My parents OFFICIALLY know now. Kinda long. Sorry. =/

  • TallSoCal

    Posts: 321

    Jun 30, 2008 1:32 PM GMT
    I apologize for the length of this forum, but I REALLY would appreciate what you guys have to say in response to this. I'll make it as short as possible.


    About a week or two ago, my dad asked me what I thought about everything that was going on with the new marriage laws, and I told him I didn't care, and that I had no opinion. He said I had to have an opinion as a Christian because I'm either for God or against God.

    Yesterday (June 28th & 29th) ((our conversation lasted through the a.m.))

    My dad was harassing me about some conversation we NEEDED to have. When I asked him what it was about, he said, "Life..and stuff." So, we talked and this is how it pretty much went.

    We talked about school, church, rules of the house, marriage, my future, blah blah blah. Then, he picks up this folder and pulls out a paper I wrote in Psychology about a year ago about finding healthy sexual values. In the paper, I mention my bisexuality and homophobia and Christianity and all of that, and my dad goes on and on about how homosexuality is out of the order of God. He brought up all these scriptures about how homosexuality is wrong and an abomination and he really didn't understand what I was saying.icon_mad.gif

    He said being gay is a choice and this was my argument. My dad REALLY loves homemade tacos (btw). I know that's random, but I used it in my argument.

    "Homosexuality isn't a choice. That's like saying being black is a choice or being male is a choice. Why would someone willingly decided to be gay knowing everything they're going to go through? Your ACTIONS are your choice, but not the things you desire. You like tacos so much, but you can't just decide one day to not like them anymore. You can stop eating them, but you'll still like them. Can you just up and decide to not love Mom anymore?" And he said that he could.

    I talked about how some doctors and psychologist and scientists have proved some things and how some things have yet to be proven, and he said, "Dr. Who? It hasn't been proven, and it never will. It's a demon spirit. Society and doctors try to come up with ways as to why homosexuality should be accepted." After that, I just gave up. He obviously doesn't get it, but he said he's going to be checking up on me about once a week now.

    He prayed for me and had me pray, and in all honesty, a part of me just wants this to be over. I just wanna be happy. That's all. I can't even be myself around the people that claim to love me, and I dunno what else to do or who to talk to. So...here I am.

    Sorry this was so long, but that's what happened, and I had to tell someone. icon_cry.gif
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    Jun 30, 2008 1:37 PM GMT
    Oh man icon_cry.gif

    I still have yet to come out to my Catholic parents so I don't have much to say. But I say, take this as an opportunity.

    It's good that you're finally out, that means no more hiding. Your family may come around eventually, just remember this is all for the best.

    You're OUT! That's awesome in itself!
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    Jun 30, 2008 1:51 PM GMT
    Sounds like the discussion I will be having with my father. He is very religous...VERY!!! He read your paper so he basically knows you have relationships with men. It will be interesting how he still thinks of homosexuality as a choice. Will he still say negative things? Maybe this will strengthen your relationship. What does your mom have to say?
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    Jun 30, 2008 1:58 PM GMT
    OMG... icon_eek.gif ... that was brutal!

    You are right. He is waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay wrong!

    There are religious organizations that you can contact and get information to help defend yourself...or maybe they can talk to your dad...or schedule a counseling session.

    I have suggestions I can make about books to help you defend yourself against religious bigotry. Let me know if you have any interest.

    Keep us posted. I am very sorry that you are going thru this.
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    Jun 30, 2008 2:01 PM GMT
    When I read stories like that, I thank God I was raised by atheists.
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    Jun 30, 2008 2:17 PM GMT
    Reading this just makes me so happy that I have such liberal parents. My parents are cool with my transition in my sexuality and have embraced it.

