Re: Cold-Calling a Distant Relative Who Doesn't Know the Family Was Jewish #general

Angie Elfassi


In reply to this story, and my story is not about people denying their Jewish
ancestry, but I have been told, and found, that it is better to first write a
letter before making a phone call. I phoned a 2nd cousin once removed, who had been
adopted at birth. I was very excited when I found her and I phoned her and she
denied that she was the adopted child of .... (intentionally left blank). But her
older brother (also adopted at birth) had given me sufficient information to know
that I'd found the correct person.

So, again, better to write or email first!

Angie Elfassi

I tried calling a man who is my 3rd cousin twice removed. I know his father's
headstone has a cross on it, so I already knew the family had left Judaism...I
mentioned that the family came >from a small town in Ukraine. She sounded surprised,
but told me to go on. So I asked her what she knew about the family's religious
background. She asked "what do you mean". So I said that the family was originally
Jewish. Well, she immediately changed her tone, and said "I'm sorry, but the
details don't match my husband's family. I have to go. Bye".
Anyone else encounter this? Maybe I shouldn't have brought up religion, and
simply tried to get as much info as possible?

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