The Need for Paternity Testing Comes to the Silver Screen
The major motion picture Bridget Jones’s Baby is (naturally) about Bridget-a loveable woman-next-door who is pregnant and isn’t sure which of her two suitors is the father of her baby. Paternity testing is occasionally in the news for high-profile celebrity cases, but is the need for this service really that great in the general population?
A Few Paternity Testing Statistics
- 41% of U.S. births in 2014 were out of wedlock. That’s a 33% increase in 10 years. And the rate is 68% for black babies (CDC)
- 2% of men are unknowingly raising children who aren’t biologically theirs (KU Leuven Laboratory study, 2016)
- Industry insiders estimate that nearly 1,000,000 peace-of-mind and legal paternity tests are performed each year in America, 100,000 of which are from at-home kits sold at retail (IRi).
Why is it important for a child to have a relationship with their biological father?
Children who live absent a biological father are 2-3 times more likely to:
- experience emotional and behavioral problems
- be a victim of child abuse
- engage in criminal behavior
- live in poverty
- use drugs (Source: National Center for Fathering)
Paternity Testing is Real Life-Not Just the Movies
So although the new Bridget Jones movie is a light-hearted comedy, in the real world getting a paternity test can be stressful, and results have potentially life-changing consequences. The option to collect and submit DNA from home, with affordable paternity testing performed by an accredited lab, mitigates a lot of the stress and makes the test more accessible to everyone-especially a girl-next-door like Bridget Jones.
Steve Smith, Executive Director at IDENTIGENE, says, ‘I’m not surprised that the need for paternity testing is being included as a theme in a major motion picture. We process thousands of tests a month at our lab and the desire to take advantage of DNA science for paternity answers is definitely becoming more mainstream.’
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