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Wedding Woes

Classic Prudie and...omg

I went over to see Prudie's answer for today's 4 Men post and there was a Classic Prudie at the bottom of the page.  It is way too OMG to not share:

"Over 20 years ago I had an affair with a married woman who became pregnant with my child. She reconciled with her husband and they raised the boy as their own. I have not had any contact with my biological son, at the husband’s request. No one in my family knows I have a secret son. Two weeks ago I found out my niece (my sister’s daughter) is engaged, and the groom to be is none other than my biological son! Prudie, I am livid that my son’s mother and her husband did not stop this relationship in its early stages. “No, Bobby, you can’t date that girl because she’s your biological cousin” is all it would have taken. I contacted the woman and she swore she didn’t know our son was marrying my niece since my niece has a different last name. I asked her what she planned to do to stop the wedding and she said she’s doing nothing! Our son doesn’t know anything, and according to her, cousin marriage is harmless! Prudie, how do I bring this up with my niece and her parents? I have never had any contact with my son, and I don’t think I should approach him about it. He doesn’t know his father is not his biological father. I don’t want my niece to live in incest because of my past mistake.  Please help."

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Re: Classic Prudie and...omg

  • Holy crap, I don't even know what to say.  I mean, legally in the US you can't marry 1st cousins right?  I feel like something needs to be said but I don't know to whom and from which person involved.  Wow.
  • ILoveBeachMusicILoveBeachMusic Indiana member
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    What did Prudie say?
    Ro041
  • short+sassyshort+sassy member
    5000 Comments Sixth Anniversary 500 Love Its First Answer
    edited February 28
    Whoa, that's like the plot of a made-for-tv movie!

    TBH, though.  Although it sounds horrifying, at first, to call it incest is getting extreme.  First cousin marriages are legal in at least half the states.  From the article I have a link to, a child born with birth defects is twice as likely with first cousins as it is with non-first cousins.  But then you're also talking about a rate of 3% vs. 6%, so still not necessarily a huge danger.

    As hard as it is, I think the LW needs to keep this under wraps.  Not to keep his own secret, but because it would be blowing up his bio-son's world.  A young man who has no idea his father isn't his bio-father.

    I didn't do a deep dive on stats, but here is an article I found about first-cousin marriages and procreating:

    http://www.todayifoundout.com/index.php/2014/02/people-stop-thinking-appropriate-cousins-marry/ 
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  • YIKES!!!  All I can think is that Bobby's parents didn't know that the girl he was dating and ended up proposing to was his cousin.  LW says he didn't keep in touch with them so maybe they didn't know?  If they did they're sick people.

    Either way, just this once I'd stray from my usual "don't say anything about the secret child" - I think LW has to say something.
  • Casadena said:
    Holy crap, I don't even know what to say.  I mean, legally in the US you can't marry 1st cousins right?  I feel like something needs to be said but I don't know to whom and from which person involved.  Wow.
    I posted after you, but the link I have above outlines which states first-cousin marriages are legal and illegal in.

    Roughly speaking, they're illegal in about half the states.  Some states they're legal, but with conditions (no idea what the conditions would be).  And it's completely legal with no conditions in many states.
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  • Casadena said:
    Holy crap, I don't even know what to say.  I mean, legally in the US you can't marry 1st cousins right?  I feel like something needs to be said but I don't know to whom and from which person involved.  Wow.
    I posted after you, but the link I have above outlines which states first-cousin marriages are legal and illegal in.

    Roughly speaking, they're illegal in about half the states.  Some states they're legal, but with conditions (no idea what the conditions would be).  And it's completely legal with no conditions in many states.

    Thanks, I wasn't sure and didn't feel like looking it up, lol.
  • ShesSoColdShesSoCold bend over and I'll show ya mod
    Moderator 5000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its
    Casadena said:
    Holy crap, I don't even know what to say.  I mean, legally in the US you can't marry 1st cousins right?  I feel like something needs to be said but I don't know to whom and from which person involved.  Wow.
    I posted after you, but the link I have above outlines which states first-cousin marriages are legal and illegal in.

    Roughly speaking, they're illegal in about half the states.  Some states they're legal, but with conditions (no idea what the conditions would be).  And it's completely legal with no conditions in many states.
    Yikes.
    Image result for someecard betting someone half your shit youll love them forever
  • short+sassyshort+sassy member
    5000 Comments Sixth Anniversary 500 Love Its First Answer
    edited February 28
    Casadena said:
    Casadena said:
    Holy crap, I don't even know what to say.  I mean, legally in the US you can't marry 1st cousins right?  I feel like something needs to be said but I don't know to whom and from which person involved.  Wow.
    I posted after you, but the link I have above outlines which states first-cousin marriages are legal and illegal in.

