Twins Separated At Birth – 20 Stories That Will Leave You Shook

Currently, there are 7.7 billion people living on the earth, and only 0.3% of them are identical twins. Many of these twins were split up at birth and grew up having no clue about each other’s existence. In this list, we’ll go over the stories of 20 pairs of twins who were separated at birth and who met each other for the first time as adults. Don’t miss any of them, they’ll surely leave you baffled!

#20. Jorge, William, Carlos & Wilber

One of the most famous cases of twins being separated at birth is that of Jorge Enrique Bernal and William Cañas Velasco. Jorge grew up with who he believed was his twin, Carlos. William, in turn, grew up with his supposed twin, Wilber. But at the age of 24, these four guys made a startling discovery.

Photo: Courtesy of Dr. Nancy L. Segal

It all began when one of Jorge’s colleagues went to buy meat at William’s butcher shop in Bogota. When she entered the shop, she couldn’t believe how similar her colleague and the butcher shop were. She was so baffled that she secretly took a picture of the butcher, and on the following day, she showed it to Jorge.

#19. The Four Siblings Reunite

Jorge couldn’t help his curiosity and decided to get in touch with William, the butcher. Eventually, the two of them met, and they were both surprised at how identical they were! After all, both shared the same narrow face, skinny body, and cheeky smile! Jorge and William showed each other pictures of their supposed twins, Wilber and Castro. They also realized that Wilber and Castro also bore a striking resemblance, since they shared the same robust heads, large bold bodies, and big lips.

Photo: Courtesy of Dr. Nancy L. Segal

A few weeks later, these four men realized that they had been switched up after being born and then mismatched. It took 24 years to correct the hospital’s mistake and for each of the brothers to realize they shared more interests and features with their biological brother than with the man they grew up with. Dr. Nancy L. Segal, leading expert in the study of twins, wrote a book about their story, named Accidental Brothers. You should definitely check it out!

#18. Jim Lewis & Jim Springer

Many twins grow up separated from one another, but as soon as they reunite they realize that they have tons of similarities, not only as regards their looks but also in their interests and personalities. Well, this was definitely the case for Jim Lewis and Jim Springer, who met at the age of 39 after being raised by adoptive families.

Photo: Courtesy of The Jim Twins

These two guys realized that they didn’t only share their DNA, but that they also shared the name Jim and apparently their love for blue-white striped shirts. Believe it or not, they had the same favorite piece of clothing! Amazingly, they both divorced a Linda, were married to a Betty, drove blue Chevrolets and had a son named James Alan /James Allan. Dr. Segal theorizes:

“I do not regard these really as coincidences. Rather, they’re genetically influenced commonalities.”

#17. Eddy, Robert & David Shafran

While identical twins are already rare, the chance of having identical triplets is astronomically small. The odds range from one in 60,000 to one in 200 million pregnancies. In 1980, Robert Shafran was lucky to find his lost identical twin Eddy in a college in New York. Their story went viral and shortly afterward they met their third identical brother, David.

Photo: Courtesy of Neon Rated

Due to their one-in-a-million story, they became somewhat of local celebrities in 1980s New York. The three brothers decided to monetize their experience, opening a restaurant called Triplets. I do recommend you watch the 2018 documentary film Three Identical Strangers based on this unlikely case.

#16. Michelle Mordkoff & Allison Kanter

The film Three Identical Strangers blew up in the theaters, grossing over $12 million. And somehow it inspired 54-year-old Michele Mordkoff from New Jersey to take a DNA test herself. And voila: It’s a match! She found her long lost twin Allison Kanter, a resident of Calabasas, California.

Photo: Courtesy of CNN

Finally, after being separated for so long, the two reunited in a hotel in New York, and all in the presence of the director of Three Identical Strangers, Tim Warden. He stated afterward:

“I was thrilled that Three Identical Strangers could have such a positive legacy, helping to reunite twins after decades apart.”

#15. Elyse Schein & Paula Bernstein

In 1968, newborns Elyse and Paula were separated in a bizarre scientific study to test the difference between nature and nurture. Neither of them was told about the experiment, but 35 years later, Elyse started looking for her birth mother and found her sister in the process. In their book Identical Stranger, they interviewed the psychiatrist who separated the twins.

