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Ask The Good Enough Guy: My Husband Can’t Handle Our Gay Son


Hi Good Enough Guy,

My 19-year-old son John came home from college a little while ago and came out to my husband Tyler and me.

I have suspected John was gay for a while and I am just happy he is finding himself and becoming more comfortable with who he is. But Tyler is having a hard time with it and things are strained between him and John.

Now John is saying he may try to get a summer job near his school and not visit us over the summer break and I know this has to do with my husband’s attitude.

I don’t want my son to start pulling away from us. What can I do to help my husband accept our son?

Thanks

Carol, New Orleans.

Hey Carol,

One of my best friend’s sons came out to him about eight years ago, and he had a tough time with it at first. I remember talking to him about it, while we drank a beer (or thirty). He’s not a big talker and I don’t recall most of what was said (probably the beer), but I remember trying to listen more than I spoke, while he shook his head, shrugged his shoulders and tried to process what he was feeling. Reading your question took me back to that night, all that beer, and the look he had on his face; like he was trying to figure out something that couldn’t be figured out; and wouldn’t make any real difference if it could.

I called and talked to him about it yesterday to see what he’d come up with since then, and all he said was “At the end of the day, he’s still my son. Nothing else matters much.” As I said, he’s not a big talker, but is this case, what’s left to say?

The thing is, this situation is more about acceptance than homosexuality. It’s about the limit of what a child can tell a parent and still feel loved and supported. Where is the line drawn that, once crossed, turns our pride and joy into someone we find hard to be around?

“Dad… I’m gay.”

‘Mom, I’m pregnant, and I don’t know who the father is.”

“Dad… I think I have a drug problem and I need help.”

“Mom, my boyfriend’s Black (White, Latino, etc) and I’m scared of what dad will think.”

As forward-thinking as we like to believe we are, the sentences above, and a few thousand others like them, have sent parents scrambling for answers (and wine glasses) since biblical times. But none of this helps much, huh Carol? Well, here’s what I think:

So far, you’ve done a fantastic job: You say you’ve suspected this for a while and yet you didn’t try to “out” John. I bet it was hard for you to know that he was struggling with this, but you still let him come to his own conclusions, in his own time. And now that he’s decided to come out to you, you’ve adopted a perfect attitude about it, letting him know that you’re happy that he’s comfortable enough with himself and with you to open up and that you love him unconditionally. YOU’RE A GREAT MOM (just thought I’d tell you).

Your son is a really strong man: I consider myself a pretty tough guy, and yet being a teen-aged boy kicked my butt pretty good. I can’t imagine trying to endure all of the nonsense I went though in high school while struggling with an issue that intense, and not being able to go to my parents, for fear that my dad would act, well, exactly like John’s dad is acting. He had it rough. Kudos to him for hanging in there.

Tyler is gonna need to man-up: John didn’t go away to college and decide to be gay, any more than I could have woken up this morning and decided to be ten inches taller and white. What John did do was go away to college and decide that he was going to live his life, on his own terms and not hide who he was from anyone, including his father. He came home, faced down his fears, and told the truth. It takes some real cojones to do that. Now, it’s your husband’s turn.

What Tyler needs to understand: John is gay. He’s also a college kid, a son, a man, and a big list of other things and at nineteen, he’s just getting started. He’s strong enough to have made it this far, he’s smart enough to be making it in college, and he’s got enough heart to have decided that he’s going to do things his way. He’s got some good stuff going for him. These are the parts that make John who he is. Your husband doesn’t have to like every piece; what parent has the luxury of liking every single thing about their child? But he does have to accept them all if he wants to be a part of the rest of his son’s life, and it looks like there’s some great stuff coming up.

Your husband may just need some time to get his mind around everything. As men, we’re born with thicker skulls. It’s great for fending off attacks and opening coconuts and stuff, but it can take a little longer for things to sink in sometimes. If that doesn’t help, you may want to look into some family counseling. Those guys aren’t as funny as me, but they’re pretty good at what they do.

Good luck to you all… and I hope I helped.

Will

Will Jones

William Jones is originally from the tiny town of Alton, Illinois, and now lives in the tinier town of Reisterstown, Maryland. He is a happy husband and a proud father of three, and writes as a hobby, in those few moments he finds between husbanding and daddy-ing.

 

 

58 Comments

  1. Brett

    May 14, 2011 at 10:57 am

    When I came out to my parents, it took my father longer to come around as well. He came around when I started dating my first long-term boyfriend: seeing us as more “normal” and thus understandable. We all just want to be loved.

    But I’ve seen cases where parents don’t come around and the detrimental effects it has on their gay children– children who had so much hope and promise but without the acceptance of their parents, fall into a seemingly never ending loop of failed relationships and casual friendships.

    We need our parents to accept and understand us so we can better face the world that often does not.

  2. keith

    May 14, 2011 at 11:17 am

    Perfect answer

  3. Angela Smith

    May 14, 2011 at 12:12 pm

    Sad, we are suppose to be there for our children regardless of their choices. God is the only one who can judge our lives and it is sad that parents dont realize that they can still parent, even though they do not agree with the decisions that the children make, grown or not.