    Roughly speaking, they're illegal in about half the states.  Some states they're legal, but with conditions (no idea what the conditions would be).  And it's completely legal with no conditions in many states.

    Thanks, I wasn't sure and didn't feel like looking it up, lol.
    I had initially started to type that it was legal in most states, because that is what I thought I'd heard in the past.

    But I decided to look it up so I wasn't completely talking out of an assumption I had, lol.  Which apparently was incorrect, at least to describe it as "most".

    At any rate, in light of my limited research, while I would feel a bit icky about two first cousins getting married who had grown up together.  I'll admit to having the probably UO that it's NBD, biologically and emotionally speaking, for two first cousins to get married who don't even know they are first cousins and met as adults.
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  • OurWildKingdomOurWildKingdom in the 216 member
    2500 Comments 500 Love Its Third Anniversary 5 Answers
    edited March 1
    Casadena said:
    Holy crap, I don't even know what to say.  I mean, legally in the US you can't marry 1st cousins right?  I feel like something needs to be said but I don't know to whom and from which person involved.  Wow.
    I posted after you, but the link I have above outlines which states first-cousin marriages are legal and illegal in.

    Roughly speaking, they're illegal in about half the states.  Some states they're legal, but with conditions (no idea what the conditions would be).  And it's completely legal with no conditions in many states.
    I did a quick search on Wikipedia, and conditions can include age restrictions (only 55 or older), proof that one or both parties is sterile, and/or genetic counseling.

    Either way, yikes!
    charlotte989875short+sassy
  • Ro041Ro041 member
    Sixth Anniversary 1000 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer
    @Casadena here is Prudie's response.  Sorry I turned off my comp and bought a car yesterday afternoon.  Ha!

    "This is an opportunity to repeat my frequent reassurance to fathers: Dads, a statistically significant percentage of you actually have sired the children you think are yours. There’s no reason to doubt the mother of the groom when she says she didn’t realize the bride was related to you, especially if there’s been no big family gathering to celebrate the impending nuptials. You think you have a simple, easy way for the mother of the groom to stop the romance by saying, “Bobby, your father is not your father, and your fiancée is your cousin!” But if you think this through, explaining all this will entirely upend his family, and now yours, and at this late date in the wedding planning you can understand that the parents want to stick with their original plan to keep quiet about Bobby’s biology. I do think that people are entitled to know their origins and keeping these secrets has the potential for blowing up, as you are now seeing. But as it stands only three people know you’re the biological father of the boy, and while it may take all your will power, I think it should remain that way. Cousin marriage is common in much of the world and I think the remaining laws against it in this country should be repealed. Yes, there is an elevated risk of passing on genetic disorders, but it absolute terms it is very small. Two young people are in love and planning to make a life together. I think you should let that be."

    I REALLY don't agree with what was said in much of Prudie's respinse...

    charlotte989875MyNameIsNot
  • CasadenaCasadena member
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    Yikes, I don't either!  Shut up and say nothing is the response?  No.  Totally don't agree.
    charlotte989875
  • ILoveBeachMusicILoveBeachMusic Indiana member
    2500 Comments 500 Love Its Fourth Anniversary 5 Answers
    I'm with short&sassy in the UO department. Unless there is a history of a genetic disease on the biodad's side I'd leave well enough alone. They weren't raised together and have no idea they are cousins. The likelihood of something happening biologically is small. Leave it be.
    short+sassy
  • I'm with short&sassy in the UO department. Unless there is a history of a genetic disease on the biodad's side I'd leave well enough alone. They weren't raised together and have no idea they are cousins. The likelihood of something happening biologically is small. Leave it be.
    The risk is in recessive or latent disorders that need two recessive gene carriers to manifest. More likely when the two parents are related. 
  • ShesSoColdShesSoCold bend over and I'll show ya mod
    Moderator 5000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its
    I was telling H about this last night and I thought of something - so, if LW does nothing, could you imagine holidays and stuff like that?! He's now going to have to see his son at Grandma's on Easter now and try to act like that's not his kid and he's not super uncomfortable. And if they have kids? I don't think I'd be able to sit around and pretend that their kid ISN'T my biological grandchild.

