Lately I've become very interested in the topic of incest and societal attitudes towards it. Beyond my academic interest in the subject, I have to say that the idea of incest itself has become very erotic for me, not just the "forbiddenness" of it but how intimate and affectionate sex between relatives could be. For the record, I am not even remotely attracted to any of my actual relatives and the idea of having sex with them would be awkward beyond belief (I wonder whether or not this really is due to the Westermark effect, my simply not considering them to be attractive or my not being very close to my family). The evidence for the Westermark effect (that, during childhood, especially early childhood, we naturally develop an aversion to having sex with people we were raised in close proximity with) seems strong but something about it seems impractical to me (maybe because there are certain features that men and women are almost universally attracted to). Does the Westermark effect mean that we naturally develop an aversion to people we were raised with or just that we are subconsciously hardwired to be sexually uninterested in them? Most people aren't sexually interested in trees but the idea of having sex with one doesn't disgust them. It makes a big difference because an aversion (as a form of anxiety), natural or learned, can be desensitized whereas (I don't think) sexual interest in something or someone that is just not sexually interesting can ever be developed. People tend to use the Westermark effect to rationalize and justify their aversion to incest (the appeal to nature argument) but there's no reason that an aversion to incest can't be desensitized just because it's natural, without this aversion, would most people be attracted to relatives (at least relatives that they consider to be good looking)? There are obviously some people who are attracted to family members that they were raised with and, presumably, they share with us whatever genes are responsible for the Westermark effect.