  4. m.e. johnson

    May 14, 2011 at 12:21 pm

    Keith, I agree, much as I as a woman know about it. I had a very good friend whose son eventually became her daughter. My friend was livid with embarassment (She was quite the socialite.). I became the ‘surrogate’ mom, I loved that child. She was charming, talented and quite beautiful. My friend finally came around, mostly after seeing how all of us embraced her child but also just because it was her child. But it took years, sadly, because they both died young. Perhaps I should add that the father had died many years prior.
    I really hope things work out for this family.

  5. Cody Williams

    May 14, 2011 at 1:02 pm

    What really, really trips me out is today people, even the ‘liberal-cool-accepting’ ones, act as if being gay was/is something new. As if each time someone decides to ‘come out’ that it is an earth shattering, tsunami producing big deal. BFD! It’s as old as the book of Genesis and as common as women dying their hair. A big yawn, if you ask me.

  6. KATINA

    May 14, 2011 at 1:28 pm

    I am trying to say this with the utmost respect not wanting to offend anyone but why does Tyler have to accept the fact that his son is gay and support him. I love my children with all my heart but homosexuality is something that I couldn’t put up with. I believe, let me say again I believe that it is a lifestyle choice not something you are born with. I feel bad for Tyler and what he is going through. I don’t think anyone is thinking to much about his feelings here. He son just gets to say hey guys I’m gay and Tyler is just supposed to say Okay……noooo it doesn’t work like that, everything is does not come in a tidy neat little package. I would be angry, disappointed and sad if this was my son. Angry because my son has never been involved in that life to think it is okay or acceptable, disappointed because this is not the lifestyle he should be involved in and sad because he was born a male and would choose to use himself for unnatural purposes. Yes, John does have good things going for him and I am sure he is a lovely guy inside and out but everyone has to admit this is tough situation and the father should not be made to feel bad because he reacted honestly. I am pretty safe in saying that honestly I would have the same reaction. Now by no means am I saying for him to mistreat his son I hope in time they can both come to a common ground that both of them feel comfortable with not just John.

  7. Remote Patrolled

    May 14, 2011 at 1:51 pm

    My advice is that it takes time. My father was very anti-gay growing up and when I came out at age 22, 15 years ago, it was hard for him to accept…

    But time changes everything. Parents have all manner of fears about being gay and what it will mean – but they soon come to realize that those fears are unfounded. Today my dad is totally cool with my sexuality and loves my partner like another son.

  8. Remote Patrolled

    May 14, 2011 at 1:54 pm

    Katina – I respect how polite you were in your message but I think you are wrong on quite a few counts.

    I can promise you that being gay isn’t a choice – it’s totally a part of who you are, like being left handed or having blonde hair.

    But if you turn your back on your son or don’t fully embrace who he is – ALL of him (and just ‘tolerating’ his homosexuality doesn’t count) – you’ll create a whole world of unhappiness for him – and you.

  9. Rene Syler

    May 14, 2011 at 2:09 pm

    @Katina: Yes, I too thank you for being respectful. Tyler has to accept his son is gay because that is who his son is. Period. Being gay is not a choice. The only choice to be made here is Tyler’s and that is whether he wants to accept his son for who he is or turn his back, forcing John to find a surrogate family who wil provide the love, support and acceptance his God-given flesh and blood could not. You can bet the person who will be hurt most from this will NOT be John.

  10. Irene

    May 14, 2011 at 2:37 pm

    Wow…..great article agree with every word this week. hot topic too.

    I don’t know but I feel like this….I was blessed to not only have children but children came into my life through a marriage. I told myself long ago…I wanted all my kids to grow up to be them!!! And, I think despite all the craziness in our house ((just see good enough guys article last week and you will see what I am talking about)) that my hubbie and I have one thing downpat…it doesn’t matter what happens in our world to rock it our home: it is ours and we accept the people in it how they are…where they are….bottom line!!!

    That said @Katina I hear what you are saying. (was raised around that school of thought) It’s just everyone has to live their lives on life’s terms. (that is my gift to our kids) If I had anything to say about my own journey in life it is that the toughest things to overcome were when I wasn’t in a place where I was me. It is no different for our kids, I really don’t think.

  11. Jennifer

    May 14, 2011 at 2:45 pm

    Wow Katina. With utmost respect to you, I am glad I’m not your daughter or son. Maybe you should tell your kids how you feel ahead of time just in case they are gay, so they know NOT to expect very much from you as far as support from their own mother.

    I feel very sorry for you.

  12. Jackie

    May 14, 2011 at 3:08 pm

    I can so relate to this. My husband refused to accept my step-daughter’s pregnancy when she was 17. I thought maybe after the baby was born it would be different. It took a year for him to accept it, but he finally did. Three years later (now an adult) she becomes pregnant again and we are back at square one. I have spent a lot of nights helping him through this, reminding him that God loves and accepts us unconditionally. Every mistake we make he continues to support us with his love. If we are to be Christ like, we should do the same. We are all a work in progress.

