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Monday, April 25, 2016

Some Basic Tips About Polyamory


Polyamorous people are diverse. We come from different socioeconomic backgrounds, have different affiliations when it comes to everything from religion to politics, and have varying lifestyles. About the only thing all polyamorous people have in common is that they are polyamorous and they are people.

There are also many, many different ways being polyamorous works out in a person's life. There are people who are most comfortable in, for example, a triad relationship in which each person is with the other two, living together and usually sleeping together, and that triad may be completely closed or one, two, or all three people might be looking for other partners. Or, someone may prefer being with just one partner, but understands and agrees that their partner has other partners.

With that in mind, let's see a write-up from Marty Patail at pdxmonthly.com that is headlined with "How do Do Polyamory, Successfully"...
Russell and Gina have been married since 2011. Both have other romantic partners also in polyamorous marriages. And those partners have other relationships. And so on.
Got it?
1. There’s no such thing as TMI. It’s all about communication. Not only do Gina and Russell make time for daily conversations, check-ins, and tell-alls, they are in constant contact via text or phone whenever they spend time with their other partners. Explains Russell: “It helps defuse things like jealousy and envy. It helps set expectations—when I’ll be leaving, when I’ll be coming back. It provides transparency.”
Actually, there can be TMI. It's up to the individuals involved. People an be like Gina or Russell, and might even want to discuss just about every detail of plans and then what actually ended up happening, but other people might not want to hear much of any of it.
4. Get to know your lovers’ lovers. Poly couples still get jealous. According to Gina, they deal with it by getting to know the other people in their partner’s lives. “The tendency is to build things up in your head. ‘I haven’t met you, so you must be way cuter, younger, smarter, sexier.’ It helps alleviate a lot of concerns if you get face to face.”
This can be very helpful, but it isn't how everyone wants it to be. As with the first point, some people prefer not to hear about it, some prefer not to talk about it with their other partner(s). Personally, I wouldn't want to be with someone I knew was with someone else and I could never meet that person. I don't want to be someone's cheating partner. That's not polyamory. Other people say "If my partner is cheating on someone, that's on them," and I agree to some extent, but for me, I'm most comfortable if I know the other partner(s) are aware and approving.
5. Never force it. Some think polyamory is a lifestyle; others think it’s a sexual orientation. (Russell is in the former camp, Gina in the latter.) Either way, Gina says, building a monogamous relationship with a someone who you hope will be open to polyamory later is a bad idea. “Having someone change who they are for you is not a good way to go.”
This is a common question for polyamorous people: "How soon do I discuss with someone I'm seeing that I'm polyamorous or looking for a polyamorous relationship?" If you've met through a polyamory group or through an online service where you indicated you're polyamorous, that's already taken care of. But if it is someone you met another way, it is a different matter. Generally, I say that someone shouldn't assume that someone who hasn't explicitly promised monogamy is being monogamous, nor should anyone who hasn't explicitly asked for monogamy expect it. However, monogamy is presented by much of our culture as the ideal and the norm. So, it is a good idea when the discussion comes up as to why you're dating (just for companionship? looking for a spouse? looking for a partner?), polyamory should be brought up. Example: "I'm polyamorous, and I'm looking for a permanent partner to eventually live with, hopefully for the rest of my life, who will accept and support that I will date others, and I will support that person if they want to date others."

It really helps if you know who you are, what you need, what you have to give, what your limits are, what is negotiable for you, and what is not.

Go read the rest of it.
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Sunday, April 24, 2016

Why Men Choose Polyandry

Ruth asked at a Big Internet Portal's question-and-answer service...
Why do men choose polyandry(a woman with multiple husbands)?
What's the appeal? Is their jealousy? How does sex work? Is it akward knowing that the other husband has had sex with your wife?I'd like to understand how polyandrous relationships work, especially from mens point of view. Could you handle your wife having another husband?

Why do men choose a monogamous marriage? Why do men choose not to marry at all? Why do some men choose a polygynous marriage, or a group marriage? It’s going to be different for different people, but you can find some common reasons that pop up frequently. It is a combination of needs and wants, including social, emotional, financial, sexual, etc.

A man may choose polyandry because he is bisexual, or because he enjoys seeing his wife with another man, or because his wife has a higher libido than he does, or for reasons that are entirely nonsexual.

You can see the very good Best Answer if you keep reading.
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Saturday, April 23, 2016

Kindred Spirits Returns

Jane has been working to bring back Kindred Spirits after service with the prior host was interrupted with no signs of being restored. See her blog posting with an announcement about a new version of Kindred Spirits.

Kindred Spirits is a forum for serious discussion of consanguinamorous relationships and similar affinity relationships. See this for more info.
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Tuesday, April 19, 2016

It Was Great While It Lasted


There are scores of ongoing relationships I've covered through exclusive interviews in which the lovers are denied the freedom to be open about their love and are, by law, denied the freedom to marry and have that marriage treated equally under the law.

The relationship depicted in the interview below lasted until death, so is, sadly, not an ongoing relationship.The surviving partner  is, and was, mature, intelligent, and educated and was living with his partner as though they were married, and yet was (and would still be) denied his right to marry under the law. The hid the truth from everyone in their life. They weren't hurting anyone; why did they have to hide their love and be denied their rights?
Read the interview below and see if there is any good reason to deny others who are in relationships like this their basic rights to be together.


*****


FULL MARRIAGE EQUALITY: Describe yourself.

Ismael: I'm a high school teacher in History and Philosophy. I'm 51 year old. My father was a museum director and my mother was a teacher, too. I live near Rome, Italy, where I was born. I’ve never been married. I'm a heterosexual monogamist. I live alone now.

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Monday, April 18, 2016

New Mexico Still Wasting Public Resources to Attack Lovers

Jane has an update on a case we've been following in New Mexico in which consenting adults are being prosecuted for having sex. The cnjonline.com website reports...
A Clovis man and his mother accused of incest were freed on bond Wednesday after being arraigned in district court proceedings one day prior.
Go to Jane's blog as she analyzes this latest news very well.



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Thursday, April 14, 2016

April 15 is the National Day of Silence in the US

GLSEN's National Day of Silence takes place tomorrow, Friday, April 15.

It's a day of silence, especially in schools, to bring awareness to the prejudice, inequality, and bullying suffered by LGBT people.

Along with all allies, I also think poly people and consanguinamorous people should participate.

Everyone should have the freedom to be themselves without being bullied. Every adult should have the right to share love, sex, residence, and marriage (or any of those without the others) with ANY and ALL consenting adults, without prosecution, bullying, or discrimination. Young people should be free to develop relationships, as appropriate for their age, with their peers without being forced into a narrow heteromonogamous paradigm. Transgender, genderfluid, intersex, and other students and faculty need to see that they are supported.

LGBT, poly, and consanguinamorous students and faculty still have to deal with hateful policies and attacks, but with your help, that will continue to change.
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Wednesday, April 13, 2016

A Survey of Recent GSA News Coverage

We mentioned the recent news about apparent mother-son GSA couple Kim West and Ben Ford. Their story made it to many outlets and there were the usual expressions of ignorance and confusion from some, and the hate from the anti-equality bigots. The reaction is exactly why almost all people experiencing GSA stay in the closet.

Here's a round up of some of the news coverage of this couple and GSA. First up is something published at mirror.co.uk late on April 7,  2016.




A mother reunited with the son she gave up for adoption 30 years ago says now they’re in love - and trying for a baby together.

She did not raise him. So any allegations that she somehow "groomed" him for this is invalid.
Kim West, 51, has been in a relationship with her biological son Ben Ford, 32, for two years and believe they are ‘meant to be’ after she was forced to give him up for adoption just a week after he was born.
But the couple, who say their sex life is ‘incredible’ and are planning to get married, insist their relationship is not incest, the New Day reports.
Instead they claim it is ‘Genetic Sexual Attraction’, a term used for relatives who feel sexual attraction for each other after meeting as adults.
Sociologically, GSA isn't incest.

The couple were brought together after Ben, who was living in the US, sent his England-born mum a letter out of the blue in 2013.
Two years before Ben had married his wife Victoria, who he later split up with to be in a relationship with his mum.
This is one of the complications GSA can bring. We have no way of knowing if Ben and Victoria would have lasted if GSA didn't exist, but GSA can overwhelm someone who otherwise would have been faithful to the vows or agreements with an existing partner. If a relationship was already in trouble, well, it would be very difficult to survive GSA.
Three days later Ben told a disgusted Victoria he was leaving her for his mum and the couple flew to Michigan, where they had help from another GSA couple in setting up a new life.
That's interesting. Here and there, there are people who understand and are willing to help.

Over at ibtimes.com.au the write-up was done by
As its name suggests, GSA is a type of sexual attraction experienced by close relatives, including a parent and his/her child, who met as adults. GSA refers to the sexual desire between related people after having been denied to form proper emotional bond, according to GSA Forums. Like in West and Ford’s case, they parted when Ford was still an infant and only reunited when he was an adult.

Jennifer Newton for MailOnline had some more details at dailymail.co.uk...
He told New Day that he told his wife: 'Everytime I have had sex with you since I met her, I imagine its her I am kissing, otherwise I can't perform.'

West, who grew up in Islington, London, became pregnant while studying in California and after giving birth to her son aged 19, gave him up for adoption.

After Ford was adopted a week after he was born, she came back to the UK but was unable to make a relationship work.

But in December 2013, she received a letter from her son, who was looking to track down his biological parents.
This has happened over and over again to so many.
Incest is illegal in the couple's home state of Michigan and judges in the state are able to give out life sentences to those found guilty of the offence. 

However, it is unclear if a case against them would be pursued and the couple say they would move if that were the case. 

It can happen to siblings, half-siblings, parents and children, usually when one has been abandoned, adopted or raised apart due to divorce or separation.

In the UK, sex with a parent, child, sibling, nephew, niece, uncle or aunt is defined as incest and is illegal under the Sexual Offences Act 2003 with a maximum two-year penalty.
In the US, rules vary and the state of Rhode Island actually decriminalised incest in 1989.
Last I checked, Rhode Island hadn't collapsed.
Writing in the New Day newspaper, psychologist Corinne Sweet explained: "At a genetic level we are conditioned to find people who look like us attractive.

"In the first seconds of meeting someone, we make a judgement about whether they are friend or foe, and whether they can help us reproduce our genes.


"We have an almost tribal connection with family members with similar features.


"At the same time, people who are adopted or fostered feel deeply rejected.
"They have experienced a profound wound which isn't easily healed.


"So when a son meets his birth mother, he feels a great rush of need.
"There's an attraction and a longing there, and when it's combined with the appeal of genetic similarity, it becomes a very powerful and complex cocktail which is incredibly seductive."
It is important to note that GSA also happens in people who have no idea they've been reunited with a close relative, as in they don't know the person to whom they're intensely attracted is the genetic father or genetic half-sibling they didn't even know was their relative.

at metro.co.uk looked at some of the response...
The internet hate machine is doing its thing again, and today’s subjects are Kim West and Ben Ford.
Yes, there has been a whole lot of hate.
Incest is one of the biggest taboos of all, so the internet has its pitchforks out. But Kim and Ben deserve help, not hate. They’re caught up in something enormously powerful and problematic.
The only problem is that there is hate beings directed at consenting adults for loving each other. The only help they need is for their rights to be protected.
It’s sad because something has gone awfully wrong. The ‘incest taboo’ exists for very good evolutionary reasons: incest can magnify genetic abnormalities and health problems.
How likely is she to be having a biological child with him? This is Discredited Argument #18.

The Westermarck Effect appears to happen when people live in close proximity – and of course, Kim and Ben didn’t. But there must be more to it than that, or every adopted child reunited with their biological parents would experience similar attraction. And they don’t.And that’s why Kim and Ben need help, not hate.
Most people are attracted to people of the same race. If someone isn't, do they need "help?" Most men and are attracted to women, and most women are attracted to men. When that isn't the case, do they need "help?" Most women are attracted to men who are taller than they are. When that isn't the case, do they need "help?"

There’s been precious little research into the phenomenon, possibly because of the knee-jerk disgust we feel: getting funding for research into GSA can’t be easy.
That means people like Kim and Ben aren’t getting the help they need – and the online criticism means that other Kims and other Bens might not try to get help in the future.
In a world where adoption has been joined by IVF, sperm donation and surrogacy there will be more Kims, and more Bens.
That's all true.