Photo: Courtesy of Random House

Horrifyingly they learned that child psychiatrist Peter Neubauer never told the adoptive parents the true nature of his experiment. His inhuman study was never even published, and all the trauma and heartbreak the two women experienced was completely in vain. Today most states require adoption agencies to keep siblings together. Cases like this one will hopefully never happen again.

#14. Anais Bordier & Samantha Futerman

While only a few years ago it was very unlikely to find a lost twin on the other side of the world, the Internet and Social Media have helped us a lot in bringing these siblings together. In 2013, London resident Anais stumbled upon a YouTube video starring a woman that looked exactly like her. The Youtuber’s name was Samantha, who was building up her career in Los Angeles as an actress.

Photo: Courtesy of Ryan Miyamoto

The identical twins were born in South Korea and while Samantha was adopted by a family in the United States, Anais grew up in France. They kickstarted a film about their lives and finally released the successful 2015 documentary called Twinsters, that you can still stream on Netflix. Highly recommended!

#13. Katey Dunford & Amanda Bennet

Do you know this weird feeling when you leave the house and you think you’re missing something? Katey Bennet started getting a hunch she might have a twin and a DNA test proved her right. Amazing right?

Photo: Courtesy of Katey Bennet

She later found out that she and her twin sister Amanda had been born in South Korea. While Katey soon found a new home in California, Amanda’s later adoptive parents from Arizona found her to be chained to a pole by her biological father. The two women first met on Megyn Kelly Today and have stayed in close touch ever since.

#12. Gracie Rainsberry & Audrey Doering

While most of the twins in our article had to wait for decades to find their siblings, Gracie Rainsberry and Audrey Doering were much luckier. Audrey’s adoptive mother decided to get to know more about the background of her daughter, who had been born in China. Amazingly she found a photo of her daughter next to an identical baby girl.

Photo: Courtesy of Jennifer Doering

The two families connected over Facebook and finally, Gracie and Audrey reconnected emotionally on Good Morning America. After the show, Gracie stated: “It’s very overwhelming“. Audrey added: “It felt like there was somebody missing. Now it’s complete.”

#11. Oskar Stohr & Jack Yufet

The story of Oskar Stohr and Jack Yufet is truly one of a kind. These two boys were born in Spain in 1933 to a Catholic mother and a Jewish father, both of whom were German. Eventually, their mother abandoned their father and fled to Germany, but only took Oskar with her. Jack, meanwhile, stayed in Spain and later moved to Israel. As soon as she moved to Germany, the Nazi Party rose to power, so little Oskar joined the Hitler Youth Movement to hide the fact that his father was Jewish.

Photo: Courtesy of Dr. Thomas J. Bouchard Jr.

The twins actually met in 1954 but due to the language barrier and the fear of anti-Semitic family members, their meeting did not go well. They didn’t meet again until 1979. Dr. Segal stated about those unlikely brothers:

They had an extraordinary love-hate relationship. They were repelled and fascinated by each other. They could not let go of the twinship.”

#10. Jerry Levey & Mark Newmann

Mark Newmann was one of the bravest men out there: a firefighter. In 1985, his colleagues attended a convention where they met Mark’s look-a-like: Jerry Levey. The two eventually met, and they reached the conclusion that they must have been separated at birth in 1954.

Photo: Courtesy of Dr. Nancy L. Segal

Once they got to know each other, they were spooked because of their similarities. Not only were they both firefighters, but they also drank the same type of beer and wore their keys in the same fashion. Jerry Levey stated in 1986:

“There was a weird feeling that I couldn’t explain. All I knew is that after I saw him I needed a beer and he did too.”

#9. Debbie Mehlman & Sharon Poset

It took Debbie Mehlman’s mother 45 years to finally get the courage to tell her daughter that she had been adopted and that she had a twin. Debbie immediately hired a PI who soon found her twin sister Sharon alive and well.

Photo: Courtesy of Dr. Nancy L. Segal

Just as many other lost twins, these two share a lot of similarities. The ladies are both pranksters who love rolling their eyes upwards to expose the white, which regularly freaks their friends out. Also – as you can see in the picture – they happen to share the same hairstyle.

#8. Elizabeth Hamel & Ann Hunt

These two lovely grandmothers are the ones in our list that were separated the longest. Born in 1936 in the UK, Ann was given up for adoption, while Elizabeth stayed with her birth mum since she was told nobody would adopt the baby girl due to curvature of her spine.