    I think what some parents in this situation mean by "being gay is a choice" is that the act of being gay is a choice. You choose to have sex with another person of the same sex and not that how you are born is wrong. I assume that they think you choose to physically choose to be gay, which means the physical act not the emotional which we all know can't be changed. Like so many guys that I have been with and it was their first time have said "I guess now I'm gay." Its the same thing, most people, who are not gay, think its a physical act. If you do it then you are and if you don't do it then your not. Am I making sense? My Dad actually said, "Most guys experiment, Hell I did, and you may or may not come out of this phase, but know that I love you no matter who you choose to be with!" I love my Papa!

    Hang in there! Live your life and no one elses!
  • HndsmKansan

    Posts: 16311

    Jun 30, 2008 2:34 PM GMT
    That was tough for sure.

    Sorry you had to endure the torment. Thats the kind of thing that would make me question religion, values, my parents... so many things. I think you handled it about as well as anyone could.

    What I would encourage you to do is focus on your decisions, think carefully, make them wisely. You are old enough to assess this based on reality and your own views and values... you showed this by using the "taco analogy" with your father. I would try and remember that your Dad is a man, with opinions based on his background and a world that was different years ago. Just know your world is very different than his, try and respect his opinion (since he is your father) and go about your business with as much civility as possible.

    And finally, always feel free to discuss this kind of thing here. It wasn't too long. We're here to help.

    icon_biggrin.gif
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    Jun 30, 2008 2:57 PM GMT
    paradox saidWhen I read stories like that, I thank God I was raised by atheists.


    Really? I would say that your parents are far worse! Thats terrible! I feel sorry for you!
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    Jun 30, 2008 3:08 PM GMT
    DCBoy said[quote][cite]paradox said[/cite]When I read stories like that, I thank God I was raised by atheists.


    Really? I would say that your parents are far worse! Thats terrible! I feel sorry for you![/quote]

    Well not knowing his parents, I think that is a pretty bold statement. Just because someone is Athiest don't mean that they're not good people. It's about the same as saying that you're going to hell for being gay.

    Anyway...

    Coming out is always hard and just as it isn't fair for parents to reject their gay childrens because they're gay, we can't reject them for their belief. Many religious parents' first reaction is based on their strong faith (right or wrong) and they fear that you're going to hell. Just as they can't expect us to change, we can't expect them to accept or change overnight. You've had years of making things right in your mind and accepting that you're gay. He may just need some time. My mother still doesn't accept that I'm gay, but she acknowedges that I am. She loves me, but not my lifestyle. I feel that it is kind of ignorant that she doesn't even acknowledge my partner, but maybe with time.

    I guess what I'm saying is that maybe he deserves the respect that you're also seeking from him. Maybe through your example and maturity, he can learn something.
  • UncleverName

    Posts: 741

    Jun 30, 2008 4:05 PM GMT
    Awemazing, that sounds like it was a pretty brutal conversation. It also sounds like you handled it really well.

    I agree with what everyone else has said (pretty much). It might take your father awhile to come around. He might never come around. But that doesn't necessarily mean you should drop him out of your life. It might be good to discuss and politely argue with him, just to broaden his world a little.

    Maybe others will disagree with me on this, but I would suggest that if you get tired of arguing with him over this issue, just tell him what he wants to hear. Don't bring it up, and don't bring guys that you are dating/sleeping with home with you. If you're going out to meet a guy, don't tell your parent's all of the details.

    I'm assuming that you're still living with them, otherwise this would be a different conversation. The alternative to telling your father what he wants to hear, if you get tired of arguing with him, is to move out. That way you can live your own life, the way you want to. Again, that doesn't mean cut him out of your life. It just gives you more power in choosing when and how you guys discuss your sexuality.
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    Jun 30, 2008 4:47 PM GMT
    Awemazing, that was quite nerve-wracking. I definitely applaud you for holding your ground. I'm proud of ya!

    Continue to hold your ground, stubbornly. It sounds like your dad isn't going to lay off, so, be prepared to be constantly challenged. But based on your first conversation, you held up well. I have no doubt you won't give up.

    Keep us posted! icon_biggrin.gif
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    Jun 30, 2008 5:45 PM GMT
    Well not knowing his parents, I think that is a pretty bold statement. Just because someone is Athiest don't mean that they're not good people. It's about the same as saying that you're going to hell for being gay.


