cousin

‘If you date a girl, you’re going to hell.’ I broke her heart the instant the words escaped my lips.’: 14-year-old takes in cousin’s daughter as her own, helps her through homosexuality, self-harm, ‘We were always meant to be a family’

“She caught me by surprise. ‘What would you do if I dated a girl?’ I immediately told her, ‘If you date a girl, you’re going to hell.’ The instant the words escaped my lips, something else hit me harder than the fear of my child in hell. I broke her heart. I never thought my child would be gay. I began noticing small cuts on her arms. I was losing her. I would have risked anything for her to find herself and be happy.”

‘I loved my older cousin. At 8, I learned the only way to be friends with him was to have sex with him.’: Daughter and mother in addiction recovery together after years of childhood trauma, ‘If that isn’t wonderful, I don’t know what is’

“I remember the bright red carpet in his closet. This ongoing ‘event’ became our secret, I held onto this secret for close to 15 years. I never got over what happened to me, I stuffed it so far down. This has been the hardest thing I have ever done in my entire life. I finally surrendered. I had enough. I needed to give myself a chance to live.”

‘I greeted her at the door with tears in my eyes. We couldn’t look past the horror of that day.’: Young widow becomes ‘soul sisters’ with late husband’s cousin after witnessing traumatic death together

“A stray bullet killed my husband 3 days after I delivered our son. His cousin Shelby was holding my baby boy moments before he died. She started sleeping with me that night and over the next year moved into the room with my son and I. For us, this PTSD was life. We couldn’t see past the blood, hear past the screams. Our brains were frozen in time, and the only way for us to climb out, was to be with each other.”

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