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My teenage son just came out and I'm in complete shock.

Discussion in 'For Parents and Family Members of LGBT People' started by WayConfusedMom, Jan 2, 2017.

  1. Creativemind

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    I understand the problem you're having with your son vs your husband. I came out to my Mom when I was 14, but I didn't come out to my Dad until I was 20 and had a girlfriend (at the time).

    Main reason mom was easy was that I already knew she supported LGBT rights. In fact, she used to lecture me if I said anything homophobic before accepting myself. But I had no idea where my Dad stood, so I kept it from him. I'm sure my Mom told him before I did, and I wasn't mad about it since the reaction was fine.

    Maybe it would help to discuss with your son how you think your husband would react.
     
  2. Chip

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    I want to be clear: I did not recommend this at all.

    What I suggested was explaining to your son why asking you to keep the secret puts you in a difficult situation and using a similar scenario so that he can understand why it is challenging, and why his father would likely be uncomfortable if the information is withheld.

    To me, describing the position you are in is very different than explaining why it's important to come out. One asks him to understand the situation, the other asks him to take an action. The second will, intentionally or otherwise, put him under pressure, which is the last thing he needs right now.
     
  3. Quantumreality

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    Good point, Chip.

    I made the mistake of very badly summarizing your recommendation.:icon_sad:

    I fully agree with what Chip actually wrote!:slight_smile:
     
  4. WayConfusedMom

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    I see a therapist quarterly because I'm on medication. I made an appointment to talk with her on Thursday. My husband has issues with anxiety and OCD that is a big secret to his family (his mother now has dementia). The guiding principle of that family is "if it's unpleasant it doesn't exist." So I need to talk with someone who knows about those dynamics as well.
     
  5. beenthrdonetht

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    Ah, I can understand why you didn't bring this up right away, but it is very helpful to us to understand the situation. We all have familiarity with the avoidance/denial behavior. We can practically see it in front of our eyes right now.

    Yes, definitely tell your therapist. That may help relieve the pressure you are feeling due to keeping this secrete. Any humane person would feel the same stress as you, keeping a secret about a loved one from another. But I do agree with the consensus here that outing a person before they wanted to out themselves... just usually ends up bad.
     
  6. Chip

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    You would really benefit from learning about Brené Brown's work on authenticity, vulnerability, courage, and the impact of shame.

    She has three awesome TED talks: The Power of Vulnerability; the Price of Invulnerability and Listening to Shame. I would suggest taking an hour and watching all three (about 17 minutes each). If the work connects with you, she's got some great books and other resources.
     
  7. WayConfusedMom

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    Oh, I love her. Worth a revisit.
     
  8. Shadowgirl37

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    Don't feel bad. You should be happy for him, and for yourself. Think about it this way, he trusted you enough to tell you. Not a lot of teens even say anything to their parents about being LGBT+. Congrats to him, and to you!
     
  9. Chip

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    If you are familiar with her work, I highly recommend her books "The Gifts of Imperfection" and "Daring Greatly". They deal a lot, directly and indirectly, with the feelings you're going through right now. "Gifts" talks about the things that get in the way of wholeheartedness, while Daring continues on that and goes into more detail about parenting. The videos are worth revisiting as well... I've watched them a bunch, and I often pick up something new (or something I'm ready to hear) on re-watching.
     
  10. Lynz

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    Anddddd new obsession. Now in love with TED!

    Thank u!!!!
     
  11. Assassin'sKat

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    Yo. It's okay that you didn't know. Don't feel bad. Look. I told my mom and told her not to tell anyone. He's probably embarrassed about it, and that's not your fault. It just seems like a big deal to him right now. When the time comes and he's ready to tell your husband, I'm sure he'll warm up to it eventually. Just remember that this is absolutely not your fault. It has nothing to do with how you parent. You and your son might be close but that's not why he's gay, and I think your husband will realize that eventually.

    ---------- Post added 7th Jan 2017 at 06:47 AM ----------

    Please do not pressure him to come out. You can explain to him why it's difficult for you for your husband not to know, but it's very important that he doesn't come out until her is ready.
     
  12. WayConfusedMom

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    Thanks everyone. I talked to my therapist and feel much better. With her guidance, I've told my son that as long as things are on the level of thoughts and feelings I will keep any and all confidences, but I won't hide a relationship from his father. This is exactly the same position I would take for a relationship with a girl. So we are in a don't ask, don't tell position until he is ready to take that step. Thanks for all your input and for letting me process here.