Babies mixed up in hospital, families raise them under one roof: “More like twins than sisters”

Amy Christie

Two babies were swapped at birth due to an error made by hospital staff. The truth came out when the babies were 3 and their parents had to consider the prospect of taking them away from the only family they’d known and loved until then.

Rather than rip everything apart, the parents found a novel way to raise the babies together. They all moved under one roof and each toddler ended up with four parents and eight grandparents.

What are the details?

Caterina Alagna and Melissa Fodera, from the fishing village of Mazara del Vallo, both gave birth at 23. Their baby girls came into this world only 15 minutes apart, according to Good News Network.

The on-duty nurses somehow switched the two babies and when it was time to go back home the two mothers were surprised because none of the babies was wearing the clothes they’d bought for them. They were assured that it was merely a wardrobe mishap.

Three years later, while Alagna was picking up Melissa, her daughter, from nursery school, she suddenly spotted something that completely shocked her. Another child named Caterina had the same traits as her other two daughters.

As soon as she recognized her mother as the other patient who had been in the same ward with her and remembered the clothes mix-up everything seemed to come into place.

The babies had been switched. 15 days later they got official confirmation of their suspicions after DNA tests.

“I challenge anyone to raise a daughter for three years then give her up over a simple mistake,” Fodera said.

Rather than swap the babies back and go on with their lives, the families decided to let everyone get used to the change gradually. They all started spending time together in the same house. And the arrangement was so successful that when they tried to separate for six months, they all ended up missing each other terribly and went back to the initial way of living.

Melissa and Caterina found out about the switch when they were 8 years old. The only complication they had to deal with was their legal names. Other than that, living with two families in the same house turned out to be a great choice.

“The girls effectively grew up with four parents and eight grandparents, and the experiment worked… Today they are more like twins than sisters and there is a kind of love which binds the two families,” Mauro Caporiccio, author of the book Sisters Forever stated.

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Amy Christie is a passionate writer and journalist, always striving to bring out the positive and create meaningful connections.

Dallas, TX
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