Others tell me about their deep, abiding, wholistic love with their close relative, relationships that are more beautiful and profound than most of the other marriages you see… the ones that don’t have to be hidden in a closet. Bearsbaby was generous with her time and privacy, sharing with me to provide the follow interview, which is one of the best so far. (I am bumping up this interview because it is one of my favorites and still as relevant as ever.)
Bearsbaby is an attractive, and as you will see, eloquent woman living in Scotland. She is in her mid-30s and a “born and bred” highlander. She works as a personal assistant for her brother, who works in law helping the disabled. Sometimes, she is also caretaker to her brother due to serious ongoing health problems.
FULL MARRIAGE EQUALITY: You live with your brother. Does anyone else live with you?
Bearsbaby: Me and my brother live as husband and wife. Although nobody lives with us, we do have pets, and we quite often have our elder sister come and stay for anything up to a month at a time. We deliberately moved to a city so we could be together and build our relationship together.
FME: Is your brother your full blood brother? Is he younger or older than you, and if so, by how much? What other siblings do you have and are they older, younger, what?
My bear is my full blood brother and is a year older than myself. I have an elder sister, a younger brother and an older brother. Due to our relationship though, we no longer have contact with our older brother.
FME: Describe your relationship with your brother.
Our relationship is a very loving one, and my brother is my whole life to me, and I know I am his life and reason for living. We aren't just brother and sister, we are the best of friends, soulmates and the other half to each others wings. We have a very close and intimate relationship, which includes lovemaking. I can't sleep at night without him being by my side, I cry when he is in the hospital, etc. To me, there is only one person I have ever loved, and ever will, and that is my sweet darling brother.
FME: What was your relationship with your brother like prior to the inclusion of sex?
I have always been close to my brother, even as children we always seemed to get on better with each other than all our other siblings. We were raised by our parents in a very close knit community, which was quite hard, mainly because it became so difficult to hide our relationship away. Mum and Dad always said we were like 2 peas in the same pod even as children.
FME: When/how did you first realize sex with your brother was a possibility and that you wanted it? Did such feelings seem strange to you or like something you had previously considered to be wrong?
I knew by the age of 13. I was very sexually attracted to my brother, but even though we both had the sexual attraction towards each other, we didn’t make love for the first time until a couple of years later. To us there was nothing wrong or strange with our feelings; it always felt just right. We had built our love up from an early age and to both of us, love isn't wrong. How can sexual attraction be wrong when you have the love there?
FME: Who made the first move? How did it happen? Was it planned or spontaneous?
I don't really think either of us made the first move. We had been in love for 4 years before we became sexually active like that. It was one of those moments that just felt it was right for the both of us. I know the first time we made love, I felt… well, how to put this... home.
It was the most heavenly and loving feeling I had ever felt in the world, and I knew that I wanted my brother to be my one and only for the rest of my life from that point on.
We built our love up over many years. At 11 years old, I was craving to just be with him even if it was doing homework together and holding his hand under the table. At that age you do get confused with emotions and feelings, but then this is the learning process as you grow up, but to me, it always felt right. Of course we had ups and downs, we argued, we fought at times, but we always kissed and made up, literally. Even at an early age, we always managed to slip away for a moment to have a kiss before bed.
There were times that I doubted myself, and whether I would always be able to give my brother the love he deserved, but this was more prevalent during his times of illness and hospitalisation.
One thing that I always knew though, no matter how ill he got, I loved him. I would even play truant from school just to visit him in the hospital, etc. This was my loved one, my one and only, and I would have and still would do anything for him. He really is my one, my only, my heart, my soul, my every waking breath, and always will be. I have never wanted to be with anyone else; I have only ever wanted my brother.
FME: Some say a consanguinamorous brother and sister are kinky by definition, but I disagree and notice that most consanguinamorous relationships look like any other relationship, although usually with much more intensity. Do you feel like your relationship is taboo, and if so, do you like that or get a thrill from that? Or does it feel normal?
What is taboo about love? Our hearts and souls choose who we love, and who we want to share our lives with, so when you find that one special person, then how can it be so wrong or taboo? We are a strong loving couple, we have been brought up together, we have learned as kids more about each other than many couples would learn about each other in a lifetime. So what that we are brother and sister? We are a strong, loving couple, and always will be. A relationship is built on love, trust, security, the ability to communicate with each other, and the ability to still learn more about each other. We have the advantage of having a whole lifetime of building this up with each other. Therefore, I feel it is a much stronger relationship, and definitely a more loving one, that many would never find in their lifetime.
FME: Does anyone in your life know the full, true nature/history of your relationship and how did they find out? How have they reacted? Are you able to act like a couple in public... does anyone know you as a couple but not as brother and sister? What kind of steps, if any, have you had to take to keep your privacy?
We have a very supportive family, and they know everything about our relationship. That included our grandparents. Our doctor and my brother’s medical team know about our relationship also. They had inklings years ago, and we finally admitted our relationship to his team, and they don't even batter an eyelid now. They just see the couple we are.
It was mum and dad that caught us out big-time. They found us sound asleep cuddled up naked together, so really there was no hiding from that point. Yeah, it caused hell at first, but after they realised that we had actually been in love for 4 years by this time, they took the difficult decision to support us.
Now, if you look at us, you would see a normal husband and wife relationship, we walk down the street holding hands etc, but then that's all we are... a strong loving couple. This is why we made the decision to move to a different city over 200 miles away from our original home.
FME: Having to hide the full nature of your relationship from some people can be a disadvantage. Are there any other disadvantages? Conversely, do you think family members have some advantages and some things better than unrelated lovers?
