Jump to content
  • Announcements

    • KC

      Get Smart on the Web   09/16/2016

      Be informed on better ways to stay safe on the web -- Source: Mozilla
Sign in to follow this  
Guest David

Break up with cousin. How to move on? seeking advice.

Recommended Posts

Guest David   
Guest David

Well, here it goes. It feels good to be able to talk about my experience with a cousin in an environment I know is safe. A few members in my family know about my experience, but I don't feel any of them can give adequate advice on the topic.

I am currently 21, and my cousin is 19. She is my second cousin. About 3 years ago, I took a trip to see my aunt who lives 3 hours away. My cousin (1st cousin, 40 years old) asked me to take her two daughters with me so they could also visit my aunt, who is their grandmother. I agreed to take them. The younger sister, the one this story is about, rode in front with me, while the older slept in the back seat. I grew up around these cousins, but it wasn't until this trip that my affections for my cousin began. Maybe it was because I hadn't seen her in a few years, and now here we were on a rode trip, now older teenagers. I remember talking with her on that car ride, and looking over and seeing how beautiful I thought she was.

The next few years it seemed as though her and I played a game of not talking to each other much at family events. I am much more sociable then she is, so I would be the one to start conversations with her. She would talk to me for a few minutes and then walk away. I always wondered why she didn't talk to me more. She seemed so shy around me. Even still, my attraction for her grew, and I began to feel anxiety when around her because I was hiding my feelings, and I felt she had feelings for me she was hiding, too.

In June of last year, I decided I would tell her how I felt about her. I decided it was more important to speak the truth than to hide away my feelings, even if my large extended family would shun me; the truth was more important to me. I called her up and asked if she wanted to go on a picnic with me. She happily agreed. After some chatting, I told her how I felt, that I had intimate feelings for her since that car ride, and that I felt the truth would set me free, even if she and the rest of the family hated me for it. To my surprise, she confessed she felt the same way, but was too scared to tell me because of what the family would think. I told her it was more important we be true to ourselves then to live our lives in fear. I took her home after that. 

Over the next few weeks, we exchanged a few romantic emails. I then saw her at a family gathering. At the gathering we went outside to talk, confessed more of our feelings for each other, and we then shared a kiss I thought would last for a lifetime. After that kiss I was sure I wanted to make her my wife.

Another few weeks later, I had a weekend trip planned to go visit the same aunt where this all started. I asked her to come with me, to which she agreed. At my aunt's house, I did not want it to be obvious my cousin and I were into each other, so I offered to sleep on a spare couch in the small living room while my cousin took the only spare bedroom. My aunt made the suggestion I sleep on the floor in the spare bedroom because it would be warmer. My cousin and I glanced at each other, we each smiled, and I said okay. You can probably guess what happened next, but in all honesty, for me it was unexpected. I was not a virgin, but my cousin was, and it was my personal value to not chase women sexually, especially if they were inexperienced. At bedtime I took my place on the floor, and she the bed. We talked for sometime while I stared at the ceiling. As I dozed off, I heard her warmly ask if I would sleep in the bed with her. I thought for a moment, took a deep breath, and said okay. I cuddled up next to her under the blankets, and in a short while, we began to kiss. Not too long after, we passionately began making love. As I laid there next to her, even more so did I desire she be my wife. In fact, part of me felt she already was.

The next day, we did a few activities with my aunt, and then we went to a park alone. It was there she told me she did not want to have a relationship with me, and that we should keep a distance. I was filled with a mixture of disappointment, sadness, anger, and confusion. Why would she make love to me, and now does not want to see me? I chose to sleep in the cold living room that night. 

It has since been a year and a half. She has had a boy friend during that time, and we both ignore each other at family events. I've made efforts to talk to her about that night, and she has told me each time she didn't want to. It has been a long emotional process for me, but I think I have mostly moved on. However, I am still anxious around her at family events, and I don't know what to do about it. I've thought about just not attending family gatherings, but that's not fair to the rest of the family. They didn't break my heart, she did.

