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      Get Smart on the Web   09/16/2016

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ScarletStitch

~Need Someone Who Understands

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5 posts in this topic

So...Wow...Where do I begin? I "met" my cousin ten years ago~He is actually my cousin's son and if you want to get technical- my mother and his grandmother are half sisters- so half cousin once removed, I guess, if I'm to be specific. When we met I was in an unhappy relationship and he was young, nineteen at the time- we had an instant connection and became inseparable. I tried to ignore them but I knew I had feelings for him and he came on strong and we, unfortunately had an affair. I was completely head over heels for him. He treated me the way I dreamed a man should treat a woman, although now, I laugh at my vulnerability and him being 19 years old at the time can guess it was just a sexual conquest for him... I was wrong. He had fallen hard as well and refused to stand by while I was with someone else- so he spilled the beans to everyone including my boyfriend at the time and my Aunt (His Grandmother) I was horrified and so was everyone else. We went our separate ways although we saw each other at his Grandfather's funeral, which was awkward...But my feelings hadn't changed. He joined the military and went to Iraq... I was depressed and worried and missed him and loved him...Five years later he was stationed in Texas And I contacted him. He immediately flew me in to visit him and we picked up where we left off. I was so thrilled, but I knew he was having symptoms of PTSD and was drinking very heavily... I left Texas and although I loved him-I could not deal with his drinking. He wasn't violent or anything but I just didn't like it and I broke it off with him. Well, I ended up having another relationship and getting pregnant with my now 4 year old daughter. Her father is a deadbeat and doesn't help with her whatsoever and has no contact with her at all... My sister's family decided to move to Illinois and my daughter and I moved with them. He lives 15 minutes away in Iowa. Unfortunately he has had some DUI's and although he quit drinking two years prior- he thought he could handle drinking "recreationally" and one week into his relapse he received another DUI and went to jail. When I got here I arranged to visit him at a work release program he now lives at. As soon as our eyes met I knew I was in trouble. My feelings never changed and neither had his. He assured me that he realized that he could never drink again-never touch another drop and although it took some time- I believe him. It sounds naive writing it but I honestly do. He is the kindest, most loving, sincere man I have ever known. We have only been talking again for just under three months. He has been getting furloughs where he gets to come home for 48 hours. He is doing very well, on top of everything he is supposed to be doing, my daughter loves him and he wants to get married and finally be together. I want this, too. Our family isn't exactly behind us but they know we are going to live our lives and we are happy together. There are some, specifically his sister and my sister that are ugly about it, but we can't live for them. We have had sex three times while he has been home and three days ago I took a pregnancy test and it was positive. He is beyond thrilled and I told my mother, who is my biggest support. She is happy for us and excited as well. I am so happy- and nervous, and a little scared- but our faith is strong and I know it will work out...He gets out in a month and a half and by November we will have saved up enough money to get our own place. That is the plan anyway. My sister started drama today and said he will never be allowed around them, which sucks but that is their' decision... She doesn't know I'm pregnant and it's going to stay that way until we get our own place. I feel like she is being very judgmental and nasty about it. She will bring up his past mistakes (which I do understand but I know he will prove her wrong) when I stick up for him she switches over to the fact we are cousins- then we'll argue about that and she'll switch back to his drinking. I don't know if I have a specific question or just needed to vent or hoped someone would give me some kind words or advice- but Finding out I'm pregnant is joyous but also has a stain of our family's discontent. Someone please tell me something. I know in my heart that he is going to be okay and that he will be everything I missed out on with my daughter's father. He would never be abusive and he will work his fingers to the bone to care for us. I know he will be there for my daughter and that makes me weep with happiness for her. I know I will never go through doing everything alone with this new baby and that we are going to make it and be happy. But, it's a lot and I'm scared...

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ScarletStitch,

I'll not preach about drinking. I drink. Sometimes, to what most here would consider excess. However, if I'm driving, and I start felling myself getting too far along, I'll switch to Coke or some other soft drink well before I have to drive. I cannot afford a DUI, and I don't mean $$$ wise. I have to be able to travel up to, and sometimes well over, an hour to different jobs I work. In the last two years, I must say, my consumption has went down considerably. It sounds to me as though his is going to have to cease, and that is not going to be up for debate. Speaking of jobs, and being able to get there, does he have a job, and how will he get there? You two have created this new life that he'd best be able to pull his part of the weight to support. Are you working? I'm in Illinois too, so I know how tough the job market here is. Do you plan to move to Iowa? Is he planning on moving to Illinois? I'd have to recheck the verbiage, but, IIRC, 1C1R's can get married in Illinois. I'm pretty sure it says "first cousins" and not "no closer than second cousins" in the statute. I'm not sure about Iowa's statute either, but, ............ actually, I just looked, and Illinois says "cousins of the first degree" and Iowa says only "first cousins". Being once removed from "the first degree" I think you would be fine to marry in either, but, check with a family law attorney or local University law school to be sure.

You don't mention just how much older than him you are, and I'll not pass judgement on that count either. I chased the older women hard back in the day. My first wife was 8 years older than me. I got a PhD in Hard Knocks out of that one, but, it made me 1) much more cautious going forward, and 2) give up the older women for the most part, LOL. I'd still flirt them up a little, but I scaled my range down a little closer to my own age.  :wink:

So, all in all, it sounds like it is totally up to the two of you to make this work. You're right to not worry about what others have to say about it. It isn't like it's came totally out of the blue on them. I'd say the reason there isn't more drama and most have calmed down, is, they had their drama fest 10 years ago, and now, they see there IS actually something there, so they may as well suck it up, and get over it. I have a feeling the sisters will come around eventually too. Just do the best you can with the bed you've made, and take it one day at a time. He's going to have to regardless, so, it will behoove you as his helpmate to do likewise, and be his motivation and encouragement.

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i think you have the right outlook when it comes to your family. so many couples give up on their relationship because of a family bully. there seems to be a sister like yours in every family! i married my first cousin once removed 17 years ago (will be 18 on jan. 1). i remember he had a sister that was very much like yours at the time. she got over it. they almost always do. and even if they don't, you're right to stand your ground. she has no right to emotionally blackmail you.

now, about that drinking problem. just encourage him to stay clean and sober. it can be done! millions of people quit drinking/smoking/drugging and never go back to it. most of them succeed in staying clean because they recognize (just like he does) that one slip and it's all over. and ya know, some day he might slip. that doesn't have to be the end of the world. it just means hopefully you'll be the designated driver and the two of you will work harder together to keep him from slipping again.

good luck to both of you, and congrats on the baby and impending marriage!

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oh, and p.s..... you might get more responses if you'll edit in a few paragraph breaks in your original post :)

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There is help out there for people suffering PTSD. My Cousin is/has suffered the same post army!

I hope your Cousin gets the help needed instead of trying to suppress it with Alcohol because it's not the solution  :smiley:

Good luck

nessa76

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