    Actually, all I said is that I was raised by atheists. I am intimately familiar with my own transcendent nature, so I really can no longer define myself as atheist. However, I am grateful that my spiritual life was able to unfold naturally, beyond the limitations of primitive religious dogma and indoctrination.
  • HereNBoston

    Posts: 221

    Jun 30, 2008 6:40 PM GMT
    It was probably a shock for him to say the least, so he's likely to retreat back to what he feels safe with and knows which is religion. Give him some time, and he may surprise you, but be prepared for more bible verse warfare.

    I'd suggest that you do some of your own research into what religious scholars have written. People tend to catch the cliffnotes version of the scripture and miss the true meanings of the stories.

    It seems to be the first instinct of some parents to just brush off whatever you say and dismiss it because you're young and immature. This is a part of you he's not in control of, and he might even feel like its his fault, so when the conversation comes up again just reassure your parents that its not their fault, they didn't cause it, etc.

    It'll be a tough road, but when i came out, even through the shit storm that followed i felt so much better to at least be honest for once about myself. You seem to be handling yourself alright.
  • redheaded_dud...

    Posts: 408

    Jun 30, 2008 6:53 PM GMT
    Do try to remember this: your dad loves you enough to tell you these things from HIS perspective. Consider reading a book called Gay Christian 101 - Spiritual Self-Defense For Gay Christians by Rick Brentlinger. It's available on Amazon.

    You might find some other "taco-like" analogies that he can understand. Based on HIS language and grounded in the Christian experience. Let's face it, you won't convince him that "it's okay to be gay" by taking him to a gay bar and showing him a go-go boy. You MIGHT get him on your side with healthy Christ-like language. (Who can argue with things like "Love your neighbor as yourself", and "Let he who is without sin cast the first stone."

    Good luck with this. Use these forums as a touch-stone. You have a big group of supportive folks with a lot of experience here!

  • metta

    Posts: 39099

    Jun 30, 2008 7:08 PM GMT
    I hope that your father's opinion changes over time...hopefully by November. You may want to get some brochures from PFLAG in case he does get to the point where he looks for support and advice from other parents with gay/bisexual children.



    http://www.pflagla.org/PFLAGLA_Home.html


    http://eqfed.org/campaign/vow


    http://www.amazon.com/dp/0664229395?tag=pflag-20&camp=14573&creative=327641&linkCode=as1&creativeASIN=0664229395&adid=07WNHQ3Z53Z5VZQBY8X4&


    http://www.amazon.com/dp/0060832800?tag=pflag-20&camp=14573&creative=327641&linkCode=as1&creativeASIN=0060832800&adid=0JM407C7FGFTQY7B7TQ9&

    There are several gay friendly churches in the Los Angeles are. They may be helpful in providing information to explain things to your father. It sounds like the specific church that he goes to is pretty rigid and is interpreting Christianity in a way that will cause a lot of pain.
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    Jun 30, 2008 7:25 PM GMT
    I kinda understand what you are going through. My entire family are religious nuts too and I doubt they will ever understand what being gay means.

    I am closest to my mom and she is one of the most loving, open minded and non-judgemental persons I have ever known and probably the only one in my family who would accept me if I came out. Sometimes I swear she knows I am gay but then out of the blue she usually says something that makes me doubt whether she does know.

    Two nights ago I was sitting in the living room with her and she was reading this article "Out and Proud Celebs" and she just went off on the gays. Saying how what they were doing was wrong, and how could another man like another man, and how they were so bold has to flaunt their filthy lifestyles in our faces like nothing is wrong with it, and how it was digusting for one man to put is penis in another man's butt and how all gays are just "down right sick". (I DON'T KNOW WHY SHE WOULD SAY STUFF LIKE THAT.....it hurts!!!)

