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Zoe Writes:

Question:

I have a 16 year old gay son. He is a wonderful person in so many aspects and I am really proud of him. I found out four months ago, by chance, that he is gay. When I confronted him he immediately admitted his lifestyle to me. I was, of course, shocked, but we got over it together in about a month. I am a psychologist and I know about the facts of homosexuality. I have accepted this fact and nothing has changed between us; we are closer now. My son recently told my parents. I pushed him a little bit, and he was glad I did when it was over. My parents are still in shock, and my mother still cries regularly. They are truly disappointed and hurt by the facts. They are trying very hard to come to terms with reality, but I know it is going to take them time. They have discussed this news with friends and other family members, and so many listeners tell them that maybe my son is just confused, and that maybe he will grow out of it. I have told my parents not to listen to that, but rather to try to become accustomed to the facts as they are. They tell people about my position and people ask them how I can say that he cannot be changed. My question for you is, how can I convince them to listen to me and my son who has also supported them through their shock? Is there some reading material for grandparents? Do you know of material for lay people in Spanish? My mother is native tongue. They have had so many prejudices towards homosexuals, now they find out that their dream-boy, for whom they have done everything he has ever wanted, is one of those terrible persons. I don?t know of any local support group in our community. I have recommended that they meet with another professional to talk about our situation. They obviously are not sure that I am telling them the correct thing. I feel that they may think maybe I am being too calm, or even a bit careless because I am not doing anything about the problem. Do you have any suggestions on how to go about convincing them to accept the fact, and get them to focus on all my son?s wonderful sides? The most important thing is that my son gets a chance to be accepted, loved, respected, and valued for what he does, has done, and will do in so many areas of life, academically, professionally, and socially. Thank you.

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  • ‘Anne’ is the pseudonym for the individual who writes this relationship advice column.
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Answer:

Your son is very lucky to have such a warm and supporting mother. It is often very difficult for older generations to understand homosexuality. To them it is often seen as wrong. Many times people fear what they don’t understand. You have to remind them that he is the same person regardless of his sexual orientation. Keep in mind that you cannot make them suddenly change their views. It will take a lot of patience and understanding to break down the walls that have been in place for decades. Although I was able to find any specific resources for grandparents I was able to find the following: http://www.traditionalvalues.org/4myths.html -4 Myths http://www.pridemail.com/wearefam/index.html http://www.pe.net/~bidstrup/parents.htm Good luck to you, – Anne

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