Sometimes love can blossom under the most inopportune of circumstances. Here, people share their own “Romeo and Juliet” stories of forbidden love.
14. A whole new take on “road trip.”
My grandfather was from a strict Catholic family, and my grandmother was from a strict Jewish family. My grandfather was a ladies’ man/football player, and my grandmother was “one of the boys” so to speak, and very intelligent.
They had a common group of friend’s when they lived in Colorado, that’s how they met. One day, my grandfather was going home to Michigan to see his family, and my grandmother needed a ride to Michigan. They left Colorado as friends/acquaintances, he proposed somewhere in the middle, and they reached Michigan as a married couple.
They were together for approximately 50 years until she died.
13. Love can start with a single word.
Once upon a time, when I was around 18 or 19, I was in my Long Island backyard playing horse with a friend. I got a text message that simply read “Sex?” from a random number. I replied with something along the lines of, “Depends on who with.” The response came back as, “Wait, are you a cook?” Or something to that extent, to which I cleverly retorted “No. I’m a refrigerator. Also, God.”
This mysterious text person and I riffed off of each other for quite some time, until it was revealed that I was speaking with two female cousins (to each other, not to me) a couple of years younger than I. During a summer trip to Maine, I dropped my phone in a lake, effectively losing their number (I had Verizon, no SIM card, and no backup of my contacts).
I received a new phone shortly afterwards with the same number and waited a good month for my text buddies to contact me. When I did, there was a noticeable change in syntax and enthusiasm. When I commented on it, I was informed that I had previously been speaking with the phone owners’ cousin, and she asked if she could give her my number. I said sure.
After reconnecting with (Let’s refer to her as) Spring, our text based relationship evolved over months to a phone based one, and through EXTREMELY late night phone conversations I learned she was originally from Oregon, living in Massachusetts with her Aunt and Uncle who were her legal guardians (She had left her home in OR due to familial issues). For her birthday it was brought into light that I may be able to attend her party, as Mass is only a few hours away from NY, and when it was discussed with her Aunt and Uncle, they immediately forbade her from talking with me as I could be a terrible, evil person.
It was argued by her guardians that you “cannot come to know a person over a phone, so [my name] can’t be trusted.” They subsequently attributed non-existent “troubles in school” to her contact with me, before I’d even made the slightest contact with her Aunt or Uncle. I had NEVER spoken to them, they did not know me, and they were evaluating who I was based on false pretenses.
Spring and I continued contact despite the ban, because of the ridiculousness of its nature. She had me in her contacts under “Tiger Lily” and we spoke in secret. Her Aunt and Uncle would take her phone away at night to be sure she wasn’t talking with me by going through her contacts and phone call history.
This culminated into us having a falling out, a handful of years of little to no contact, until one night I got a call from her telling me she was moving back to Oregon and asked me to never contact her again, because she hadn’t gotten over me. I responded by asking her, “What if it isn’t over?” (continued…)
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She moved to Oregon back in with her parents and our phone based relationship turned into a Skype based one. I visited shortly after that Christmas, and it was so absolutely amazing that I fell for her twice as hard as I had before. A handful of months later she moved across the country to NY and we’ve been living together ever since.
12. He finally got what he deserved.
In high school I met and fell in love with one of the “bad boys” in our small town. He was a year older than me, was a small time drug dealer and had dropped out of high school. His father was in prison for assault and his mother had a pill problem. His life had been rough from the beginning but I could tell from the minute I met him that he had so much potential do be…anything he wanted. He had such a kindness about him. He did have a full time job at a construction company at the time so he was somewhat financially stable. My parents forbid me from seeing him since I was basically a goody two shoes, straight A student, member of the church, etc. I got the “what will people say” speech a few times as well as the “he’s going to ruin your life” version.
Of course, I chose him to be my first act of rebellion and we had to create all these elaborate schemes in order to see each other. We had a whole network of people who would cover for us if we wanted to spend time together. He tried so hard to make my parents realize he was trying to turn his life around but they refused to ever even meet him; going as far as to not let him in the house when I tried to arrange a meeting. I convinced him to get his GED (which he did with flying colors), enrol in a community college and get away from drugs. All this was in an effort to convince my parents we needed to be together. He was seriously the love of my life and my first everything. We would spend hours studying, while I’m sure everyone thought we were just getting high or having sex.
Long story short, my parents wouldn’t financially support my decision to go to a college close by and being a terrified 18 year old, I went to the school they wanted that was 200+ miles away. Looking back, I should have been stronger and told them to shove their money but I can’t change that now. Eventually, the distance got to us and after a year apart we officially ended it and I haven’t seen him since.