What advice am I seeking? I suppose it is, how do I face her at family events? I feel heart broken when I see her, but I do my best to understand she's just not the woman for me. I guess I'm wanting advice on how to move on, how to accept the decisions she's made, the decisions I've made, and the pain I have felt.

Thanks for reading. I know I have put a lot of detail, but it feels good to let it out. With the strength that is given to me, I walk without fear, without doubt, but with courage, boldness, honesty, and respect.

Thanks,

David

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Justaman    3

That's a great story. I'm in the same boat as you except with some changes. For me I found writing everything down helps a little. But as with all love, it takes time

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well it's perfectly ok to feel heartbroken. You need to go through it in order to move on and heal. I'm sorta in the same boat, except I keep trying to break it off with my cousin because we have gone too far and have been sexually involved with one another for the last 2 years despite him having kids and a long term girlfriend. I hate feeling like a "side woman" even though he has told me he wanted to be with me and tried leaving her. When he showed up at my doorstep w his things, I told him he had to go back to her. I'm heartbroken because I know I have to end it and find a man of my own. Preferably one who IS NOT my cousin and not taken. But I just feel like no one will ever compare to him. He has been there for me for the most painful time of my life, when I got divorced from my high school sweetheart for cheating on me. Now I am ashamed and confused because essentially, I have become my cousins mistress, even though he says it's not like that at all. Being heartbroken sucks, and I totally feel your pain. I've been trying to just keep busy with work, exercise, going out with friends and trying to meet people. But it's definitely hard not thinking about him. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hawk    29

David,

 I've been scarce around these parts for several months, and after I have a little break, and decide to figure out where I'm going to go to work next, I'm liable to get scarce again. Whilst I'm off though, I'll jump in, and this is as good a thread as any to do so. Before we get real carried away, I'd like to clear up one small (very common) misconception you have. If she is the daughter of your 40yr old first cousin, she is actually your first cousin once removed. The viewing public, and many new arrivals don't quite grasp the concept, so, I'll try to boil it down to the kitchen table for you. The primary "cousin" relationship is that of you and her mother being first cousins. She is one generation down the tree from that lateral point, hence, "once removed." If one day she has a child, the child will be two generations down, and will be your first cousin TWICE removed, and so on. It takes a while to wrap one's head around, but that's about as concise as I can put it. HOWEVER, if SHE believes it's second cousins, and the rest of the family believes that as well, to lessen drama, roll with it. It only really becomes an issue in a handful of States where 1C1R's are prohibited from marrying. It doesn't look like that's in your future at this point, BUT, I will tell you don't totally rule it out in the future. This site has had many stories of of young connections such as yours, and then, later in life, after other relationships, the cousins reconnecting, and actually making a go of it.

 Let's see if I can first hit the points of which you're seeking advice. It may be cathartic for me as well, as I'm in a similar situation, albeit with someone other than my cousin.

 How do you face her at family functions? Like you do any of the rest of the family. It will be extremely hard, but, you CAN do it. I know. I did it for 30 years with my cousin. Depending on how windy I decide to get, perhaps more on that later. Suffice it to say we let it be very awkward for a very long time. But, after the first few very awkward occasions, we instinctively fell into a sort of "keeping up appearances" type of mode. Since you are the one seeking to lessen the tension, your behavior may as well be the pivot that gets the two of you to that place. Be casual. Do you go out of your way to chat up other specific family members? Probably not, you just fall into normal conversation with them, and then on to others as the conversation changes or the mingling occurs. Keep it casual. The temptation is going to be to bring up the elephant in the room. I know. I did it the first few times we saw each other, and it only made matters MORE awkward. The way to do it is, to be casual. Difficult as it can be, you must, for her AND you. If she thinks you've gotten over it, it will lessen her tension over it, which will lighten her up, which will even more so lighten you up. You will never forget it, and I'll assure you, neither will she. She's running from it. Which is as good a segue into the next area as any....

