When is pursuing a consang relationship a bad idea?

I realize that this may sound like an odd subject for an article on a pro-consanguinamory website, but there are some things which need to be said which I feel are important. I’m all for others finding joy in well adjusted and healthy consang relationships, but there are some circumstances in which a relationship should not be pursued, and that’s what this article is all about. Actually, most of the advice below would also apply to regular relationships too.

If either or both of you are underage

Then do not pursue a relationship until this is no longer the case. The age of consent protects vulnerable young people against the possibility of sexual exploitation, grooming, untimely pregnancies, and simply making bad choices which you may later regret.

While sibling exploration is relatively common, and usually non-abusive, it could lead to all the same problems as exploration with any other person your age, including pregnancy. If you’re a teen under legal age reading this and you think you might fancy a similarly aged sibling, take my advice: wait until you’re older. If you still feel the same way when you’re both of age, then by all means go for it, but now is not the right time for you. It may seem a long way off, but trust me, it’s not. If your love is genuine, it will still be there in a year or two. You have your whole life ahead of you, and there is no need to rush into these kinds of decisions.

Furthermore, if this is a possible parent/offspring situation, the importance of waiting is even more pronounced. Parents have legal powers over their children, and are responsible for looking after them. This in the overwhelming majority of circumstances would mean that the power imbalance would simply be too great. It could potentially lead to the underage party feeling unable to say no, and as we know, if you can’t say no then you can’t really say yes either. Such circumstances, even when not intended, could lead to harm. Therefore it would be wise to apply the blanket rule: The parent should never pursue a relationship with their underage son or daughter, nor accept any advances from them. As with siblings, if you still feel the same way once everyone is of age, then go ahead.

If either of you is currently in a relationship where monogamy is expected.

I’ve said it before on this site, but for the purposes of this article I will have to reiterate what I’ve already said. Don’t cheat on your partner behind his or her back, and don’t expect the relative that you’re wanting to be involved with to do it either. Cheats often get found out eventually, and under normal circumstances this would simply lead to the end of the relationship and possibly a messy divorce. If the person you cheated with is a close relative then the outcome could be so much worse than that. Potentially, your jilted partner could tell the police and then all hell breaks loose, and you could both end up in jail if they discover any evidence that the allegations are actually true. Also, it’s not fair to your current partner to be cheating anyway. If you no longer wish to be in that relationship, you should say so, do the right thing and end it, and do not string him or her along because that isn’t fair on either of you.

If you’re in a relationship already but it’s open or polyamorous, then there MIGHT be a way for you to move forward, depending on your current partners attitude towards consanguinamory. You obviously don’t want to go up and say something like ‘hey, I fancy my sister, is it okay with you if I ask her out?’ if you’re unsure of what kind of reception you’re going to get. Instead, I will advise you to tread carefully, before you actually pop the question, it might be advisable to refer to a story you read on the internet or saw on the news about some siblings who were being done for incest. Say you’re not sure why they bother to prosecute people for that because you think it’s wasting police time, or something along those lines. Then judge the reaction. If it’s very negative, then a relationship with your relative is off the cards, if it’s positive, then you can move forward but obviously tread gently.

If one of you has recently had a bad break-up or was the victim of an abusive relationship

I say this because when we’ve just come out of one relationship which was toxic, we’re emotionally vulnerable. In circumstances where either you or your family member was the victim of narcissistic abuse or domestic violence, it’s going to take some time to heal and get back to where we should be. Likewise it’s going to take time to trust again if the reason for the break-up was cheating.

In all circumstances where one of you is particularly vulnerable because of how you were treated by a previous partner, you need some time alone to gather your thoughts and heal your psyche. If you don’t have and take this time, you could have lingering unresolved issues which could manifest and destroy the new relationship. For instance, if you were cheated on, you may be driven to monitor and spy on your new partner even when such actions aren’t warranted. If you were physically, mentally or sexually abused by your ex, you may be ultra-defensive and dominant in your next relationship, or you may not assert yourself as much as you should. Neither of these things are normal or healthy, and this is why time and healing are so important for human beings to function as they should.

If you really want to be with a relative who has suffered with any of these issues, you should treat carefully and respect their boundaries. They’re going to need plenty of time and space. This may lead to your feeling pushed away and rejected, but it’s important that you respect this and allow them time to recover their sense of self and their confidence in themselves. You could even suggest therapy if your relative has been badly affected and it’s effecting their daily life. Don’t push the issue of a relationship with you, wait until they’re truly ready. It’s going to be hard for them to trust again, so you need to demonstrate that you are worthy of that trust. Remember, just because you’re family and a level of trust exists already between you, doesn’t mean that they’re going to be ready to trust you this far yet.