Photo: Courtesy of Dr. Nancy L. Segal

While they were both aware they had a twin, none of them knew how to get in contact with the other one. It took Ann’s daughter years to find anything about her mother’s background. But all this effort turned out to be worth it and the long lost sisters finally met in 2013 at age 78.

#7. Daphne Goodship & Barbara Herbert

London-born twins Daphne Goodship and Barbara Herbert were separated at birth and did not meet again until40 years later. They lived in different families and towns and yet spent those 40 years similarly. Not only had they developed the same allergies and thyroid problems, but they found out they had other things in common too.

Photo: Courtesy of Herald Weekly

Strangely, they had both fallen down the stairs at the age of 15, they both had the habit of pushing up their nose with the palm of their hand, and they liked black coffee and disliked maths. Again, these unlikely similarities beg the question if we are born with a decided future or if we can influence who we are. Nature versus Nurture. What do you think?

#6. Adriana Scott & Tamara Rabi

Now this one sounds like it was written by a Hollywood director, but it is actually a true story. When Adriana Scott and Tamara Rabi both entered Hofstra University, they were both confused by strangers greeting them with another name. They both quickly realized they had found their identical twin.

Photo: Courtesy of CBS News

Imagine how many schools there in the world… what were the chances of these two choosing the same one? Luckily, fate was on their side, and now Tamara and Adriana are best friends and are working together to become professional dancers. Let’s hope, they can achieve their dreams!

#5. Two Unnamed Spanish Twins

To have their baby switched up at the hospital is one of the worst nightmares for parents. This basically never happens, but when it does, the consequences for everybody involved are horrible. This is exactly what happened to a pair of anonymous twins in Gran Canaria, Spain.

Photo: Courtesy of Natural Childbirth Exercises with Rhondda Hartman

The twins didn’t meet until much later when one of them walked in a store and was greeted by kisses. This awkward situation was quickly dissolved and the twins reunited in the same store. This must have been such a huge relief for the parents as well.

#4. Siam & Fabienne

In 2014, Siam’s friend spotted a woman on Facebook with strange similarities. Siam attempted to add the woman, but Fabienne refused, as she thought Siam was a fake account. Wouldn’t you think the same if someone looked exactly like you on all of their pictures?

Photo: Courtesy of TheThings.com

Eventually, after several of Siam’s attempts, the two women started to text one another and figured out that they were indeed twins. They had a very emotional reunion. Insanely, the doctors had hidden the existence of the other twin from both adoptive families. The two women continue to meet each other and are developing a great sisterhood.

#3. Emila Falk & Lin Backman

Emilie Falk and Lin Backman were raised in an orphanage in Semarang, Indonesia and were both adopted by Swedish couples. Their birth certificates did not mention a twin, but both families had a hunch and contacted each other. After not finding any evidence, they eventually lost touch.

Photo: Courtesy of TheThings.com

In 2011, Emilie, who was an adult now by now, was told this story by her parents and decided to track Lin down. They eventually took a DNA test, whose results obviously stated that they were indeed twins. They may never find out who their birth parents are, but those sisters will never split up again.

#2. Anna Kandl & Ella Cuares

In 2006 Anna Kandl and Ella Cuares were sadly abandoned by their birth parents in two different spots in China. The police found one of them at a park and another one at the doorstep of a hospital. Amazingly, their adoptive parents met during the adoption process and randomly decided to stay in touch.

Photo: Courtesy of TheThings.com

As the girls grew up, their parents, who stayed friends over all those years, realized that they had tons of similarities, both physically as well as personality-wise. Finally, they took a DNA test and figured out that Anna and Ella were actually fraternal twins. They met in 2013 and have been friends ever since.

#1. Zeng Yong & Liu Yonggang

At the age of 41, Zeng Yong and Liu Yonggang reunited after being separated at birth. Similar to many of the cases we talked about, Liu was mistaken to be Zeng at a restaurant. The now mutual acquaintance quickly brought these two identical twins together.

Photo: Courtesy of TheThings.com

Together, the two brothers finally tracked down their birth mother more than 1,000 miles (1600 kilometers) away. She had given them away because she could barely feed her other five children. But now, after being alone for so long, Zeng and Liu not only have each other but a mother and five other siblings. Crazy, right?

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