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Everything posted by MissPrice

  1. This is a post I've been meaning to write for a while, because I see so many people struggling with their feelings, and with how the world will/is responding. And I too struggled for years, and thought the idea of being with my cousin was impossible, and thought that if we were together, if by some chance he felt about me the way I felt about him, things would be impossibly hard. We've been married for about two months now. At the very least, members of our family(ies) accept us, and some of them are very happy we're together. Our friends all know and accept us. We are very lucky, and our world is not going to be what everyone gets, but I've learned that there are some advantages to cousin relationships that most relationships don't have, and I want to share that, because I think a lot of you don't know that, and are scared and confused, and I want you to know that not only are cousin relationships NOT impossible, but there are some things that make them special. So, for one thing. If/when your family accepts your relationship, here's a big plus: you are both invested in the same people. When our mutual grandmother (she just turned 87 and lives by herself) needs help, we are both right there to do everything we can. If one of us is more available than the other, that person spends the night at her house. If she's not feeding herself right, we both remind her of that, and if one of us decides to buy her nutritional supplements out of our grocery fund, the other one is happy about that. This is our family. We take care of them, and we both know why, and we both agree on that. Related, if there is a disagreement in the family, we send in the one of us who is best positioned to handle it. So, my husband/cousin's mother's husband (no relation to either of us) emailed the family saying he thought we should all come together and force our grandmother (again, no relation of his) into assisted living. And we talked about how to respond, and in that case my husband/cousin handled it beautifully. And I'm the one who calls our grandmother at least once a week, and tells her we both love her, and checks in on how she's doing, because I'm better on the phone. All of the above is about family, which is really important. But the personal is even more important. My husband/cousin and I saw each other a couple of times a year when we were kids. We didn't see each other for about ten years from adolescence to adulthood. After that, we saw each other again about twice a year, until I moved close to him and things got complicated. But at that point, I already knew him. I'd known him my whole life. We always talked freely about our relationships to each other. I watched him be a father to another woman's three girls, who weren't his, until she made it impossible for him. I knew what he would be like in a relationship before I was ever with him. I knew his strengths, and his flaws, just as he knew mine. And I knew that his strengths were exactly what I needed, and I knew that I complimented his flaws. I walked into this relationship knowing exactly what I was walking into, and loving him for who he is. To me, that's the most powerful potential about a cousin relationship. That you can know the other person, so well, on other terms, before you become romantically involved or commit to them. That's not something most people get to have. Anyone who reads this and is struck by it, or anyone who is struggling with the possibility of a cousin relationship, please feel free to respond here, or to message me directly. And for those of you who are in happy cousin relationships: anything to add?
  2. That must be very frustrating for you, I get that. Do keep in mind though that she's pregnant and working. Also, it's possible you overwhelmed her with the gifts. It's a beautiful gesture, but she may feel awkward about accepting them. She may be unsure what your expectations are, and not in a position emotionally to engage with you, and craving pickles on ice cream with potato chips, and having hot flashes, and terrified of being a mother. My point is just that she has an awful lot going on right now, you know? After the father of her unborn child left her, she might distrust men in general, or she might not want to look at any man romantically, or any of a number of things. What's highly likely is that she doesn't have a lot of time for other people's thoughts and feelings (and she's probably not in the mood for surprises either). I can't imagine anyone who would in that situation. The best you can do is help where she lets you and be there when and if she wants you. It's hard to argue that she's using you, since she didn't ask, you offered. And I do get that it's really tough for you, and that you want so much to be a part of her life and to help her. I spent years watching my cousin with women who didn't value him, who took advantage of him, and didn't even notice his best qualities. It drove me up the wall. At one point, he was getting divorced, and was losing his house (that he and his wife had bought, and then she picked up and left him with the mortgage eight months later). I wanted so badly to fix it for him, and I couldn't. At the time, I was living two states away, and engaged. Point is, I really do understand how tough it is to not be right next to a person you love when they are going through a difficult time. But if you really want to be the better man in her life, all you can do is offer her your support (emotional support is more what I'm talking about than gifts), and then let her decide what she wants to do with that. Good luck!
  3. Just a friendly outside perspective here, but it kinda sounds like you are pushing too hard. The last time you posted, the plan was that you would go see her and talk to her in person once you were over the flu. You still haven't seen her in person, correct? In the last message you sent her, you talk about "the promise you both made", but it's unclear to me from what you've said when she promised you anything. Also, it's great that you want to help her and her baby out, but she doesn't owe you for that. If you do think she does, it wasn't a gift. Had I had the opportunity, I would have advised you against sending that last message. You had already made your move, that puts the ball in her court.
  4. Getting it ALL out (Need advice!!!)

