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Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Dancing Around an Elephant?

Advice columnists, I'm sure, get many more inquiries dealing with Gender, Sexuality, and Relationship Diversities (GSRD) than get selected for print, some more direct than others. Here's one that made it. TAKES ONLY TWO TO TANGO wrote to Dear Abby...
I have been dating my boyfriend, "Jose," for a year. Before that, we were friends for five years.

That means she has had a lot of time to get to know him and his behavior.
Ever since I've known him, he and his half-sister, "Blanca," have danced together at parties. We're all in our mid-20s.

They dance salsa, merengue and other styles of music together. I used to think it was cute, but now that Jose and I are a couple, I find it annoying and a little creepy.
So he's doing what he's always done as long as she's know him, but she thinks dancing, or at least least some kinds of dancing, should be restricted to just the two of them now that they are a couple. Unless that was the specific, explicit, mutual agreement they made, there is no reason for him to stop doing what he's always done. She is free to ask him to stop. He is free to say no or to agree. She is free to stop seeing him.


She gets mad when he dances with me instead of her during her favorite songs. I told Jose he can dance only with me at the parties or only with her. Not both. I don't want to share him, and honestly, people joke that it's incestuous.
Assuming the letter-writer's description of the Blanca's reaction is accurate, I combine that with the fact that Jose and Blanca are half-siblings, and I wonder if they were raised together or not. If they weren't, one or both of them could be experiencing Genetic Sexual Attraction. Even if they were raised together, something could have happened or could still be happening. Perhaps the letter-writer is picking up on something? Or... this could just be nothing more than siblings sharing dances and the letter-writer has an extra dose of jealousy in her.
How can I make him understand how much this bothers me? What can I say to his half-sister when she gives me the evil eye? My relationship with her is friendly, but it was better before I started dating her half-brother.

I don't know how couldn't already know that it bothers letter-writer. It doesn't sound like she's hidden her displeasure.

Dear Abby...
If you want to hang onto Jose, simmer down and be less heavy-handed. Dictating who he can dance with only makes you appear to be jealous, insecure and controlling.
Adults should generally be free to dance together, regardless of relation, or have any other kind of consensual physical contact. It is up to each individual to establish and negotiate agreements and boundaries. If an agreement is made that limits dancing, so be it. But that has to be by consent. It does not bode well for the letter-writer's relationship with Jose that there is this problem with Blanca, regardless of what is or is not going on between Jose and Blanca.

There may be an elephant in the room. The letter-writer may benefit from reading Has Your Partner Experienced Consanguinamory?
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