As Halloween approaches, theatres fill with horror films and sinister events transpire on TV series. Currently appearing on a popular hit show is an instance of babies switched at birth, a creepy plot device That’s popped up in literature, television, and film for many years. But although It’s uncommon in the real world, it has happened?and the discovery, and resulting emotional trauma, create a chill worthy of any spooky film.
The tragic saga of Rebecca Chittum and Callie Conley is reality, but it sounds like the stuff of movies and literature. Shortly after Rebecca’s young parents were killed in a car accident, the family discovered that the three-year-old was not a biological grandchild. Ten years of heart-wrenching family and courtroom drama later, the girls were largely remaining with the families that had originally raised them.
The sad story of Kimberly Mays and Arlena Twigg was later made into a TV movie, but the facts speak volumes on their own. The two baby girls were switched due to a hospital error, but there was an additional catch: Arlena had died during an operation when she was 10 years old (during which time the Twiggs found out that she was not biologically theirs). The courts became increasingly involved when a then teenaged Kimberly sued to remove her biological parents from her life. The New York Times has the story.
One of the creepier switched-at-birth tales involves a mother who knew about the switch?and watched her biological daughter grow up in the same small town as the child she raised as her own. Yet she didn’t tell anyone of the mix-up for over 40 years. This hour-long radio broadcast, courtesy of Chicago Public Radio’s show ?This American Life,? brings multiple perspectives to the strange story.
The ending doesn’t always have to be unhappy. This Good Morning America story introduces two women who were switched at birth but who didn’t discover the mistake until they were 56 years old. It wasn’t easy at first, but now they’re trying to put the past behind them. In fact, they’re working at joining their families together in an attempt to put nature and nurture into harmony again.