A parent is a caretaker of the offspring in their own species. In humans, a parent is of a child (where "child" refers to offspring, not necessarily age). A biological parent consists of a person whose gamete resulted in a child, a male through the sperm, and a female through the ovum. Parents are first-degree relatives and have 50% genetic overlap. A female can also become a parent through surrogacy. However, some parents may not be biologically related to their children. An adoptive parent is one who nurtures and raises the offspring of the biological parents but is not actually biologically related to the child. Children without adoptive parents can be raised by their grandparents or other family members.
A parent can also be elaborated as an ancestor removed one generation. With recent medical advances, it is possible to have more than two biological parents. Examples of third biological parents include instances involving surrogacy or a third person who has provided DNA samples during an assisted reproductive procedure that has altered the recipients genetic material.
The most common types of parents are mothers, fathers, and grandparents. A mother is "a woman in relation to a child or children to whom she has given birth."
By Dean Hanley
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