So here is the optimistic ending. He sent me a letter around a year ago by way of a mutual friend basically thanking me for believing in him all those years ago and helping to get his life on track. He said that no one had ever fought for him as much as I had and that even though it didn’t work out between us, he is a better person for having been with me. Reading that was one of the most gut-wrenching and proud moments of my life. He now owns a very successful business in our hometown, has a beautiful wife, two kids, a gorgeous house, etc. So the fact that we had a forbidden relationship actually was the catalyst for making sure he got the life he deserved.
11. Love knows no boundaries – not even a fence.
My Jewish great-grandmother was in a work camp in Poland during the Holocaust (She was 18 when it started). She worked in the gardens, which she said was good, because it kept her away from the men in the camp. While she was there, she fell in love with a Nazi soldier across the fence in the compound.
One day, he took her, and they fled Poland together and went through Ellis Island on a small fishing boat. My great-grandmother miscarried on the way, but they made it here (to the U.S.) and had like 6 kids before my great-grandpa died.
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10. On this week’s segment of “forbidden love.”
My first job out of college was at a radio station. I was super excited about this opportunity and I LOVED my job. Well, I met a guy that worked there who was the most amazing person I’ve ever met, talented, funny, good looking and charming. (He can even do more than 60 different character voices for on-air work.) He made me laugh so hard my stomach hurt.
Well, I fell in love with him. I knew he was something special. My family was adamant that I not pursue anything with him because we work together and I can ruin my dream job, get in trouble, or make things uncomfortable at work. They reminded me daily.
We dated and kept it under the radar at work until he left the company a year and a half later. I also met my best friend at this job. She didn’t even know we were dating. We’ve been together 6 and a 1/2 years and married for 3 and a 1/2.
I’m so glad I didn’t listen to anyone. Oh, and I think my family likes him more than me now. If I show up to an event without him, because he’s at another engagement, people don’t say hi to me, the first thing out of their mouth is where’s Tom?! You should hear them if I remind them that they said we shouldn’t date. They act so ashamed and start making excuses for their previous notions.
9. Can you point me toward the love aisle?
I use to work at a supermarket and always flirted with the up front manager. I was a butcher with a girlfriend and she was also seeing someone. We both broke up with our significant other but never moved forward cause we worked together.
We went on strike for over 5 months and ended up going out during that time. When the strike was over, I quit shortly after. We continued to date and have been together for ten years now, married for two!
8. Love has no religion.
My boyfriend’s family is extremely religious and strongly encouraged him to date only Jewish girls. I was raised Catholic. I’ve known my boyfriend since we were 12 years old, and we’ve been dating for 4 years. His father still doesn’t approve, but we are very happy together and willing to deal with the BS that goes along with being together. We couldn’t be happier and we’re about to move to California.
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7. Through good times and bad.
I had just finished my junior year of high school, and my brother was in college. He was working on a student film and asked me to assist him with the cinematography. I figured, “Heck yeah, I’ll get to hang out with my brother and have a hell of a summer!” But man did I have no idea…
Just after my last final I went to meet with everyone at the production house they had rented from a friend. As soon as I walked in, I saw her. She was doing dishes and I was too shy to look her in the eye. She was beautiful but clearly looked young. At this point I had no idea how young, and I was too shy to really talk to her anyway, so I stuck to my brother and his friends. I later found out she was the little sister of one of my brother’s friends, and that she was going to be in 8th grade.
Most people think, woah, what the heck?? But never did I think of her that way until the end of summer. During production we grew closer as friends and eventually the movie was finished. There was a celebration following the completion and during this is when it truly started. I had drank a bit and smoked a bit and happened to be sitting on the couch when she came in and laid down on my lap. I couldn’t resist, she was so beautiful and serene the way she was laying. I kissed her, and she kissed me, and this began a relationship that has been hated for years.
Early in our relationship we were not allowed to see each other, so we went to extreme measures. I would sneak over to her house in the night and we would lay in her bed and talk for hours before I needed to be home to “wake up” for school. I spent many a day of my senior year sleeping in class because of this. We were both stupid, I was in my first real long term relationship and was utterly infatuated.
Eventually over time our parents grew accustomed to us and eventually hers grew to like me and mine grew to like her. It is 5 years later now. I will be graduating college and she is graduating high school. She is 19 and I am turning 23. We have had difficult times and a relationship model that is hard if not impossible to explain, but we love each other dearly.
6. Talk about going to the ends of the earth for someone.
I’ve been married for just over two years to the woman of my dreams. I met her when I was a teacher in Seoul. She is Korean, and I am a white dude.
Her parents are divorced, and neither of them speak a lick of English. My Korean is definitely not what I’d like it to be, so our conversations have to stay pretty simple. Her mother and sister are fairly supportive of our relationship, and both of them were there for our wedding in 2010.
Her father, on the other hand, isn’t too happy about her “dating” a waegook (the Korean word for “foreigner”). I say dating here because he still doesn’t know we’re married.
