By Thaddeus M. Baklinski and John Jalsevac

July 18, 2008 ( – An article narrated by an anonymous woman who says she is “an academic,” published in the London Times this week, favorably describes at length and in detail the woman’s incestuous relationship with her brother. The article is entitled “I had sex with my brother but I don’t feel guilty.”

“Daniel is my brother,” says the anonymous narrator, whose story was transcribed by journalist Joan McFadden, “but since I was 14 we’ve had a sexual relationship – and that’s not something that many people would feel comfortable with.”

The narrator then relates, in increasingly explicit detail, the manner in which her and her brother’s close relationship gradually became sexual during their early teenage years. The author repeatedly expresses her belief that there was nothing wrong with the relationship, other than that society was unwilling to accept it.

She explains that the topic of incest is frequently tied in with sexual abuse, but that it need not be. “Incest is so often spoken about in the same breath as abuse, but if you’re close in age and equal in relationship terms then it’s entirely different,” she says. “There’s no comparison between siblings close in age having sexual feelings and contact and an adult forcing a younger member of the family to do something they neither understand nor want to be involved in.”

She also suggests that incest should begin to be studied from an academic viewpoint and disassociated from the topic of sexual abuse. “As an academic I have a tendency to draw logical conclusions. I like to see a pattern and resolution, so it does pain me that what appears so lovely and natural to me would be regarded as abhorrent by most people. It’s not my subject, but I would be really interested to see a study on incest done on these terms, moving it away entirely from the concept of abuse.”

She concludes by explaining that she and her brother have since ended their sexual relationship, with her brother having gotten married, and she herself having met another man with whom she is having a relationship. Nevertheless, she explains, “It’s hard knowing that the one person you love above everything is out of bounds. Perhaps worst of all is the fact that you can’t tell anyone, as his or her disgust would ruin everything.”

The subject of incest has been appearing more frequently in the mainstream media in recent months, with its treatment becoming increasingly sympathetic. Two recent court cases related to incest have been reported on by

In March of this year John Deaves and his daughter Anne pleaded guilty to two charges of incestuous intercourse which produced two children. One child died a few days after birth; the other was physically healthy.

District Court Judge Steven Millsteed observed that the case was unique, in that it did not involve the abuse of a minor; rather, the relationship took place between two consenting adults. “This is not a case where a father has violated his daughter and used his position of authority to take advantage of her powerlessness. Rather, this is a case of a mutually consensual union, formed by adults, who had previously had little contact.”

Judge Millsteed, however, went on to argue that “the offence of incest exists not merely to protect children from sexual abuse.”

“In my view,” he continued, “other relevant factors include the need to prevent the high risk of congenital defects of children born of incestuous relationships and to prevent children who are brought up in a family unit founded on an incestuous relationship suffering psychological harm and social stigmatisation. Those factors assume significance in this case,” said Millsteed.

In February 2007, the German brother-sister couple, Patrick Stuebing and Susan Karolewski, asked the Constitutional Court to overturn the ban on incest.

Archbishop Angelo Bagnasco of Genoa, appointed last year to lead the Italian Bishops Conference, said when commenting on the Italian government’s initiative to legalize same-sex unions, family policy must have a basis in natural law and the moral order. If it does not, public opinion someday may justify the instatement of law that sanctions destructive sexual relationships once believed inconceivable.

If society allows homosexual unions, said the Archbishop, “Why say ‘no’ to forms of legally recognised co-habitation which create alternatives to the family? Why say ‘no’ to incest? Why say ‘no’ to the pedophile party in Holland?” (If We Don’t Say No to Same-Sex Unions, then Why Not Incest and Pedophilia Says Archbishop: