I guess Tom and I are like a lot of husbands and wives these days, on our second marriages. You could listen to us both talk about our first times to the altar and there would be a lot of similarities.
We both were too young and too naive, we both chose mates our parents saw through the first time we brought them home. Yes, and if that hasn't also happened to you then, no doubt, it has to a good friend of yours or a family member. It seems pretty common.
So, you hope that you've learned from your mistake when you finally get around to choosing someone else to tie the knot with.
Also, like a lot of second-timers, we each came with kids, at least one each.
It was funny how we did it ... Tom brought a son, Simon, I brought a daughter, Andrea, to the marriage. And, they were both, basically the same age, only weeks apart in birthdays.
Tom and I are also attractive people so these two children of ours were also quite nice-looking, Andrea, in fact, was exactly what you might think of when you imagine a sixteen-year-old blond hottie. Yes, she was quite the pretty young woman.
And Simon, well, he had his father's curly blond hair and was on the swimming team so that can give you an idea of what Simon was like. He also had his father's boyish grin which had to be a hit with the girls his age.
So, here we were, the four of us a newly-blended family which you find in multiple examples in every neighborhood.
Of course, Tom and I were in love, we had met through mutual friends and, now married, we were pleased that our two children also seemed to get along quite well. Neither were the jealous type and both were also good students and had good friends, the kind of friends that parents like to see around their children.
About six months after our wedding, I was in putting clean sheets on our kid's beds when I picked up Simon's phone from his desk and the screen came on with a naked picture of my daughter, Andrea.
I stood there looking at her picture, knowing that I had come across something rather startling, something that I couldn't ignore. I flicked the picture out of the way and there were more, many more ... even some of them together.
I got it back to the way I found it and finished up and went to have a cup of tea and think about what I'd found.
This was, of course, a real game-changer and not something that could be ignored. I knew Andrea was on the pill, that was a good thing. There were several photos of them having intercourse along with a variety of other sexual activities.
It was shocking, of course, but, being quite honest, it was also quite arousing to look at them together as a couple.
Simon and Andrea are quite handsome young people and these photos, especially, showing them naked and aroused and together in so many sexual situations, well, I felt myself not only shocked and surprised, but my panties were getting wet as I went through them.
All I knew to do is to wait until Tom got home and for us to discuss what, if anything, we might do about it. Oh, the fun of parenting.
So, about an hour later, I heard the garage door open, then close.
Simon and Andrea had since come home and each was up in their own room, so when Tom came in, I gave him a kiss and followed him up to our bedroom to change.
"So, how was your day?" I asked, having no idea what was coming.
"Um, okay, until just a while ago."
"Oh, what happened?"
"I was changing the sheets in Simon's room and picked up his phone from the bed. It had some pictures on it."
"Ah, probably a girl's pictures, I'll bet. And probably not shots that her mother knows about."
"Uh, I think in this case, her mother knows about the pictures."
"What makes you say that?" I asked, obviously not putting two-and-two together quite yet.
"They're of Andrea."
I was pulling on a pair of jeans and just stood there looking at her.
"Andrea? On Simon's phone?"
"And these were explicit?"
"Naked ones of her, shots of them having sex, several of her giving him oral sex, several of him doing it to her. Yes."
"Mmm. Well, it looks like we'll need to talk about this," I said, rather stating the obvious, I suppose.
"Well, of course. What is it we're supposed to do, as parents, in a situation like this?" Barb asked me as I sat down on the bed.
"I'm not sure. She's on the pill, right?"
"Yes, and I know she's been taking it. I went and looked."
"So that's a good thing. Um, well, I suppose the first thing we need to decide is whether or not we even tell them we know. They're both sixteen and home when we're not."
"Yes, I've thought about that. We could tell them to stop but, really, how could we make them? It just doesn't seem possible. We'd have to supervise them twenty-four, seven."
"Yeah, not possible. They'll do it if they want to."
"So, knowing that, now what?" she asked.
"I suppose that we both agree that there's little we can do to stop it. And, that Andrea's protected. The other thing would be that it's consensual, there's no force or bribery."
"Yes, it's sounding like we need to talk to them. That's a good point."
"We should also tell them that they need to keep this quiet, just known to the four of us."
"Right. They have to act like normal around their friends and at school and around family," she added.
"Now, if they're allowed to continue, what then? How should they act when they're around us? Should we allow them to spend time in their rooms together? Sleeping together?" I posed.
"They're not related, I mean, that would be different if they were. This, I suppose, really isn't incest. They're not really brother and sister."
"Well, how would we feel if you and I weren't married, maybe just lived in the same neighborhood and you found the pictures? What then?"
"Yeah, it would be different. Again, I suppose it would be just about impossible to keep them apart if they wanted to be together."
"What would you do, under those circumstances, if Andrea asked you if she could have him over to spend the night? Would you allow them to sleep together?" I asked.
Barb stood there, not knowing exactly what she would do.
"I ... I really don't know. They're sixteen, legal to do it. I don't know."
"Remember, during the day, when we're not here, they can do anything they like," I said and she agreed.
"I suppose, if they both want to sleep together, maybe we should let them."
"I think I agree. What about displays of affection around us? Holding hands, cuddling on the sofa watching television, kissing?" she asked me.
"Maybe we should ask them if this is love or just sex?"
"Um, maybe we should ask that separately, to each one privately?" she told me.
"Good idea, get an answer from each one, see how they really feel about each other. I suppose they could be really falling in love with each other. They aren't related, so maybe that's happening? Who knows?"
"So, it's looking like we need to talk with each one separately, then together," she said and we both agreed and decided that we would do that after supper.
