Open a fresh box of Kleenex and flip over to TLC: The cable channel has ordered “Long Lost Family” to series.
The show features highly emotional and touching stories of people who have suffered a lifetime of separation and are yearning to be reunited with their birth parents and biological families. The reverse also applies on this reality show: Parents who wish to find children they had to place for adoption long ago.
Hosts Chris Jacobs and Lisa Joyner are both adoptees who have embarked on their own journeys to discover their biological families. Each episode follows the hosts as they investigate the stories of two individuals or families who have longed to resolve their lifelong searches.
The stakes are high, TLC promises: A successful investigation offers the promise of not just a heartwarming reunion but also a chance of redemption for people who have wrestled with emotional agony for years.
There is no simple path to find the missing loved ones. With tightly held family secrets in their way, the searchers have odds stacked against them. Jacobs and Joyner conduct painstaking searches through public records and utilize the latest DNA technology in their hunt for answers. But what they discover, and who they find, is anything but expected.
TLC’s descriptions of some participants are included below.
Rita (pictured above, with host Joyner)
A mother who was forced to place her baby boy for adoption 31 years ago. Rita’s boyfriend dumped her when she told him she was pregnant and her mother sent her to a home for pregnant young women for fear of a scandal. Still holding on to his baby blanket from the hospital, she longs to meet her son again and keep the promise she made to find him.
Her birth mother was the daughter of a minister who was deeply embarrassed by a pregnancy out of wedlock. Because of the lack of support offered, she ended up placing Jenny with social services. The search for Jenny’s birth mother takes a dramatic turn, when photo evidence suggests they may have been unknowingly connected for years.
Diana and Jeannette
They are two women in search for the father who suddenly vanished from their lives when they were just 4 and 5 years old. With no memories of their separation from him, the women have grown up haunted by his sudden disappearance. They hope he can be found so they can see him once again to find out the truth and ask him what happened.
Ancestry, the largest provider of family history and personal DNA testing, is teaming up with TLC as a sponsor of the upcoming season. As part of the show sponsorship, Ancestry provides family history research on each of the featured individuals to help make discoveries possible.
“Long Lost Family” is produced by Shed Media for TLC. The series premieres Sunday, March 6, at 10/9c.
Watch a video teaser above, which is also exclusive to TheWrap.