    If i come out I might lose everyone i love but your father seems to be trying to understand and usually parents like that eventually come around. Just stand your ground.
  • zi0nx5

    Posts: 27

    Jun 30, 2008 7:41 PM GMT
    Like some others on here, I've yet to have this conversation with my parents (especially father) and I know that's gonna have to surface in less than a year because I'll likely invite them to the "gay graduation" we have here at USC in Los Angeles (officially, it's called "Lavender Commencement" and honors self-identified LGBT and straight Ally graduates).

    I suggest you do some Googling about the most recent scientific breakthroughs in studies of the "gay gene" and print them out for him to read, if he chooses to read them. You can't force him of course but at least you'd be taking a more thorough approach, rather than relying on 2,500-year old anecdotes from a book that set boundaries (that may have been well-intended given the circumstances like very low life expectancy and such) for that time. Last thing I read is that it's not really a "gay gene" per se but more of how much testosterone vs. estrogen is absorbed by the brain during fetal development. In laymen's terms, the gay guys absorbed more estrogen, lesbians got more testosterone; ironically, gay guys on average statistically have bigger dicks than their straight counterparts icon_smile.gif But I digress (and don't mention that statistic to your dad please, because that might just undermine him even more.. haha)

    Also, I know I'll be using some scripture even to back my argument up when the time comes. Take Matthew 7:1-5 and the judgment/hypocrisy issue for example. I won't go into detail, but I think of my faith––I was brought up in a non-denominational Christian church that did preach ignorance of modern issues such as homosexuality––as believing in an intelligent Creator that will judge in the end, if that ever happens, if It sees fit. It's not really our place to be judging ourselves to the point where we degrade each other because of a really really really old book.

    But frankly, I don't think that Creator out there really cares if I stick my penis in a vagina and make babies the "natural" way. It's busy drinking some good tea, making stars blow up, creating life elsewhere in this universe, and doing stuff our human brains can't even comprehend.

    And hey, if you've got the balls to say it, say that in the most basic rudimentary way it's all about a book that said 2,500 years ago that a penis should only go in a vagina. Period. Crude, but that's pretty much it. Lewis Black, the comedian, was talking about this on one of his CDs and it's hilarious.

    Other things to think of: the Bible has been translated only God knows how many times, and translated by old, very old-school, narrow-minded white men in Europe and then mass-produced, and then re-interpreted. No offense to our Caucasian bros, I love you guys icon_smile.gif It's like the old can-and-string telephone analogy; after a while, the message gets garbled in translation and the end message becomes very different from the original message.

    But, your best bet is to counter with massive amounts of research that's already been done, and your personal logic and common sense.

    And hey, Jesus Christ never said anything about discriminating against people that aren't "straight" and from what I remember from Church, his word takes precedence over the Old Testament stuff.
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    Jun 30, 2008 7:48 PM GMT
    Might sound dumb, but this is one of those times when you have to count your blessings. Sometimes, when it's hard to see them, I work backwards. I think of a much worse scenario, and say to myself "why didn't that happen?" From there, I usually find stuff to be grateful for.

    Like Lazz said, it seems like he's trying to understand, even if that's not exactly what you're getting from what he's saying.

    Advice is always a double-edged sword, but if I've got anything to say that I hope is encouraging, as applicable to you as to your dad, it's that you shouldn't have this be something that will change your beliefs or faith. If you believe in a "master plan," then it's all in there, He didn't forget to put something in there. This is a challenge to understand whatever you believe more completely.

    Here's wishing you the best.

    Edit: I want to point out that I'm not endorsing one view or another, and certainly not trying to be preachy, just trying to help you look at it in a way that might make a mountain seem climbable.
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    Jun 30, 2008 8:54 PM GMT
    paradox saidWhen I read stories like that, I thank God I was raised by atheists.


