Attracted to a family member and very ashamed

Postby sapphireraiin » Wed Dec 20, 2017 6:25 am

Hi, I’m a 23 year old female. I should let you know that I am a lesbian with a beautiful girlfriend whom I love deeply. However, I have a secret that is killing me, and that I hate myself for.

I’m very attracted to someone I cannot have, who is a family member. He’s my uncle (related by blood).

I’ve been confused about this for a long time, because as a lesbian, I’m sexually attracted to other women, and I have been since I can remember. My uncle is honestly the only man I have felt this strongly for.

I first noticed my my feelings towards my uncle when I was 15-16. I am aware that this is the age one’s sexuality is usually developing rapidly. I remember feeling butterflies before visiting my uncle’s house, and when he was around, my heart would beat faster and I’d blush. One day I saw him walk out of his bathroom wearing jeans, and no shirt. I know he saw me looking at him. In the past, I talked to a therapist about these feelings, and she tried to help me accept them. Yet, I simply can’t accept how I feel. To me, feeling sexually attracted to this man is “wrong” and I’m deeply ashamed of it.

Currently, my uncle and I aren’t very close. We only see each other a few times a year at family gatherings. During these events, we barely speak to each other. Sometimes he will come over and sit next to me, but he won’t attempt to make conversation. If I try to talk to him, he replies awkwardly and with short responses. Even though I’m very attracted to him, I also feel uncomfortable with him - almost fearful. I always feel like he’s watching me (even though he’s probably not). To be honest, I fantasise about him regularly. Meanwhile, I feel so awkward with him and I sense that he’s not comfortable near me either. At the same time, I love him with all my heart. Apparently he does know about my sexual identity, and he knows I have a girlfriend, so I’m not sure if this makes him uncomfortable.

When I was much younger, he was part of my life and saw me regularly. He and his wife used to visit me all the time when I was a child - he’d watch television with me, play games with me, take me to the park, buy me presents and read me stories etc. As I grew older, he was around less, and he obviously started his own family. He now has his own children to worry about.

At 23, I honestly don’t know why I feel so attached to him. Some days I miss him so much that my heart aches, and I cry. I worry about him and hope he’s doing okay. Sometimes I wish I could call him and ask if he’d like to meet for a coffee, just to talk, but I’m afraid he would find it weird, or that the rest of my family would find out and think of it as unusual.

I know this all sounds ridiculous, but I just don’t know what to do. Having to make eye contact with him kills me. We can barely exchange two words without either of us looking away. I don’t know how to be around him, and I’m going to have to deal with this for many more years to come. I’ve mentioned this secret to my girlfriend - she told me it was okay to feel like this, and that she knows it must be hard for me. However, I don’t really want to bring it up again with her, as it might make her uncomfortable.

To be honest, sometimes I have wondered whether my uncle ever did anything inappropriate to me when I was very young. At least that would explain why I feel this way towards him now. I really don’t know if he did. Maybe I am repressing memories. Please help me. I’m desperate here. Part of me wishes I could tell him how I feel and let everything out, but obviously I can’t because it would destroy his relationship with my whole family, and I’d never see him again.

It’s like the feelings that I have for him are the same feelings I have for my girlfriend - yet, with my girlfriend I am able to express them towards her in a healthy way.
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