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nora.gris

The only impediment is my mind.

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Ok so I'm new and I really need an advice because I'm so confused.

So my cousin lives in another country (where my parents are originally from) so we really didn't have that much of a contact besides summer, bc we go to visit our family.

I'm born and raised in an european country, where I currently live.

A few years ago, when we were preteens, it was the last time we met (before this year) and we didn't even talk, he now says it was because he was shy. Obviously we know each other since we were little kids and we would always play together and have fun, but as we grew up, we started falling apart and didn't talk at all when we visited them. I had this little feeling for him but I always wanted to hide it, because I grew up in Europe, where marriage or romantic relationships between cousins is seen as incest even though it's legal, but still, it's a huge social taboo.

So fast forward to this year. I'm 19 and he is two years older than me. We are young adults. Keep in mind that all this years I was trying to make my own life and we didn't have any contact at all.

So we go on vacation there and we meet. Throughout the whole journey we didn't talk that much. I was really nervous but I also didn't want to create any sort of relationship between us so I kept it polite but I still was kind of playful, if that makes sense. Oh let me tell you that in this country, marriage between cousins is very common, and normalized, so in that aspect we don't have any problem.

Ok, so the thing is, then he got my social media and when I went back to my country, we started talking. He wanted to know whether I was in a relationship or not and we started knowing each other really well for the first time. After a few weeks he asked me if I liked him or if I could like him one day, because I previously told him I didn't want any relationship with someone from the family. I told him yes and we continued to talk (everyday for HOURS till we go to sleep) and just know each other.

As a person I really really really like him. He is such a nice, sweet, funny and open-minded person. I was NOT expecting it. We talk every day and we talk about everything. Physically I am very attracted to him, since forever actually. And he also likes me. He even told me that he sees us together forever. 

Now here's the problem. I'm so afraid about what people will say.

But when I start to analyze things, it's not even that deep. My family will probably 100% approve it, as I told you it's very normal for us in our culture. My friends, they were a little surprised at the beginning when I explained it to them, but quickly went to tell me that I should do what I felt and they are really supportive and encourage me. Legally, it's totally fine and legal in the country I live and basically throughout the whole continent. So the only problem I have is my fear and my thoughts about what others will say.

The thing is both of our fathers are brothers, so we have the same surname. In the country I am from, married women don't take their husband's last name, so if people see we have the same surname they will definitely notice we are related. Also, kids take both surnames, from the father and the mother, so technically they will have the same surname TWICE.

I mean, I know it's the most stupid reason I could come up with, but I really care about what other think about me or us in this case, and this is really destroying our, let's say, happiness, because I'm constantly thinking about this and can't seem to get over it.

I really like him, I actually think I feel way more for him than just like him and whenever he messages me I become the happiest person on Earth. But I'm constantly seeing comments of people saying it's incest, it's wrong, it's disgusting, bla bla bla and it makes me really confused and uncomfortable.

Once I arrived to the point of saying, you know what, I can't continue with this "relationship", I'll just block him everywhere but something kept me off from doing it. 

I really thought of just hiding it and not tell anyone about it, I mean the fact that we are cousins, but they will eventually find out one way or another, and that terrifies me.

What should I do? He will get tired of this at the end, because he tells me repeatedly that we shouldn't care about what others think but it's not easy to do it when you live in a society where for loving someone you're considered weird and mentally ill.

If you arrived till here, thank you and I hope to hear from you. Kisses 😘

Nora 

Edited by nora.gris

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Hi Nora,

Hope my reply is not too late. Your thread is the kind of threads I want to reply on. And so hopefully I can be of help. First question, is your cousin your first crush/first bf? Or have you had a "normal bf" already before him? Not that it matters, but I just want to gauge your experience with relationships.... Coz I believe that it's diffrent, ,say in my case, wherein my cousin-gf is my first. My first love, first gf, and the whole nine yards.. Just want to ask.

