Elyse, who had been living in Paris, had decided to seek her birth mother. She was told that the mother was not interested in meeting her, but was then informed that she had an identical twin, Paula. After not knowing her sister for three decades, with help from social workers she was able to find her within days.
But here's the kicker- they were deliberately separated.
On that first day Elyse did not reveal the secret she had discovered during her research. But soon afterwards she told Paula that they had been deliberately separated at birth and were the subjects of a unique study on nurture versus nature, a debate that has enthralled scientists for generations.
The real purpose of the experiment was hidden from their adoptive parents, who were vaguely told that the children were part of an ongoing study.
As you might expect the twins are not particularly happy that their very lives were the subject of an experiment.
"Nature intended for us to be raised together, so I think it was a crime we were separated," added Elyse.
And the scientists involved knew full well that tearing apart twin sisters was unethical.They also tackled the scientist behind the experiment that changed their lives, Peter Neubauer, an internationally renowned child psychiatrist.
At first he refused to speak but he eventually agreed to meet them as long as their conversation wasn't recorded. They allege he showed no remorse and offered no apology.
35 years of having a sister stolen from them.
The twins found that he was willingly aided by the Louise Wise adoption agency that handled both their adoptions.
Viola Bernard, a child psychologist and consultant to the agency, had firmly believed that twins should be raised separately to improve their psychological development, and that dressing and treating them the same retarded their minds.
I'm sure that the twins all over the world raised together- sharing possibly the closest sibling bond imaginable- will be pleased to hear that they are somehow retarded. And I'd like to see the research that this so-called psychologist used to reach that conclusion- or has belief replaced facts in the field of psychology? And on the subject of the unethical nature of tearing apart twins, the man at the centre of the study understood completely and clearly that what he was doing was wrong-
Aware that his research would be criticised, Mr Neubauer reportedly locked the study in an archive at Yale University, not to be opened until 2066.
But he went ahead and did the study anyway, aware that he wouldn't be around to face the music when the information is eventually released- nope, he gets to cover up his wrongdoing for another few decades. For him the lost years of the twins didn't matter a damn- his "highly important" research trumped their lives. Apparently, there aren't enough twins around who had been raised separately anyway so he had to go and deliberately rip this family apart- and because this is a study, I'm sure that there are many more sets of twins who have also been separated in the name of one man's curiosity.
It's a disgrace- and if the scientist who conducted this research didn't have the moral fibre to behave ethically then whoever funded him should have. Since the "research" is being held by Yale, I'm assuming they're responsible.
Ponder this- since when did a university classify scientific research in archives? And what other research, that could be "criticised", is being held in secret?