View Full Version : DNA Cousin Matches

17-08-2018, 2:25 PM
Can anyone help or advise me please. I have two DNA matches on that are giving me problems. One says that they could be a First Cousin once removed - Second Cousin once removed. The second one says that they are a Second Cousin - Second Cousin once removed. The two matches also match each other. I have looked at their trees and mine and I can find the link between the two of them, however I can find nothing to link either of them to me. Does anyone have any suggestions on where to start trying to work it out. Any advice at all would be welcome. Many thanks. Julie

18-08-2018, 12:35 PM
Hi Julpre, I am no expert, but has always believed that the removed bit is Generations, if I am wrong, someone will come along and correct me.


18-08-2018, 1:41 PM
Hi Julpre
Are there any geographical similarities between your tree and theirs? Could there be a clandestine relationship between one of your ancestors and theirs a few generations back?

18-08-2018, 3:31 PM
Hi Julpre,

Close cousin matches to people you are not aware of does, as Suekilp said, very often point to a NPE in the not too distant past. Autosomal DNA has a knack of revealing past family secrets!

Have you tried contacting the cousin matches directly to ask if they have any ideas how you fit into their family trees? Even where surnames don't fit, sometimes locations can point you in the right direction.

The relationship labels assigned to cousins by the testing company are just a guestimate. The shared quantity of DNA for any given relationship covers quite a wide spectrum, so given that you have probably worked out the ages of the two matches you might have a better understanding of how they could be related by checking the exact amount of DNA you share with each of them against a relationship table. There is a useful one at https://isogg.org/wiki/Autosomal-DNA-statistics, if you scroll down the page to the table showing The Shared cM Project - Version 3.0.

Have you had any clues from checking the trees of cousins you have "in common" with both of these matches? It can be frustrating if there are none, or if the common cousins don't have public trees.

Are you and your two problem matches uploaded to all of the available sites to maximise potential shared matches? Many of the DNA companies (GEDmatch, FTDNA, MyHeritage) accept raw data for free and each has their own different tools, which can add another layer of information to a search. Well worth doing.

Sometimes these DNA conundrums are a bit like the Rosetta Stone and you just need to wait until another close cousin turns up who can unlock the key to the puzzle.

In the meantime you could try joining an informative discussion group like the DNA Detectives on Facebook, where somebody might have a better idea of how to get to the bottom of your mystery relationships.


18-08-2018, 5:48 PM
Thank you for your replies. I have looked at the two trees of my 'dna cousins' and I can see their link to each other but nothing that is linking to my tree at all. I am not sure how far back I should be looking?

The 1st Cousin once removed - 2nd Cousin once removed - shares 226.7 cM of DNA over 10 segments the longest being 50.5 cM.

The 2nd Cousin - 2nd Cousin once removed - shares 203.5cM of DNA over 8 segments the longest being 50.8cM.

Deeny the link you kindly gave me took me to a page that said it had no data on it...sorry..I did try to look at it.

I've been looking at it again this afternoon, the link between the two of them is easy to find...there must be something odd about my link. Someone had suggested I make a private tree of the matches and build it until I find the link, I have tried that too, and still not found my link unless I haven't gone far enough, I have both of the matches on it but that's all. :confused5: It is very frustrating.

18-08-2018, 8:41 PM
Sorry for the typo with the dashes in the DNA Shared cM chart. Try https://isogg.org/wiki/Autosomal_DNA_statistics

It looks as if both of your matches could fit into several relationship categories, but if both of them are a similar age and belong to the same generation they might be exactly the same distance from you, relationship wise.

If they are your second cousins you would all share the same set of, or at least one common, Gt-grandparent.


21-08-2018, 4:52 PM
Through a lot of effort I have linked the trees, BUT the results leave me with the 1C1R-2C1R as a 3C1R father-in-law's half sister's sister-in-law's great-great-granddaughter (!!) and the 2C-2C1R as 3C1R father-in-law's half sister's sister-in-law's great-grandson.....now the mind boggles. I think I was lucky to find this link, however something has gone on a couple of generations back, and things are not what they seem. Am I ever likely to get to the truth...? Are there places that can look into it for you?