If the other person has already said that they’re not interested

Its a no-brainer really. If your relative has made it clear that they do not want to pursue a relationship with you, then continuing to flirt with them is violating their boundaries. My word of advice: Just don’t do it. Such things could be taken as sexual harassment by courts if the other person gets pissed off enough, which would mean at the very least a restraining order against you and a criminal record. Unrequited love is painful, I know, but there are healthier ways to deal with it. You could join a forum, or do things to take your mind off it. Also consider that being pursued constantly by somebody that you’re not interested in can be very unsettling and upsetting, and it could make you come across as a creep. If you really love your relative, you won’t do these things, you will respect their wishes and move on to greener pastures.

There are many reasons that a person may not be interested. The main one being that your relative might be a regular and thus the idea might disgust them, but some other possibilities also exist. A sister who is a lesbian will not be interested in dating her brother. A man who prefers younger women will likely not want to date his mother. Sometimes the reason is just that they see you as incompatible with them. Whatever the reason: no means no.

If their partner has recently died

Death is never a nice subject, and eventually it comes to us all. When it happens, comfort and time is what is needed for those left behind, and this especially applies to the partner of the deceased. Regardless of the cause of death, it can be very traumatic to lose somebody, and this puts people in a very emotionally vulnerable position. They’re unlikely to be open to a new relationship until they’ve gone through the grieving process and are ready to move on with their lives. This could take anything from six months to a couple of years, depending on how strong their relationship was when their partner was alive, and the manner in which they died.

Take all of this into consideration, and do not pursue somebody who is still grieving the loss of their partner.

Conclusion

I think most of what I’ve said in here should really be common sense for most people. It’s really about having empathy for others and knowing when is a bad time to approach somebody. It’s about right and wrong. I feel we must be absolutely clear on moral boundaries and respect for people. Respect is after all one of the fundamental building blocks for a healthy long-term relationship.

Advertisements

Welcome to the Library

You may notice something new on my website today, I’ve just added a menu item called The Library at the top of the site. Currently it has one submission from somebody I’ve been chatting to by e-mail for the last few weeks, but this Library is intended for the whole community, so don’t be shy if you wish to contribute.

Library Submissions may be either non-fiction, original fiction or fanfiction. The works may either be free or paid for, and I’ll specify which in the listings. So if you’re a talented writer who wants to earn from your stories, I don’t mind you charging for your work, and I won’t charge you for having your work listed. For obvious legal reasons, all fanfiction stories must be free of charge.

Now, another word on stories, whether original fiction or fanfiction. I will accept submissions which contain erotic or sexual content, however, I will not accept PWPs (porn without plot), or any material depicting underage characters in sexual situations. Such things go against the ethos of this site and the community as a whole, and we must set some reasonable standards whilst allowing free expression.

All that said, enjoy the Library 🙂

A young woman and her parents

Well folks, today I bring to you a story from a new KS member. She’s delighted to have found our community and was keen to share her story with us, thus helping others to realize that they aren’t alone in the world. She appears to be a very happy, outgoing and confident person in a delightful relationship with her parents. In the following interview, my questions are in bold font and her answers are in italics, just to make things clear for the readers.

Describe what kind of consanguinamorous relationship you’re in, or have been in? (for example, is it a closed or open relationship, which family member are you involved with, is it a heterosexual or homosexual relationship…etc?)

I am Kelly, a 24 year old female who has been actively involved with my mother and father from the time I was 19 years old. We are open in that the three of us are routinely sexual as a group, but I enjoy one on one time with both my mother and father. She and I are both bisexual.

Describe yourself, approximate age, what kind of person are you? What are your interests and hobbies?

I am 24 years old, brown hair, and petite. I consider myself to be very open to new experiences and I love the rare occasions when I can travel. I love to read and I am an unapologetic foodie!

How did it start, and what were your thoughts and feelings at the time?

It was a steady progression of mutual attraction between my parents and I for several years before we acted on it when I was 19. I am an only child and we were pretty casual about nudity when I was growing up. My attraction began at puberty and I soon saw my parents as sexual beings as well as my mom and dad. The first night we had sex as a family was when we were on vacation in The Dominican Republic. The drinking age is lower there and we all took advantage of the fact that we were staying in an all inclusive resort. We got back to our rooms and my parents started undressing in front of me and I began stripping as well. My parents started kissing and I kissed them, too. It was such a beautiful experience and we love playing together as a family to this day. I felt great about it then and I still do.

