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AIBU to ask what kind of cousins these are?

(22 Posts)
DickVanTyke Sat 10-Feb-18 18:09:45

So we're all a bit confused here about second cousins vs first cousins once removed (what does that mean?)

So can the wise people of Mumsnet confirm what kind of cousins these are?

Bob and John are first cousins (we're pretty sure we have this right, their Mums are sisters). Bob has a daughter called Sarah, John has a daughter called Sally.

What kind of cousins are Sally and Sarah? And what kind of cousins are Bob and Sally?

Surfingwhippet Sat 10-Feb-18 18:11:20

Sarah and Sally are second cousins, Bob and Sally are first cousins once removed

VegasJuice Sat 10-Feb-18 18:12:47

Sarah and Sally are second cousins, as they share a set of great grandparents.

Bob and Sally are first cousins, once removed.

FitBitFanClub Sat 10-Feb-18 18:14:09

The "once removed" thing is the generation slip. So, your cousin's offspring, make them once removed from you and vice versa.

DickVanTyke Sat 10-Feb-18 18:14:44

Thank you, what does first removed mean?

SusanBunch Sat 10-Feb-18 18:14:48

Pretty sure they would be second cousins. Sarah would be John's first cousin once removed and Sally would be Bob's first cousin once removed.

MrsHathaway Sat 10-Feb-18 18:17:01

Whether you're a sibling, first cousin, second cousin etc has to do with who your nearest common ancestor is. The higher up your family tree you have to climb, the higher your cousin number.

Attached a useful chart. Your column tells you cousin number (sibling, first, second, third etc) and your distance up and down it is the remove.

spanieleyes Sat 10-Feb-18 18:18:11

This is useful
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cousin#Cousin_chart

so I think Sally and Sarah are second cousins!

Pearlsaringer Sat 10-Feb-18 18:21:39

I think it works like this

In the same generation, a first cousin has the same grandparents, a second cousin has the same great grandparents, a third cousin has the same great great grandparents, etc.

Removed cousins are those from different generations. So your mother's niece is your first cousin, but the niece's child would be your first cousin once removed.

Pearlsaringer Sat 10-Feb-18 18:22:41

x post

FitBitFanClub Sat 10-Feb-18 18:26:27

Thank you, what does first removed mean?
It's not "first removed," it's first cousin, once removed. Or second cousin once removed etc..

Imagine a set of concentric circles. Your parents and their siblings are in the centre, and your first cousins (all the same generation) are all in the first ring out, and your children are in the next ring out from that, grandchildren the next one out and so forth. You are straight first cousins in your ring, and all your children are 2nd cousins to each other in their ring. The "once removed" part is your relationship to people in the next ring to you (either inside or outside). Or I suppose, you're "twice removed" from people two rings away.

Does that make sense?

lljkk Sat 10-Feb-18 18:29:25

"steps removed from being" is what the removed means.

So first cousin once removed = one step away from being first cousins.
2nd cousins twice removed = one of them is 2 generations below from being 2nd cousins, etc.

Other cultures don't get into this, by the way! At least my Mexican friends were baffled that there special names. Cousins were cousins, for them. Even if their cousin was technically the great-grandchild of their uncle. Other languages make a big deal about family order and different siblings have special names depending on that, or their children have special names.

QEI referred to Mary QoScotts as simply "my cousin" although they were 1st once removed as I recall. I don't know when we English speakers got so technical about cousin relationships.

DonkeyOil Sat 10-Feb-18 18:30:22

what does first removed mean?

Don't think that's a 'thing'! The once, twice (etc.) removed is the number of generation 'slips' if you like. So if there are two first cousins and one never has children, but the other has a child, then a grandchild, then a great-grandchild, the relationship of the childless cousin will always be 1st Cousin once removed, then twice removed, then three times removed to the progeny of the other cousin.

Sorry, I know I'm repeating what's been said already in several different ways!

LadyLaSnack Sat 10-Feb-18 18:35:35

What about my cousin’s cousin who is no blood relation to me?

So if my dad (Ian) has a brother (Stewart) and Stewart has a wife (Alice) and they have a child (Andrew) then Andrew is my first cousin. But what if Alice has a sister (Lisa) who has a son (Gordon).

Gordon and Andrew are first cousin’s too, and I always thought therefore me and Gordon weee second cousins, but I suspect I might be wrong?

lljkk Sat 10-Feb-18 18:43:23

In some traditions those cousins of your cousins are considered as good as a true relation.

Something similar, I think my Sikh friend explained that if her sister was married to Raj, then she (my friend) wouldn't be allowed to marry any of Raj's brothers; another marriage would be like incest in their culture. The Sikhs also have a prohibition against anything closer than something like 6th or 7th cousins marrying. They frown a lot on common Muslim practices.

NewYearNewMe18 Sat 10-Feb-18 18:46:48

What about my cousin’s cousin who is no blood relation to me?

That's no relations whatsoever and not a second cousin. He's a random you meet at weddings and funerals

MrsHathaway Sat 10-Feb-18 19:11:21

Gordon and Andrew are first cousin’s too, and I always thought therefore me and Gordon weee second cousins, but I suspect I might be wrong?

I'm afraid you are wrong. That connection doesn't confer any relationship on you; you simply have relations in common.

However, where it gets complicated is that it's very common for you to have another common ancestor somewhere (the papers love to fap about how Barack Obama is the Queen's fifteenth cousin six times removed and so on) so you might also be somethingth cousins on another side.

UsernameInvalid66 Sat 10-Feb-18 19:24:25

So if my dad (Ian) has a brother (Stewart) and Stewart has a wife (Alice) and they have a child (Andrew) then Andrew is my first cousin. But what if Alice has a sister (Lisa) who has a son (Gordon).

You're technically no relation to Gordon, but if you see each other fairly regularly at Stewart and Alice's family gatherings and you think of him as a kind of relation, I'd just call him your distant cousin. People probably wouldn't ask for any more details.

I investigated this question myself a few years ago as I have very few cousins, and only really know one of them at all well, so I was feeling a bit under-cousined and started wondering if I had any "Gordons" I didn't know about! (I still don't know.)

Talkingfrog Sat 10-Feb-18 21:31:33

Thank you for asking and to all those who replied. I can now work out the proper relationship between my cousins, their children and my daughter.

scarletslass Sat 10-Feb-18 22:42:26

so what about this situation - my mum's brother married my dad's niece, and they have a child. What relationship is the child to me?

OlennasWimple Sat 10-Feb-18 22:48:10

So your uncle married your cousin?

The child would be both your cousin (from being your mum's brother's child) AND your first cousin once removed

EduCated Sat 10-Feb-18 22:56:58

Work out which set of grandparents you share, then count the number of Gs - if you share grandparents then you’re first cousins, if you share great grandparents then you’re second cousins etc.

If there’s a difference, i.e. it’s my grandparent and your great-grandparent, count the lowest number and then the difference is the removed. So if your Grandma Joan was my Great Great Grandma, we’d be first cousins (lowest number of Gs) twice removed (I have 2 extra Gs). I think.

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