We tried to keep the conversation as normal as we could while we ate, then after we'd cleaned up and put things in the dishwasher, then Barb went and asked Andrea if she'd come up and help bring the laundry down.
Mom asked me to help bring the wash down so we went up, she then steered me into their bedroom where my stepfather was waiting.
"We need to talk with you about something," she said as I suddenly stiffened.
"We know about you and Simon. About having sex, about the pictures on his phone," my stepfather said as I stood there frozen.
"Well?" my mom asked.
I knew there was no denying it. They obviously had seen the pictures on Simon's phone, so I told them, "Yes, yes we are. It started about two months ago."
"Well, we're listening," Mom told me and I began to relate how it all happened.
"He was in the shower one afternoon and I went in the bathroom right when he was coming out. It ... well, it just started things, I guess. Simon's a good-looking guy and he ... well, he was standing there, um, pretty excited and, well, I told him how nice he looked."
"How do the two of you feel about one another? Is it just physical or is it more?" Mom asked.
"It ... well, it started out, well, it was just so sexy and all, he was there, naked and all and, like I said, excited, and he asked if he could see me. So, I let him. It was when we hugged that things just went on their own. We started kissing and before either of us knew it, well, we were in my bed together. That was how it started."
"So no one forced the situation, it was consensual?" my stepfather asked.
"Yes, oh, Simon would never do anything like that, he's really sweet."
"So, how do you two feel about each other? Is it just sex, just physical?" my mom asked. She really wanted to know.
"That first afternoon it was. And the next ... for a while. But, now, well..." I said as tears began to slide down my cheeks.
"I don't know how to tell you this," I sobbed as Mom took me in her arms. "I love Simon," I sobbed, "he loves me," and she held me until I'd regained my composure.
"We're not angry with you two, Andrea, we just want to know what's going on," my stepfather told me calmly.
"I don't think either one of us meant it to be this way. It was just physical right at the start but, then, well, it all changed, we both started to feel differently about each other. Then, a week or two ago, we both told each other we loved each other."
Now they knew that this was more than just sex, more than just a physical thing between Simon and me. I had just told them and was hoping they wouldn't be angry.
"Andrea, your mom and I certainly appreciate your honesty. That means a lot," my stepfather told me and Mom agreed.
"Well, why don't you go to your room for now, we want to talk with Simon, then the both of you together after we've had a chance to talk with each other," Mom told me and I hugged and kissed them both and left.
I was sitting in the den, flipping through the channel lineup when Dad came in.
"Can you help me with something upstairs, Simon?" he asked and I followed him up to their bedroom.
"Close the door, Simon, we want to talk with you about Andrea, you and Andrea. We know you're having sex, so why don't you tell us how all this came about?" my dad asked.
He began by telling me that my stepmother found the pictures I had of Andrea and us together on my phone. I knew, of course, exactly what kind of pictures they were talking about, they were really X-rated, even of us having sex.
"Yeah, I took those," I admitted.
"And Andrea isn't being forced or coerced in any of this?" my dad asked.
"Oh, no, Dad, I really would never do that to Andrea, I care too much for her to do something like that."
"So, how do you feel about Andrea, Simon? Is it just physical or is it more?" my stepmother asked.
I looked from her to my father and back, answering, "Well, it's become more. I think we are in love with each other, I know we're just sixteen but Andrea is very special to me. I love her and I'm not hesitant to say it."
They both nodded and I added, "She says she loves me, too, and I think we really do."
"And it was consensual, neither of you were coerced?" Dad asked me.
"No, I could never do that to Andrea. Not ever."
"We didn't think so but we have to ask, Simon, I hope you understand," Andrea's mother told me and I nodded. She told me to go to my room and wait until they called the both of us in for a final talk.
Well, I thought just what you probably would under the circumstances: the shit was going to hit the fan. They seemed cool about things so far but the fact was that I was fucking her daughter and it seemed as simple as that as I slowly walked back to my room past Andrea's closed door.
We were dead.
Well, now the difficult part began, Tom and I trying to decide what our ground rules were going to be.
"Well, they think they're in love. And, I suppose they could be. So, what would we do if you and I were just neighbors?" Tom asked me. "If my son came over, would you let them go to her room together?"
"They would anyway, when I wasn't home. So, I guess I would."
"How about sleeping together? What's the difference if they go up each night to bed together? They're already in bed together during the day," my husband asked.
I agreed, after all they were already together. Then he asked me about them showing affection, kissing, and such.
"Well, if we were neighbors and your son was at my house, visiting my daughter, his girlfriend, I suppose I wouldn't mind if they kissed and held hands and such."
"Nor would I," he added. "I suppose we'll get a better idea of how they feel about each other as we all get more used to this."
"So, are we ready to talk with them?" I asked and we agreed that we were so Tom went down the hall and came back with them both.
We explained to them what we felt was fair under the circumstances, then asked if they had any questions. It was Simon who asked the first one.
"So, you're saying we could sleep together in the same room if we wanted?"
His father took the question, "Well, Simon, there's not much difference in that and what you two seem to be doing when you're home during the day. And, you've both told us separately that you do care for each other. Right?"
"We love each other, Dad, I already told you about that. Right, Andrea?"
"We do, it didn't start that way but..." Andrea began, now wiping her eyes again as Simon hugged her to him. "We do now," she blubbered as Simon held her.
"I think we can see that there is love between the two of you, Simon," Tom said and they both looked at each other and exchanged a brief kiss.
"We also will not object if you kiss or hold hands, the normal things a young couple might do in front of their parents; we're trying to understand and want you to know that," I told them.