i drafted this years ago for others to use... edit it as you see fit. i'm stickying it so it doesn't get lost again.
I have something to tell you that is very important to me, but am having a difficult time knowing how to bring the subject up. I decided that writing it in a letter might make it easier.
I have fallen in love with the most wonderful person. We share an incredible relationship. We know each other's every thought. We respect each other, understand each other, and give each other unconditional love and support. I have never felt so comfortable in a relationship before. I feel completely at ease with this person, without having to try and pretend to be someone or something which I am not. I know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that this is the person I want to share my life with.
Our choice, however, may be seen as somewhat controversial. In fact, even we struggled with our feelings, knowing we would face opposition. You see, the person whom I've fallen in love with is my cousin. But rather than deny ourselves the chance at happiness, we decided to pursue our relationship very slowly, and with a great deal of caution. It is important to me that you know we seriously considered all aspects of a relationship such as ours after doing a great deal of research on the subject. It is also very important to me that you research the issue of cousin marriage also, before you draw any conclusions.
What we've discovered in our research is that marriage between two cousins is not nearly as uncommon as people would think. We've also learned that we had preconceived notions about cousin marriage that we have learned from society, but which have no basis of truth. We have learned that cousin marriage is fully supported by the Bible, as well as almost every other world-religion.
We've learned that the risk of genetic defects is only very slightly higher than any other couple, and in fact much lower than many other couples based on lifestyle choices. We've also learned that genetic counseling is something to be strongly considered if we decide to expand our family in the future. We've looked into exactly what genetic counseling can and can not do, and are confident that a qualified expert could determine if we are at a higher risk.
We've learned that cousin marriage is legal throughout the majority of the world, including much of the United States. We've even discovered that until about 150 years ago, cousin marriages were common, and much more accepted by society than they are today.
One of the most important things we have learned is that we are not alone. An average of one out of every 1000 marriages are between two first cousins, and many more relationships occur between cousins that choose not to marry.
We are both fully aware that marriage is a serious commitment, and that such commitments are not always easy. A strong marriage takes alot of work. There will always be obstacles to overcome, and we realize that social prejudice is adding one more hurdle for us. But we also believe that those who love us will be supportive of our decision once they, too, have looked into the issue and separated fact from myth.
I love you. We both do. Your acceptance and your blessing are very important to us, but are not required. We are both old enough, mature enough and wise enough to know that true love is something to celebrated, never wasted. With or without your support, we intend to pursue this relationship. I will always value your feelings and respect your opinions, but this is a choice that only we can make.
I hope that this letter brings you joy and not despair. If you are disappointed, I am asking you to look at a couple of websites which provide an enormous amount of information which is thoroughly researched and documents the sources of the information. Those websites are www.cuddleinternational.org and www.cousincouples.com.
All my love,