How long have you been together, and what are your plans for the future?

We have been together for the past 5 years. Four years ago I gave birth to a beautiful and healthy baby girl. My father is the father, but we have no plans to tell her at this time. I live at home with my parents while I finish school. We will see what the future holds!

Is your relationship legal where you are?

No

If you could legally marry, would you?

No. I am happy with our current arrangement and I love my parents too much to disrupt their marriage.

What would you like to say to others who disapprove of your relationship, or who want people like yourself to be thrown in jail?

Live and let live. We are all consenting adults and no one is being mistreated. This works for us and it works for many other people, too.

Describe the advantages and disadvantages of consanguinamorous relationships in your experience.

Honestly, the sex is incredible, but, beyond that, I have never known this depth of love, acceptance and comfort with anyone else. I hate having to hide this from the rest of the world. I hate that something that feels so natural is considered a crime.

How do you feel about your relationship now?

Wonderful!

Before you had this relationship, what were your thoughts and feelings about others who engaged in this type of relationship?

I was certainly intrigued by the idea of incest and I have always been curious about people who live this lifestyle.

What are your thoughts and feelings about consanguinamory in general now?

I feel that, so long as it is a consensual relationship, there is nothing wrong with it. I wish more families could know how loving and natural this is.

What is it like, having to hide the truth from the world, and having to lie to people?

Exhausting. I am so thankful to Jane for creating this safe space for like minded people to share their stories.

What would you like say to anyone who discovers a friend or relative in a consanguinamorous relationship?

Congratulations! I know very few people who know what they want and I know even fewer who allow themselves to have it. It always takes courage to live the life you want!

Is there anything else you want to add?

Not at this time, but ask me anything!

Okay, so it’s obvious from what she’s saying that she is consanguinamorous by orientation. She knew from her teens that these attractions existed for her, and during her adult life she has naturally slotted into this relationship with her parents. This isn’t uncommon in a non-GSA situation, as we don’t experience Westermarck Effect.

You know what’s sad, that these three people would get thrown into jail in so many countries. That people would label this happy and confident young woman a ‘victim’ when it’s obvious to anyone with an open mind that she is nothing of the sort. There are far too many assumptions about incest in general, but especially parent/offspring relationships. I hope that her story inspires more people to come forward in sharing their own stories.

As a side note, not many people have been interviewed for my blog, however, Keith has a very large section on his website dedicated to interviews he has done. Anyone who wishes to browse through his stuff can do so HERE.

The Consanguinamory Orientation Study (AKA the Non-GSA Study)

Hey folks, Here is another one for you. This survey is strictly for non-GSA consangs (i.e. Those of us typically lacking Westermarck Effect altogether where there was no separation and reunion) and is intended to prove that Consanguinamory is an orientation.

Why is such proof important? Because people have the perception that consang people can easily find partners who are unrelated to them and that therefore the prohibition on incestuous relationships is justifiable. On the surface that may look true to the outsider, because it’s quite easy to find regulars who are willing to have a sexual relationship, a cursory look at a dating website is enough to prove that. However, we cannot have double-love with regulars, and thus these relationships are often unsatisfying and unsustainable for us in the long term, it’s a theme I hear time and time again with people. So by expecting us to enter the world of regular relationships, and never to be what we naturally are, we’re expected to forever forego true happiness and satisfaction in life. This is intolerable, and downright cruel.

In short, the purpose of this survey is to arm us with real data which is set to prove our case, that we’re an orientation, and that we often CAN’T be satisfied with regular relationships. This is something we’re born with and didn’t ask for, but we should not be subjected to prohibition and incestophobia. Rather, we should be treated like the normal people that we are, and accepted into the mainstream alongside homosexuality.

Oh, and just as a reminder, the consanguinamory reproduction study is still live and will be for another few months yet. If you’ve had a child via consanguinamory, please fill out that survey to help dispel the ridiculous mythology of all children born of incest being disabled.

