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Question
Posted by: Shocked | 2008/07/16

How to accept a gay child

Hi, how do a parent accept a gay child ? How do you react and what do you say and do after absorbing this news or rather will I ever absorb it? It is totally depressing and after all its my only daughter. I am devasted. She is my child and I love her.

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageGay, lesbian and bisexual expert

Hi Shocked, welcome to the forum and thanks for posting. You were obviously not expecting this and as such it came as a shock to you. Great advice from Ferny (and please also read Ferny's article - click above the forum on the link to our articles), and I think you need to go easy on yourself for a while. Read up as much as you can, learn as much as you can. Most importantly, you haven't failed as a parent, your daughter didn't choose to be gay, she's not going to change and as a loving mom you'll want her to be happy and true to herself.

Contact Triangle Project (telephone 021 448 3812) to request a booklet for parents dealing with a child being gay. You may even be able to download it from their website (www.triangle.org.za).

Please keep posting and tell us how you're doing.

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

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Our users say:
Posted by: Kevin | 2008/07/30

Dear Shocked.
I am gay, and 27. I have had so many questions about being gay. The reason for my constant and ongoing depression, is the fact of how my parents react to the subject. Although I am unable to actually know for certain that they know anyways, their words keep hitting me in the heart. There was so many times I wanted to tell them, just basically because we have this very close relationship and you feel you don' t want any secrets between you. However, I have watched some of my other friends come out and their whole world fell apart, they even had to move out town to a more gay friendly one. So I have decided that I wont be able to handle this time of rejection - not because I don' t have the courage, but because the love I have for my parents and my siblings is far more greater - the thought if loosing that closeness and love and relationship is quite scary, and I wont jeopardise that. Or so I feel. I will rather live with the secret, that loose them in any way.

This is actually a very broad topic, my point is just this, just accept her. Accept her and love her, don' t make a fuss about her gayness, the fact that a parent rejects their child in any little or big way, is very depressing for a child. Imagine your own mother rejecting you for something that you don' t have control over. I believe the relationship between a child and their parents is very very sacred, something that must never be broken. I hope you can see the point I am getting at.

Reply to Kevin
Posted by: Shocked | 2008/07/17

Hi guys, Thank you for responding and thanks for the advice I really appreciate it.I am so lost for words I dont know what to say to her. She e mailed me to tell me, she did not have the courage to tell me face to face. I want to say the right things but when I get started I just go off track and not say a word. I havent said a word since then. I was suspicous tho, and now its confirmed. My son is behaving badly regarding all this, he knew all along, its been over 3 years now and is not taking it to lightly.Screams at me about it every now and again.

Reply to Shocked
Posted by: H_T | 2008/07/17

I think in time you will learn to accept the fact that your child is not going to have a more socially acceptable life (the life you wanted for her) with a husband and kids of her own.
No the less if she’s true to herself - she will be happy and as a parent is that not what we want for our kids?

Reply to H_T
Posted by: Ferny | 2008/07/16

Hi there,

The regulars all know me & my family by now.

My son Stef, told us he is gay a few years ago. I was not devastated or disappointed. Yes, I was concerned as to how society in general would judge him & possibly reject him. But because he himself as a mature & confident gay young man knew how to handle whatever came his way, it was never a major issue.

What I would like to say to you is this - PLEASE remember, this is NOT about you the parent, your daughter is gay, she needs your love & support in her life ahead just as any child needs their parents love & support. After all, is she any different to how she was before you knew she is gay? I very much doubt it & if it seems so to you then it is because you are letting yourself feel that way.

My advice to you is to educate yourself about the gay & lesbian community. Knowledge is SO important. If you gave birth to a child with a particular problem e.g. Downs Syndrome, Cerebral palsy etc wouldn't you want to know everything about it? Well, this is just the same & you have made a good start by posting on this forum.

Your daughter can have a wonderful & happy life ahead of her with someone special in just the same way as any young person.

My son is getting married to a wonderful young man in 3 weeks time on the 9th August. Just today they were at the lawyers drawing up their ante-nuptial contract. They are having a legal & religious ceremony followed by a reception for 70 family & friends.

The point I am trying to make is that gay couples have the possibility to do everything straight couples do if that is what they choose. But the only way to have that is to live their lives honestly & openly with the support of their families & friends.

I know that many young gay persons do not have that support & many never disclose their sexuality for fear of being rejected. It is a sad truth but please don't allow yourself to be part of that group.

Remember that this is about your daughter, try not to make it about yourself. Any family member or friend who rejects YOU for having a gay child is not worth knowing!! I firmly believe that & will cut any such person out of my life without hesitation. My children have my unconditional love & that will never change!

Kind regards - Ferny :-)

Reply to Ferny
Posted by: LONEWOLF | 2008/07/16

Just give her all your love as always, even if you do not understand. She is not going to change, and you do not want to loose her. She respected you enough so she was honest, respect her in return. It is not easy, but that is the way it is.

Reply to LONEWOLF
Posted by: G | 2008/07/16

Am so dying to tell my famly that am also gay - but its not easy because of the judgement and etc. She is still your child - nothing has changed - she is the daughter you brought to this world and needs your support more than ever. I respect her for the courage to tell you - am 31 now, have a good career, financially stable but only one missing puzzle in my life - longing for my family to know about my gayness and at least live freely around them but am scared of rejection. please dont reject your child - she hasnt brought this to herself - its not her liking - its who she is and its not her choice to be who she is - i believe so.

Dont pray for her to change cause thats not gonna happen. just be glad that she had the courage to come out to the only person she trust most - her parent and most of us long for that support of a parent figure.

Good luck

Reply to G

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