Are my niece and nephew lovers?


June 28, 2016

Dear Pastor,

I have a problem. I know you can give me good advice. I cannot mention it to my husband because he can get very arrogant when things are not going his way.

My sister has three children. She was going abroad for a while and asked whether I could keep two of them. She would take the last child.

We have a guest room. None of my children are with us. My husband and I discussed it and agreed to help my sister.

My husband goes to bed and wakes up early.

There are two beds in the room. The girl, my niece, is 17. Her brother is 15.

Pastor, we didn't think anything was wrong for them to stay in the same room. They are nice, decent and obedient children.

I am retired. My husband does his own business so we can afford to keep the children.

I got the shock of my life. One night I woke up and saw the light on in their room. I decided to check.

When I opened the door, I saw my niece in her panty and her brother lying down on his back. She was kneeling by his bed, playing with his penis.

I shouted at them. I went for the broom to beat them, but I had to remind myself that I did not want my husband to hear me.

The boy's penis was as stiff as ever. I could not go back to sleep. I could not tell my husband anything.

This girl is 17 and has a big body. When I told their mother what I saw, she said they were probably experimenting. I didn't see them having sex.

I am so mad at her. I told her to get them out of my house.

My nephew is now sleeping in the helper's room. I don't have a helper. We use that room for storage. My husband asked me why am I putting him in there. I did not tell him the truth.

I said that he is a big man and needs his own space. My husband said, "I see". I don't think he believes me.

I told my sister to make arrangements to get them out of my house, but I changed my mind and told her the daughter could stay, but the boy must go.

I am confused. I don't know what to do. I asked my niece if she had ever had sex. She said yes. I asked if it was it with her brother. She said no. I believe she is telling me the truth. Please, Pastor, tell me what to do.


Dear C.M.,

First of all, let me commend you for taking your sister's children to live with you. You did so because you wanted to assist your sister and the children.

I have observed that you have not said anything about the father of these children. Perhaps he is not in their lives at all.

I also want to congratulate you for your restraint when you saw the two teenagers doing something inappropriate.

I know you could have lost it, so to speak, and beat their lives out of them. Your husband would have heard and you probably would have ended up in court or prison. You did well for control yourself.

I know some people would criticise you for putting these two teenagers in the same room. They had their separate beds. I am sure you believed that, as siblings, and at their age, they know it would be wrong to get physically involved or to engage in any sexual activity.

However, as a counsellor I have had to counsel adults on many occasions about siblings who have had sexual intercourse with each other - uncles and nieces, fathers and daughters, stepfathers and stepdaughters, the list goes on.

I have constantly said when children of the opposite sexhave reached a certain age, they should not sleep in the same room together.

What you saw shocked you. Why did they have the lights on. Why was your niece only in her panty, kneeling at her brother's bed and playing with his penis.

Were they about to have sex? Why did she take off her nightie or pyjamas?

Their mother response was not good. She spoke as if she was defending them. These children did not need sympathy. They should have been rebuked, but not condemned. You have taken the right decision in separating them.

Never should they sleep in the same room together again. They were not experimenting. They had gone beyond that.

Continue to help these children. Do not insist that their mother try to find another place for them to live. Keep them under your watch.

Make an appointment for them to see a psychologist. You said they were good children. Therefore, I repeat, help them.


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