Thankfully he doesn't see this as an abuse situation. Unfortunately, while he's trying to be supportive, he doesn't recognize their rights.

Back at mirror.co.uk, gave more info....

A British mother who has admitted having an incestuous relationship with her son was in hiding as police said she could face up to 15 years in prison .
What an absurd waste of public resources that would be.
If a member of the public was to complain about the couple, US police would be duty bound to investigate.
Law enforcement personnel make decisions all of the time to not investigate.
A spokeswoman for Michigan State police told the Mirror: “Under State law incest between two consenting adult is a third degree felony punishable by up to 15 years in prison.

“Anyone convicted of such an offence would also be required to sign the sex offenders register for life.”
Ridiculous. Why waste a police officer's time with something like that? Why waste a court's?
Ben added: “When I met Kim, I couldn’t think of her as my mum but instead as a sexual being.
Of course. She's not the woman who raised him.

continued the coverage at mirror.co.uk with other cases this blog has already covered.

In addition to the infamous comments sections after the news items, discussions popped up everywhere, including one at babycenter.com.au.

There were many of the usual "eww!" comments, but there was also this one of profound ignorance from M2bjune2012 ...
I didn't read this article but I remember reading an American one about an estranged dad and daughter getting together.
It's just wrong on so many levels. Especially where parents and children are involved because in my mind it's like paedophilia.
Uhm, pedophilia is attraction to prepubescent children. It has nothing to do with sex between consenting adults.

I'd drop them like a bad habit, yep. And report it, seeing as it's illegal in Victoria and consent is irrelevant.
What terrible person. She should instead consider this. The discussion there is filled with hate, little reason at all.

We obviously still have a lot of work to do raising awareness, defeating the hate, and securing rights for all consenting adults.
Many, many people have experienced GSA. Many of them have made love with their GSA partner(s). Some of them even develop spousal relationships. It's a lot more common than people think, and as they wag their fingers and talk about how disgusted they are, they probably know someone who has experienced GSA.
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Tuesday, April 12, 2016

An Ally Writes an Editorial on Utah

Connor Boyack writes at sltrib.com that the constitution of Utah should be amended to decriminalize polygamy...
Utah's Enabling Act, passed by Congress to allow the Utah territory to create a constitution, form a state government, and become a member of the Union, notes that Utah's admittance would be "on an equal footing with the original States." And yet, the same act contains a mandatory provision forced upon the state which few other states (those with early Mormon influence, like Utah) were required to include in their constitution: a prohibition on polygamy, or plural marriage.
Things are a lot different now. Marriage is a fundamental right and women are now considered people rather than property.
Despite that plea, many will still write this issue off, assuming that most or all polygamists are monsters of the Warren Jeffs variety, deserving of whatever punishment they are given. The facts simply do not support this theory; most polygamists are in mutually consenting adult relationships and loving families. They should, like the rest of us, be presumed innocent until proven guilty of anything — not considered felons outright merely because of their voluntary family arrangement.
If adults agree to live in a polygynous marriage, or a polyandrous marriage, or a same-gender triad, or some other relationship or marriage, nobody  should be able to stop them. There is no good reason to try. Utah is the only state I know of where polyfidelity is still criminalized. That needs to change, and nationwide full marriage equality is needed.



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A Hypothetical About Consanguineous Sex

The Stig Mommy asked “What Would You Do?” Here’s the situation.

You meet your DH [Dear Husband], date for years, are madly in love and get married. You have four beautiful, smart, and healthy children. Your marriage is still strong after 15 years.

15 Years into your marriage you somehow discover that your DH’s father (who has passed away) had an affair and a love child from a disclosure by your MIL [Mother-In-Law]. The name of the other woman strikes a chord with you but you cannot remember where from. Weeks later it is still bugging you so you go digging. Turns out this woman is listed as your birth mother on your adoption papers. She too has passed away before you ever got a chance to meet her. You match the timelines up and it turns out YOU are that love child. Surprised

WWYD??

Tell your husband that you are actually brother and sister? Would you get a divorce? Stay together? What would you tell the kids? Or would you keep the whole thing a secret and sweep it under the rug? Please explain your reasoning.

This sounds like Genetic Sexual Attraction. So what would you do, dear reader?

