Wife reportedly gives birth to twins from two separate fathers
A woman in Xiamen City, China, has reportedly given birth to twins - from two different fathers. And while it may be your first instinct to assume this isn't possible, it's actually backed up by scientific research as a rare occurrence in some pregnancies.
The Chinese news site Strait Herald was tipped off to this unusual scenario by Ms Zhang, the director of the Fujian Zhengtai Forensic Identification Centre. This agency reportedly ran the paternity test for the newborn twin boys, and detailed how exactly this went down when the father first saw children - or, more accurately, child.
The husband, identified by the pseudonym Zialong by Chinese media outlets, noticed the babies looked quite different from each other. One thing that raised Zialong's suspicions was that one of the children resembled him a lot, but one looked nothing like his supposed parent.
So, he requested a DNA test - and the results came back to show that while the twins had the same mother, only one of the children was his. After hearing the results, she reportedly tried to cover up her actions by accusing her husband of falsifying the test results. Eventually, however, she was forced to admit to what had really happened: a one-night stand.
The story became known to the public after the husband and wife went to the local police station to register the birth of the two children. In order to complete the registration, a paternity test was requested to prove the validity of their parenthood - which then revealed the results on the public record.
This type of birth is extremely rare, as you can imagine, and is known as heteropaternal superfecundation. This can happen when a woman releases two eggs a few days apart in the same reproductive cycle before having sex with different partners. It can also happen when a woman has sex with two different partners within an extremely short timespan.
“It’s extremely uncommon,” Michael Carroll, a reproductive scientist at Manchester Metropolitan University, told The Guardian. “It all adds up to many rarities happening in the same cycle.”
According to Zhang, the husband was enraged at his wife when he found out, and has now said that he will raise his own child - but not the one fathered by another man. It's unknown what will happen to the second child at this time.