Family history

My family history is a bit complicated — this seems to have presented a problem to some of the medical people involved in my care. I decided to post it on this website to set the record straight.

One of the medical specialists we saw in the hospital in December 2011 gathered information from me and my husband separately and did not always make it clear what he was looking for in his questioning. As I have worked in health care, I did my best to simplify my complicated background and report on the relevant ‘genetic’ history. My husband was asked a completely different question, “have there been any emotional upsets in her life?” This led to a consultation report that said, “Her husband did tell me that her mother died last year, but the patient herself stated that her mother was alive at age 86.” Unfortunately, that medical specialist (who was unbearably rude to me) made no attempt to clarify or ask about the discrepancy. In fact, not a single physician/psychiatrist, nurse or any other health professional inquired about it. The irony, of course, is that both my husband and I were correct — my adoptive mother died in 2010 and my biological mother was still alive at that time. (she died April 26, 2013)

Both of my mothers were sisters. They were both born at St. Paul’s Hospital, in Vancouver, B.C.

Me with my biological mother, May 17, 2012

Me with my adoptive mother, October 3, 2010

Jennifer Sweeney, born Jennifer Fleming
Adopted by John Gregory Sweeney and Maureen (Evans) Sweeney

Biological Family (New York)

James Fleming –born 1930, d 2000 (lymphoma)
Elizabeth (Evans) Fleming — born 1925, d 2013 (died of ‘old age’ at 87)

Full Siblings:
Delia Fleming
Miriam (Fleming) Rollock

Dianne (Fleming) Beadle
Ed, Jim — fraternal twins

Adoptive Family (Vancouver)

John (Jack, Jake) Sweeney, born 1929, died 2005 (esophageal cancer)
Maureen (Evans) Sweeney, born 1933, died 2010 (lung cancer)

John Paul Sweeney (biological son)
William (Bill) Sweeney (adopted son)
Thomas (Tom) Sweeney (adopted son)

Wedding of Jack Sweeney and Maureen Evans, August 8, 1953, St. Augustine’s Church, Vancouver, B.C.


One Response to “Family history”

  1. Melanie

    Hi Jennifer:

    Thank you for sharing your story so eloquently. It is a pleasure to be in TWP group with you as well. Melanie

    02 Apr 2015 at 6:59 pm

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