I’ve spent the last two years of my life getting myself into a respectable career that will allow me to provide for my wife (and our cat). We were both victims of the recession, and there was a good year and a half where we were both working crappy jobs with crappy pay.
However, recently I was offered a career with a Federal contractor, and this job has not only given me the chance to handle ALL of our finances with ease, but also send my sweetness back to school for her third degree (the first two not being as conducive to finding work in the current job market… third one is nursing).
She’s got another year and a half of school left, and after that we plan on flying back to Korea to have a real big traditional Korean wedding at one of those palaces.
That’s when my current father-in-law will learn he’s got a son-in-law, and hopefully my cushy corporate position will be enough to convince him his daughter made the right choice.
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5. At least she’s finding a way to make it work.
My entire romantic history. I’m gay and my parents are very conservative Christians. They have straight up told me they think “homosexuals are the reason this country it going downhill”!
Anyway, I’m their perfect daughter who just happens to have a lot of sleepovers with touchy-feely friends who pop in and out of my life frequently.
4. He’ll always have a piece of their love – his child.
The mother of my child was married to another man who thought he was his. I couldn’t be a part of my child’s life. When the baby was two, they got divorced. The husband finally noticed that the baby’s eye color didn’t come from either of them.
After the divorce, she wanted to move out of state so I offered to adopt my son. She agreed and after a DNA test, I got full custody. I haven’t heard from the mother in over three years.
3. “It was incredible while it lasted.”
When I was sixteen, I fell in love with my best friend and we started dating. Her father was an ex-marine with serious temper problems and very clear ideas about the kind of people worthy of hanging around his kids, and I wasn’t one of them. He hated me. It didn’t help that he was a homophobic psycho and if he’d found out about us, she’d have been sent to some kind of camp and my parents would definitely have been alerted way before I was ready for them to know.
We had to hide our relationship from both our families for more than two years (continued).
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On several occasions she got into trouble for something unrelated and her parents’ preferred punishment was to tell her she couldn’t see me/hang out with me anymore. We made it work around all the restrictions, but it was a state of constant paranoia – no matter where we went together, someone who knew her family could see us and we’d be screwed. We couldn’t hold hands in public, couldn’t kiss at the movies. One of the only times we had truly to ourselves was on Sunday nights when her parents dropped her at church for youth group…and I waited around the corner til they left, picked her up and took her somewhere else. We’d go down the road a little ways, park by the train tracks and sit in the back of my Explorer for the precious hour we had, just cuddling and talking.
The relationship was incredible while it lasted, and in the terms of this question, it was successful; it didn’t end because it was forbidden love, but just because we went to college and the distance proved too great. I’ll always have fond memories of that time, even if it was unduly stressful.
2. “A kindred spirit at an inopportune time.”
When I was 17 I secretly dated my 31-year-old high school English teacher. He was actually my teacher as a freshman and then he coached the baseball team that I kept stats for, and we just kind of became close. I somehow figured out his AIM screen name and started chatting with him online, and that’s how it really took off. Whenever I tell people this story they demonize this guy as some sort of sleezeball, but it legitimately didn’t happen that way. The two of us had the same views on nearly everything and had all the same likes/dislikes and made each other laugh incessantly. I developed feelings for him and actively tried to turn the relationship romantic.
I had very strong feelings for him and almost went to a college in the town that he lived in and was thinking about moving in with him after high school graduation. He was in love with me and thought we were soulmates. I should also mention that it didn’t last very long (6 months or so) and while it was physical, we never had sex.
He commuted to work about an hour each day, so we hung out in his town and never ran into anyone. No one ever found out, but he totally would have been fired and maybe even have faced criminal charges if they had. In the end, I didn’t want to be tied down at such a young age and ended up moving 700 miles away to go to college.
I still talk to him to this day, he’s married now and i’m in a long-term relationship. We still remember each other’s birthdays and keep up on Facebook. There’s nothing but good blood between us and I look back on the situation as an entirely positive one and I still believe, to this day, that (aside from my current SO) he is the only other person who has ever come close to being my true male counterpart.
Most people find it hard to believe that he wasn’t just some sort of sicko and that I wasn’t being taken advantage of but honestly, my eyes were wide open the entire time, I was smart and rather mature, and he had nothing but good intentions. I truly believe it is possible for people to find a kindred spirit at an inopportune time in their life trajectory.
1. Overcoming invisible boundaries.
My grandad was a Catholic from the Republic of Ireland, my gran a Protestant from the Northern. Regardless of how much you know about your Irish history, this was an incredibly bad situation to be in around the time of riots and conflicts between the two parts of the country. They moved to England and my grandad gave up his faith at the altar so they could marry and be at peace.
They stayed married until his death.