    You thanked God? icon_razz.gif

    I completely understand what you're going through aweamazing. I don't really know what else to say except that my parents (mother moreso for the religious aspect) will cry for a very long time when she finds out. My father will just be disgusted. He is very old fashioned.
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    Jun 30, 2008 9:02 PM GMT
    Hey there, Awemazing, you've already gotten some really good advice and empathy from the earlier posts, but I'll add mine as well. I had that conversation with my father roughly 10 years ago now. At a certain point, I told him that I couldn't spend time with him because every conversation led back to his trying to convince me that I needed to repent. We didn't talk for more than two years--eventually, he came around. Slowly. It took him awhile to be comfortable in my home or to talk with my partner. Now, he welcomes us both genuinely and gladly, and it's really a pleasure to spend time with him again. I hope you have the same experience (minus the two years of silence), and good for you for being honest with him--it must be a huge relief in many ways.
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    Jun 30, 2008 9:03 PM GMT
    I was raised in a Buddhist household. My father had a very, very hard time dealing with my brother coming out as a Christian than when I came out of the closet.

    Go figure.

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    Jun 30, 2008 9:03 PM GMT
    I'm sorry that this will probably turn into another RJ religion flame war, but the truth of it is unavoidable. Religion imparts in its fervent adherents an arrogant certitude about things they know nothing about. The depth of their examination of these issues begins and ends with "What does the Bible say?"

    Your dad doesn't see your real, human, natural emotions and attractions. He sees this as a "demon spirit". That's such bullshit. And people wonder why the gay community and the religious community are at such odds.

    Just think how much less dysfunctional this family relationship could be if your father wasn't tainted by religious bias, but instead said, "Son, you're my son, I love you, and whatever makes you happy, makes me happy."

    I wouldn't hold out great hope that he'll come to accept it. It may be one of those things you just don't talk about. But it doesn't have to be that way and it's sad that it is.

    In any case, at least you don't have to worry about hiding it from him anymore. Your story sounds very similar to mine. My dad was also very religious. I didn't tell him about me, but he found out by reading a letter from someone I was dating at the time.

    I hope things turn out well, but just know that he is coming from a place of ignorance and prejudice. You're a good person and his perspective has been poisoned by misinformation.
  • TallSoCal

    Posts: 321

    Jun 30, 2008 9:05 PM GMT
    Thanks for the responses, guys. One of you asked what my mom thinks about all of this, and she agrees with my dad 100 percent. She always has. They're the type of parents that stand by the beliefs that God appointed my dad to be the head of the household, and my mom.....his assistant, pretty much.

    I'm actually looking for a place to move out to. My parents aren't going to kick me out, but they're the types of people to say, "If you don't want to live by my rules, then you're old enough to live on your own."

    My parents and I have been through this before. They took me to counseling (a Christian counselor), and he told them that it was probably just a phase I was going through. My dad would always ask me "how I'm doing". I know what he meant, so I just said, "I'm fine" cause I didn't want to deal with it.

    icon_confused.gif Ugh. He doesn't even think evidence is a credible source of information because it's not from the Bible. So, I guess I'll just tell him what he wants to hear until I'm on my own. icon_redface.gif
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    Jun 30, 2008 9:17 PM GMT
    zi0nx5 said

    Other things to think of: the Bible has been translated only God knows how many times, and translated by old, very old-school, narrow-minded white men in Europe and then mass-produced, and then re-interpreted. No offense to our Caucasian bros, I love you guys icon_smile.gif It's like the old can-and-string telephone analogy; after a while, the message gets garbled in translation and the end message becomes very different from the original message.

    How very, very true. Ironically, it's people who think they know the Bible so well who have no idea about its origins, authors, variant versions, and the process by which the 66 books of the canon were compiled. For them, ignorance is bliss I guess.

    There are two very good books I recommend for those who want to know more about the Bible and how it came to be as we have it today.

    51C625AT9WL._SL500_BO2,204,203,200_PIsit and 513kkRQMS8L._SL500_BO2,204,203,200_PIsit
  • zi0nx5

    Posts: 27

    Jun 30, 2008 10:33 PM GMT
    And in the words of Margaret Cho on Jesus's return: "That's not what I meant!" icon_razz.gif