathers relatives while I did not so if anyone checks that shit, they’re gonna be asking questions.” — sunshineykris


“That my grandmother was biracial. She was abandoned shortly after birth at a church by an older white lady, adopted by a white farmer with 11 kids, stopped talking to most of that family due to nondescript unpleasantness as an older teen. She died 20 years before I was born and looks like Maya Rudolph in the few photos I’ve seen but insisted she was part-Sicilian.

My father and his brother both look more white than not; my father worshipped the ground she walked on and never questioned her ancestry, my uncle was always pretty sure she was Black and argued with her a lot (both dad and uncle ended up being super active in the civil rights movement and still are devoted to antiracism work nearly 60 years on, which largely stemmed from these discussions growing up).

Anyway, my mom (divorced from my dad) got me a DNA test a few years ago. My grandmother was definitely half-Black, I have no Sicilian or Italian DNA. I’ve connected with a few Black distant cousins over email and zoom, am waiting for the pandemic to mostly end to talk to my dad about it and introduce him to more family.” — ReddishWedding2018


“My son is my 4th cousin. (We adopted him as an infant from an agency.) Fun to find that we are actually related!” — iawegian


“I exported my raw DNA from 23andme and threw it through promethease to find out why I have porphyria, which is supposed to be hereditary. My mom and dad are definitely my mom and dad, but neither of them have this, which means it was environmental exposure that caused it. Discovered a rare AMPD enzyme deficiency in mom, found out dad carried a recessive LUPUS gene and gave it to my sister. DNA is WILD.” — djspacebunny


“I took a DNA test & found i am ethnically 25% Ashkenazi. After 8 months of serious digging, I found out my grandpa (my father’s dad) is not my father’s biological father. I have since came into contact with my half-uncle, he’s super nice & I enjoy chatting with him. i loved learning about my bio-grandpa & the rest of the family. We haven’t told them & don’t plan on it. I have a small family so it was such a great comfort to connect with more ‘family,’ understand my lineage & the history of my Jewish ancestors. Really a lovely experience.” — ameliacantlove

Dna GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY


“I knew about being conceived using assisted reproductive technology (ART) but I didn’t know about the Duggar-ish number of half siblings I had from the same sperm donor. Frankly it blindsided my parents too.” — Obstetrix


“My deeply-racist back woods Mississippi family had an African in it six generations ago. My grandma is about 5% African.” — chimusicguy


“It wasn’t me but my sister. We have a very Italian last name and my dad and grandmother always told us stories about our family coming over from Italy and our relatives still in Italy. My sister one day calls me hysterical, she did a DNA test and came back 0% Italian. Zero. Percent. And it came up with matches to other people as half siblings. She confronted my parents, and apparently my parents had split up for a bit and my mom was with another guy during that time, but then got back together with my father. And they supposedly didn’t know but that’s how my sister found out she had a different dad.” —Anonymous


“I received a DNA kit for Christmas, found out that my first cousin is actually my half sister. My mom had an affair with the man I always thought was my uncle, but it turns out he’s my biological father. My mom doesn’t know I found out but it gave me a lot of insight into my childhood.” —Anonymous


“My mother’s biological father was not the man who raised her and who I knew as my grandfather. Her biological father was actually her mother’s first husband, who was a literal super spy who has been written about in history books. I got in contact with his son, my half uncle, who has been wonderful, and who has filled me in about his father’s wild life.” —Anonymous


“This happened to a coworker a few years ago. She knew her dad was her stepdad and that her bio dad was some guy named ‘Dave’ and she knew a little bit about him. She was told that ‘Dave’ just didn’t want to be a father.

She did the DNA test more to find out her ancestry, than anything else. Well, after she posted her results, she instantly matched with a bio sister, then found her bio dad, who wasn’t ‘Dave,’ and a bunch of other family — no one knew each other existed, including her actual bio dad. They all have embraced her with open arms. It’s been incredible to watch her heal with her new family.”


“Found out none of my seven siblings and I have the same father. We are all in our fifties and sixties now. Wow, Mum! LOL.” —Anonymous


When I was 28, I did a 23andMe, and matched with a biological uncle! I reached out to him, and long story short, we were able to determine that his younger brother was my dad. We did a cheek swab to confirm and it was a 99.9999% match. My dad isn’t one of the people my mom thought it could be; they met once, hooked up, and never saw each other again. His entire family accepted me with open arms, and I happily have an awesome stepmom, two more younger siblings, and an amazing extended family. The absolute wildest part, though? My dad lived in the same city as me, and had for all the 15 years I lived there. At one point, we even lived on the exact same street, but missed each other by about a year. SO CRAZY.”


“After my parents passed away, through research on Ancestry.com, I found out that my stepfather lived across the street from my family when I was conceived, so my stepfather might actually be my biological father.” —Anonymous


“My Dad found out at age 50 that his father was not his biological father. His mom never told him and still tried to deny it after he showed her the DNA results.”


“My mother had gotten pregnant with me right after high school in 1985. She had always believed her on-again, off-again boyfriend was the father. They got married and then he joined the Navy — so we would both have health benefits. However, he was dishonorably discharged after developing a drug problem and he and my mother divorced. My mother remarried and her new husband adopted me when I was 5, as the man who always thought he was my father gave up his parental rights.

A few years ago I decided to take an AncestryDNA test out because I was curious about my heritage. I was really shocked when I got a paternal match to someone I’d never heard of. Bio dad never responded to my message through the site, but my aunt remembered him hanging around during that time. What’s funniest to me is that my mother categorically denies it, but it’s impossible because it’s DNA 😂.”


“A few months ago, a guy I went to high school with reached out to let me know his DNA results show that he’s my half brother. I have a sister that’s 43 — as well as a younger brother (37) and younger sister (27) — this guy is 40, I’m almost 40. When my mom was pregnant with me, she was told about a ‘one-time affair’ from our father when he was publicly threatened by the lady’s husband in our very small town and knew it would get back to our mom. But we didn’t know we had a half brother from that affair until 40 years later!”


“After taking an ancestry test, I was contacted by a man from Jersey City who had a genetic link with me asking more about my family because he is adopted and wanted to learn about his birth family. 

After some light digging, I find out that he is a sibling of my paternal grandmother, who (up until this point) was an only child! During WWII, my great-grandfather was drafted in the Navy and sent to Italy. He met a woman there, relations happened, and he went home. Few months later, Italian woman finds out she’s pregnant, she comes to Jersey City to find him, can’t find him and has the baby in the States and surrenders him to an orphanage, and goes back home to Italy.”


“I found a cousin that I didn’t know — and at that point I knew all my cousins. Turns out it was my aunt’s son she gave up for adoption in the ’70s. Long story short we ended up meeting him. He and my aunt are very close now. It doesn’t always turn out that way, but it did for them. I am so happy for my aunt and cousin.”


“Not my story but of someone in my hometown. After taking a DNA test a woman found out that she had a brother out of state. And after doing some more digging, they found that not only was he her biological brother but that the man she thought was her brother was not. The two were born in the same hospital and had been switched at birth. The two men eventually wound up meeting one another, but claimed the family they had been raised with as theirs.”