  13. Jeremiah

    May 14, 2011 at 3:11 pm

    Well Katina, I agree with Jennifer. With due respect as well, perhaps you should let your children know you’re a bigot ahead of time, so they’re aware of it before they tell you anything you may not accept? It’s unfortunate that you’ve decided that you’re only happy with your kids under circumstances that include the sexual orientation you’d like them to have. Being gay is no more a choice than being heterosexual is. I think the saddest thing about your message is that it seems to imply that your happiness about your son’s or daughters choices is more important to you than their own happiness about being who they are. Not to go to far here, but you should keep in mind that your attitude is the exact kind of attitude that causes younger homosexual children to turn to self hate which can and has been leading to suicides increasing in homosexual teens. Just check the “It get’s better” campaign. Don’t be a contributing factor to that Katina.

  14. Rene Syler

    May 14, 2011 at 3:17 pm

    @Jeremiah: good points, nephew.. thanks!

  15. Will Jones

    May 14, 2011 at 3:24 pm

    Easy folks. Attacking only leads to more attacking, and being attacked just makes us dig in or heels and defend or position… instead of thinking about what we’re defending.

    I think it’s the “life choice” part that gets people stuck.

    Katina, can you remember exactly how old you were when you woke up one day and made the decision to only be attracted to men from that day forward? Were you in grade school, or were you a teen-ager? Or maybe you waited until you were in your twenties; after all, it’s a pretty big decision.

    The reason I’m asking is because, if this is a “life choice”, then that means, at some point, every human being in the world had to have sat down at some point in their lives and decided who they’d be attracted to. But if that is the case, I can’t for the life of me, remember making it. I’m attracted to women, but it’s not because I decided to be, it’s just how I’ve always been for as long as I can remember.

    You are attracted to men. You didn’t decide to be, you just are. So if you woke up tomorrow and you were a man, do you think you could just turn off that attraction and “decide” that you were attracted to only women after that? Would you date only women and marry a woman because it’s what everyone else thinks you should do? Would you leave the man you love, because it was “wrong” for you to love him?

    My mom’s a little white lady with red hair and freckles and my dad’s a skinny black guy with a great smile and squinty eyes. Not very long ago, they couldn’t have gotten married or been together or loved each other because a bunch of folks that didn’t know either one of them had decided that it was wrong. Since then, most folks have realized how ridiculous that was. Hopefully, a few years from now, people will realize something very similar.

    I’m not trying to change your thinking on this issue today. I’m just giving you some stuff to kick around in your head for tomorrow. You don’t owe me or anybody else a reason for why you believe something, but you do owe it to yourself to think it all the way through so that you know WHY you believe it.

    It was great hearing from you! We love discussions here! 🙂

  16. Jeremiah

    May 14, 2011 at 3:26 pm

    Sorry for the double post, but I’ve always wondered one other thing. This who gays can’t procreate argument seems rather suspect to me. There are many heterosexual couples who choose not have children. Do you suppose we not allow them to get married? I mean they’re not procreating right? Secondly and on that point, last I checked most homosexual couples are VERY keen on having their own children. I haven’t heard anything from the homosexual community suggesting that A) The males are unwilling to donate their sperm in order to have their own child/give that child up for adoption. Or B) That the females are unwilling to accept male sperm in order to act as a vessel to have a child to keep as their own/give up for adoption. Makes the who procreation argument seem pretty silly.

  17. donnie

    May 14, 2011 at 3:29 pm

    OK Will great article only because our daughter is gay and I don’t think she would mind me putting it out there,I’m surprise Irene my lovely wife did not mention that in her response..Unless its different for a daughter to come out than a son which I don’t think it is than I can share some of my own feelings on this..My Daughter took me to the beach and being nervous on how her old man would react she bought a high school friend along to break the news,,,Now let me just say that me in Boo (not her real name) have always been close she was always a daddy’s little girl . I guess my first thought was oh no,no grandchild by her cause Im really looking forward to some Grand baby’s any way the second thought was my religion in believes which is the same believes she was raised on.let me also add she is about to start collage next fall just to give everybody a ideal of her age.At first I thought well maybe its just a phase she is going through,she is just confused

  18. Michael

    May 14, 2011 at 3:30 pm

    Although most men will probably not admit this, I believe the reason so many men have such a difficult time with this issue is because they somehow feel that their sons sexual orientation is a reflection of them. In other words, men are more concerned with how family and friends wil react and they are afraid that they may have contributed to the issue in some way.

    Most men gain their sense of identity through sexual conquest and when homosexuality is involved it shatters the typical male ego.

    The key for Tyler is to recognize that his sons sexual orientation has nothing to do with him, therefore he should not be ashamed nor embarrassed with his sons preference. Although it may be difficult to accept at first because of religious upbringing or antiquated male attitudes, he should count his blessings and accept his son for the man he will become as a result of being true to himself. He does not have to agree with his sons choice, he simply has to learn to open his heart and love his son unconditionally.