No room for haters in our movement

It’s with a troubled mind that I write this, because the unthinkable has happeed. Somebody claiming to be an ally of our movement has expressed some transphobic bigotry on the forums, describing gender reassignment surgery as a ‘mutilation’, and transgender as a ‘mental illess’. Not only do I feel horrified and disgusted that anyone could think this way let alone post such obnoxious rubbish, but it comes only days after a mother of a vulnerable young transwoman signed up to the forums. I really feel for her, and hope that she takes comfort from the kind remarks of the other forum users who immediately shot him down and supported trans rights.

One of the arguments that the bigot made, was that our movement is going to be in some way harmed by our support of transgendered rights. I think I speak for us all when I call this bigot out on his hateful rubbish, and express to all that there is no room for such hate in our movement. Some transpeople are also consang, and we support all forms of love and ways of being between consenting adults. To do any less would be hypocritical, immoral, and discriminatory. How can anyone support one sexual minority of consenting adults, and deny another? The rights of people to decide who they wish to be intimate with, in what way, and what they choose to do with their own bodies are BASIC HUMAN RIGHTS. If you do not have authority and autonomy over your own body, then you are not free, it’s as simple as that.

I’m not saying that everyone must be enthusiastic about every single thing that another person may choose to do with their bodies, or even necessarily agree with it, but we should ALWAYS support a persons HUMAN RIGHT to make those decisions for themselves as they see fit. Hating on others for their sexual differences has been going on in one form or another since time immemorial. In the modern age, we as a minority are often on the receiving end of such hate, so we of all people know how it feels to be cast aside by the masses as defective and deviant. How can we, knowing how that feels do that to another minority? We can’t. Hate is always wrong.

I’m not saying that we know everything about every sexual minority, we don’t. We don’t get all of the unique challenges that transpeople go through, how could we if we are not trans ourselves? What we can do is LISTEN WITH EMPATHY and try to understand as much as we can. What we do have in common is the hateful reactions of some other people. We cannot preach empathy and understanding to regulars if we do not practice it ourselves.

Do not let bigots like this idiot win, don’t dwell on their hateful statements even for a moment, and do not take it to heart. People like that are not worth your time or energy. I’m still trying to figure out if this guy believes the horrible bile he’s been posting, or if he is trolling, either way I am not going to tolerate more of it, and I would like all readers to know that Kindred Spirits is still the place to be for consang people of all persuasions. If you’re LGBT, Poly, Kink, or whatever, YOU’RE VERY WELCOME, and we admins (as well as many of our members) will do everything in our power to make your stay comfortable and enlightening.

We need allies of course, but what we do not need is ‘allies’ who support us and hate on others, those who do such things are no better than those who support gay rights and yet deny us our rights. We can only move forward by pushing for the EQUAL RIGHTS OF ALL CONSENTING ADULTS. Minority groups need to stand united in the face of hate, we may be different, but some of the challenges we face are the same, and for much the same reasons. We are one group amongst many, so I repeat my call for friendship and solidarity with those other minorities, that the establishment of such solidarity will be of great benefit to us all. In such solidarity, we will find greater understanding of each other and strength in numbers, and that will pave the way for future generations to enjoy the freedoms we were denied. We owe this to the next generation, not just to our own people, but to all people of sexual diversity.

Nothing off Limits, my second interview

Well folks, as promised, I did it again, I went back to do a second episode with Michelle to cover the results of the consanguinamory study. We discuss that and a few more things also.

I’ve built up a wonderful rapport with Michelle, and I can tell you that this appearance will not be my last on her show (unless I’m unlucky enough to get hit by a bus or something). She is a true ally and is genuinely fascinated by all that she has learned about us over the last few months. This is a quality that is uncommon in people, and it is wonderful for us to have found such an open minded and intellectually honest independant journalist willing to cover our stories. Just look at what she has to say about haters on her blog, and you’ll see what I mean.

She is a real gem, and my thanks go out to her once more for giving me this platform to speak for us. If you’re reading Michelle, may God bless you because we certainly do 🙂

A new blog, and a word of thanks

Some good news today guys 🙂 KS member LoveIsLove has created a wonderful new website called Consanguinamorous Rainbow with the aim to giving advice and information about consanguinamory. He has also been rather busy over the last couple of weeks working on the Consanguinamory Wiki I created a while back, but didn’t do much with. So I am asking all members of the community to bookmark these pages and check back regularly for updates, and also to say thank you to LoveIsLove for his recent contributions to our resources. Welcome to the team, friend,  and well done 🙂

Please read URGET

No, really, that’s not a spelling error. It’s actually the title of a particilarly moronic piece of hate mail sent to Cristina last night while I was chatting with her on Facebook, which, with her permission, I have decided to cover.