    So, when you are trying to decide what to do in a situation, it's helpful to think about the pros and cons. What happens if you do tell her how you feel, best case scenario? What is the worst case scenario if you tell her? And best/worst if you don't? So, what do you hope will happen if you tell her? I did read your entire post, but not all in one sitting, so just to clarify: you see her for a couple of weeks once a year. You are in Canada, she is in Hawaii I believe? Assuming I got the basic facts right: best case scenario, you tell her how you feel, and she feels the same. What happens then? She leaves her boyfriend, obviously. Are either of you in a position to visit the other until next year? If yes, would one of you eventually move to be with the other? If not, you would be in a long distance relationship. Is that what you want? If she rejects you, she's still your cousin. I'm going to assume you will still be in a position to see her every Christmas. How would you feel about that? My advice with cousin relationships is always to take it slow, be careful what you commit to, and if you commit to it, be ready for what that means. You can never change the fact that she is your cousin. You two could decide to have a relationship, and then break up, and she'd still be your cousin, and always part of your life. I believe that you are currently nineteen, and she is currently eighteen. That's pretty young to commit to anything serious. Not that it doesn't happen, but it doesn't happen often and turn out well. And I would say, if you don't want to commit to her long term, and think about having children with her (or not), and think about all of the implications of that, you may not want to complicate a good friendship now for something that probably won't last. And I know you feel strongly about her, and I know you are in a tough place right now. My advice though is to wait a few years. See who you are five years from now. See who she is. And if you've missed being with her every second you haven't been with her for those five years, and you think she might feel the same, say something then. Cousin relationships are never simple, and they are never easy. Make sure, if you get yourself into that, it's worth doing.
  5. Hi John. First, just to clarify, you do not currently have a romantic relationship with your cousin, correct? I ask because you say you are currently "dating" her, which, in American culture, implies a romantic relationship. However, it doesn't sound like it means quite the same thing in your context, because it sounds like there is no romantic relationship, you two just spend a lot of time doing things together. Secondly, the genetic question is quite complicated. I wouldn't get too caught up in percentages if I were you. The percentages are only estimations, and they are dependent on a lot of things, such as: Is consanguinity common in the culture? (i.e., the chances of a birth defect are higher if multiple generations marry individuals they are related to) How small is the population? (i.e., if it's a small, closed culture, even if cousin couples aren't common, there is a higher chance of birth defects) Are there environmental factors increasing the risk of birth defects overall? How old are the parents? There is also no perfect DNA test that will test for all possible defects. If you and your cousin do get married and decide to have children together, I would highly recommend talking to a genetic counselor about your specific risk factors, and what DNA test they would recommend based on what population/culture you are both from (which can determine what defects are more likely). On the point of whether or not you should tell your cousin: if you feel something for her that you don't feel for any other woman, it would be unfair to any other woman to pursue them. Sometimes in life you have to take a risk, and in your case, it sounds like a risk worth taking. Lots of people have written on these boards about possible ways to bring up your feelings, I'd definitely recommend looking around.
  6. Torn

    Sounds like your cousin is struggling with his sexuality. That is absolutely not something you want to be in the middle of. It also sounds like his treatment of you is borderline physically abusive. I would strongly suggest putting some space between him and yourself for a while.
  7. I agree with all of that. If someone is looking for a fling, or a fun summer, or some drama (yuck), looking for any of that with a cousin is a terrible idea. Not every relationship can (or should) turn into something serious, but a relationship with a cousin is serious from the moment it starts, whether or not that's the plan. A cousin is a connection no matter what. and if someone gets hurt and the romantic relationship is over, that familial bond still exists. That's a lifetime of possible pain and awkward encounters. It's my opinion that anyone who wants a relationship with a cousin needs to be willing to give that relationship their all, and be mature enough to recognize what a real relationship (as opposed to a fantasy or dream of a relationship) is like. Otherwise, the potential pitfalls make it not worth the risk. I knew I had a thing for my cousin years before I said anything. I needed to know how serious my own feelings were, and that they were real, and to be in a situation to make things work if he felt the same (which I didn't think he would, I just decided I needed to tell him anyway). I think that was the right choice, and I encourage anyone in a similar situation to do some serious soul searching before starting something that isn't simple or easy to back out of. As a side note, it took a long time for me to say something to my cousin, but when I did, and when he felt the same, that was it. There was no question for either of us that we'd do whatever we needed to do to be together for the rest of our lives. That, I think, is part of what can make a cousin relationship so special. If you do it right, that cousin dynamic morphing into something deeper, something built on a pre-existing affection and knowledge of each other, the trust and intimacy can be exceptional.
  8. She mentions that she wants to see you twice in a short conversation, she doesn't want you to buy her anything specifically (i.e., clearly not just interested in what you can do for her), and she says "I love you" first. Those are all good signs; she is clearly very fond of you. Definitely don't delay going to see her once you are feeling better! It sounds like she's in a tough situation, and that she wants you close. Whether or not she ever loves you the way you want, if you love her, you should absolutely be there for her. Keep us updated!
  9. If you are there for her and her child, she will get the message, even if you don't tell her directly. Good luck!
  10. If you are as serious about your cousin as it sounds like you are, and you are both currently single, you should speak up! We don't get many chances in life to be truly happy with someone, and if you think that highly of her, and are willing to commit yourself to her like that, then she has the right to know that someone loves her like that, and you have the right to give yourself a chance at that dream. I carried a secret torch for my cousin from childhood, but never thought he would return those feelings. I was 29 when I finally told him, and he kissed me. We got married last spring. We've had to deal with some very difficult things since we got together, but what's never been hard is us. Being together is what gives us both strength and meaning. I spent years trying to tell myself that my feelings for him were a fantasy, that I wanted him because I couldn't have him, etc. That wasn't true. When you find the right person, you know. Don't let her slip away and be less happy with someone who cares about her happiness less because you are too afraid to take a chance.
  11. New to site aussie couple

