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      Get Smart on the Web   09/16/2016

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Space... isn't that supposed to be the final frontier, not hell?

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Hi, newbie here. I read through a few postings and felt comfortable enough to register and share my story, hoping for a bit of feedback.

My cousin story is a bit different than what I have been reading, in that I met my cousin for the first time in 2006 when I traveled overseas to meet family. I didn't even know he existed before that. My family tree on that side is a bit, well, wonky. Anyway, there were sparks right away, but he was so cute, and so much younger than me that I figured it was just my imagination and his charm. Before I left, he told me how he had hooked up with another cousin in the family, someone more his age and who he saw far more frequently. When he told me that I thought, "Oh, so that little taboo has already been touched on in the family, so best I stay out of it."

We spoke very infrequently since then, keeping in touch the odd time through Facebook. He lives in the UK with other family members there. Fast forward to this year, when circumstances came up that required greater contact, and he and I started talking a lot. Due to family personality traits, charm and flirtation are fairly common, and so that kind of playful banter started... and then something more. I'm married, and my husband and I had discussed the concept of opening our marriage, but I never felt I could find someone I would feel comfortable enough to do that with. So, when I started finding out that my cousin had felt the same sparks I had years ago, and that he was very attracted to me, I considered the situation for a few days then decided to give it a go. He was open minded and had no qualms about it. We spoke a lot, every day for hours on Skype or in text. He made me laugh like no one had before (and I have had a few serious, long term relationships, so I'm not new to connecting with people), and he was so romantic, and could get me fired up, and everything was fantastic. We both agreed that for logistics sake, and a few other reasons, we didn't want to pursue an exclusive relationship. Yet, certain things started being expressed, sometimes more out of him than from me, as I was trying to keep to a minimum any ideas that might be interpreted as pressure. Over the course of five months, my husband's opinion on the matter kept swinging from one extreme to the other, of happy acceptance to bitter jealousy. It was putting a lot of stress on everyone. My cos was also seeing a couple of people back in the UK, and his desires for me were starting to strain some of those relationships.

I think he started getting more interested in a new lady, but he always denied it, said that the three he had on the go already (included me) were more than enough.

Then one day, during the stress and strain of what my husband and I were going through, my cousin just cut off all ties (pretty much). He blocked me on Facebook, and removed me from his Skype contacts. One night he sends me a loving text before bed, and when I wake up the next morning he has sent me an email saying he is hugely stressed and is "going dark". I had a chance to book an immediate flight out to the UK to see him to try to talk about it, and I wanted to speak with him about the idea, but he declined my new friend request. I thought that if I did it anyway, it could either be the most romantic thing in the world, or the creepiest, and I wasn't sure what kind of way he would see it.

The things we spoke of, the way he talked to me, the things we shared... I know that he felt deeply for me, and I for him. And I've been in situations before where the only way I was able to cope was that *I* had to cut ties, so I can rationalise his (immature) behaviour. But part of me is wondering if that is what it was, or if he really is just being a player (part of his genetic heritage).

I have decided not to contact him further and let him come to me if he wants to talk. He is away right now, so silence doesn't necessarily mean what it could mean.

No one has ever made me feel the way he has, on so many levels, and I doubt anyway ever will. A past boyfriend used to hold that top spot, and the connection I felt with my cousin just blew that out of the water. My husband is nice, and he's very handsome, but there are some levels we just don't connect on, and I had been struggling with the idea of ending my marriage for many years. I told him that if it ended now, it wasn't because I was leaving him for my cousin, but I know that is how it would always be interpreted. If I was single, I would want to have a crack at a proper romantic relationship with my cos, and I don't have any expectations for how long it would last, I just know that it would be like fireworks.

It's been less than two weeks since I was struck off. I am still struggling with it, but trying to be mature and graceful. So, how crazy am I to keep thinking about him? Should I be trying to do those negative reinforcement tricks of thinking bad things about him to try to make myself lose interest, or is that just futile? I already knew going into this that my heart would probably be broken, and that it would take many many years to get over him. I guess I just hoped I could find a way to avoid it.

Thanks for reading.

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Guest xocodeljc

So sorry that you are going thru that, my suggestion is try to keep yourself busy, it helps me not to think about an ex.  Also, time is the best determinant of the future, try to be patient with him while he sorts his thoughts/issues and know in the end that he will come around at sone point in life and you should be ready to express to him what you feel and need. If he agrees then pursue whatever you want and if not then give yourself enough love and respect to walk away even if it hurts... hope it helps.. if u can, p k ease help me out on ny question.


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i dont think that you are crazy at all to be thinking about him. I mean its natural and show the depth and truth in your love.

and trust me the negative stuff never works!! Atleast it never did for me!

I think you just need to accept the fact that he has moved on and so have you/you need to.

better focus on a goal -- very difficult initially but eventually you will overcome it

good luck and wishing you all the courage in the world to move on

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Thank you both for your kind words of support. I have been trying to talk sense into myself about moving on, getting on with it, etc. I have had a few set backs, but I know (I hope) that it will get easier with time. I have been reading other peoples' posts since I put this up, and I see that others also find the deep connection difficult to get over. That is reassuring in a way. I think I/we took on too many variables at one time: long distance, age gap (I'm 39 and he is 28), open relationships, kissing cousins, etc. (He had told me about the other cousin (they were younger then) as a way of letting me know he was okay with the idea.)

He returns from his trip this week, so I have one more week of waiting to see if he will change his mind in the short term, and then, I guess I just have to move on.

My heart has never ached this way for anyone before.

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Since I last posted, not a lot has changed, but a few minor updates are worthy of note.

I think I have come to the realization that my marriage isn't going to work out. I love my husband but it has felt more as a companion than a lover, and I feel too young to live the rest of my life without a lover. I have been trying to make this marriage work for years, and hearing him say things like he will try harder to be romantic just reminds me of how little work love and romance are for some people. Love shouldn't be work. A relationship should be, but there should be love there to fuel the efforts. I just don't feel that it is there.

As far as my cos goes, we exchanged a couple of emails, and he saI'd things that made me feel like he's struggling, not a player. We still probably won't be on speaking terms for quite a while I fear. Who knows what will happen in that time.

At the moment, I am picturing a future where I am single, putting myself and my kids first and hopefully being more selective about who I open my heart to. I can't see anyone making me feel the way my cos has. I have had many long term relationships in my life,  so I have a respectable sampling of what men are out there. I just love this one so much I know that I'd be comparing any other man to him. Someone said they had a relative who passed away having never married because she couldn't marry her cousin. I feel like I can relate to that. Once I have split with my husband, I can't see being with anyone else until I have had time to be with my cos. And if that doesn't happen....

It feels crazy to be longing after someone like this, but it is so powerful. I appreciate this forum/webpage as reading things I don't feel ashamed of how I feel for him anymore.


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Update (for those who are following):

It seems that my cousin would prefer to play Jack the Lad and has chosen a life of casual sex without any contact with me (and his excuse is that it is because he has such deep feelings for me, he can't even talk as just friends with me. The woman he lives with got it into his head that this was incestuous, so I think that is part of his motivation. I tried to explain otherwise, even sent him the webpage to this place, but I doubt he's visited). Besides, his behaviour is really starting to be more like that of a player, and I'm just not interested in that, despite what I felt for him.

So, my advice to anyone considering pursuing something with their cousin: don't forget that they are still people, and it could go the same way as any relationship or interaction. The difference is that you will probably feel things far more intensely than you ever have in your life, both the good and the bad. So if you're not prepared for that, then let that sleeping dog lie.

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