I will have to cut off at some points for commentary, as within this block paragraph of doom there are no commas, full stops, or punctuation of any kind. It’s a huge run-on sentence, or should I say, rant. We all know ten year olds who can write better than this, but to hell with the terrible writing, let’s get on with the content:

You people are f****** disgusting lilysgardenercom it’s f****** wrong

She opens by expressing her disgust, uses an expletive, and then asterisks it out… which begs the question, why include swear words if you don’t have the bollocks to keep them in? This is repeated throughout the whole letter, but lets continue:

and you guys probably will go to hell for incest I’m just letting you know you can’t do that it says in the Bible so so you’re going to hell

So, it’s wrong because the Bible says so. How convincing an argument. The Bible also forbids pork and clothes made of mixed fabrics. Remember guys, you’re going to Hell if you’re wearing a cotton/polyester shirt, or if you enjoyed a nice piece of bacon every now and then. When analyzing what the Bible says, it usually pays to apply a hefty dose of common sense, especially when dealing with the ancient laws written down in Leviticus.

I wonder if she would be inclined to throw Abraham and Sarah into jail, or believes them to be burning in Hell for all eternity?… just saying. This chick doesn’t know as much about the Bible as she thinks she does. It’s not as cut and dry as she believes it to be, and if she had actually READ some of it, she would realize that.

and honestly when you have a child probably with the f****** whatever Brothers your maybe your sister maybe you’re lesbian is sick

Was that a homophobic slur? I think it was. She seems to think that Cristina is going to have a baby with her brother… or with her sister if she’s a lesbian, which according to her is sick. Um. Don’t know how to break it to her, but two women cannot procreate through having sex. As for the sentence structure here, if indeed it was intended as a complete sentence (again, it’s hard to tell because of lack of grammar) it’s pretty incoherent, and difficult to tell what specifically she intended to say.

oh you’re raping your family member and you’re going to have some f****** in breeded children so spread some in breeds around this f****** world

Rape, who the hell mentioned rape? Nobody on any site in this netword advocates for raping anyone, including family members. We ACTUALLY advocate for consenting adults who are in consanguinamorous relationships to be allowed to live their lives without being harassed or persecuted by the state, or anyone else for that matter.

If I’m reading this tirade correctly, she believes that if family members rape each other, it leads to spreading inbreeding around? What? That makes no sense at all.

and I swear to god dude you will go to hell I’m not trying to hurt your feelings but I’m trying to warn you about hell because honestly you’re going to go to help for f****** brother

Trying to warn us about hell… maybe that’s what she thinks she is doing, but in reality she is making herself look like a complete idiot. I’m sure God has better things to worry about that who is doing what with their genitals.

Also, she cannot be legitimately claiming to NOT wanting to hurt our feelings when hitting the ‘send’ button on a huge incestophobic rant with rape advocacy accusations and ‘spreading inbreeding around’. We’re not thick enough to fall for that one.

oh and encouraging all these people in the world to f*** their family members is another reason why u are going to hell

No, actually nobody encourages people to engage in incestuous activity, we simply provide support and information to people already involved, and try to raise awareness of our community. Clearly she hasn’t read a word of Cristinas site.

and not disease you made up is a f****** lie and it’s disgusting sexual attraction to your family

First off, Genetic Sexual Attraction is a genuine phenomenon. Had she bothered to google it, she would have realized that GSA is a thing, it’s not some made up ‘disease’. We don’t classify consanguinamory as a disease anyway thank you very much, it’s an orientation, asswipe.

I understand if you say yeah my family members are beautiful or something but oh I want to f*** my brother your f****** weird and yeah you’re deranged and sick

Translation: I have a strong Westermarck effect and find incest disgusting, anyone who disagrees with me is weird, sick and deranged.

Not much more to say about this except closed minded and bigoted.

and by the way I’m up playing with you if you don’t stop posting s*** about f****** family members

Playing with us? So this whole rant is a joke then? Maybe we should take it as such because nothing we’ve reviewed so far has lead us to take her seriously. Actually, me and Cristina had a bloody good laugh about it last night.