  19. donnie

    May 14, 2011 at 3:54 pm

    I’m sorry Will hit a wrong button lol I aint as good as Irene on this keyboard.As I was saying I thought she was confused but a year or so later with the same girlfriend I think she knows who she is.As far as Katina goes we don’t have to be nasty about it we can all agree to disagree in a nice way. She came on with her thoughts just like we did and people are attacking her.Some people needs more time than other.Like her I always was if any of mine are gay they can just get the hell out but when it is one of yours and they come out well for me it change my way of thinking..I love her just as much if not more if that is possible than before..I’m thankful that she can come to me with anything now.We have talk about our faith and believes on this matter .Do I wish it was different sure I do I would be lying to myself if i said no. All I can say to Carol in New Orleans is give dad some time and don’t push him He loves his son no matter what .I always tell my wife that time heals all things and that nothing stays the same.Everything changes.Hang in there and and love em both with all your heart and put it in Gods hands.. And by the way were neighbors.Were right down the road in Gulfport MS. Anyway good luck and God bless

  20. Irene

    May 14, 2011 at 3:59 pm

    @donnie…lol….yep we love all our kids!!! And, I thought our child was being true to herself and that is what matters at the end of the day.

    @Will I agree….differences is what make the blogworld go round….and round….

  21. Jude

    May 14, 2011 at 4:49 pm

    When we were dating my (future) husband and I had a conversation about how we would feel if we had a gay child. No problem, but it never dawned on us as Jews that our child would come out to us as a Christian. You just never know what challenges you may get to feel your way through.

  22. Rene Syler

    May 14, 2011 at 4:58 pm

    @Will: you underscore my point EXACTLY about being gay not being a choice. I cannot remember the day I said, “I think i’m gonna like boys now” because it never happened that way. It just who I am, a part of my make-up.

  23. Rene Syler

    May 14, 2011 at 5:04 pm

    @Brett: thank you for this. At the end of the day, we all want to be loved, especially by our parents who are our first real models of what unconditional love is or should be anyway. I do love that your dad began to see you as “normal” whatever that is. But i know what you’re saying; being gay became secondary to his son being happy. Good man who raised a good kid 🙂

  24. donnie

    May 14, 2011 at 5:38 pm

    Good point Jeremiah on homosexual raising a family.As I said in a earlier post that was my first thought no grand baby’s by her. so she set me down and explain to me how homosexual could absolutely and do every day, have and raise baby,s all the time.Her girlfriend has two moms and she has 2 little sisters..So I’m not worry about that any more..lol

  25. kim

    May 14, 2011 at 6:06 pm

    john is exactly the same son tyler had last year, last week and the day before he came out to his parents. my advice to tyler would be this: you love your son, right? now picture your life without him.

  26. Rene Syler

    May 14, 2011 at 6:26 pm

    @Kim: yep.. and Amen to that

  27. Cody Williams

    May 14, 2011 at 9:56 pm

    Alright, everybody seems to respect how ‘polite’ Katina is. I certainly hope it’s equally okay for me to say how backwards and out of touch that Neanderthal (word removed) is.

    Get with the program Katina. Life ain’t about your small mindedness. You, my friend, are the one who’s not socially acceptable. Kinda like segregationists back in the 50’s and 60’s. You’re a dying breed, babe.

    Yes, I really want you to feel bad about that. I do.

  28. Rene Syler

    May 14, 2011 at 10:37 pm

    @Cody: YIKES! Cody. Okay I understand your ire and where it comes from but you know we keep it respectful here. I think some great points have been made her, namely that Tyler and those who think as he does, need to get with the program (even if it takes a minute) or be prepared to lose a child. It’s really that simple.

  29. KATINA

    May 15, 2011 at 7:55 am

    OMGosh @ Donnie thank u so much for the defense I am not a bigot it’s just what I think and how I feel and my goodness I never called anyone any names or tried to make anyone feel bad about themselves. To each it’s own but for me it’s just not an acceptable way of life and I still stand by my earlier thoughts. As far as helping children commit suicide, no never, I will not pretend to be happy about anything my children know the truth about how I feel and therefore I will not forge a fake relationship with my children and trust me they all know how I feel. I have never been nasty to anyone n this blog or that is homosexual and never will be. I have many friends that are bisexual/homosexual, I don’t run away, I don’t not hug or touch my friends I am not like that I have encountered many homosexual persons and love them dearly we have eaten off the same plate slept in the same bed but they too know where I stand on the subject and without name calling we agree to disagree. So Jeremiah you are way off the radar here like I said my feelings my thoughts my opinion and I’ve been called a lot worse BUT I always stand by my convictions!!!

  30. KATINA

    May 15, 2011 at 8:02 am

    Also thank you Will great points that I will kick around see what I think about them I appreciate people who don’t feel the need for me to agree thank you!!

