No matter how repulsive majority of the public think incest is, it is troubling that a lot of cases involving what is now termed ‘Genetic sexual attraction’ surface everyday – in the papers, on the telly and even on the grapevine.
”Every day”, says an expert, “children from broken homes and polygamous homes are always seeking for their biological family. And it is a dangerous trend as quite a number of these ‘lost and found’ relatives may find themselves drawn sexually towards a close relative mothers, sons, fathers and daughters, brothers and sisters …”.
Three years ago, Constance, a divorcee finally remarried and relocated outside Lagos. Her only daughter from her first marriage refused to be up-rooted from the school where she was doing so well and opted to live with her father. “I was dead against her living with a man who didn’t even bother to know what was happening in his daughter’s life after we split”, Constance explained.
“She was then 17 and I didn’t discourage her from asking him if she could live with him until she finished secondary school. I was sure he would refuse and I would gleefully tell her `I told you so,’. I was greatly surprised when he not only agreed for Tope (her daughter) to live with him, he promised to assume full responsibility for her education. By then, he was doing very well in business and looked fairly comfortable financially.
“It was a relief in a way as I didn’t want my new husband to have the problem of a step-daughter on his hands. Tope flourished in her father’s care and it was obvious he wanted to make up for lost time. Tope was introduced to other family members and it was clear that father and daughter hit it off. He lavished gifts on her and she became really sophisticated over the years.
Then her father’s wife blew the whistle on both of them. One of the children, a lad of 16 had picked up Tope’s mobile to call one of his friends. When he was through, a text message came in for Tope and he accessed it out of curiosity. Then he noticed other messages from their father’s mobile, read them then promptly handed the phone to his mother. The messages she read made her toes curl. It was obvious Tope was having sex with her father through the series of text messages he sent to her.
“I felt sick to my stomach. By this time,Tope was at the university and her stepmother had kicked her out. She now lives on campus and told me she would soon relocate to a one-room apartment she’d found near her university. Her dad paid for everything and she’s refused to severe relationship with him. She said the sex thing was a one-off and they were both drunk at the time.
When I reminded her of what I’d read from the text messages her had sent to her, she clamped up. My current husband had warned me to be really careful here or I would be the enemy. But how can I be `careful’ about an incestuous relationship? True it happens all of the time, but should you wish it on your worst enemy …”
Analysing incestuous relationships further, the expert said: “Whilst trying to analyse the rationale behind this abnormal behaviour, psychologists have pinned the name GSA – General Sexual Attraction on it. This affects parents and children and brothers and sisters who are reunited after a long number of years. Normal taboos have not been built up within the family, with the result that there can be abnormal sexual attraction. Tolu’s case is typical of the GSA epidemic where there never was a normal father – daughter relationship.
“GSA is rare between people raised together in early childhood, as most siblings have evolved to prevent incest. Several factors may contribute to GSA. People commonly rank faces similar to their own as more attractive and trustworthy. Heredity produces substantial physical resemblance between close relatives. Shared interests and personality traits are considered desirable in a mate. In cases of parent – child attraction, the parent may recognise traits of their sometime mate in the child. Such reunions typically produce complex emotions in all involved”.
Some years ago, there was a report that a brother and sister couple in Germany were fighting anti=incest laws. They grew up separately, met as adults, and have had four children together. Not long ago in far away Indiana, USA, Phil Bailey, a 26-year-old man, and his grandmother Pearl Carter, 72, were reported to be trying to have a surrogate baby after they’d started having regular sex.
Makes you sick doesn’t it? Unfortunately, all over the world, people like Tolu and her dad are forever yielding to human weakness – it doesn’t make it right or acceptable. Just sad.