Now more to the point:

You mentioned that you fear. You know what? You should arm yourself then. The materials in this website is so helpful. Look at the references on the homepage regarding the FACTS about cousin relationships and you will be amazed. Seriously. This site is a savior to my relationship with my cousin. But just to tackle some of the things you say,... You said,

On 9/30/2018 at 2:17 PM, nora.gris said:

The thing is both of our fathers are brothers, so we have the same surname. In the country I am from, married women don't take their husband's last name, so if people see we have the same surname they will definitely notice we are related. Also, kids take both surnames, from the father and the mother, so technically they will have the same surname TWICE.

I mean, I know it's the most stupid reason I could come up with, but I really care about what other think about me or us in this case, and this is really destroying our, let's say, happiness, because I'm constantly thinking about this and can't seem to get over it.

First of all, it's not a stupid reason... if it is a 'big deal to you', then it is a big deal to you.. I mean, not really a 'big deal' but there's just this WISH that "darn it.. if only our mothers are the ones that are siblings..! Just so that we can "hide" our surnames or whatever so that people won't ask!" lol. I feel like you are private person...and you don't really want that people talk behind you or after you or whisper things about you adn your relationship. I believe that you have a sort of "reputation" that you need to maintain -- and that's pretty understandable.

You know what though? People actually don't care. They don't. You will get your 15 minutes of fame, be on the news, and people will talk... but as soon as you don't do something stupid, even if you don't say anything but just stand your ground, they really got no chance. Again I will repeat: people don't care too much about other people. What people care about is themselves.

Now of course that won't help you too much... but my two points above is a mindset. What I can help you practically though is to encourage you to have that confidence and "own your relationship". You said that you are 19. Probably going to college and of course got plans. You see, I grew up in the Philippines... a strong catholic background and a family code that is just STRONG against cousin relationships. It's impossible to be married there in the Philippines. It is illegal and couples there are persecuted by families..even disowned. I remembered telling my cousin-gf back then that "we will be somebody in our clan... we won't be pushovers".. Basically my plan, as a guy, is to have a voice in the family...the big decisions that needs to be made and so on...just so that nobody will look down at us (me and my gf) by the time we let the cat out of the bag so to speak.

And so now you are 19.. If you will have a Master's degree and none of your siblings and other cousins have Masters!? Dang, you have "a voice" over them and it will help your relationship with your boyfriend immensely. ^__^

 

Hope my comment helps,

Pooch

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Hi Pooch, thank you so much for replying :)

On 27/10/2018 at 23:18, pooch dijo:

is your cousin your first crush/first bf? Or have you had a "normal bf" already before him?

Answering this question, I did have crushes and a boyfriend before, but not for a long time so I definitely am not very experimented. He is the first guy that I kind of saw myself with for a very serious relationship. 

And thank you for understanding my point of view regarding the whole people's opinion on me. Maybe you're right and nobody cares that much, it's just that it's so hard to apply this theory in real life I guess. 

And I'm really surprised to hear about your story. The fact that in your country the marriage or relationships between cousins is illegal is really messed up. I guess this proves that other people can have more (real) problems than I have. I really really hope your relationship works out and you get all the support from your loved ones. I am definitely sending all the love your way!

Again, thank you so much for your answer, it definitely did help me a lot. I appreciate it. 

Love,

Nora.

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On 10/30/2018 at 8:46 PM, nora.gris said:

Hi Pooch, thank you so much for replying :)

Answering this question, I did have crushes and a boyfriend before, but not for a long time so I definitely am not very experimented. He is the first guy that I kind of saw myself with for a very serious relationship. 

And thank you for understanding my point of view regarding the whole people's opinion on me. Maybe you're right and nobody cares that much, it's just that it's so hard to apply this theory in real life I guess. 

