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Half of Britons do not speak to a family member

Published on 25 Jun 2013 11:36 : 2 comments : 9263 views

  • Over 26 million Brits have fallen out with a family member
  • The most common disputes occur between siblings and can last 10 years
  • Main reasons for falling out include money, jealousy and choice of partner

We are a stubborn, headstrong nation with a shocking 26 million of us having fallen out with a family member for up to 10 years. Money, jealousy and choice of partner were found to be key causes, according to research commissioned by Genes Reunited.

To coincide with Genes Reunited’s sponsorship of the new series of ITV’s Long Lost Family, the family history website conducted the research to find out why families in the UK stop speaking to each other.

The most common arguments occur amongst siblings who seem to be driven to disputes over money (61 percent) but also include sorting out who cares for an elderly relative and politics.

On average, 45 per cent of children do not talk to their parents but this rises to 61 per cent for children aged between 18-34.

Regionally, the image of the ‘stubborn northerner’ remains with more than half of those living in the North East and North West of England admitting they have fallen out with a family member. In contrast, Londoners step away from their impatient reputation with more than half of the people questioned saying they have never had a family bust up.

Those living in the East Midlands hold a grudge the longest, with a quarter admitting to not speaking to a family member for more than 10 years.

Money causes the most issues for those living in the South East of England with more than a quarter of people giving it as a cause for their argument while politics, religion and sexual orientation also feature as reasons for a family argument.

Family rivalry is as old as the hills and includes Elizabeth I having her cousin Mary Queen of Scots executed in 1587 due to their differing religious views as well as the Nolan sisters falling out in 2008 over a multi-million pound reunion tour. It is no secret that the Gallagher brothers have had an ongoing feud, which led to the split of Oasis in 2009.

Rhoda Breakell, Head of Genes Reunited, said: "We have been amazed by what a profound effect family disputes can have, with close relatives not speaking to each other for more than ten years. Building your family tree on Genes Reunited, using our active community boards and searching the 515 million records online can help you connect with family members that you may not have seen for years. We have 750 million names on the site and one new name is added every second, so there’s a high chance you’ll find who you’re looking for."

The third series of Long Lost Family, presented by Davina McCall and Nicky Campbell will feature eight new episodes, which see families reunite with loved ones that they have been desperately trying to find.

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by Caldervale on 25 Jun 2013 23:52 :
"Least said soonest mended." Old adage if becoming the "Modus operandi" would ease many a disgruntled dispute. Or to practise the Christian principle "Forgive and forget" may help. Family feuds are not new indeed they are as old as the hills.
Wars have been the end result in some cases. Just proves the extremities some people will go to. Thankful no such happenings within own circles.
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by Mary on 26 Jun 2013 08:23 :
As family historians, we all know how exciting it is to find a relative on the branch of the family that has always been a bit of a mystery. Let me tell you, it is incredibly frustrating to contact them and they refuse to talk to you because your great grandfather was the black sheep of the family and "we will never forgive him for what he did". What??? What did he DO??? Please tell me.......
Grrrrr..... the mystery is buried with my branch and their branch won't say.
It wasn't bad enough to make the papers or the courts.
Please people, if you are going to have a fight and not speak to the rellies, or they won't speak to you........leave a clue for the frustrated descendent inflicted with the genealogy bug. :-S