Alright, so, this is going to be very long, so if you don't have time on your hands, I suggest you don't get into this. And yes, there is useless and pointless flirting in my description but with good reason. I promise.
I'm very new to this website, I just now made an account so that I can share my experience with all of you. I'm hoping you have some advice to offer. Basically, I have a cousin, and he's my first cousin. He's not removed or anything like that, he's just my first cousin, my mother's brother's son. I've known his sister all my life, and I've been so close with her for so long. She's been my best friend from the very beginning, and she still is to this day. Him, I've only known a few months. He's slightly older than her and was given up for adoption as a baby. It was a closed adoption, so no one in our family even met him or spoke with him until he turned eighteen, which was just a few months ago, in June. I haven't met him in person yet, but I plan to very soon. He lives pretty far away from me, as I am in Florida, and he is in New York.
When we met, it was his sister who initially introduced me to him, and I knew nothing about him. I had no idea what he looked like, sounded like, or even how old he was, but I got to know him very quickly. We are both over eighteen, me being a few months older. The first thing I noticed about him was that he is just the sweetest, he was so happy to be meeting me, and he couldn't stop jumping up and down with excitement and expressing to me how happy the whole thing made him. He had never met any of his biological family before, so his sister and I were the first people he spoke to, and he said, quote, he "felt he was with his people". (I couldn't help but think of Mrs. Puff, lol.)
About a week went by, and we had really bonded a lot, we shared a lot of the same hobbies, especially music. He writes and raps, and I sing, and we both play piano, so we sort of feel we might be able to collaborate. It wasn't long before I started to feel some type of way for him, and I noticed it first when I sent him a picture of me at winter formal with my ex, and I almost wanted him to feel jealous. But that wasn't what made me realize it, what happened was, I confided in him about how cute I felt in the dress, and he said, "You're always adorable." My heart fluttered, and I couldn't help but hope that maybe he was flirting with me. But he was my cousin, so I tried to brush it off, and just said "Nah". However, he kept going and continued to flirt, saying things like "What? It's true!" and "YA FACE. IS CUTE." I tried to deny my feelings for him, telling myself it was just because I had just met him, but after a few days, I still felt this way. And the crazy thing was, he brought it up to me a few days later, saying that he had been talking to his biological mother about how apparently cousin marriages are legal in around half the states, and she said, "You can't date your cousin. You know that right?" and he played it off like he thought it was funny for her to suggest such a thing, but then he slowly eased his way into it. First, it was "If we weren't cousins", and when I admitted feeling the same way, he admitted that he was starting to like me. And from there, we decided that we would try to be in a long distance relationship, and for two weeks, it worked perfectly. We were very happy together, and we fell in love so quickly. I cannot express how deeply in love I am with him, I really can't imagine myself with anyone else. He talks about building a future with me, getting married, having kids, living together in a beach house, making music together. It all seems so perfect.
We have broken up twice... Both times, he ended it. He says he was afraid, and he felt like it can't work, because our family will feel some type of way about it, and he isn't sure what type of way that is, exactly. He also said he doesn't want to risk losing the family he just got back, and I completely understand this. However, we both found that at this point, neither of us can go even a few days without each other. He even tried being with someone else immediately after a breakup, which didn't work at all. He ended up breaking up with her almost immediately and getting back with me. We haven't broken up since then, and he's promised to stay with me from now on because he's had enough of that bull.
But... This is where the problem comes in. He wants to keep it a secret from our family... Forever. Yes, forever. Not just hide it until we feel comfortable enough, he wants to just hide it from everyone for the rest of our lives, and I don't think that's going to work. I, myself, am eager for my family to know. If it were up to me, I would tell everyone right now, because I wanna show the world, this is my boyfriend, and I love him more than anything else in the entire world. But, at the same time, I understand that he just got this family back. His sister is aware of our feelings for each other, as well as the past two times we were together, (she's not judging, but she feels like I sort of made her the third wheel) but he wants to keep it a secret from her this time. He says no one we told before ever truly approved, and he feels like it got in the way of our relationship, and that's where it went wrong. He says he really, really wants it to work this time, and that's why he wants to keep it from everyone and tell absolutely no one.
What is your take on all this? And I apologize for the story being so very long, lol.
P.S. Other people who know include my mother, my father, my aunt (my mother's sister), his best friend (who is also my friend now), his ex-girlfriend/best girl friend, his friend, his cousin, and a few of my own friends. Our friends seem to be okay with it, for the most part, not judging at all. My mother and father don't particularly like it, but they aren't disowning me, they aren't seeing or treating me differently, and they aren't trying to interfere or cause problems. They just don't agree with it. However, my father has admitted he will not feel comfortable walking me down the aisle...