 You feel heartbroken when you see her, but you're doing your best to figure out she's not the one for you. This is where it gets tedious, and confusing, and, it has the potential to be disastrous in the future. There is the possibility that she is actually a good fit for you. But, you've said she's nowhere near as extroverted as you. Sounds like my cousin. She's a very private person, and wants people to consider her a nice person. Everyone I know DOES think that about her. We are very similar. We were born a week to the day apart. We ARE second cousins. Our Moms are firsts. But, for a time we were as close as siblings. At some point, I may repost my tale which has been lost over time in various upgrades to the site here. At any rate, when we were 20, we had our little "moment", she got nervous, didn't want to go for it, and walked away. Sound familiar? I didn't want to push her, so, I let her walk, and we let the whole affair (no pun intended) be awkward for years. We're 54 now, we've aired it all out, and we're finally back to where we were "before". In the intervening time, she got married, had two kids, got divorced, and since shortly thereafter, has had a long term BF. I went back to running amok, got married and divorced three times, and had other relationships as well. The timing was never right, we have no stomach for cheating, so even though I'm single, she's taken, and there'll be no shenanigans.

 Now to how I'm in a very similar situation. I may as well spill, the rest of the mods and admins have a pretty good idea of what I've had going on, but I've not went into it openly. I'll try to do so as concisely, yet discretely as possible. Here's where it gets very windy.....

 Ok. The first two marriages were when I was in my 20's, and not very long term. The first was 4 years, the second about 2 years. After that. I was with a woman formerly known around here as DW (Dear Wife). We were together from when I was 30 till I was 51, almost 21 years. She knew me and Cuz were close, and had been closer. She didn't know all the gory details, and didn't need to. She was a good woman sober, but every man's worst nightmare when she drank. She didn't want to not drink, and after 20 years of the abuse, I wasn't going to do it another 20 years. We divorced. I had no intention whatsoever to EVER let another woman that close to me again. I was a three time looser at marriage, (and other relationships too) and I was in no mood to do it again. I had a couple girls riding with me, one of them being Cuz's older sister, who I actually had the "kid crush" on when we were young. I had some friends I rode with introduce me to another woman, despite my protestations. But, we met, she was an intelligent, engaging conversationalist, and had been widowed the year before. I actually was the one who called Cuz and told her of his passing, as we had went to school with him, and Cuz was traveling, and at that point, was not on FB, and was largely out of touch with hometown events. At any rate, The Good Widow and I hit it off big. Cuz's Sis and The Blonde both met her and both told me "You better not let her get away." When a woman who is riding on the back seat of a Harley tells you that about another woman, knowing her arse is going to be replaced there by said other woman, one takes notice. When TWO of them do it, it's a consensus, and it behooves one to at least consider the possibility. So, against my better judgment, I let her in. It was very good. I'd never been happier in my life with a woman. Cuz would even be hard pressed to make me that happy, and is probably the only woman I know with the qualities to do so. So, for about two and a half years, I was very happy. I saw me growing old with this woman. But, alas, it wasn't to be. In early February, out of the blue, she came in and said she didn't want to do this anymore. I was crushed. (Sound familiar?) But, I'm not going to beg anybody to love me. I WAS tempted, but, I didn't. I've since wondered many a time if I should have. I just couldn't bring myself to it, so I didn't. She had become attracted to another man, and when that happens, it's over anyhow. She said there wasn't anyone else, and, I suppose technically, at that point there hadn't been yet, but they were talking, and she was intrigued enough to take the chance, and break me. And that she did. I was lost. I still am, but I'm getting better. As if that wasn't enough, in the middle of March, the former DW was found dead in her bathroom. I was out on the Harley getting some "wind therapy" over the Widow when I got the news. I knew DW lived in the town 6 miles south of here, but I didn't know where. Her sister called me, freaking out, gave me an address, I jumped on the bike, and took off. About 3 miles south of town, who should I roll up behind? You guest it..... The Widow. Great. I guess she thinks I'm stalking her. So, I didn't blow past her like I was tempted to do, I just followed her to the first set of lights, I had to turn left, she was turning right. She had the window down, and a funny look, ( I guess she wondered if I was stalking her, LOL) and said "What's going on?" I said "They just found DW dead in her bathroom." She said "OMG, where are you going?" I said "I don't know, I have to find the place" The lights turned, and we went our separate ways. I got there before the coroner got there even. Her sister and the friend who had went to check on her, and had the police go in and look for her (and found her) were there, the EMT's, and a handful of her friends and co-workers. They obviously wouldn't let us go in until the coroner was there and allowed us to, so, we were outside. When they brought her out in the red velvet body bag is when I lost it. I lost it for ALL I had lost. A marriage which should have worked, and a relationship that was working (I thought), but, in the end was a sham. I had largely been off work since the middle of December, (I'm a Union worker, and a lot of it is seasonal) and a few days later, got called by the Hall to go south to Tennessee to work. (I'm in Illinois) I obviously turned it down, telling them I just had WAY too much on my plate to leave. Unlike me, in the divorce, DW had not taken my name off her affairs. I had gotten my name off the plastic, but, I had to go sign the life insurance policy to get her cremated, buried, and a stone. Then, I unceremoniously got uninvited to the funeral. So, I loaded up and went to Memphis/Tunica. I had to get away. I have family and friends down there, and I've been back several times since. I needed a distraction, and shortly, I got one. In a BIG way....

