Advice for client's "gay" son?

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Aug 22, 2008 4:51 AM GMT
    The other day my client turned to me for advice about her 14 year old son who told his camp counselor that he "wasn't sure if he liked boys or girls" etc. She said she wasn't really sure how to handle it so she just spoke with him about it. I think like a lot of kids at that age, he probably knows that he's gay, but isn't sure exactly what it means. Anyhow, I said that she just needed to be supportive and be open to talking about it with her son should he want to talk about it. The other thing I mentioned was that it would be good for him to have an older gay mentor type person to talk to if she had an openly gay friend who her son might know/ respect...

    Just curious, has anyone else had to deal with a similar situation in offering advice to someone about how to handle teenagers who think they may be gay?
  • MuslDrew

    Posts: 463

    Aug 22, 2008 10:09 AM GMT
    In my area we have a fantastic therapist who happens to be gay. I have referred many people to him for a few years now, gay & straight. So far everyone has given him a thumbs up.
    Also, our area Aids Resource Center has a group or two for young men who meet for group discusions and have some alcohol free social events.
    I would think Chicago has similar offerings.
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    Aug 22, 2008 10:18 AM GMT
    Having only accepted my sexuality fairly recently, I say tell her not to confront her son about it unless they are really close. Chances are he'll coop up even more and the denial will be longer. It's almost always the better to let people come out on their own time. But suggest to her to somehow indirectly show her son that she's cool with gay people. One example is commenting about gay issues positively, i.e. mention at the dinner table how she thinks the ban on gay soldiers is ridiculous or how she's all for gay marriage and whatnot. Hints dropped here and there to show how open minded she is so her son will be less anxious about feeling 'different.'
  • GQjock

    Posts: 11649

    Aug 22, 2008 10:36 AM GMT
    Thing is...
    He went to the Camp Counselor instead of her
    So there's already some reluctance for him opening up directly to his Mom
    and by the Mother questioning him about it betrays the kids trust
    I'd tell the Mom to just tell the kid that lines are always open and just be there for him
  • Timbales

    Posts: 13993

    Aug 22, 2008 11:38 AM GMT
    GQjock saidThing is...
    He went to the Camp Counselor instead of her
    So there's already some reluctance for him opening up directly to his Mom
    and by the Mother questioning him about it betrays the kids trust
    I'd tell the Mom to just tell the kid that lines are always open and just be there for him


    I agree. Letting him know that he has her unconditional love and support is what's important here.
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    Aug 22, 2008 12:50 PM GMT
    irishkowboy saidShe said she wasn't really sure how to handle it so she just spoke with him about it.


    Did she say how the talk went? One thing she can check into is to see if his school has a Gay Straight Alliance (GSA). They can be very helpful for GLBT students and their allies. You can also recommend GLSEN (Gay, Lesbian, and Straight Education Network). It's web site is http://www.glsen.org/cgi-bin/iowa/student/student/index.html.

    It's a great organization and targeted to helping young people understand their sexuality in a safe environment.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Aug 22, 2008 2:08 PM GMT
    I have run into this a few times actually. The advice I've given to parents, relatives, and friends of those who are in their 'questioning' phase is to say a few simple things to the guy.

    1. I love you no matter what.

    2. All the same, I think it's great if you like guys or girls or both. All that matters to me, us, the family, etc. is that you're happy. Period. I/we will support you no matter what.

    3. I'll completely understand if you don't feel comfortable talking to me about this. I just want you to know I am here for you if you would like to talk. I'll also promise not to say anything to anyone about our conversations unless you're going to hurt yourself or someone else. How does that sound?

    So that's my three cents. Hope it's helpful.

    -Jason
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Aug 22, 2008 2:56 PM GMT
    I myself had that "ah-ha" moment when I was in Junior High. I always knew there was something different about me, and that's when I figured it out. The advice you gave is pretty str8 forward and perfect.
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    Aug 22, 2008 3:26 PM GMT
    I think your advice is good. Let the son know that he is loved and that he can approach her at anytime. Also there are several good websites for young gay teens or young people that are wondering about their sexuality. Unlike some people on RJ, I believe bisexuality does exist. He might fall into that category.
  • GQjock

    Posts: 11649

    Aug 22, 2008 4:21 PM GMT
    muchmorethanmuscle said We don't talk about some possibility of a potential issue burgeoning into a huge mess. We suppress it by going shopping.

    Now....who's game?

    I still have GQ's credit card...





    My bank called Much...
    They said ...

    We've been seeing an inordinate amount of transactions at Walmart recently
    and we know this doesn't fit your profile
    Have made these purchases


    No... and you have my permission to arrest whomever it may be and have them renditioned to Saudi Arabia icon_cool.gif

  • EricLA

    Posts: 3461

    Aug 22, 2008 5:51 PM GMT
    Sounds like a good time for her to watch "Billy Elliot" with her kid. Maybe it will help start a discussion.