  31. Rene Syler

    May 15, 2011 at 8:07 am

    @Katina: yes, we respect other people’s opinions here, including yours, that is a given. My sincere hope is that you look beyond Donnie’s defense of you to what he said about learning more about his gay child. His fears turned out to be unfounded. But the point I think everyone is trying to make is that it’s quite shocking for a parent to put conditions on the love they will give their own flesh and blood. And while I know you are trying to show how progressive you are by saying ” I have many friends that are bisexual/homosexual, I don’t run away, I don’t not hug or touch my friends I am not like that I have encountered many homosexual persons and love them dearly we have eaten off the same plate slept in the same bed ….” it actually sounds a lot like folks who are closet racists but try to show the world they are not by saying, “some of my best friends are black.” Standing by your convictions is admirable, except in cases where you choose said convictions over your kids.

  32. KATINA

    May 15, 2011 at 8:36 am

    @ Rene point taken but that is just the way I feel. No I made that known because I am not a hate filled person I love everyone get along with everyone but if my gay friends know how I feel what is the problem WE R STILL FRIENDS. They don’t agree with many things that I do in my life and we AGREE to DISAGREE and no one should be called names or made to feel forced into a decision of acceptance because it’s the “get with it” thing to do. So with that said I’m sticking a fork in the convo cause I’m done with it lol have a great day everyone!!

  33. Will Jones

    May 15, 2011 at 9:01 am

    Katina- Glad you came back. As I said, this situation happened to a close friend of mine, but it didn’t happen to me, so I can SAY how I think I would react, but I can’t honestly say that I KNOW for sure how I’d react.
    So my question is how would you react? You said “…I would be angry, disappointed and sad if this was my son…” But what would you DO to him? How would you treat him? How would you treat his boyfriend/partner/(one-day-soon)husband? If they adopted, how would you treat your grandchild? In your conversation, I hear a whole lot of what you’ve been taught (“…using his body for unnatural purposes…”) But in saying that you “…eat off of the same plate and sleep in the same bed…” I think I hear more of how you think. Usually, when there’s some gray area between what we’ve learned and what we really think, it means we need to either re-think or re-learn. Not saying you do, just saying I usually do. 😉
    You’re reading this which means you haven’t plucked out your eyes, and you’re typing so you probably haven’t cut off either hand for sinning against you either… unless you’ve never sinned… LOL. What that means (at least to me) is that you know some things must be read and understood figuratively and metaphorically. We have to be real careful when we draw hard lines because eventually we end up drawing a box that only has room in it for one, and that’s a lonely place to be. Maybe it’s just me, but I think we should get rid of all the hate in the world first, and once that’s done, we can start worrying about who’s allowed to love who. I hope you get around to answering my question. If not; it was good talking to you.

  34. Rene Syler

    May 15, 2011 at 9:02 am

    @Katina: yep, totally get it. Friends is one thing, your kid something totally different. BTW, no one forcing you into a decision, more like fervently praying you get there on your own, especially in case one of your children is gay. Have a great day

  35. Rene Syler

    May 15, 2011 at 9:22 am

    @Will: The more I read of you, the more enriched and thankful I am that you are a part of Good Enough Mother. And Katina, though we disagree, I feel the same about you and everyone who comes and comments here. Thank you all.

  36. Cody Williams

    May 15, 2011 at 11:14 am

    Sorry about that ‘slip’ Rene. I hit the submit button before thinking. Big mistake, sort of.

    However, I’ve said for years that homosexuals are the last folks in American that people think it is okay to ‘marginalize.’ And it will not be until homosexuals and all people who stand for equal rights take a more aggressive in-your-face defensive attitude about demanding rights and equally will others take an honest look at their stupidity. And that’s exactly what it is. It’s no different than that bigotry of Bull Connor back in the 50’s, no matter how sweet and loving Katina tries to make her ignorance sound.

    I’m for calling a spade a spade and a bigot a bigot.

  37. Cody Williams

    May 15, 2011 at 11:15 am

    Oops, ^^equality^^

  38. Jennifer

    May 15, 2011 at 11:37 am

    For the record Katina, I didn’t call you any names. And I didn’t attack either. All I said was that I felt VERY sorry for you and that I hope you tell your kids how you feel so they know to go somewhere else for support, because your first response showed a bit of bigotry on your part and while I try not to base people on my first impressions (or posts), I still have the feeling that you are back-pedaling after the severe criticism you received from the other posts and rightly so. You honestly sound as if you come from a long line of bigotry in your family tree and I feel very sorry for you again, if indeed that is the case and it sounds like it might be.

    I’ll end on this note: you are entitled to your opinion(s), feelings or whatever. What bothers me (still) though is what you put out there as your original stance and you can’t take that back. I hope your children NEVER see this side of you, or this post because they are your children until you die and life is very hard when you don’t have the support system of your parents. Like I DID say, I am glad I’m not your child.

    Knowing people who are gay and sleeping in the same bed or eating off the same plate as you say is different. I have to wonder what your friends that are gay would say if they saw your original post?

    Be careful Katina.

