A woman in China from central Henan province who found a woman who looked strikingly similar to herself on social media has discovered that they are identical twins.
Cheng Keke, 29, from Gongyi city, announced on ByteDance’s Douyin social media video platform yesterday that the results of DNA testing confirmed her biological relation to Zhang Li, who lives 50 kilometres away. They discovered last month that they were separated at birth when their single mother had put them up for adoption.
“I successfully got an elder sister today,” Cheng said in a video post.
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Cheng, who has a two-year-old daughter, was told by her sister-in-law in January that a teacher at a martial arts school in Kaifeng city looked very similar to her. The resemblance was so striking that even Cheng’s close relatives could not tell them apart, according to a report in the Beijing News.
Cheng reached out to the woman, Zhang Li, mother of an 11-year-old boy and a six-year-old girl, and found out the similarity did not stop at looks. Their birthdays are in the same month in the same year, but several days apart because Cheng’s birth date was recorded on the when she was adopted several days after being born. They also have the same blood type, food preference, dress style and had even bought some of the same clothes.
The two women had a video call a month after the first contact and were amazed. “Am I looking at a mirror?”, Zhang asked at the time.
Cheng was the only daughter of her adoptive parents who adored her and said she had never suspected she might be adopted, but after seeing Zhang she had questions. She said she struggled for two months before getting the courage to ask them.
Her mother initially denied that Cheng was adopted but eventually confessed that she had been brought to the family by an elderly woman 29 years ago about whom little is known. Cheng and Zhang met the next day.
“I was so nervous that I couldn’t sleep. My legs kept shaking. I was more nervous than when I was giving birth,” Cheng recalled.
“I was really excited when I finally met Zhang Li and immediately felt close. We have the same canine teeth and moles on the face. Our voices are similar and we both cover our mouths when laughing,” Cheng said.
Cheng’s mother went to meet Zhang for their second meeting, who wept for a long time and kept saying she would have adopted both babies if she knew there was a twin.
The two women and their adopted mothers all met at the end of last month. Zhang’s mother, identified only by her family name Han, said the daughter’s biological mother was not married when she had the twins and had asked others to help find a home for them.
Han said she could not afford to raise both girls back then, so she took only the elder one after paying 600 yuan (US$92). Cheng’s mother said she agreed to take the baby girl out of pity after she was rejected by two other families — Cheng was born premature and could not cry at that time. Zhang was also too weak to cry or eat, according to Han, who had to feed her baby formula with a syringe for a week before Zhang could eat on her own.
Han originally objected to the DNA testing for fear her daughter would abandon her to look for her biological mother but eventually agreed after both women promised the mothers would not lose a daughter but would gain a new one.
Both women had said they are not interested in finding their birth parents.
“They (her birth parents) would have come to find us if they wanted to. Where were they in the past 30 years?” Zhang Li said.
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