Hello all, thanks for stopping by. First off, thanks for all the great advice, stories, and posts on here, and special thanks to the creators and admins. This has been bugging me for a while, and I was so glad to discover this place, I really felt welcomed and moved by some of these stories, but most of all, hopeful. I truthfully am a forum noob, and have never really posted anything on a public board before, much less this topic. The reason I started this topic is because most of the threads I came across seemed geared to very young people, and while other posts did offer some insight, I decided to try my luck here, hoping for a more custom tailored response, respectably.
Straight to the goods then. I'm 'Andy' and soon to be 35, she's ‘Cindy’, in her 40s, and we are both single and 1st cousins. I have had a crush on her as far back as I can remember, our families were close when we were kids, and often spent weekends together. Because of our age gap at the time, her being a rebel teen who idolized Madonna and me with my Transformers and GI Joes, we were not very close. We hung out like average cousins, nothing special. Over the years she was always close to my thoughts, plus we stayed in touch on social media, but again noting special. Fast forward a little over two decades, during which we would occasionally see each other at large family gatherings, but no major contact beyond that. Next time, it was special, it felt different. Recently, for an outdoor family reunion, it just so happened that we were seated together and we practically spent the whole time chatting exclusively. I really love to make her laugh and I was doing just that, and so was she. Every now and then I'd get from her, what was probably a wholly innocent gesture, an arm touch and smile. I still refuse to read too much into this, this is uncharted waters and I know better than to treat it like the average crush. At one point during the party, a relative approached us and exclaimed to my cousin Cindy, "oh my, I thought this man was your boyfriend!" Our mutual relative was a little surprised when she realized it was me, but did not make a big deal or read too much into it. This made me back off, obviously my body language or a combination of ours both suggested we were a couple to anyone who did not know better. Cindy's reaction was amazing though, smiles and blush galore, she didn't even make an "Eww face" at the remark. Anyway, since then we have been texting occasionally, every other day, very short conversations because I know she is busy and a single mother. I remember one text she wrote, "I miss you." We exchange our problems and offer advice. On more than one occasion she mentioned how she just wants to be with a nice guy who accepts her, and how hard it is for her to find someone, I responded truthfully, that I'm pretty much in the same situation, looking for "Miss Right" and all that. We even spoke on the phone briefly, this is where it escalates a tiny bit.
Here is where it gets good, but really scary for me. This Saturday we have a date, for lack of a better word, or more accurately dinner and a movie. Yup, I went for it and she said yes! Holy holy crap! What do I do? I kind of have the evening planned, dinner at a nice restaurant, but I'm hoping to sub the movie with something romantic, like somewhere with a nice view of the city. I really just want to talk with her and spend time alone, and gauge her feelings a bit more. Anyway, I am out of my element here. I'm hoping someone reading this has been in a similar position. I am totally patient and would rather something happen organically on her end, than me trying to force it and be selfish. I would love tips for our date though, I will be myself of course, but I’m wondering if there’s little things I could say or do to hint at my romantic interest in her. I'm kind of nervous and don't want to make a fool of myself.
I have strong feelings for Cindy. She's amazing in terms of her fortitude, strength, and outlook on life. She is beautiful inside and out, she makes me laugh, and is always on my mind lately. A part of me believes we don't choose who we fall in love with, and it's not often a girl makes me feel this way. There's definitely some magic there, I just can't tell if its of the romantic kind or not.
Any advice from people who have been in similar situations, and my age group would be preferred, but all thoughts are greatly appreciated. Thank you kindly in advance!
• We've known each other since I was 5 and she was three. She lives out of state and just happened to be at my great aunt's. We didn't start talking everyday until I was 12 and she was 9. And every day until now we've talked, which now I'm 25 and she's 22. I say talked because she lives in a state over. She is my first and probably only best friend. Out of everyone I know, she comes out on top. I've never had an attachment to anyone this strong, ever. I wish I could give her everything she deserves. I wish I could make her life better. She's been looking for the right person forever and can't seem to land a good person. She is the only girl I have ever and will ever love. My stubbornness and feelings are probably why I never moved on when I thought she changed her mind on us being that way a lot because she's admitted she feels the same way. I have never and will never want anyone else. And to my shame it weighed on me so much and it keep getting brought up that I avoided her some days. It wasn't her fault, it was mine. I just didn't know how to say, I was in love with her and not make it awkward, weird, and sad as hell because at the time I thought she saw me as more of a brother. Not knowing if my feelings would be reciprocated played a factor as well. That last on actually scared the living hell out of me. And when I'm scared, I keep quite. I'm what you would call a useless man, if you could even call me a man. I keep thinking she could do a hell of a lot better, because she really could. I was just trying to look past my wants and needs and focus on hers. She needs a financially supportive partner, I am not that. Me thinking like this is the reason I never spoke out about my feelings often. I would throw a hint here and there, or someone else would bring it up, but the conversation would never go anywhere go anywhere. But that's how it's always been. My life has a way of dangling my dreams in front of me, then slaps me with it and and says I can't have it. I just can't take not having anything anymore. I get enough to suffer, that's about it and that's how I know it will be until I die. But even if it some how miraculously happened would we be happy or just sad? Why...just why did we have to be related? Does life enjoy torturing me to the very end? Constantly giving me hope that maybe we could be, then spitting in my face. I just want her to be happy. This situation is one of the main reasons why I'm always depressed and sad it's because my damn soulmate is my cousin. I've witnessed proof of this time and time again. We like the same things, we think the same things so much we are literally saying the same things at the same time all the time, and we enjoy simply taking to each other for literally hours a day for 13 years. I would chop a certain part off and stick the wound in fire ants just to have a chance to be with her. Doesn't even have to be a sure thing, just a chance. I want to be with her so bad it hurts. I hurt when she hurts, I hate hearing her down there so unhappy, knowing I can't do a damn thing to help her because I'm ao useless. I wish I could be everything she needs and wants. I wish I could give her what she wants, when she wants. I wish we weren't family so we could be a family. But that will probably never happen, because we're cousin's. I can't even think of suicide (I'm a coward when it comes to that so don't worry) because she keeps talking of killing herself if I die, and that scares me worse than my own death. I don't want her to kill herself over me. I just want her happy. But we never are. I just love her so much. Is that really so repulsive to society? That is the only thing stopping us. What people would think. And it does help the fact that people relentlessly remind me of it by teasing us, because even they can see how close were are. I just wish I could have this one piece of happiness but life denied it in the worst way and now I'll never be able to love again. You may say I will but you don't know me. I've been stuck on her for over a decade they rest or my life seems worth it. She says I will too but I know I won't. Trying to find love somewhere else just seems wrong and I don't want to. That's why I've accepted that I'll die alone because if it's not with her I don't want love. Doesn't stop it from hurting like hell though. I've used to cry nightly over this but know I just fall in a depression pit and only cry every so often because I'm used to emotional pain now but I'll be damned if it makes me stop talking to her or anything. I've got too few friends for that and she's the oldest and most precious one. I just wish there was some way to be with her. But keep on dreaming I guess. I don't get along with very many girls. Just her actually. So I'm positive I'll die alone without love. I can't be with anyone else. My mind won't let me. I've had a few encounters with other girls but everytime it gets to the point of them try to flirt with me I feel guilty. Like even them saying stuff like that to me is a betrayal even though we aren't that way with each other. And I can't and don't want to change that. Because to be honest I would rather die lonely than be with someone else. Sorry about the bad, repetitive writing and the 'woe is me' story. I just have literally no one else to talk about this to.
I posted a month or so ago for advice from this board. I received great advice and really appreciate it.
My comment this time is perhaps for perspective. My second cousin and I met over the summer for the first time (I’m 35, he’s 44). After a few sporadic texts after meeting (cousinly texts) we admitted a mutual attraction (one that was initiated by me). We began talking frequently through text at that time. Talking about commonalities and also about connecting physically at some point. We found that we’re both very compatible emotionally and physically.