  39. donnie

    May 15, 2011 at 12:01 pm

    , told this too is my wife..I’m 50 something and all my life its been one right after another that different groups have fought for. But it seems to me that in our society is more acceptance ,more open than it has ever been to everybody but to those who chose to stick with there old ways or should I say there core values and believes.If its not with the main stream, thinking and as someone quoted get with the program than there attack .And I see it all the time in everyday life and on the news…The saying live and let live ( IN my opinion ) applies to everyone to all groups and all believes including those who still believes in the old values that marriage is between a man in a women ,That there’s nothing to be ashame of to be a Christen.It seems to me that the old way of thinking is whats under attack and being discriminate against..

  40. donnie

    May 15, 2011 at 12:15 pm

    Jennifer there you go attacking again for how they feel.As I said in my earlier post its the ones with the old core values and believes that are under attack..when and if Katina ever has to face this as I have she well find away to deal with it with support of her family and friends and through prayer. One thing everyone seems to be forgetting this is a shock to the parents especially that still values what there parents and there parents believed in..You said you did not call her a name but you did really and you are still trying to degrade her as a Person and more idempotent as a mother..

  41. Tiffany

    May 15, 2011 at 3:09 pm

    First of all, no one should be telling others to “get with the program” when their opinions don’t fit what they think they should be. That’s not very respectful, in my opinion. I don’t care if you think someone’s opinion is wrong or outdated or whatever. Opinions are opinions, not facts, and chances are pretty good that someone else has the same exact feelings about your opinion, too.

    Onto the issue at hand – Tyler’s handling of his situation with John. I think it is important to remember that nowhere does it say that Tyler has to accept homosexuality as being okay. He has to accept John as being okay. I don’t care how you feel about homosexuality – whether you think it’s a choice or not, whether you think it’s morally right or wrong, etc. There is no reason in the world why someone should not love and support their child(ren). Trying to suggest that Tyler has something wrong with him for not instantly being okay with John’s announcement is completely unrealistic and insensitive. Just give him some time. And I don’t think it would hurt to have John come around even more now that he’s come out so that his dad can have more opportunities to warm up to the idea of his son’s new lifestyle.

  42. Rene Syler

    May 15, 2011 at 3:59 pm

    @Tiffany: well when I said “get with the program” I meant understand the fact that his son is gay and his opinion is not going to change that, ever. John is gay. As I said before the only choice to be made here is Tyler’s acceptance of who is son is. Honestly this is mind blowing to me that this is still such a big deal. Don’t we as parents want our kids to be happy? Isn’t that paramount? Or can we only love/accept them when they do everything we want them to do?

  43. Cody Williams

    May 15, 2011 at 4:16 pm

    @Donnie, you wrote: “its the ones with the old core values and believes that are under attack..”

    You ain’t getting it, man. Slavery was once held as someone’s ‘core value’ too.

    If that ‘core value’ is ignorant, bigoted and stupid then yes, those folks should be called to task.

    I am a Christian. You can’t get more Christian than me. Ignorance is not a Christian value.

  44. Cody Williams

    May 15, 2011 at 4:23 pm

    @Tiffany, I’m of the belief that we parents know who and what are children are long before they do. Tyler has had at least 20 years to accept his child just as he is.

    How serious is it that people stop today, not tomorrow, with their ignorance and intollerant attitude against gays?

    Because in the time it takes you to read this, some young person is going to comit suicide out of fear that someone he/she loves will not accept their sexuality.

    Let’s stop this foolishness. Today!

  45. Irene

    May 15, 2011 at 5:21 pm

    @cody….I am a Christian. You can’t get more Christian than me. Ignorance is not a Christian value.

    @cody….and intolerance is not a christian value either and that is why our churches aren’t busted at the seems with attendance, etc in this day and age.

    Do you know what I have learned in my 40 years of life and 12+ years with @Donnie and our crew???? That life ain’t this perfect book of proverbs…..we each have to live out our own destiny…carry our own cross but my life sure is alot stronger and better because of the people in my family that help me carry it. I hope John’s dad can come to some sort of peace with all this because life is short and your kids are your kids whatever their sexual orientation, beliefs, and etcetera. Donnie has learned to accept that our daughter is who she is….but he was trying to explain that he was raised a christian and taught that homosexuality was a sin. Donnie also firmly believes that conservative values are under attack and that people who believe & actually live it conservatively have a right to be heard also.

  46. donnie

    May 15, 2011 at 5:34 pm

    I hear you Cody but the core values I speak about had nothing to do with slavery . I’m a southern and for one have never or ever will believe in slavery. All I’m saying is in today time its the old values th, thats everybody wants to change.. Believe in God,country, and family. If I was to stand up in a room speak out how I feel and my believes I would be boo and shouted down if not out of the room.If a guy wants to be with a guy or girl with girl I don’t care more power to them,but don’t condemn me for it or hate if I don’t believe its right or natural in what God planed for us..But hey thats me not you or the young man were talking about. I wish no harm or bad wishes on any of you….As I said before give the dad some time he well love his son no matter what as I or you would..I just took up for a lady who I felt like people was been rude to her for how she believes..The gay communities wants rights and people to respect there choices and I’m the first guy in town who well say hell yea they deserve it just like Katina,and I do or anyone else.As long as there choices don’t hurt anyone or anything… As a Christan I have to love everyone including even the ones I don’t agree with….God is our judge

  47. donnie

    May 15, 2011 at 5:42 pm

    amen. Irene far explained it way better than I could..When I do it.It sounds like a bunch of bla bla bla…lol..Irene know me better than anyone in this world and she summed it up and one post what I’ve been trying to say all day…And Tiffany I thought you were right on….