Hiding away always has disadvantages, but it's how you make the best or worst of the situation that will either make or break you as a couple. Of course being in the type of relationship we are in would seem so taboo and wrong to society, so you have to be strong enough in each other and as a couple to be able to hide the fact you are related.
It hasn't been a bed of roses for us, in fact it's been hell at times. When we first got found out, it nearly broke us and the family to pieces. We have also had to make the conscious decision to have no more contact with our eldest brother, due to sibling rivalry. He wanted a bit of what we had together, but only the sexual part. So we were left with no choice but to literally disown him. So there are a lot of disadvantages.
FME: You're an attractive woman. Some people do know you are brother and sister, or did when you were younger. How do/did you deal with people who are interested in dating you, or with people who want to fix you up with someone, or ask you why you're not with someone?
The only people that know I am living with my brother are our family and medical teams; apart from that we are a 'married' couple. Of course when I was younger I had people try and pick me up, but my brother was always by my side, and if they knew us as brother and sister, then he would defend me by saying something like "Are you trying to hit on my sister?" If nobody knew who we were, then he would come over and be the man I love, and hold me kiss me, and then say something like "Hey loser, are you trying to pick up my WIFE!?!"
I would also do the same for him, but nowadays we don't have anyone see us as anything different as husband and wife. I wear his ring, and he wears mine. As highlanders we took a decision to declare our love to each other formally in front of those we loved, so we had a Celtic commitment ceremony. To us this was our marriage, and from that point we became in our hearts husband and wife, and with that we dedicated our life and our love to each other.
So no matter who finds me attractive, my heart, my soul, my body, my everything, belongs to my brother, and always will.
FME: What do you want to say to people who disapprove of your relationship, or disapprove of anyone having this kind of relationship? What's your reply to those who would say that if a brother and sister have this kind of relationship, it is only because the sister is being victimized by the brother?
I would like to say that you have the biggest disability of all: a negative attitude. Take time to see the couple we are, take time to listen and learn, after all we are all the same underneath, we all have the same feelings and emotions, we all love and can be loved, so why should we not be with the one person who makes us feel complete?
There is a difference between a consensual relationship and one that is non-consensual. That’s what defines the difference between a relationship and abuse. If you are not willing to learn about our type of relationship, then it's YOU that's making us the victims. So aren't you the ones abusing us by victimizing us?
FME: What advice do you have for someone who is curious or has romantic or sexual feelings for a close relative? What advice do you have for parents who find out their children (perhaps still living at home) are involved with each other?
For those who are curious, I would say keep at as curiosity only. Your heart will tell you if this will ever come to anything, so follow it, and even if you never end up in a relationship, you will always have a close bond.
For those who have sexual feelings to a close relationship, I would ask them to question if they aren't confusing love with lust. There is one heck of a difference. Lust can't make you feel complete; it's nothing but sexual desire. So even though you may have sexual feelings, is it really worth ruining what you have learned together over the years because of lust? Think long and hard. If you know 100% that you have sexual feelings because of love, then follow your hearts. If it's just lust, then it's time to back away.
For the family and relatives, my advice would be quite simple. You are the family and loved ones that make us the people who we are from a very early stage of life. You teach us what is right and wrong, yet as adults, you choose to become childish if you refuse to listen and even try to understand. Love chooses it's path for everyone. You brought us into this world because of love. You gave us the ability to understand things in life, so don't lose it yourself by refusing to understand us.
FME: If you could get legally married, and that included protections against discrimination, harassment, etc., would you?
In a heartbeat. My brother is my life, he is everything I could ever want in a man. I have loved him for 24 years now, he is the only man I have loved and ever will, so even though we live as husband and wife, it would be dream come true to legally marry him.
FME: Any plans for the future?
We find it difficult to make long term plans because of the health problems that my brother will suffer from throughout his life. Due to his medical condition, we both know he will spend the whole of his life having tests, having tumours form, and one day it will claim his life, so we live and love every day of our lives for what it is.
However next year, we are having a family party to celebrate that we have been together 25 years.
FME: Do you know in-person others who have had relationships like yours?
Only online. We keep our relationship quite private and we want people to see us as a couple, and we see everyone else for who they are. So we may have met other couples like us and not known it; we just see everyone for the loving people we all are and can be.
FME: Anything else you want to add?
We all love for the same reason: our hearts and souls tell us that the person we are with is the right one for us. Follow your heart, listen to your soul. When you know your heart, mind and soul speak as one, it's right. Love never judges anyone, so don't judge until you fully understand. We may be related, but look past that, see us for who we are.
He's my brother, yet he's also my bear. He’s a Grizzly in his fight to give disabled people the right to lead as normal a life as you and me, yet my Teddy Bear when he's in my arms. Don't discriminate us, don't judge us. We have a right to live and love, just like everybody else does.
Dear reader, if you can read that and still support laws against consanguinamory and still think it is acceptable to deny siblings the right to marry and deny marriage equality, then I don’t see how you can live with yourself. It is cruel and heartless to discriminate against, ridicule, and criminalize such a beautiful and pure love. If only most marriages in this world were anything close to this loving, the world would be a better place.
Thanks again to Bearsbaby for sharing.
If you are in a relationship involving conanguinamory or consensual incest, know someone who is, support those who are, or just want to know more about such relationships, I’m not aware of any better place to discuss them than the Kindred Spirits forum. Also, please join the group I Support Full Marriage Equality on Facebook.
You can read other interviews like this here.
If you are in, or have been in, a “forbidden” consensual relationship, and want to be interviewed, please contact me at fullmarriageequality at yahoo dot com.