 The job they had called me for was having turmoil. The steward was leaving. They called me, and told me they wanted me to take over as steward. They made it sound like a cake walk that was big $$$. Well, it was big $$$, but it was anything but a cake walk. After three hours of orientation, the stew who was leaving dropped a folder in my lap, and said "Here you go Brother, Good Luck.". I opened it up, and found out I had ~ 65 people scattered over 275 miles of a soup sandwich. It was crazy. I'd tell you to find a distraction, but if you do, be careful what you ask for. Initially, I was in WAY over my head, but, the steward of one of the other trades took me under his wing, and within a week or so, I was rolling with it. If I had known how big an elephant it was to eat, I would have never taken it. And that would have been a HUGE mistake. I made so many friends, and made so many connections, if I don't work from here on, it's because I don't want to, or jobs haven't kicked off yet. I succeeded beyond my wildest dreams, professionally, AND financially. I found out I have a LOT more in me than I ever thought I did. I did things I didn't know I had in me. I played the game well. I picked my battles wisely, and didn't loose any of them I took on. I got my way, pretty much just for the asking. This thing was so long geographically, and coincidentally geographically, that I made several more mixed business/pleasure trips to the Memphis area over the course of the job. In the process, I got a female friend who I have as a "life coach" who's traveled with me. I have another female consort I've known for nearly 40 years, and we were an item when we were very young. They've kept me amused, and distracted. Initially, the Widow and I were in occasional casual contact. That wasn't working. I had this void that I couldn't get past. (Sound familiar?) I had to break contact, at least for a while. I told her to block me on FB, and take my number out of her phone, and I was taking hers out of mine. I couldn't watch it. I didn't block her, because I was the one that couldn't watch what she was doing, and I had no indication she was watching what little I had time to post, and really didn't care if she did. I just couldn't do it. So, it got a little easier, but I still had this void. To be perfectly honest, I still do. To be honest, I want it to grow. I don't want to fill it. These girls are not looking for a relationship, and that's why I chose to hang with them. I can't do it any more. I'm too old. I will be happily single before I take another heartbreak like this last one.