I am going to take you off this internet and throw you in jail lady for encouraging incest

Actually, she can’t do that. Freedom of speech includes expressing unpopular opinions, and again, nobody is encouraging incest, we simply provide a supportive environment for people who are or who have been involved. There is nothing illegal about anything on these websites.

and thinking you guys have the right to talk about family members and the wrong ways if you knew who my father was Lady you would never have made this website

How the hell would we know who her father is? Why should we care? If he was anyone of consequence or intelligence, he would have explained the free speech laws to her. Chances are, he works stacking shelves or flipping burgers. So, if this was an attempt to put the frighteners on us; epic fail.

my father knows about this now and he is really going to f*** your s*** up

As Cristina said in her reply e-mail: Good luck with that.

and we aren’t even from here so I mind you you might want to pack your belongings that all the incest know they need to cross the border to Mexico and go f*** themselves over there and get out of God damn America because we’re not trying to have America get f***** up by you sick m************

‘all the incest know’? Maybe ‘all the incoherence know of the writing not good’. Sorry guys, I just had to, you know. She isn’t even from America, but she wants Cristina out of America? That just doesn’t make any sense. Trying to make sense of this is causing my IQ points to be reduced by about 10.

I’m not playing with you my father is going to f****** take your website down and we’re going to blast you and sending this in on the news and you’re going to be f****** embarrassed 

She does realize that Cristina has spoken with many a journalist… right? That talking to the media (providing that it’s anonymous) doesn’t phase us, right? Well, she can try to embarrass us, but we are not embarassed by our sexuality, and nor should we be.

So here ends the rant of doom. Really, we had a good hard laugh at this one. The lame threats, the butchery of the English language, the spelling mistake in the title… none of it leads us to take this seriously. She got angry, real angry, but in the end her anger and her ranting produced the opposite of the desired effect. It does not scare us, it made us laugh.

My grade: D- Try harder next time.

Genetic Engineering and Consanguinamory

Well folks, another day, another great topic up for discussion at Kindred Spirits. This time it’s genetic engineering and it’s relevance to us as a community. After responding to the thread, I thought it deserved an article of it’s own because I hadn’t covered it yet and it’s something that could potentially be of great importance to us at some point in the future.

As we all know too well, one of the most commonly cited objections to the legalization of incest is the ‘mutant babies’ argument, namely that incest leads to disabilities and deformities in the resulting children. While most often this is not the case, and most babies born to consang parents are healthy, we must accept and acknowledge that we do bear greater risks than our regular counterparts. Therefore the choice to bear a child must be taken very carefully, ideally after genetic testing to ensure that we are fully aware of any genetic nasties which may be lurking unseen, and the risks of these abnormalities being expressed should a baby be conceived.

Like all parents, consang couples want their offspring to be as healthy as they can be, and this is where the subject of genetic engineering comes in. Now, I know that the thought of genetic engineering fills peoples heads with horrendous experiments gone wrong. It helps none that labs are creating corn crops which contain their own pesticide which kills bees, other vital insect life and field mice whilst contaminating the land, they’ve made bioluminescent pigs and cats, and even goats which produce spider silk, and probably MUCH more than that. Such things are true abominations, animal abuse, contamination of the food chain, and they make me question the sanity of those conducting these awful experiments.

However, with regards to our community, these things are far removed from the potential benefits which genetic engineering can have when the technology and science is used responsibly. Here, I am speaking of the type of genetic engineering which replaces a faulty gene with a healthy copy (one which already exists within the gene pool of the organism thus not introducing anything foreign) with the view to preventing serious and debilitating conditions which limit the quantity and quality of life. Used this way, genetic engineering should not create such a degree of moral or ethical quandry, and nor should it have significant impact on the evolution of our species.

Say we have a hypothetical brother and sister couple, they’re both young and healthy, but a genetic test reveals that they both carry arecessive ‘bad copy’ of a gene which could lead to a debilitating condition, but have a good dominant copy and so neither sibling is expressing the disease. If they chose to have a baby, there is a 25% chance that the child will express homozygous recessive ‘bad copy’ genes (meaning the child has the genetic disease), a 25% chance of homozygous healthy copy genes (the child doesn’t carry ANY copy of the bad genes), and a 50% chance of the child having heterozygous bad and healthy genes like the parents (recessive bad copy, but dominant healthy copy). So, all in all, a 75% chance that the baby will be okay, and a 25% chance that it will express the disease. Yes, I know this is a very simplistic example because many diseases are caused by more than one gene, but it’s sufficient that you get the general idea.