I’m a male and not gay, so if I was a husband who had discovered this truth about my wife (that we were half-siblings) I would tell her only if I thought it would make her happier or have no effect. I would not tell her something like this if it would upset her, seeing that she could not do anything about it. But I wouldn’t be married to a woman who is grossed out by the very idea of consanguineous sex, and I’m sure she wouldn’t want to be married to me. So most likely, I would tell her. Nobody else necessarily needs to know. Notice that the children in this hypothetical are healthy.

What if you had to live with it as an open secret? As in everyone know that you are brother and sister and decided to stay married.

The problem there would be bigotry. But I would challenge the gossips to explain exactly what the problem is. It would provide many teachable moments, showing that such marriages can be lasting and happy. The problem, in so many places, is that ridiculous laws that are still on the books and still enforced would invalidate the marriage and may even lead to prosecution, for the "crime" of loving each other.

Most respondents, by far, chose “Stay married but tell only DH the truth”.

There were a lot of comments.
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Monday, April 11, 2016

Women Aren't Barganing Chips In Business Deals

Whether you like it or not, most of us no longer live in a world in which men trade their daughters in arranged marriages that are little more than business deals. Unfortunately, laws still lag behind progress and some exist based on this model of marriage.

Now, women are people, not property.

Now, marriage is primarily a romantic matter, and even if based on finances, is up to the potential spouses, not their father, brother, or uncle.

Marriage used to be a business deal between clans, and a woman's sexuality was part of the deal, which is why women had to have sex with a man, just one man in particular, and of course that man was going to be from a different clan (but the same race) and could be older than her, but not younger. This is why royals often had consanguineous marriages; there were no other nearby clans that could provide a fair "trade."

For the most part we don't think like that anymore, but some people still apply such thinking to relationships and marriage.

If marriage is based on love, if it is up to the consenting adults who are the potential spouses, and if it is a fundamental right to marry or not marry, then there is no good reason to ban interracial, same-sex, polygamous, or consanguineous marriages.

Someone can think it is weird or disgusting or something they would never do, but a woman, like a man, should be free to marry another woman, or more than one woman, or more than one man, or men and women, or a younger man, even if that younger man is her genetic son she gave up for adoption ...as long as all spouses are consenting adults, it is nobody else's  place to try to stop them. Anyone who says that a woman shouldn't be free to marry the adults who mutually agree is saying she should be a bargaining chip, traded in business deals by her father or brother or uncle.

Not only should she be free to marry the adults who mutually agree, but her sexuality should be her own whether she marries or not. She should be be free to share sex and/or residence, married or not, with and all consenting adults, even of the adult is someone of a different race or her genetic father, so, brother, or aunt.

Again, someone might be shocked by the idea, or be against it, but it shouldn't matter. If someone doesn't want such a relationship, the good news is that they don't have to have one. But there's no good reason they should have any power to stop someone else from being with the consenting adults who mutually agree.

If there are two or more adults who want to be together, whether or not that includes sex,  cohabitation, or marriage, then shouldn't they be allowed to live their lives without prosecution, bullying, or discrimination? It seems to us that we should be encouraging people who want to be together to do so, considering how much strife and animosity there is. We can't force people to like each other, but if they do, we should not try to force them apart.
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Kim West and Ben Ford Are Not Alone

It's been all over the news that there's a couple brought together by Genetic Sexual Attraction named Kim West and Ben Ford. According to the articles, Kim is Ben's genetic mother. He was adopted and raised by others, but as an adult, found Kim and they've fallen in love.

This is not rare.

What is rare is appearing in the media with your names and faces. Some people have done so because they were outed by law enforcement, but every once in a while, there is a splashy article from someone that decided to give their accounts to journalists without the protection of anonymity.

Unfortunately, because of bigotry, some of it placed into criminal law, most people experiencing GSA and closeted, especially if their relationship is consanguinamorous.

Some of the articles have said that Kim and Ben have now gone into hiding, and who could blame them? Bigots spew their venom, irrationally insisting that there's something wrong with consenting adults loving each other. They never provide a good reason, but this doesn't stop them from threatening people who are not harming anyone.

Our good friend Cristina has posted an appeal to  Kim and Ben to contact her. Here's what she wrote...
I am a Legal Secretary and advocate for the rights of consenting adults to have love, sex, residence and marriage with any and all consenting adults.

