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What you didn’t know didn’t hurt you

Prior to DNA testing there was no way of knowing for sure that you weren’t the biological father of your children.? DNA testing has opened up a whole can of worms that society has yet to learn how to deal with.?

The term paternity fraud is? incorrect since 9 times out of 10 the woman cannot know for sure that a child is not the supposed father.? This reflects the judgment made? in the Australian High Court when Meredith Magill made her successful appeal against the previous $70,000 litigation.? To assume that all cases of misappropriated fatherhood are fraud? and that the mother is at fault completely lets off the hook the male who is invariably involved in all these cases.?

Actual statistics of misappropriated paternity are hard to quantify.? The link at might give some idea.? Basically for most of humankind men have been bringing up children for whom they are not the biological father.? They have not been experiencing any devastation or stress because they haven’t known.? What they didn’t know didn’t hurt them.? Now that we have DNA testing we suddenly have this male insistence that the only true father is a biological one.

The existence of DNA testing changes everything.

We have to approach child birth from a completely new angle.? Some ideas can be found here

What all this should make clear is that the current child-support payment system, which assigns payment obligations on the basis of biological paternity, not parenting commitment, is tragically flawed. Regardless of whether the father suspected, knew or had no idea that the child he was parenting was genetically unrelated, and notwithstanding however culpable his female partner’s behaviour was in creating that situation, the law needs to recognise and affirm men’s value to children as parents – and people – not sperm donors. Playing the biological card not only undercuts research findings that affirm the importance to children of having an active male parent in their lives, but lends support to the insulting claim made by a sperm donor interviewed on Four Corners last month that he, not the man who invested 20 years of time and love, was his daughter’s “real” father.

After the Magill case, this is where the law is quite likely to go.

And this too:

Of course, rejecting mandatory paternity testing at birth does not mean that men should not be assisted to accept the obligations of fatherhood in a more informed way. Upon the birth of a child, men ought to be given the opportunity to give one-time-only non-rescindable consent to their acceptance of the rights and responsibilities of fatherhood. If they feel unable to sign on the dotted line without conclusive proof that they are the biological progenitor, they should be offered a DNA test free of charge.

However, once a man does formally accept social and legal responsibility for a child – either with knowledge of their genetic paternity or in the face of a fully informed waiver of that knowledge – their status as the child’s legal father should rightly be set in stone. No DNA skeletons rattling out of the cupboards at a later date should affect what they legally owe their child or, hopefully, how they feel about the kid who calls him dad.

This site is supposed to be supportive of the need for? children to have a father? present in their lives.? I would expect nothing less than a positive response to these ideas from fellow posters.