Cassandra Madison and Julia Tinetti from Connecticut are a pair of good friends at work who bonded over their adoption and then learned the shocking truth that they are, in fact, biological sisters.
Both women, who met in 2013, were born and given up for adoption in the Dominican Republic. They had some uncanny similarities in personality and were often mistaken to be sisters at work. Little did they know that the resemblance and similarities in personalities were actually biological.
Madison, 33, and Tinetti, 31, got together one night and compared adoption papers to see if they could be related. However, nothing matched in their records, their birth parents and birthplaces in the Dominican Republic were different.
Yet, one of them still had this lingering feeling about their connection. Years later, Madison moved to Virginia from Connecticut but remained friends with Tinetti and kept close contact through social media.
A Pleasant Christmas Gift
Madison's adoptive mom gave her a DNA test as a Christmas gift in 2018, and it matched her with a first cousin and some distant relatives. From the onset, Madison was thrilled with the DNA test because she didn't know that there were ways adoptees like her could find their biological family.
The first cousin then helped Madison connect to her birth father, Adriano Luna, who told her that her birth mother, Yulianna Collado Luna, died in 2015 due to a heart attack. Madison flew to the Dominican Republic to reconnect with her dad and other siblings.
Luna told Madison that they had to give up her and another younger sibling for adoption because he and Yulianna could not make ends meet. Madison was adopted when she was only six weeks old. When the couple had another baby a few years later, they could still not improve their lives, so they had her adopted as well.
"We didn't have money, we were sleeping on the floor, struggling to buy food," the father said.
Convinced that Tinetti is the younger sister, Madison asked her if she could take the DNA test. While Tinetti had some hesitations because some adoptees don't have a happy ending, she finally relented to her friend's request.
After the results came back, both women learned that they indeed have the same biological parents. It also turned that there were some mistakes on their adoption papers.
Adoption Papers Switched
Tinetti has a childhood best friend, Molly Sapadin, who was also adopted from the Dominican Republic. Tinetti and Sapadin's adopted families in the U.S. were close, so the girls, who were adopted at the same time, grew up close.
Sapadin, who has met Madison as well, has seen Madison's birth family stories and something struck with her. She recognized the name Collado and dug up her adoption papers, thinking that she and Madison might be related. She also took a DNA test, which revealed that they were biological cousins. After more digging, the women found out that the adoption agency made a mistake and switched Sapadin and Tinetti's records.
The friends have finally put the pieces of the puzzle together. Today, Madison and Tinetti talk daily on the apps and even disagree like sisters. Tinetti has also connected with her family in the Dominican Republic, including her birth father, who was stunned to see her photos and videos because she looks exactly like her birth mother. The sisters plan to visit their birth country in the spring of 2022.
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