    I know that's the least of the problems here but I just couldn't get over that.
    Image result for someecard betting someone half your shit youll love them forever
    CharmedPamMyNameIsNotSTARMOON44
  • After seeing what's going on in my family and the genetic testing involved I do think that it's worth speaking up.    I don't know that there's any way to do this or to prevent any hurt but I think that these are people who should be aware of what's going on with more information.  
    Ro041
  • Ro041Ro041 member
    Sixth Anniversary 1000 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer
    I also think of the ramifications on Bobby's family if he finds out about this on his own and further finds out that his parents knew and didn't tell him.  Wouldn't it be as simple as a 23 and Me test?

    sparklepants41charlotte989875
  • Ro041 said:
    I also think of the ramifications on Bobby's family if he finds out about this on his own and further finds out that his parents knew and didn't tell him.  Wouldn't it be as simple as a 23 and Me test?
    This is exactly where I'm at. Information this important shouldn't be kept from people. 
    charlotte989875
  • Ro041 said:
    I also think of the ramifications on Bobby's family if he finds out about this on his own and further finds out that his parents knew and didn't tell him.  Wouldn't it be as simple as a 23 and Me test?
    This is exactly where I'm at. Information this important shouldn't be kept from people. 
    Exactly.   I'm now on 23 and me and see where I have 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th cousins.   I would be a bit concerned if I found an overlapping geographical dot IN MY RESIDENCE with my first cousin.

    But beyond that, my unborn niece is diagnosed with a genetic issue.   SIL and BIL are going through some testing to determine if one or both are carriers.   It's a rare but fatal diagnosis.   I think I'd want to know this going in assuming I entered into a relationship believing that procreation was on the table. 
    sparklepants41OliveOilsMomcharlotte989875
  • I don't see what can be done at this point. Telling the couple that they are cousins would definitely devastate them and two families as well. As horrible as this situation is, I think it's better to go with the potential risk of a genetic problem rather than the certain risk of family destruction.
    short+sassy
  • OliveOilsMomOliveOilsMom South Jersey member
    Eighth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers

    While we were preparing for our wedding, we had to do a quick priest change about a month before the ceremony.  So we met with the new priest to interview us.  He asked us some pretty specific questions.  After we answered, he explained his reasoning for asking the questions.  It turns out that he had second cousins come to marry, but they did not know they were cousins at all.

    He explained that their grandmothers were twins and born to an unwed mother in Philly.  The families of the twins, thought it was best to separate them and each take one to raise.  One family stayed with one twin in Philly, the other family was further away.  The families knew each other, but the twins didn't know about each other and then when they married and changed their last name the other family didn't know.  So when the grandchildren of the twins met in college, they had no idea nor did the immediate families know.

    Everything came to light during their engagement!  Families started to meet and some of the older generation recalled knowing people with the same last name from back in the day.  Eventually they found the right older generation relative who knew the full story and shared it.

    The priest said that he could still marry them if they wanted, since they had grown up separately and were far enough apart for state law.  But after thinking about it, they declined and broke up.

    All that to say, I think they should know that they are first cousins.

    charlotte989875eileenrobCasadenasparklepants41
  • ILoveBeachMusicILoveBeachMusic Indiana member
    2500 Comments 500 Love Its Fourth Anniversary 5 Answers
    I'm with short&sassy in the UO department. Unless there is a history of a genetic disease on the biodad's side I'd leave well enough alone. They weren't raised together and have no idea they are cousins. The likelihood of something happening biologically is small. Leave it be.
    The risk is in recessive or latent disorders that need two recessive gene carriers to manifest. More likely when the two parents are related. 
    I am aware of that which is why I said a genetic disease. The father would be aware, most likely, if that were the case.
  • ShesSoColdShesSoCold bend over and I'll show ya mod
    Moderator 5000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its
    maine7mob said:
    I don't see what can be done at this point. Telling the couple that they are cousins would definitely devastate them and two families as well. As horrible as this situation is, I think it's better to go with the potential risk of a genetic problem rather than the certain risk of family destruction.
    But that risk will always be there. This information won't just disappear when LW decides not to say anything and she walks down the aisle. LW will be sitting on this elephant in the room, hoping no one else finds out about it for the rest of his life.