 When that job ended, I posted some parts of this story as a motivational tale to others and also to "let it out". I made no mention of the Widow mind you, just my success, and my surprise at it, and my uptick in confidence. Well, who do I get a pm from? You guessed it. The Widow. She had unblocked me just long enough to congratulate me, and then was going to put the block back after the time limit. I told her she didn't have to, and that the conversation, and ability to air it out had been cathartic. We now do communicate some, and it isn't nearly as bad as it was. Want to know why? Because I DO realize it was HER decision, right or wrong in MY eyes doesn't matter. It is her who made the choice. Bed Made Lie. I thought I was the better man, but she didn't. I now KNOW I am. Maybe she'll figure that out, and maybe not. Her opinion of me is not MY problem. Sound familiar? She's actually came to the house a couple times, and the face to face WAS a little awkward at first. Sound familiar? I did truly love her. I still do, and always will. But, I realize now, that my opinion is that SHE screwed up. She may not think so, and conversely, MY opinion of HER choices are not HER problem. She will decide whether she made the right decision or not, and she will live with her decision as I am.

I can tell you that there is no time limit to grief. It is like a death. That I actually had a death to deal with in the process did also begin the process of consolidating my emotions and getting them into focus. I hope you don't have anything like that to deal with, and the grief of the loss of what you wanted is the extent of it. While there is no time limit, time DOES soften the blow, and you WILL get past it. I get one step closer every day, by the sheer will to do so. You have too up to this point, and you may as well continue to do so. If, at some point out in the future, I am truly alone, and the girls have went other directions, and the Widow should be in a similar place, perhaps she will reach out, and we can (MUCH MORE CAREFULLY) revisit it. You and your cousin may find yourselves in the same place. As I mentioned, it wouldn't be the first time that a youthful liaison has led to a mature relationship between cousins in your situation. It will all come down to timing, and enough of a lack of the awkwards that you need to lessen as best you can, while you can. You should do it with no expectation of anything in the future, but because it's a factor in your healing process.....

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Romalee    26

Hawk I did read all of your post. While you gave good advice to the OP, I truly "felt" your pain and joy in this post.

It is so good to have you back, if only for a brief time. Hope you have a very Merry Christmas.

If I were close I would give you a big hug!!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hawk    29

Roma,

 Aww, I'd take the hug, and I take it as the highest compliment that you read that mess, LOL. I know how you are with walls of text...... :lol:

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hawk    29

Nat,

 Yeah, and I used that lemonade to wash down the elephant. You know the old saying.... "How do you eat an elephant?" "One bite at a time". A good glass of lemonade helps wash it down too, LOL

 

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest David   
Guest David

Just, Paris, and Hawk. I deeply appreciate the responses. I posted this a few weeks ago, but thought it might be too long and that no one would read it. Hawk, thanks for sharing so much of your story. This forum really is a wonderful place to share.

To provide an update, I thought to check on this post because I wanted to see what advice might have been given. Today was Christmas, and as per the tradition, my extended family had a get-together. I'm sure you can guess who was there... my cousin! Which isn't a big surprise, but she doesn't always go to events. I almost didn't go because I didn't want to see her. I decided to go, anyway. I haven't seen my cousin in 6 months. The last time I saw her was at party, which I walked out of because I couldn't bare to see her.

Today her and I mostly avoided each other. I did wish her a Merry Christmas, and then later asked how her school work was going. For the most part, though, I just could not bare to look her in the eyes. When I saw her today, I had flashbacks of that night of passion we shared. After she left, I sat down, feeling very lonely and solemn. I know I may sound weak and emotional, but I am actually a rather strong and stern young man. I've endured many circumstances, but nothing like how this girl makes me feel.

I got a text from her this evening. She said she was happy to see me. I reminded her we never got lunch/dinner (which we planned to do over 6 months ago but then stopped communicating) and asked her to let me know when she was free so we could meet up and talk. She said she would.

I don't know if we will actually meet up, and if we do, I don't know what will come of it. Like Hawk said, I won't expect anything. I'll just go with the flow. I can't help but wonder though, what our future will be. 