And I'm really surprised to hear about your story. The fact that in your country the marriage or relationships between cousins is illegal is really messed up. I guess this proves that other people can have more (real) problems than I have. I really really hope your relationship works out and you get all the support from your loved ones. I am definitely sending all the love your way!

Again, thank you so much for your answer, it definitely did help me a lot. I appreciate it. 

Love,

Nora.

I see... if he is your first then I really hope the best for you! 😊 

You said that its hard to apply in real life, yes that is true. Coz it is my experience too.. so you know what I do? I sometimes "intentionally be a jerk" (even though i am not), just so that I can have those callous stuff on my heart to prepare myself... and it does not have to be big stuff, you know? But small stuff like "treating your cousin bf's dad not like your uncle perse but as your bf's dad"... subtle difference, but it is a mindset. Or for instance, not overly apologizing to a mistake you made..a simple apology sometimes is sufficient. And many others...

I dunno if you know what I mean above but it kinda worked for me to get that "thick-faced muscle" just so thay I can stand my ground. And here's my suggestion since you are the lady in the relationship,: treat your cousin-bf really really well. Even though it can be hard, you have to support him and his decisions. Coz when he's strong, then you become strong too and it fuels to your relationship as you get to know this guy --- as your bf. 😉

Thanks for the positive feedback!

By the way, my cous-gf and I started young as well. Lots have happened. Ups and downs. Thick and thin. She was 15 and I was 17 when we started and I still am learning a looot of things a out her and vice versa even now. We are no longer in the Philippines but are in Canada where cousin marriages are legal... so whenever we talk about that the "typical marriage these days ends up in divorce after 3 months", I really feel grateful. 😊

 

Pooch

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Hello, Happy Holidays!

Your situation resinates with me a lot, although my relationship with my female 1st cousin has not advanced as far as yours (we are still just "friends"), I see some similarities. After reading your posts I realized that we (my love interest) may not be as close as I had hoped, we don't talk on the phone every day, only occasionally. However this is mainly due to our busy work and family schedule. 

I'd like to start by saying I hope everything worked out for the best. This site has helped me navigate a similar issue, plus the hope and support found in people's posts are very encouraging. In regards to your family, I feel similar. Cousin marriages and relationships are allowed in my culture, but not common where we live. We'd definitely be the topic of conversation for a while, but I agree with Pooch, it won't last. One of my Uncles' married my aunt, which is his first cousin. Admittedly my cousins and I made fun of this situation behind their backs, but now I see the irony. They are together even today, and have kids and grand kids. Their relationship gives me hope too. It's normal to care what your relatives think about you, I try to pretend that I don't care, but I'd be lying if I said it doesn't concern me (what our family would say and think). However we are both adults, I am 35 and she is 45, and I know that my immediate family would be happy for me, but not at first. I can't comment on her immediate family because they are a bit more judgmental than mine; I am fortunate enough to have a family that offers their love and support unconditionally.

Our fathers are brothers and we have the same last name, but it's a pretty common one. We do not have a romantic relationship, we've been hanging out at least once a week for the past few months. I have hinted my feelings by flirting occasionally, and have even tried the "If we weren't cousins line..." No major results in my opinion however, or I can't tell whether or not she feels the same. So I intend to confess my feelings this weekend while we are hanging out together. I hoped something would blossom organically by now, but it has not. I doubt she would ever make a move even if she felt the same, so it falls on me to say something. I fear if I don't tell her how I feel, then my feelings will only grow, making this much harder in the future. I don't believe this will strain our relationship in the event she doesn't reciprocate, because we have a pretty tight bond.

For what it's worth, if you love this person, then that love should give some perspective. Meaning it should outweigh your "fear" in my humble opinion. If my cousin responds by stating, "What about the family?" Then my planned response is "Let's work on us for right now, and strengthen our bond before we worry about others." Thinking about family's opinions this early on will only be discouraging, however once there's foundations there, the new perspective and hope should outweigh the concerns. I wish you all the best. 

Seasons Greetings

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