Emily Atack branded her cousins ‘the best invention since the Game Boy’ and ‘50% sibling, 50% mate’… years before revealing she is expecting a baby with step-cousin Alistair Garner

Emily Atack branded her cousins ‘the best invention since the Game Boy’ and ’50 per cent sibling, 50 per cent mate’ before it was revealed she is expecting a baby with her auntie’s stepson.

MailOnline revealed on Wednesday, The Inbetweeners star’s new boyfriend Dr Alistair Garner is her step-cousin who she has known for over 30 years.

And Emily, who is five months pregnant with Alistair’s baby, has previously told how important her cousins have been in her life, calling them ‘the best friends I ever had’.

Her family, including mother Kate Robbins who calls Alistair her ‘nephew’, are believed to be thrilled the comedy actress is becoming a mum for the first time and endorse her romance with the nuclear scientist, who is not a blood relative.

And writing in her 2019 autobiography Are We There Yet?, Emily, 34, gave clues as to why she’s ended up in a relationship with Alistair, 37, because her cousins ‘understand each other on a deep level.’

Emily Atack branded her cousins ‘the best invention since the Game Boy’ and ’50 per cent sibling, 50 per cent mate’ before it was revealed she is expecting a baby with her auntie’s stepson (pictured with Alistair) 

MailOnline revealed on Wednesday, The Inbetweeners star's new boyfriend Dr Alistair Garner is her step-cousin who she has known for over 30 years

MailOnline revealed on Wednesday, The Inbetweeners star’s new boyfriend Dr Alistair Garner is her step-cousin who she has known for over 30 years

She says: ‘Cousins are the best invention since the Game Boy. They are basically 50 per cent sibling, 50 per cent mate. You look the same but different…

‘You understand each other on a deep, deep, level and you have a smidgen more social etiquette towards them than your brother or sister…

‘It makes me sad for my friends who don’t have that relationship with their cousins, because mine were the best friends I ever had. They are still my best friends to this day.’

Emily has a large number of cousins courtesy of the sprawling families of both her parents, actress Kate and singer father Keith Atack, who split in 2007.

Alistair hails from her mother’s side, being the stepson of Kate’s sister Jane who married his father Stephen Garner, who passed away last summer leaving Emily devastated.

Despite the majority of her cousins living in the North of England, including Alistair, Emily says herself, plus sister Martha and brother George, still managed to spend lots of time with them while they were growing up.

Plus, she also praised their ‘gorgeous’ looks and compared them to models.

She added: ‘Most of them have northern accents like our parents, are model-tall, and they are all absolutely gorgeous.

Emily, who is five months pregnant with Alistair's baby, has previously told how important her cousins have been in her life, calling them 'the best friends I ever had'

Emily, who is five months pregnant with Alistair’s baby, has previously told how important her cousins have been in her life, calling them ‘the best friends I ever had’

‘Growing up, we would spend spring days terrorising each other in the spare room of my grandparents house in Birkenhead, locking the smaller ones in the bathrooms, nearly decapitating each other hanging out of windows and throwing sweets on the road.

‘We slept in dens on the floor of each other’s bedrooms, we stayed up late and ate midnight feasts until we were sick.’

Emily later explained she attempted to replicate the close bond she shares with her cousins within her friendship groups. She said: ‘They’ve taught me openness, love, friendship – things that I’ve looked to create with all other friendship groups…

‘They’re my solid foundations that everything else is built upon and it doesn’t matter what happens in the rest of my life – if all the walls are knocked down, I know those foundations will be there…

‘They make me think of those Ellie Goulding lyrics: ‘When I’m standing with you, I’m standing with my army.’

The I’m A Celebrity star announced her shock pregnancy last weekend, telling her 1.9million followers she’s ‘never been so happy and terrified at the same time’.

Emily and Alistair recently set up home together to prepare for their baby's arrival (pictured together in September)

Emily and Alistair recently set up home together to prepare for their baby’s arrival (pictured together in September)  

She had chosen to keep her relationship with Alistair private by not referring to him in her lengthy post, favouring using the word ‘we’ while voicing her excitement about becoming a mum.

MailOnline told on Wednesday how their family backed the relationship.

A source said: ‘Emily and Alistair have grown close over the past 12 months. It was unexpected but their family is delighted for them. They make a great couple and everybody is excited for their new arrival.’

Hours after MailOnline revealed her link with her baby’s father, Emily broke her silence on Instagram thanking well-wishers.

She wrote: ‘Overwhelmed with all your messages of support about our baba! I’m stuck at home very sick so your kind messages really do cheer me up.’

Emily then joked: ‘So do M&S biscuits it turns out.’

She had chosen to keep her relationship with Alistair private by not referring to him in her lengthy post, favouring using the word 'we' while voicing her excitement about becoming a mum

She had chosen to keep her relationship with Alistair private by not referring to him in her lengthy post, favouring using the word ‘we’ while voicing her excitement about becoming a mum

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