Deja Vu

19 12 2013

Oh how I remember the days of the Chic-fil-a controversy with a heavy heart. Weeks and weeks of Facebook posts and media attention. What I remember the most is the pain in my heart, just like a knife, when I would see a family member or friend, one I particularly feel great affection for, like or share a post supporting Chic-fil-a. Last night and today feel like deja vu, only it isn’t about Chic-fil-a, it is about Phil and Duck Dynasty.

Close your eyes and imagine the person you love the very most in this world. The person that you love so much that you would die for. I am not trying to be dramatic here, I am being literal. If it came right down to you or them, you would give up just about anything to see them live a joyful, long life. Not that anyone will probably ever ask it of you, unless you are involved in some freak train accident where you push them out-of-the-way but you don’t have time to save yourself, but the person you would literally risk your life for. Now think of someone saying vile, untrue, hurtful things about that person you love with your whole being. It would just seem so wrong, wouldn’t it?

As if that pain wasn’t enough, now think of people who you hold dear. People in your life that you think very highly of, and have great respect for. Imagine if these people you love  begin to stand up and speak out. But it isn’t in defense of this person that you would give your life for, it is in defense of the one who spoke up and said the untrue hurtful statements. Your friends and family begin to defend his freedom of speech to say these things. They tell you that he has every right to say whatever he feels just as we all do.

Now, you have a small glimpse of what it feels like to be the mother of a LGBT kid. A kid who is pure and good and loving and kind and just happened to be born queer. Yes, my heart is heavy today.

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Three Things to Know When Someone You Love tells you they are Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, or Transgender

11 12 2013

I recently realized I write to process my pain. I have not been blogging much the past 6 months, which means my life is going pretty well. That is a good thing. A lot has changed since those early days of my son coming out. It no longer feels like a crisis or even like a negative thing in any way. I am so grateful for the people in my world who have helped me along the way to get to this place of complete peace with my son being bisexual. So many mentors and teachers and just friends, who held my hand through the past few years. I hope these three simple things might help other people in their early days of this discovery.

1)Stop thinking about sex. This was one of the 1st pieces of advise I received. When we hear someone is gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgender, as human beings, our first thought is about them in the bedroom. I personally believe this comes from our culture and how we have been conditioned to believe LGBT people are all just about sleeping around. Regardless of why our mind goes there – tell yours to stop. Sex is a small part of who your LGBT loved one is, just like your sex life is a small part of who you are. So, get your mind out of the gutter, or in this case, their bedroom.

2)Take some time to just breath. As shocking as this news can be, and even though you may feel like the rug has been swept from under your feet. Life really hasn’t changed that much. Your loved one is the same person they were before. They have not changed, they were already LGBT, you just didn’t know about it. Take a moment to think about parents sitting by their child’s side watching them take their last breath. This may be shocking, but it isn’t the end of the world and there are much worse things to have to live through – so gain some perspective. It will be a journey and it will not be easy, but it is definitely not the worst thing that could happen in your family.

3)Your LGBT loved one has shown great courage in sharing themselves with you. They need to know that even if you don’t understand it all, you still love them unconditionally. They need to know you have their back. Because not everyone will, some people they love dearly will turn their back on them in the coming days and months. They will need extra love and acceptance from you. Be intentional about letting them know you are there for them, today, next week, and next year. That is really all that they need to know, that this new information doesn’t change your love for them.

So breath and take one moment at a time. This journey can be an amazing one of discovery. Discovery about yourself and your own fears, discovery about how strong family bonds can be, and discovery of ways to live without fear or judgment. Chin up, Buttercup, life goes on.