    Your story sounds similar in some ways to ours. My first cousin and I got together when I was 29 and he was 32. We too had been close since we were kids, except for a few years in my late teens/early twenties when we lost contact. We've been together for three years now, and we got married last spring. This site has been a great resource for me, hope it is for you and your cousin/partner too. Welcome!
  12. Merry Christmas happy holidays

    Merry Christmas and happy holidays to all of you! This site has been an amazing resource for me and my cousin (husband of seven months now). Thanks so much for building the resources and environment to support couples like us. We really appreciate it!
  13. 1st Cousins, Relationship Advice, Family Help

    Does your cousin live with her mother, or is she financially dependent on her? If not, it seems like you could visit her as planned in January and talk to her in person about everything without involving her mom. If so, then she probably has some growing up to do before you can realistically expect any kind of commitment from her.
  14. Im in love with my 2nd cousin

    Charity, we can't give you good advice without knowing more about your situation, such as where you are, how old you and your cousin are, whether either or both of you is dependent on your family, etc. I would say the first thing you need to do is to take a pregnancy test. If you are two days past your normal start time, you should get a pretty clear result one way or the other.
  15. As someone who has brought up this topic with doctors, I agree with KC that what a family doctor will tell you can be unpredictable, and often rooted in prejudice. One doctor seemed surprised but fine, but when I told my obgyn, she was obviously repelled, started treating me very differently, and tried to push me into getting an extremely expensive genetic test. I showed the test to my brother, who is in medical school, and he said it tested for a number of extremely rare genetic diseases (e.g., one that has only been see in 300 individuals in a closed Eastern European population, which is not part of my ancestry), and that it didn't test for thousands more that were more likely to be a problem. Do keep in mind that any genetic testing you have done is unlikely to be covered by your health insurance. The more you know about the genetic history of your family, the better off you are. Studies published on birth defects of the offspring of cousin couples have usually been in populations where this is a common occurrence, meaning the chance of birth defects is compounded over generations. Basically, if your ancestors also married their cousins, there is a higher chance of a recessive defect emerging. However, even in these studies, the chance of a birth defect is pretty low. It is an increased risk to have a baby with your cousin, but less of a risk than any woman over 35 having a baby. Whatever you do, make sure you do your research and have as much information as you can to make an informed choice. And good luck!
  16. How would a state know you're related anyway?

    All laws related to cousin relationships and marriage vary on a state by state basis, which is really frustrating. For example, I and my husband/first cousin live in Ohio, where it is illegal for us to marry. There is a question on the marriage application that we would have had to lie on, and in the unlikely circumstance that anyone ever found out and decided to cause problems, it could have gotten very complicated for us. Additionally, my health insurance has a stipulation in it that it can't cover a first cousin as a "partner". However, Ohio has a law that states that they will accept the validity of marriages created in other states. We married in Tennessee, where first cousin marriage is legal, and Ohio accepts that as a legal marriage, and my husband is now covered under my health insurance under the category of "spouse", which doesn't have the same stipulation as "partner". I am not a lawyer, but it is my belief, based on the research I've done, that the federal law protecting gay marriage would win a case in a court of law for any marriage accepted by some states but not others. Because my husband and I now have a legally recognized marriage and all the protections that go with it, we are not going to be the couple to pursue this (unless we moved to a state where there was some question about the legality of our marriage). I do hope that someone will take it to court though, and that the legal rights of cousin couples will be recognized on a federal level, overriding all of this horribly frustrating and complicated state by state nonsense. Good luck with figuring out the details for yourself, and if you do find loopholes in your state as I did in mine, I'm sure other people here would appreciate if you shared that.
  17. Dilemma with my cousin.

