A British mother and her son, who both admitted to having an incestuous relationship, have reportedly gone into hiding after the mother discovered she was facing up to 15 years in prison.
Kim West was 19 when she gave birth to her son, Ben Ford, and gave him up for adoption, the Daily Mirror reports. West had been studying in California at the time of Ford's conception and birth and returned to the U.K. soon after.
Thirty-two years later, in 2014, the pair met for the first time.
At the time of their first correspondence in 2013, Ford was living in Colorado and was happily married. One month after talking for the first time, the pair reportedly had their first kiss at a hotel after indulging in a bottle of champagne. They then engaged in "incredible and mind-blowing sex," according to West.
Two years later, Ford has since left his wife and is now planning to move to Michigan with his mother.
"This is not incest, it is GSA," West told New Day, the Daily Mirror reports. West was referencing the term Genetic Sexual Attraction — used for relatives who feel sexually attracted to each other after meeting as adults.
"We are like peas in a pod and are meant to be together.
"I know people will say we’re disgusting, that we should be able to control our feelings, but when you’re hit by a love so consuming you are willing to give up everything for it, you have to fight for it. It’s a once in a lifetime chance and something Ben and I are not willing to walk away from.”
Ford said he never looked at West as his mother, even from the moment they met.
"When I met Kim, I couldn’t think of her as my mum but instead as a sexual being," he said. "I had seen a therapist at an adoption support group and had learnt about the GSA phenomenon.”
The pair said they hope to be able to get married and start a family, though GSA marriages are illegal in the United States. They're currently considering leaving Michigan to avoid being arrested.
"Under State law incest between two consenting adult is a third degree felony punishable by up to 15 years in prison," a Michigan State Police spokeswoman told the Daily Mirror. "Anyone convicted of such an [offense] would also be required to sign the sex offenders register for life.”
A woman made headlines in 2015 for writing a shockingly honest piece for Jezebel about the sexual relationship she had with her father, who she met when they were both adults.
"So here’s a new story to throw into the mix: genetic sexual attraction is normal, and very real," Natasha Rose Chenier wrote in the piece. "If it is a parent-child relationship, the parent, whether male or female, is always responsible for establishing and maintaining boundaries."
"Failing that, they are sexual abusers. And to the victims of their abuse, I want to say what I have finally been able to understand myself: that my attraction, and what it led to, was not my fault."