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Second cousins, 30s and 40s

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I am recently in a situation (going on two months now) of a mostly text relationship with a second cousin. I am 35 and he is 44. We did not meet until last summer (funny enough it was bc of studying genealogy). I felt an instant attraction to him. We talked sporadically over the next three months through text until one night we admitted a mutual attraction. Since then communication has been practically daily. 

From my angle, I live in a city, have no kids, and am not particularly bothered by the fact he’s my cousin. Our families are not close and we did not grow up together. (It would just be a relationship I saw as telling immediate family members and not being open with the public). We share so much in common. It was really like experiencing the male version of myself when I met and talked to him. Views on politics, religion, music, humor. We are very similar. 

He says while he is attracted to me he doesn’t see a long term relationship as practical and thinks we should pursue something with an expiration date. He has two kids, lives near immediate family in a small conservative town. 

We have discussed the discrepancy in our views (we both enjoy talking and want to get physical) and yet he continues to reach out to me and I continue to reciprocate communication. However, I cannot get physical with him under recreational circumstances. 

My question is...has anyone actually seen someone evolve in this kind of scenario? Is it practical to think he may eventually be okay with it down the road (even if in the beginning last time we talked about it specifically he said he saw the chance as slim)?

I have ceased initiating communication with him and it only made him increase his communication even more. I know he likes me...a lot. But so far he hasn’t been able to promise a relationship with any hope for a future. 

As of yet, we have not seen each other since admitting mutual attraction over text. 

Is this situation with a reluctant potential partner  one that anyone has seen or experienced before? Information on a relationship like this is not text book so it’s difficult to find and/or interpret. 

Thank you in advance for considering providing any input. 

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My first reaction to your post was to advise you to tell him to get lost!  

My second reaction was to reread your post to check if you mentioned if either one of you is in another relationship.  If you are both free, he is not being respectful to you.  Second cousins are not forbidden that we know of, so his attitude is completely selfish.  

You deserve better treatment.  I'm notorious on this site for recommending a book:  NASTY PEOPLE, HOW TO STOP BEING HURT BY THEM WITHOUT STOOPING TO THEIR LEVEL by Dr. Jay Carter.  Your cousin is being an NP and expecting to control you.  You can download the book from Amazon.

If he wants to keep you a secret, he may have other interests.   Have you actually met in person?  Are any other relatives in contact with him?  

If you have other questions,  let us know.  We're on your side!!



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Abrad, listen.... he doesn't want a long term relationship. he wants something with an expiration date, which means no matter how much he likes you, he does NOT see you as a potential mate. he sees you as a disposable playmate. i know that's a difficult pill to swallow, but you're 35 years old, you don't need to waste time in a relationship that has no future. so give him the expiration date he's asking for... an expiration date of yesterday, and move on. find someone who is looking for the same thing out of life as you. similar interests aren't going to change his short term focus.

i know you've stopped initiating contact, but it is time for you to cease to respond when he makes contact. it's not going to be easy, but you deserve better.

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Thanks so much for the quick feedback! That is such a good question. I don’t get the impression that there’s anyone else (he’s mentioned how he hasn’t been in a relationship for months) but that’s something worth investigating. I told him if we engage in anything physical I would want exclusivity to which he agreed. 

He has said he is not comfortable being public with the taboo. He said that very directly and matter of factly. I believe him but I also think it’s something no one needs to know about so what’s the big deal. 

He is acting more and more like a partner over text (we talk every day, he talks about all parts of his life, and I can tell clearly he cares about me). That doesn’t mean anything though if it doesn’t amount to what I’m looking for. 

I just don’t know if it’s an idea he needs to get used to as we get to know each other or if it’s a scenario that will never evolve into what I’m looking for. 

We met in person this summer. That’s when we first met. At the time though, we didn’t admit a mutual attraction. That came months later after contact by me to be honest. 

Edited by ABrad
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We do respect each other so just cutting off contact and saying to get lost wouldn’t be the most practical. I know that he’s very slow moving in relationships (by his own admission) so I’ve taken that into consideration mostly because I know he likes me...but that doesn’t mean anything for long if it doesn’t materialize into a real relationship. 

Most practical would be to just tell him we need to put space between us. Let things fizzle out. 

It’s sad because I really do like him a lot. He’s very easy to get a long with he just doesn’t see any potential for a real relationship with me because I’m his cousin (even though I’ve suspected that may also be an excuse). 

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well since you are still getting to know each other that does put a different spin on it! he may just be freaked out about going public. and at this stage, you're right, it would be too soon. however, if you want something long-term and he just simply is not interested in such a commitment, then i'd definitely not ever let things get physical.  that's just a heartache waiting for a place to happen (to quote an old janie frickie song). 

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Update: My cousin and I talked tonight and agreed to a period of no contact. He said he couldn’t tell family and friends about us because of the taboo. He was concerned about what people would think of him dating a cousin and also said it would be a poor model to his children. I told him that if that was the case I couldn’t enter into a relationship with no future. 

Too bad. We really do enjoy each other’s company. 

Thanks for the advice you provided me on this board. 

Edited by ABrad
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