    So, your cousin is married, and has a secret girlfriend, and sometimes the two of you are intimate as well. Sounds like a recipe for drama and trouble to me. The bottom line for you is that she is married, and you need to respect that even if she doesn't. Sounds like you need to keep yourself out of any situation with her in which things "just happen".
  18. For those of you who are or have been openly in relationships with cousins: what reactions do people outside your family have when you tell them about your relationship? For us, it isn't something we announce to everyone, but eventually the "so how did you two meet?" question usually comes up with friends, and we're honest. I reply with something like "well, actually, we've known each other all of our lives. We're cousins." The reaction from that point on has been so similar with every exchange that I am curious about what others have experienced. This is my experience, basically word for word every time: Friend: "So, like, first cousins?" Me: "Yes, my father and his mother are siblings." F: "Oh. Do you have the same last name?" M: "No." F: "Well, have you guys thought about if you want to have kids?" M: "Yes, actually the genetic risk is much lower than you would think, only about 2-3% higher than the general population, and from what we know about our family history, there is nothing that should worry us." F: "That's good!" [pause] "I actually used to have a crush on one of my cousins..." At which point they tell me about their crush. Well, the crush part only happens with about two thirds of them, but that's the part that surprised me the most. The rest of it happens every time. All of our friends have been accepting, and no one has been judgemental, at least to our faces. In fact, the more people I've told, the more confident I've felt because of how well they've responded. What about you guys?
  19. It's just that the original poster stated some confusing things about marriage in Ohio, and I didn't want anyone reading the thread to misunderstand. It isn't "illegal" to be in a relationship with a cousin in Ohio (say, as it is in Texas), and it is possible to be in a legal marriage in Ohio. That does of course require that you are not married to anyone else first.
  20. A point of clarification for anyone reading this thread: while it is not legal to marry your cousin in Ohio, you can be married in a state that does allow cousin marriage, and Ohio will recognize that marriage.
  21. Planning a baby

    You don't even have to go to a genetic counselor; your OB-GYN can order any of a number of genetic tests for you. Even if your health insurance doesn't cover genetic testing, some companies have special rates currently, because they are trying to expand their market. That being said, Lady C is right, being first cousins only raises the risk of birth defects slightly. This is higher for specific populations where cousin marriage is common, so the more you know about your shared ancestry, the better.
  22. Dilemma

    Hi Lilly - as someone who is happily married to her first cousin, I certainly don't think there is anything wrong with your feelings. However, you said he's fifteen. That's too young for a romantic relationship with a cousin (and for most guys, too young for a relationship at all). If you are seriously interested in him, wait until the two of you are both older. The age difference won't matter then. It's okay to feel how you feel, but try to put those feelings away for now. Be friends, concentrate on becoming the kind of woman you want to be, and if in a few years you still feel about him the way you feel now, that would be time to consider pursuing a relationship with him.
  23. I'm a little confused by your story 1) you two are dating, but you've never actually met? ("I haven't met him in person yet, but I plan to very soon.") 2) He's already broken up with you twice, once getting together with someone else immediately afterwards?, and 3) You are both 18, correct? Assuming I got all three of those things right, this doesn't sound like a serious thing. Maybe meet him before you start talking about forever, in any context.
  24. Introduction and Advice

    If you are twenty and your cousin is five years younger, that means she's fifteen. That's too young to "date", even if the two of you aren't in a physical relationship. On the upside, it also means that her feelings about you might change significantly as she gets older, especially if the two of you are friends. Like Lady C and KC said, five years isn't a big difference... once you are both adults. I know it's tough, but I would highly recommend trying to put your feelings on the back burner for now, and concentrating on college and friends and all the fun things about being twenty. If you are serious about your cousin (which if you are looking up marriage laws I'm guessing you are), you have plenty of time, and you can spend that time turning yourself into the kind of man she could fall in love with. If you aren't, it's not worth causing strife in your family over now - you have to live with them for the rest of your life.
  25. Do guys express their feelings during sex?

    I would say that regardless of gender, passion during sex does not necessarily mean anything outside of the bedroom. However, you said in your thread that your cousin told you he imagines a future with you. I would say that's about the best evidence you're going to get that he cares about you.