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      Get Smart on the Web   09/16/2016

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Guest Keith Cambra

Are sexual relations with a cousin illegal in states with a marital prohibition?

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My cousin and I are in love with one another. We have kissed but the affection that we have for each other rubs both of our parents the wrong way (our parents are sisters). My mother threatened to have us both thrown in jail if anything were to happen between us. We live in Texas where it looks like it would be illegal to get married but would it be illegal even for us to be in a relationship together!? We are both adults (I am 38 and she is 22).

Thanks for the help.

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Hawk, did you find some information on this before? I think you found the updated criminal code.

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Keith Cambra,

You don't want to play around in Texas. Or Wisconsin. Nevada either, as I recall. Possibly Oregon and a couple others as I recall. I would have to go back and look to see for sure. Texas and Wisconsin are the worst, I do know. Sexual relations between first cousins are felonious there, and would most likely be pressed. The others, while it may be felonious, maybe, maybe not. Rhode Island, Ohio, and Illinois have quietly decided to not prosecute any incest cases involving consenting adults, although cousins are not on the list there. Who knows what would actually happen anywhere to be honest. 50 States, 50 different sets of shysters setting and enforcing the rules.

However, in most States where there is a marriage prohibition, it is NOT criminal incest. And actually, as crazy as it sounds, in Wisconsin, where it is a felony, and they will come after you if it suits their cause, first cousins can legally marry, and have relations, provided both parties are over 55 (IIRC) and/or one party can produce an affidavit of sterility from a physician. Go figure....

Bottom line, get out of Texas, or don't leave/produce empirical evidence. You have the right to remain silent, I suggest you fully enjoy that right so long as you are in Texas. Your Mom can't just have you thrown in jail. There would have to be evidence rising to probable cause to be arrested, and rising beyond a reasonable doubt to convict. The rantings of a hysterical woman won't cut it. Should she get the two of you on video in an uncompromising position, then, yeah, you in a heap a trouble boy, as the old saying goes. They would most likely prosecute, and put the two of you on the sex offender registry for life. My advice, don't chance it. Go to Colorado, New Mexico, Florida, or Georgia, (or any of the green States here: https://www.cousincouples.com/?page=states )

and don't worry about it. 

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Thanks for the information. This is such a frustrating situation. Something that should be no one else's business could end up getting two people thrown in jail because of the love that we share for each other.  :cry:

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so, keith, just to be sure... you're first cousins, right? meaning your mom (or dad) is the sibling of one of her parents? just clarifying, because texas law only applies to first cousins...

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LadyC,

The thought that they could be 1C1Rs did occur to me as well, seeing as there is the age difference....

But, usually, first cousins know it. It's 1C1Rs that think they are 2nds, and 2nds that think they are 3rds, and so on.

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it's always good to double check though. i have several 1c1r's who believe that we're first cousins. they don't differentiate... they just think cousins are cousins, especially since we're in the same age range. i've tried explaining it to a couple of them before and they were just dumbfounded... and we're talking about highly educated individuals!

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Yes we are first cousins. Our mothers are biological sisters. My mother is older than hers. I am the second born son whereas she is the youngest of her sisters. That is the reason for the difference in age.

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