Thanks for the support, 

David

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hawk    29

David,

 Your future is what you make of it, including all the twists and turns beyond your control that naturally go with it.

 I'd like to remind you again, when this dinner date happens, do not point out the elephant in the room. You let her point it out, if it gets pointed out. You do not want to push her toward going out of her comfort zone. You want to draw her into yours. If you seem needy or clingy over it, it will turn her off big time. If, on the other hand you are discrete about it, even to the point of nonchalant, it could make her question whether if, at some point in the future she DOES want to repeat that evening, if you care enough that you would go there again. If she thinks you would, but you could "take it or leave it", and aren't really lacking in that department, if she does feel something, she will want to compete for your attention, and will do so even if subconsciously. You WILL have to look her in the eyes as much as she will be able to, and you will need to be able to read what you see there, as well as any man is ever able to read a woman. No small feat, but, if you pay attention and keep your cool, you can do it.

 Here's kinda how it went when me and mine aired it out after all the years. Mind you, up until then, and we were MUCH more mature, we DID totally avoid the subject. But, when it came up finally, and we decided to talk it out, it pretty much started with me testing the waters. We had bounced around the edges of it two or three times before we actually sat down one night and totally aired it out. I began along the lines of "Yeah, it happened. Yeah, it was very intense, and got that way probably too quickly. But, I don't regret it, and if circumstances were what they were, I'd do the same thing again. And, if circumstances where what they were, and I knew then, what I know now, things may have been very different. But, they weren't, and here we are. I just want my best cousin back in touch on occasion." Then, it just sort of went from there, and we went into all the things we'd miss out on over the years, and, then, eventually got to the feelings that had been there all those years, and to the fact that (at the time) we BOTH were committed to others, and had no stomach for cheating. At that point, we knew how we felt, and always would, and were able to "run the elephant out of the room", and be back to where we were "before".

 You are young enough that you don't necessarily HAVE to wait 30 years to get around it, but pushing the issue is not going to help. If she touches on it, try some of how I went into it. You can leave out the "If I would have known what I know now" part, because you did realize it fairly quickly, and it hasn't made a difference, because she has refused to entertain the idea so far. And she may continue to refuse to. But, if she thinks you are like "Yeah, it happened, and I don't regret it, and if you asked me like you did, and that night being what it was, I WOULD do it again. But, it isn't the same, and here we are. I just want my favorite cousin back, and who knows where and what the future holds for either of us. I just don't want us to loose track, and I want you to be able to call me any time you need to. If I at all can, I'll do what I can for you, within reason." 

 With something along those lines, you let her know you care, but, you're not going to let it dictate your every waking moment, even if it still is for the time being. THAT will get better with time too. Trust me. But, it lets her know, that if she deep down DOES want to try it again, she'd best not wait too long, because you WILL move on, and the day will come that it won't matter whether she wants to or not, it ain't happening......

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
MissPrice    19

Hi David,

Hawk said some things that I strongly agree with. There's also something I'd like to add, because I think there is a point here that is important and has not been addressed.

I hate to be indelicate, but you say your cousin was a virgin before you were together. I don't know what country you are in or what culture you are a part of, but losing that is generally a big deal for a girl. It is also often not an easy one, physically or emotionally. To complicate that with (as least the in US) the social ambiguity of a relationship with a cousin must be exceptionally challenging. I imagine she's been dealing with a lot.

You sound like you are handling things really well so far, and I encourage you to keep it up. You can't control how she feels or how she deals with how she feels, but you can control how you approach her, and it sounds like you're doing that. And here's where I'm going to pass you off to Hawk's good advice, because he's absolutely right; needy or clingy is bad, no woman (or man, in my experience) in the history of the world ever found that attractive. But if you are honest and straightforward, and you let her take or leave you at what you are and you aren't impatient with her, no matter what, you will respect yourself.

Good luck, and all the best to you!

 

Edited by MissPrice

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

×