So, if one of my children is gay, what will my response be? More importantly, will they feel safe enough to be honest with me? I already know, without reservation, that my arms will be wide open. I will march at the front of every gay pride parade, will advocate and vote for their rights at every opportunity, and will welcome their loves into my heart and home. Do they know this? And, how will they respond to each other if one of them is gay? Will they be compassionate? There is a good statistical probability that one of their friends will "come out" at some point. How will my children react?
I think the answer to those questions relies heavily on my attitude and actions NOW. If I hide the reality of homosexuality, or sexuality in general, from them, then I am choosing to rely solely on external sources for their education. If I want them to make wise sexual choices and respect themselves and others, then I have to be willing to expose them to what is out there, and be ready for their questions. If I want them to become compassionate human beings, and humanitarians, then I must be one myself, and they must see it.
Please do not take this to mean that I am presenting my children with sexually explicit, age-inappropriate materials, in order to manipulate them into activists. I am merely saying that I do not feel the need to shield them from the gay couple walking down the street, and I welcome their very normal questions about sex and love. We have had many conversations on what "family" is and how every family is unique. Our own family has non-traditional elements which, together, we have learned to embrace in very positive ways. I do not handle these conversations perfectly. I flounder and stutter. I frequently say, "I'll get back to you on that," and the spend then rest of the day Googling for answers. At one point, I even directed Kinsey to that book I bought her about her body with all the cartoon drawings in it. But every new chat is a new opportunity and I do my best to let them know that the door is open.
And, in those discussions, the question, "can boys marry boys?" has presented itself. Of course the typical preadolescent giggles accompany these conversations, as my boys can hardly imagine marrying girls, let alone other boys. I answer honestly that some boys do love other boys and want to marry them but they can only do so in certain places because of the laws. Their sweet, cherub response: "Why? That's so sad!"
Yes, loves, I agree.
To Be Continued...