  48. Kim

    May 15, 2011 at 5:58 pm

    It was hard for me because it was not the life I had envisioned for her. I was also concerned about what others would say. My daughter underwent a drastic change. She cut her hair, binded her breasts and dressed like a male. She was more boy almost than her twin brother. I tried to impose my will on her. I changed seeing the unconditional love my youngest had and the fear of an outing by a friend.

  49. Irene

    May 15, 2011 at 6:25 pm

    Kim did you see the Chaz Bono Documentary on OWN? He is also going to be on Dr Drew on HLN this week.

    I think it is brave and courageous you you to have so much insight about yourself. I hope you get through it. As far as what others have to say…I can’t help you there I was born with an “I don’t care” attitude.

    Our daughter has went through a similar journey. She went to her prom in a tuxedo. I was busy working and didn’t even know what she wore until I saw the pictures…she cut her hair that was down to her waist almost..and now dresses in all male attire…honestly though she is happier then she has ever been I think. I believe later down the road she may make more changes and it will be allright….we all gotta be who we gotta be…

  50. Jeremiah

    May 15, 2011 at 7:41 pm

    @ Katina – I found bigot to be an apt description of your attitude, it wasn’t intended to be name calling, I really meant it. Perhaps you should reference the actual definition of bigot and then tell me exactly how you might differ from it. From what I’m hearing from you are very intolerant of others. On your agree to disagree point, this is nowhere near the same thing. If I like the color red and you like the color blue, we can agree to disagree, and still be friends sure. However, your position, and your attitude towards an entire group of people isn’t something that can be agreed to be disagreed on. Hating or disagreeing with someone because of who they are is no different than hating or disagreeing with that person because the color of their skin. As I said earlier, you are exactly the kind of person that drives these kids towards self hatred and violence towards themselves. I’m sorry if that shell shocks you, but I hope it does. Your attitude towards homosexuals is no better than the attitude whites used to have towards blacks. And your justification for it is no better than theirs would have been. I’m sorry you’re unable to see the parallel between their behavior and your own, but your attitude and others like yours will be in the very next chapter following segregation when future generations read about oppression of certain groups and will be frowned upon in the same way I’m sure you do slavery. Hopefully you’ve actually done your research on the subject and aren’t holding onto arguments such as “being gay is unnatural” as a cornerstone of why you feel this way (although I’m sure a particular “holy” book is more than likely the real culprit here). If so, try picking up a book, nature indeed does produce many examples of homosexual, as well as a-sexual animals so by definition it can be natural.

  51. donnie

    May 15, 2011 at 8:12 pm

    My daughter was always a tomboy and its funny because when she was little even than I was a little worried .I remember telling Irene I sure hope she don’t grow up to be gay..She played football for 4 years on a all boy team.She played offence and defense she caught pass’s and scored TD’s.I could go on and on about a great player she was But . Someone made a good point about the father has raised this kid from baby to man hood he is still the same kid walks the same way,talks the same ….My little girl isn’t so little any more and she made up her mind who she is.I do believe its not a choice but the way you were born.. I know being a christen and believing in as one post read a particular “HOLY ” book than I had to do a lot of thinking .Because this same little girl (young lady)was raised to believe in the Bible she came to me worried about her soul…I was so proud of her for coming to me .I told her God love’s for who we are and that in my heart I can’t believe a loving caring God would condemn her to hell . Anyway my point Im trying to make is I saw the signs maybe I didn’t want to but they were there..She tried dating guys in jr.high and high school.She told me it just didn’t feel right. She know way back than that wearing a dress or girls shoes wasn’t her thing….I don’t know what the answer is,all I know is she is still my little girl and I love her very,very much….

  52. Rene Syler

    May 15, 2011 at 8:14 pm

    @Donnie: “.. all I know is she is still my little girl and I love her very,very much….” beautifully stated and “nuff said

  53. Jennifer

    May 15, 2011 at 10:47 pm

    Yeah, ok Donnie. I don’t exactly know where you are reading but I’ve read, and re-read my two previous posts and HAVE NOT CALLED Katina ANY NAMES. I said it sounds like a bit of bigotry. I actually used the words ‘showed’ and ‘sounds like’. Where does that constitute name calling? I’m also not attacking her. If anything, I’m telling her to be careful. I also said I’m glad I’m not her daughter. I can’t imagine what it would be like for my own daughter or son (I have two sons and one daughter; all incredible by the way) to feel that they couldn’t come to me or feel that I would react so harshly against my own flesh and blood. I just can’t imagine putting conditions on my own children and for them to feel that if they couldn’t meet those conditions, that I wouldn’t love them for who they are or accept them as my own. I would walk through fire for them; I would pitch myself under a bus for them … I would do anything for them and would be proud of them if they were black, white, purple, red, gay or lesbian. You can’t order children like they are food at McDonald’s. You get what you get.