I have been following your story on the internet closely and I think it is absolutely awful that law enforcement has forced you into hiding.


I have experience with GSA so I completely understand what you both are going through. I congratulate you on finding love and happiness together.


Due to the oppressive laws that you both are forced to live and love under, I feel deeply for you and your situation.


If you are reading this, please know that you have a friend, ally, and advocate in me. I want to help you in any way I can. I would welcome contact and would do anything I could to help you.


Please check out my website www.lilysgardener.com


If you want to contact me completely confidentially, please email me at lilysgardener@protonmail.com

Kind Regards to you both, Cristina
There aren't a lot of places  to turn if you're experiencing GSA. It's great that Cristina has extended her hand to Kim and Ben, and I do so as well. They (and anyone else experiencing GSA or who is in a consanguinamorous relationship) are welcome to contact me via email at fullmarriageequality at yahoo dot com or on Facebook as many others have done.

This is what our friend Jane wrote in response to an article on this couple.

If you are friends or family of someone in a similar situation to Kim and Ben, please see this.

Here's is the start of a series published here on myths about GSA.
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Sunday, April 10, 2016

Siblings Day

It’s national Siblings Day, at least here in the US. 

In keeping with the interests of this blog, we want to celebrate all people who love their siblings, especially if that includes supporting your sibling as they face discrimination for their gender identity, their sexual or relationship orientations, or their relationships or sexuality. We also want to celebrate all siblings in consanguinamorous relationships. For many of them, there is no more important person in the world than their sibling(s).

So if you have a good sibling, let them know you appreciate them.
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Monday, April 4, 2016

Kindred Spirits

Kindred Spirits is the name of a forum to which I could proudly refer people wanting to seriously discuss consanguinamory in a supportive environment. The host, Forumup, is apparently down and has been for some time. We do not know if it will be coming back or if it will still host KS. It is possible KS will find a new home.

If you want to be informed about KS moving forward, please send an email to fullmarriageequality at yahoo dot com ...Your address will not be shared with anyone.
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We Get Letters of Appreciation

Anonymous left a comment on this blog's most popular entry...
It's really reassuring to read this blog. I feel like the word "incest" has become a really dirty term to describe something that shouldn't be considered dirty or unnatural. I guess everyone's need to fit in with society only serves to perpetuate this derogatory notion that incest is bad, when in reality things are rarely so black and white.

I'm 25 and I have crushed hard on my brother ever since puberty. I originally thought it was a phase I was going through, and chose to keep my guilty secret to myself. But as time passed and my sexual infatuation with my brother showed no signs of letting up, I began to question whether there was something wrong with me. I did the only thing a 14 year old girl could do in that situation, as incest is illegal and and frowned upon. I probed away at my friends to gauge their reaction and determine what was acceptable and what was "gross."

Thankfully, you've written a very informative and open-minded blog which I hope will serve to reassure anyone who is going through what I initially went through during my teens.

If by any chance there is a young person reading this comment, my best advice to you would be to relax and remember that we can't help who we are attracted to. I would also say that peer pressure is a big factor when growing up so if you wish to talk to someone, then I would recommend making good use of your online anonymity to talk openly with someone who has gone through what you are going through. My final piece of advice would be to give it time and if your feelings haven't wavered then the next thing to do is talk to the person you are having these feelings for. That might seem completely nuts to you, I know I was terrified of my brother finding out about my feelings for him. But, this only concerns you and the person you are having these feelings for. Remember that being told someone has deep feelings for you is the biggest compliment and most heart warming thing in the world. Especially if those feelings are mutual, and you never know if they're mutual if you both refuse to confront them.

Revealing my feelings to my brother, at the age of 16, was the best decision I made and one I wished I had made sooner. It was a huge relief when I realised that he wasn't disgusted and our normal brother-sister relationship wasn't damaged. It was also a massive weight off my shoulders and I feel so privileged to have what feels like a very unique relationship with my brother.
That's wonderful. It can take a lot of courage to be so vulnerable, and I'm glad it worked out. It is important to remember that there is a difference between love and abuse.

If any of this resonates with you, whether you're involved or have such a crush, or are a friend or family member of someone involved, know that you're not alone, but be cautious.
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