Saturday, February 26, 2005

Dealing with a homosexual offspring

Dealing with a homosexual offspring

By Bob Garon
TODAY Newspaper
Friday, February 25, 2005 11:55 PM

What to do when reality sets in and you are faced with a child who is a homosexual or lesbian? First, you need to spend time getting the facts. There are so many falsehoods going around about homosexuals and homosexuality that you need to sort out the true from the false. Learning as much as you can will make things a lot easier for you.

Then you will need to be ready to listen. Listen to how your son feels about the mix of confused feelings he is experiencing as reality sets in his life as well as yours.

Keep the lines of communication open. This is a time of crisis for your child and he needs you badly to listen to him and understand him more than ever. So keep talking. Get to know what is in his mind.

Be sensitive. Don’t sermonize him about the “evils of homosexual activities.” You don’t want to shut him off and not know what’s in his heart and mind.

Support him. You may have difficulty accepting that he is gay, but keep in mind that he is still your son and deserving of your love. Things have not worked out as expected, but then, much of life holds surprises (many unpleasant) for us all.

Keep in mind that there is a lot more to a person than his sexual orientation. A lot more to your son than his homosexuality. You need to focus on his person and the beauty that emanates from within. I have fine friends who are gay. Many of them are very talented, kind-hearted and generous persons. This is what should be focused, just as one would with the heterosexual son or daughter.

We do not choose our sexual orientation. Someday, no doubt, science will unlock the mystery about why some are born gay. Until then we can only accept and continue to love our gay children as if it doesn’t matter what is their sexual orientation.

Just as we would teach our heterosexual children to live decently, so, too, must we show our gay children the way to a happy life.

There will be, however, some very difficult issues for which there are no easy answers. Like, how the Church views homosexuality. The official stand of the Church is that it’s okay to be a homosexual as long as he does not engage in sexual activities. But then, the homosexual’s orientation is precisely geared to the same sex. It’s what makes him homosexual. So does the Church require him to be chaste for life? It seems so, since he isn’t drawn to the opposite sex. Now that’s a very tall order indeed. It is like asking the heterosexual to refrain from having sex with the opposite sex and instead being restricted to the same sex activity.

Still, through it all, the gay youngster needs the love of the parents. Understanding and acceptance are crucial to keeping love alive and healthy between parent and child.


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