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Are you REALLY supposed to be able to assign multiple types of parent-child relationships?

Whether you are or are not supposed to be able to do this, in either case something is broken.

In this example I went into Cecil Fern Santee KVGH-DHV profile and changed her relationship type to her mother Birdie Thurman to "Guardianship" and marked the change as a temporary test.

I then went into Cecil's change history and went back to the original place where her "Biological" relationship had been assigned--the "Restore" button was lit up blue, so I clicked on it to set the relationship back to what it was originally (i.e., Biological).

Instead of doing the restore and changing the test values of the relationship back to Biological, the "Restore" created a BRAND NEW Biological relationship type and just added it to the previous one:



To make matters worst, the only relationship type that is now showing in the person page is the incorrect one that was SUPPOSED to have been restored from the change history:



Note that I have now manually fixed this to what is was supposed to be, so it will no longer appear as in the images above.

Also Note that when I performed the restore from the change history, it did not allow me to put any reason for why I was trying to change the value back to what it was.

BTW, I see no advantage to being able to assign multiple parent-child relationship types for anyone. I believe that you should only be able to assign a single "Type" to any relationship.
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  • The relationship type is a multi-valued conclusion. So the common scenario where you would have multiple is:

    Child has Guardian Dad, Bio Mom in 1972, then Adopted Dad, Bio Mom in 1982. This allows us to capture the legal changes in relationship over time.

    Multi-valued are a bit complex and it's not alway deterministic what a user exactly wants when they edit/delete/add a value. So the Restore restores that previous value and doesn't delete or modify any other existing ones. It's left to the user to determine what they really want. All Restores don't allow changing Reason, it just restores, and the user can go edit the Reason if they choose.
    • Hmm. So you are treating the parent-child relationship types as relationship EVENTS (instead of "types" as they have been labeled).

      In any event you can still see by the second image above that the (incorrect) relationship type that is displayed on the person page was NOT restored with the restore button.

      My initial impression is that this is being overcomplicated, and as a result of it's non-deterministic function, it has some weird side effects. So weird in fact that some people would consider them "bugs" even though it was designed that way.

      Relationship types are typically progressive. I would probably tend to remove all relationship "Types" (actually events) simply in order for the correct one (usually the one latest in their life) to show on the person page.

      Now if they want to show ALL of the events on the person page with the associated dates, that would be okay, I guess. But in the same vein, all of the couple relationship events do not show either (same problem I guess). Hmm.
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  • I can see a situation in which a child starts in a foster relationship, which then becomes an adopted relationship.

    I can also see a guardian relationship that later becomes an adopted relationship.

    In both cases the assignment of the relationship is an event. And yes, multiple events can be assigned to the same child-parent relationship.

    In both situations, there is a specific date associated with Foster (assignment), guardianship assignment (i have it in my own ancestry back in the 1840s), and of course, adoption.

    Even biological has a date associated with it -- when the child is born.

    The problem, of course, is that FamilySearch does not allow a date to be associated with the event. It is being treated as a relationship with no date(s) involved.

    And yet in Joe's example, there are dates (at least a year date) involved.

    This is a "flaw" on the part of FamilySearch. It is handled as a multi-valued conclusion (that takes place serially), but is not assigned as an event. Hopefully, the management will take another look at this situation and determine how to handle this.

    The same problem already exists with the couple relationship -- and is flawed because it is not serially handled (which it should be). Marriage - divorce - remarriage happens and should be handled in a serial manner.

    This points up the intense need for the whole Family Area to be reworked, even to the point of getting it right with sourcing. The events should be treated individually, just as all events and facts in other need to be treated individually, and not grouped by type.

    I am in hopes that this whole area will be reworked to the point where everything is covered in a logical manner and no shortcuts (like grouping by type) are taken (which is the case now). My hopes is that it wont be ten or even five years before this is addressed, but it took ten years for us to finally get a means to start index corrections.

    This is one of those cases where the whole area needs to be drawn out in how it should be handled, and not patched here and there (which is now taking place). Regardless, when everything is finally in place, it is going to take a lot of work to make the record "worthy of acceptation."
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  • oops. My mistake my example above for the current implementation.
    The marriage multi-value events in the Couple Relationship are events, which can have a date and place. But the parent-child relationship multi-value type does not have event so can't show the date. You'll have to put that in a relationship Note.

    The original design for parent-child relationship had that as an event, but didn't get implemented.

    There has been very little modification to the relationship object since the launch of FT. The view has changed a bit, and FS added Not Married.  I do see the frailties of the UI and your feedback. However, there is little happening in re-working the relationships.

    I'd love to see any design or products that you think would be good to consider.
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    • It's a point of perspective. The Not Married option that Joe refers to, applies to an individual and means that person, during their lifetime, was never married. It has its uses.

      The Not Married option that most of us also need is a Not Married option for a specific couple and would, if it existed, indicate that that couple were never married to each other, but could very well have been married to other people during their respective lifetimes.
    • A particular situation I have is that a direct line grandmother had an affair with a married man - two children were born - registered under the mother's name - christened under the father's name as if the parents were married - the children throughout life used the father's surname - went through the 1911 census as "married" using the father's surname (but father not present for the census - he was with his real married family) - the father, over a period of 8 years maintained the extra household + domestic servant for his second family - and then appears as a witness on the "first" real marriage of this grandmother desribed as a "spinster".

      They were never married (he was 30 years older) - never lived together - had no recognised relationship other than having two children and "Not Married" - but were married to other marital partners.

      I signify this by corrupting the relationship marriage place to read "Not Married".
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  • This reply was removed on 2020-04-24.
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