At this point, the couple have a choice, they could forego having children of their own and adopt one instead, she could use a sperm bank (which would make the pregnancy the same risk as for regulars), they could take their chances and hope that they get a favourable outcome, or they could ensure that their child will be healthy by using genetic engineering. If they go for this procedure, it would mean that an egg would be taken from her ovary, and he would need to provide a sperm sample. They would then choose a sperm with the ‘healthy copy’ gene to fertilize the egg, which would then be implanted into her uterus at the correct time in her monthly cycle. This would be the max that would need to be done to ensure that the baby is healthy without actually tampering with the gene pool. The child would be 100% genetically theirs, but without playing the genetic lottery. In essence, it would be a glorified test tube baby.

Morally, I see no problem in such a scenario. We’re not contaminating the gene pool with foreign genetic codes from other species, we’re not talking about designer babies and all the ethical considerations that brings, not least it’s potential impact on our evolution. We’re simply talking about disease prevention, and removing the ‘mutant babies’ argument from the table of our critics. The technology exists, and it can be used in this restricted and responsible way to prevent unnecessary suffering. It is not only our people that could benefit from it’s use, but also regulars who carry bad genes which can effect the health of their children. Remember, regular pregnancies aren’t risk free either. What about people with Huntingtons disease and stuff like that? Wouldn’t the lives of their kids be better off if they can guarantee that they’re are not going to suffer a serious degenerative condition? Of course.

It may not be such an issue right now because people object to genetic engineering for a wide range of reasons, including religious objections. However, at some point in the future, this technology will be roled out for wider medical use, and when it is, it should be used responsibly and it can be of great benefit to anyone who has concerns about the genetic health of their children. For us, it will knock ‘mutant babies’ straight off the table, further weakening the argument of our opponents. If used responsibly, this technology has the potential to do a lot of good in the world, for a lot of people. It is not a thing to be feared, it’s called progress, but like with many things, the more we know, the greater our responsibility to use such technology wisely.

Factors contributing to extreme incestophobia

I was having a conversation yesterday with Rainy, one of my close friends and colleagues, and fellow admin over at Kindred Spirits. The conversation went from current events to some peoples extreme reaction towards us. We weren’t talking about people who simply disagree with our lifestyle and who simply want incest to remain illegal (the vast majority), we were talking about people who literally want us dead (a minority within that majority).

As unpleasant as it the fact is, these people exist. But without understanding what drives such an extreme reaction, we have no hope of defeating it’s toxic effects on society and neutralizing it at source. Ideally it would be better if nobody was developing such extreme views, and this article exists to explore some options on how we may do just that.

After some theorizing, it became clear to me that there is no one single factor that is causing people to react in this way, rather it may be a convergence of several of these factors. So, let’s explore what those factors are:

An extremely strong Westermarck Effect

I believe that the Westermarck Effect exists as a kind of scale, between somebody having none at all, and people having it ramped all the way up to maximum where they feel physically nauseated at the possibility of even other people doing it. Most people are somewhere in between, where it’s strong enough that they wouldn’t engage in incestuous activity themselves and they’d prefer others didn’t but even if they do they just don’t want to hear about it because it makes them uncomfortable.

Having the Westermarck effect as a scale makes more sense to me than it being a simple ‘on’ and ‘off’ function, which in my mind would be a gross oversimplification of whats going on. So, I think that somebody having an extremely strong Westermarck Effect, while in isolation may not be enough to make somebody homicidal, may be a risk factor in predisposing them to such attitudes.

Childhood sexual abuse by a relative

While most of the population falsely associate incest with child abuse, I believe that many people can see the glaring difference between people molesting their kids and two adult relatives forming a relationship, although even then many believe that there is some kind of grooming going on, something I covered extensively in a previous essay.

That said, I think that incest and child abuse may become indistinguishable for some people who suffered psychological trauma as a result of being sexually abused by a family member. Nothing gets people more angry than being who abuse defenceless little kiddies, and for good reason, pedophiles cause horrific trauma to their victims and mentally scar them for life in many cases. Some victims are left with trust issues, and an inability to be physically intimate with others. Of course anyone who has suffered from this should seek help and counselling, and they’re deserving of sympathy.

I can fully understand why somebody who has suffered like this and then hears about an incest couple could fly into a homicidal rage because they associate it, falsely, with the abuse that they went through. Not all victims of sexual abuse are going to feel that way, and some may even oppose legislation against consenting adults in their name… but I can and do understand why some people would become so angry.

