|Articles, Europe, Family/Parenting, Media Archive on 2015-02-24 22:48Z by Steven|
The New York Times
Maïa de la Baume
GRASSE, France — When Sophie Serrano finally held her daughter, Manon, in her arms after the newborn, suffering from jaundice, had been placed under artificial light, she was taken aback by the baby’s thick tufts of hair.
“I hadn’t noticed it before and it surprised me,” Ms. Serrano said in an interview at her home here in southern France, not far from the Côte d’Azur.
Ms. Serrano, now 39, was baffled again a year later, when she noticed that her baby’s hair had grown frizzy and that her skin color was darker than hers or her partner’s.
But her love for the child trumped any doubts. Even as her relationship unraveled, in part, she said, over her partner’s suspicions, she painstakingly looked after the baby until a paternity test more than 10 years later showed that neither she nor her partner were Manon’s biological parents. Ms. Serrano later found out that a nurse had accidentally switched babies and given them to the wrong mothers…
…Ms. Serrano’s love for Manon, she said, grew stronger after she learned that the girl was not her biological daughter. She also said that, after meeting the girl she had given birth to, she felt no particular connection with her.
“It is not the blood that makes a family,” Ms. Serrano said. “What makes a family is what we build together, what we tell each other. And I have created a wonderful bond with my nonbiological daughter.”…
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