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09 December 2018 @ 07:12 pm
Legal DNA and Condo Complex Party  
I had a busy day today.

The Jewish Genealogy Society of Greater Washington had a talk by Judy Russell re: legal and ethical implications of DNA. Her key point was the need for informed consent, including the risk of unexpected results, when asking someone to test. She also provided an excellent handout.

I had been concerned about the potential weather but there’s been no snow yet.

Tonight was the annual holiday party at my condo complex. In the past, our complex has done this jointly with the neighboring one (who we share a clubhouse with) but this year it was just us. That made it much less crowded and much quieter. And there was still food when I left a half hour before it ended. That was a huge improvement over all the times that the food ran out in a half-hour or less. I hadn’t realized before that our neighbors are vultures.

This entry was originally posted at https://fauxklore.dreamwidth.org/435731.html. Please comment there using OpenID.
 
 
 
author_by_night: From Pexelsauthor_by_night on December 10th, 2018 01:24 am (UTC)
Her key point was the need for informed consent, including the risk of unexpected results, when asking someone to test. She also provided an excellent handout.

Huh, that's interesting. I know when I had my aunt test , I involved her in the process. We both registered her DNA kit onto Ancestry DNA, so she also saw the terms. She was very involved in the process. Although I don't think I informed her of any potential unexpected results, but that is a great point. Theoretically, for all my aunt knows, my grandmother could've given a child up for adoption at some point. (And she was still living at the time.) There is absolutely no reason form me to think that, that's just an example, but it is the sort of thing people discover. Among more devastating results. Fortunately I haven't discovered anything life-altering about my aunt.

I did have reservations about getting my grandmother tested. My dad said before she passed that we should get her tested, and now part of me wishes that we had. It might have answered so many questions. However... she had dementia, and while she was still in the "functioning" stages (could hold a conversation, knew where she was, etc.), I didn't know if she'd fully grasp what and why we were asking, and I ultimately decided not to go through with it. I think she would've understood on a rudimentary level, but how rudimentary? I am curious what the exact ethics of that were. I believe I made the right choice in not pursuing a test, but was I being overly cautious?

(I doubt we could've done all we needed to do anyway. It was challenging enough to make sure she had taken her pills and eaten when she was supposed to, let alone keep her from eating or drinking anything half an hour before the test.)

Edited at 2018-12-10 01:27 am (UTC)
fauxklorefauxklore on December 10th, 2018 07:13 am (UTC)
I’d say not testing someone with dementia is the right ethical choice.