I am 27 and I have tried to explain to my mom why sometimes my life is difficult because she is a lesbian. I can’t make her see my point of view at all. She said, “You know, I honestly can’t think of a time in my entire life where my own parents’ sexuality could possibly have arisen as a topic of conversation!”
What would you have said to that? Sometimes I just get a little too close to see it all clearly.
Your mom’s parents’ sexuality wasn’t up for discussion because they were simply assumed to be heterosexual. Her parents’ sexuality was never a topic of discussion on TV, in church, or on the playground. She didn’t hear debates about whether or not her parents were immoral, ill, or deviant because of their sexual orientation.
It can be difficult to deal with these constant negative messages that judge homosexuality, and by extension, your mother. It is not uncommon for children of any age to want to talk about the impact of homophobia with their parents, only to find that their parents are not open to the discussion.
A common fear for parents is that they will learn things they wish weren’t true. The last thing a parent wants is for anything — any choice, any action, any thing — to affect their child in a negative way. To acknowledge that a parent’s sexual orientation gives their children one iota of different-ness is territory they often don’t want to explore.
It sounds like your mom might not be ready to hear you and validate your experiences that have indeed been affected by being in a gay family. Find nonjudgmental friends or a queer-savvy counselor you can talk to, or connect with COLAGE’s listserve.
If your parents aren’t open to talking about your feelings in regards to their sexuality, find support from safe friends or family members. COLAGE offers listserves for sons and daughters of LGBT parent(s). For young children and adult children — currently the oldest “kids” participating are in their 50s.