Religion

While this should be an irrelevance to the law, it certainly isn’t an irrelevance in many peoples lives. Religion does shape how people think and feel, and the more religious a person is, the more likely they are to hold extreme views about sexuality. Belonging to a conservative sect of a religion is more likely to make a person hold extreme positions about alternative sexuality than somebody from a more libertarian or liberal sect. A good indicator is the attitude that a religion holds towards homosexuality, it’s a pretty safe bet that those preaching hellfire and damnation to gay people are likely even more hostile to incest.

In some religions there is room for interpretation. At first glance, the Bible appears to be against incest, and yet Abraham and his sister Sarah were clearly a consang couple and God not only approved their union, but blessed them with a child after Sarah has believed herself to be barren.

In other religions there is far less room for interpretation. Islamic Sharia law for instance insists that gay people be thrown from high places, and that people guilty of incest be stoned to death after being flogged.

So while religion may be an irrelevance to many people, it isn’t irrelevant when talking about peoples attitudes towards sexuality in general or about us in particular. Some people, those of the ‘true believer’ mentality, are more prone to getting whipped up into a homicidal frenzy than those who may simply celebrate their holidays and that’s about it.

Psychopathy

While it’s certainly true that most psychopaths are able to go about their business without murdering anyone (they realize it’s in their own best interests to adhere to the law) it can be a factor in some people getting homicidal when they see or hear about something that they REALLY don’t like. I say this because most people are able to have empathy for others, this acts as a social and moral barrier for us and prevents us from harming others. With a psychopath, this barrier is severely impaired, because he or she would have no capacity for remorse upon hurting others. It’s not difficult to see how psychopathy would be a risk factor.

Degree of mental programming

Everyone is programmed to an extent, but some more than others. Programming happens when something is planted in the subconscious mind, perhaps without that person ever being aware of it. Most people have undergone anti-incest programming in the form of ‘eww gross’ reactions of other people when the subject has been mentioned, stories in the news about incest couples being depraved and perverted, and of course we’re the butt of many a joke. All of this underscored by the Westermarck Effect I mentioned earlier and you’ve got the recipe for a pretty solid negative response to incest.

That said, like in all other things, it is a scale. Some have been programmed more than others. If they’ve ever seen somebody else fly into a homicidal rage when they heard about incest, they will be more likely to think that this is the appropriate course of action. Not consciously of course, but subconsciously. So they can fly into a fit of rage without ever knowing why or even stopping to question their reaction.

What can be done to reduce these risks to our safety?

In the short term remaining hidden is a no-brainer, but in the long term that is not a viable option if we want full equality, and things aren’t going to change any if we stay hidden and afraid. Needless to say we need to minimize if possible the risk factors.

Now, it seems at a glance that all of these things are beyond our control, and to a certain degree they are. That said, that doesn’t mean that we cannot work to lessen the impact that these have. As I have said previously, we’re not as powerless as we sometimes believe ourselves to be. Far from it, we can have some influence in the world if we use our heads.

Our main objective is to improve our image. We have a major PR problem, and most of it is down to ignorance of the issues, and peoples incorrect perceptions about us. We can and should continue to get our stories out there as much as possible without putting ourselves at risk. For now that means running with independants as much as humanly possible, as they will not always expect us to provide verification, as the mainstream media does. Even if an independant does ask for verification at first, quite often it’s possible to negotiate and they may publish your story anyway even with no verification.

It’s an education issue mostly. Most people are hoplessly ill informed about consensual incest, because it doesn’t effect them and they rely on ‘common knowledge’. When that common knowledge is lacking, it leads to all kinds of misconceptions, and sometimes to people being demonized, as we are. Some of this is down to fear, aleviate the ignorance and we aleviate the fear.

By doing this we can actually get to a point where somebody who has an extremely high Westermarck effect can be disgusted without feeling the need to fly into a rage. We can get to the point where the sexual abuse victim no longer associates his or her abuse with consenting adults who are just a bit different from the norm. We can appeal to more moderate and inclusive versions of each religion so that eventually their attitudes towards us become the dominant ones. We can’t do anything about the fact that some people have psychopathy, but we can at least make it socially unacceptable to kill us and make it in their best interests not to harm us. Lastly, by fighting the misconceptions and ignorance, we leave less and less room for the programming of peoples minds.

You see, this is not an unwinnable war, it’s just going to be a long one. This is deeply engrained into the public psyche, and this level of prejudice is not going to be quick or easy to remove, but if we keep putting one foot in front of the other, we will get there in the end, no matter how long the journey. But no matter how long that journey is, no matter what obstacles we face, as long as we have each other, and enough faith to keep going, we WILL get there. That I promise you.