    Like PPs said, they could do genetic testing and find out. The mother might cave to the pressure and tell her son. The couple could have a child with a defect and then they'll be asking questions and digging to find the cause. Wouldn't that be worse - to have both of your biological parents know that you married your cousin and didn't say anything and you had to find out 5 years later when your child was born with a defect or disorder? Plus the fact that this man would subsequently learn that his dad isn't his dad. Personally I'd rather know. 

    I would have been much happier not knowing a lot of things in life. But they were things I needed to know. My mom's cancer diagnosis, my grandpa's death, my possible half brother, the mental issues that run in my family (a GENETIC thing - HMMM!), the abusive nature of other family members, all kinds of shit. Hell, I'd much rather not know my credit card bill amount or the fact that the mortgage wants to be paid EVERY month. But these things are relevant to my life. 

    You can't always avoid difficult things just because they're difficult. 
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    MyNameIsNotOurWildKingdomeileenrobsparklepants41
  • I'm with short&sassy in the UO department. Unless there is a history of a genetic disease on the biodad's side I'd leave well enough alone. They weren't raised together and have no idea they are cousins. The likelihood of something happening biologically is small. Leave it be.
    The risk is in recessive or latent disorders that need two recessive gene carriers to manifest. More likely when the two parents are related. 
    I am aware of that which is why I said a genetic disease. The father would be aware, most likely, if that were the case.
    Sorry but the last 6 weeks of my life tell me that this is not necessarily the case in my family nor was it the case for a good friend who went through something similar over a year ago.  

    There are more genetic disorders that are being investigated and some are rare enough that they are not screened as a standard protocol but their presence can be extremely problematic or fatal.    
    charlotte989875
  • ILoveBeachMusicILoveBeachMusic Indiana member
    2500 Comments 500 Love Its Fourth Anniversary 5 Answers
    edited March 1
    banana468 said:
    I'm with short&sassy in the UO department. Unless there is a history of a genetic disease on the biodad's side I'd leave well enough alone. They weren't raised together and have no idea they are cousins. The likelihood of something happening biologically is small. Leave it be.
    The risk is in recessive or latent disorders that need two recessive gene carriers to manifest. More likely when the two parents are related. 
    I am aware of that which is why I said a genetic disease. The father would be aware, most likely, if that were the case.
    Sorry but the last 6 weeks of my life tell me that this is not necessarily the case in my family nor was it the case for a good friend who went through something similar over a year ago.  

    There are more genetic disorders that are being investigated and some are rare enough that they are not screened as a standard protocol but their presence can be extremely problematic or fatal.    
    I certainly didn't mean to be insensitive to what you and your family have been going through @banana468. I know it has been a very difficult time for you and your BIL and SIL and the rest of the family. I'm very sorry. 

    edited for typing
  •     
    I certainly didn't mean to be insensitive to what you and your family have been going through @banana468. I know it has been a very difficult time for you and your BIL and SIL and the rest of the family. I'm very sorry. 

    edited for typing
    @ILoveBeachMusic thank you.   I understand that my response was harsh but this is now a knowledge base I have that we simply can't assume that because we (say DH and I) are fine that we won't pass on genetic variants that may be extremely problematic or fatal for offspring.

    BIL and SIL are in the middle of this.  My dear friend and her H determined that they have a gene that if passed onto their children has a 50% chance in miscarriage.   

    No one in this situation is a cousin but the point is that we simply can't believe that we're aware that there's a genetic disease in the family.   In both situations these were only found after pregnancy occurred.   Sure you can look into genetic counseling but something tells me that if this couple entered into genetic counseling they'd get a report back with something advising them about what Grandma and Grandpa had in a doctor's office. 
  • I was telling H about this last night and I thought of something - so, if LW does nothing, could you imagine holidays and stuff like that?! He's now going to have to see his son at Grandma's on Easter now and try to act like that's not his kid and he's not super uncomfortable. And if they have kids? I don't think I'd be able to sit around and pretend that their kid ISN'T my biological grandchild.

    I know that's the least of the problems here but I just couldn't get over that.
    This is why I disagree with her. Also, several years after her advice, there’s now a pretty reasonable likelihood of someone doing 23andme and figuring it out, and “omg why didn’t you tell me that I was marrying my cousin” is not a good conversation to have. 
    OurWildKingdomeileenrobsparklepants41
  • But why is it up to the LW to tell? It isn't her place. If we were talking about a crime or molestation or something that needed to be told, then anyone who knows could tell. But this? It's on the dad and the woman he had the affair with
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