Our only glitch - I wanted to pursue something that had the possibility to be long term. He said it was only going to be short term (friends with benefits) because he couldn’t deal with being publicly open with dating a cousin (even though he admitted it didn’t feel wrong...it just looked wrong).
Anyhow, we determined this difference in intentions early on in the relationship. I said perhaps then we shouldn’t continue. I would never tell him not to contact me though bc I really didn’t think we needed to do that. We weren’t an official couple and we’re also cousins so what’s the point in making it like a break up? I just thought it would fizzle out. He wouldn’t pursue it knowing I wanted something long term.
I’d walk away (through text...as much as you can there - being slow to respond. Not initiating, etc)...he’d reach out more. In fact, we got to the point in our text relationship that he would indicate he missed me if he hadn’t heard from me. This caused me to be confused because he told me he just wanted a FWB with me (although he said we could just be friends too and he didn’t have to get physical if I didn’t want to. I believe him. However, his desire to be in touch with me frequently and also to share his day, what was going on in his life, and emotions he might be feeling, involving his relationship with his kids for instance, told me he wanted emotional support from me. The kind that was not just a casual friend but from a partner. He also expressed interest and curiosity in my life.)
All that was nice (what I wanted actually in a long term relationship) but I found it hard to share things about myself and fully open up bc he kept saying we just had a short term thing going on.
These months through text he’d talk about meeting up when he came to town but he never was able to follow through on it. It got to the point where I finally initiated a meet up and he of course was open to it and excited. We met up one night, kissed, had fun spending time together and left it at that. We didn’t take it further. I left the next morning. Both of us left still interested in seeing each other again though.
His communication became more sporadic in the following days (which I sensed might happen) but I didn’t sense he lost interest in me just that it reflected his inability to commit to a long term relationship with me. Last week he contacted me and reached out with the sense that he missed talking to me (bc I just mirrored his texting and didn’t text or initiate if he didn’t...we ended up at one point going three days without talking...kind of a long time for the habit we got into). I missed him too to be honest. Anyhow, on the advice of a friend, I told him the reason I didn’t reach out was bc I wanted to be with him but not as FWB. He said it was all too complicated and that he thought we should just be friends/cousins and not be pursing benefits. I agreed that that was totally okay (what I thought we should be doing anyway if we weren’t pursuing something long term).
This time instead of reaching back out after a few days of not talking like he usually did he still hasn’t reached out. I felt (and still do) incredibly sad and miss him. It’s the kind of heartbreak I’d feel after a break up. However, this break up feels sadder than others bc I feel like we’re both still interested in each other. He just didn’t give it a chance to develop. (Note: We’d have the conversation multiple times before but it hit home this time with him I think bc we’d actually seen each other in person).
Anyone have any thoughts on this? Have you seen this happen between cousin couples before? I hope we talk again someday. I was afraid of this the whole time and why I didn’t want to knowingly go into a short term relationship with him. Because while he can say we’re cousins, friends (and I truly think he enjoys talking to me)..truth is we didn’t know each other before (our families are not close). Unless one of us reaches out, we won’t spend time with each other again. We’re connected on FB and that’s really the only realm we have outside of deliberate communication.
I know if I reach out he will reciprocate but I don’t think he’ll reach out to me anymore. (Which is okay, but I’m still sad. It hurts bc while he said he was interested in me outside of benefits, when he realized benefits should really be off the table he went away. Honestly, if we were to have a fling I’d rather it have been of the physical kind rather than the emotional kind.)
This kind of connection felt like the kind we could always be together. And maybe we will in a roundabout way. But right now it sucks because I don’t know that for sure. Additional perspective on cousin relationship dynamics and perhaps any experience in the thought process of a reluctant partner is what I’m looking for. I know that we would probably be a regular couple if we were away from everyone. So it’s hard.