    Being gay is not a choice. This has to do with DNA make up. Having red hair is not a choice. Having green eyes is not a choice. Having spina bifida is not a choice. Having Down’s Syndrome is not a choice. I’m wondering how Katina would react if her child was born with Down’s or some other genetic disorder? I wonder what she would do then? Adopt them out because they didn’t fit her idea of normal? What is considered normal for Katina? Now if you think I’m attacking her with all these questions, you’re dead wrong. They are only questions. But I am very curious how Katina would respond …

    It’s unfortunate, but the father of my children, my ex, is just like Katina in his thinking. He would disown any of our children if they turned out to be gay or lesbian and has said as much. The reason why? That’s what he was taught growing up by his own mother who, I’m not afraid to say, IS A BIGOT, because it’s true. She has even said in front of her own grandchildren that she dislikes people who are gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, African American, or Mexicans or Asians only she uses expletives like she’s a charter member of the KKK. After a weekend with her, I have to deprogram my children from all the filth that she spews out. I hope that the message I am sending to my children every time I have to deprogram them is that everyone is different but we’re all human, with feelings, and maybe we should walk a mile in someone else’s shoes before we judge them.

  54. donnie

    May 16, 2011 at 7:17 am

    I agree Jennifer, we should walk a mile in every one shoes including Katina’s before we judge..Have a good day don’t mean to piss any body off..Just saying we all have a right to say what we want with out being attack..

  55. Cody Williams

    May 16, 2011 at 12:33 pm

    Donnie wrote: “Anyway my point Im trying to make is I saw the signs maybe I didn’t want to ….I don’t know what the answer is,all I know is she is still my little girl and I love her very,very much….”

    My point exactly, man.

    My point exactly.

  56. April Brucker

    May 17, 2011 at 8:35 am

    Having had many gay friends in my life I know it is not a choice for them. Bravo on John for having not only the strength to come out but to be himself in a world that doesn’t always welcome an LGBTQ person. While many people with a quarter of a brain know someone has no say in their sexual orientation or gender identity, there are still people who are ignorant enough to think it is a choice and that it can be cured.

    However, Tyler probably isn’t just struggling with the whole gay son thing but probably had dreams for his son. These dreams probably included having children and passing on the family name. And it probably included a big wedding where everyone came, etc. While John and his perspective partner could still have children via adoption or surrogate as well as marry in some states, the odds of these things happening are less likely at the moment, although with the current legislation it could all change. In addition, Tyler has lived longer and is aware of the homophobia and discrimination facing his son. While men, especially fathers, are less likely to show their feelings, this griping and tension could really be masked as fear.

    I do think though, as many of my gay friends have experienced with their father’s, dad eventually does come around. Not only does he become proud of his son for being himself, but he realizes that if his son were closeted not only wouldn’t he be himself, but perhaps he might be hiding one of the best parts of himself.

    A friend of mine was a principal with City Ballet for years and is very gay. At first his dad, a native of Texas, had a hard time. Not only did his dad come around but when my friend played in a gay softball league in the city, he helped him perfect his pitching technique. So basically in the end every partent just wants their kid secure, safe, and to know they are settled in this world. I know this is long winded and I hope this makes sense

  57. Peppercorn16

    July 14, 2011 at 2:13 pm

    I feel for the John
    because if it’s one thing for anyone who’s gay is for their family(mom and dad) to accept it and still love them just the same as they did before learning he or she is gay. But the father maybe feeling that HE as a father lacked in something is why he’s son gay and people are going to point and laugh at him because he has a gay son. Some men feel that having a gay son says that he too maybe gay. When that simple is not true. The pressure the father is putting on John is that John feels his father is ashamed of him and he hates him because he’s gay. Which is why a lot of gay men commit suicide family disowns them because they refuse to accept them being gay. It’s too bad Tyler is closed minded about his son hopefully he will come around and accept his son and still love him for who he is and John can come around and visit more often without feeling unloved

    Maybe Carol can talk to Tyler and Tyler will listen and can be the loving family they should be

  58. Will Jones

    July 26, 2011 at 6:59 am

    Peppercorn16- Yeah, these are folks I’d love to hear back from. I’d really like to know what happened, but since I can’t, I’ll assume that the father figured out how to “man-up” like his son did and they’re all having a laugh about it now.

    At least that’s my hope for them.

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Combing the aisles at Target in search of the best deal on Cheerios, it hit Rene Syler like the stench of a dirty diaper on a hot summer’s day. Not only is perfection overrated its utterly impossible! Suddenly empowered, she figuratively donned her cape, scooped up another taco kit for dinner and Good Enough Mother was born.

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