Thanks glassesgirlnj! That would be awesome. I haven't felt inspired to ask anything lately, and I really like the questions other people have come up with.
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QQOTD- Queer Question of the Day - Page 7post #121 of 1967/10/12 at 11:54amThread Starterpost #122 of 1967/10/12 at 12:25pmI have one, if that is okay.
Which person in your life have you found to be the most surprisingly supportive of your queeriosity?
All my extended family on my father's side have been difficult at best to deal with, and have never been supportive, much less kind. My grandmother's sister, my great aunt, and I have always been close, but she is older and very traditional and religious and we didn't talk for awhile after I came out. I kind of assumed that our relationship was over, like I assumed about the rest of the extended family. But little by little, she began calling again, sending cards to me, asking me how DW was doing and requesting that I hug her for her, things like that. She was incredibly supportive and excited about the pregnancy, which I wasn't sure she would be. The last time I talked with her about two weeks back, she awkwardly asked if it would offend us if she bought the baby a Precious Moments keepsake bible. She really wanted to because she bought the same bible for me when I was born. I thought it was unbelievably touching that she wished to do that, especially since I thought no one in my extended family would even claim this baby as belonging to the family.
Her gesture really moved me.post #123 of 1967/10/12 at 5:30pmpost #124 of 1967/10/12 at 6:34pm
my most queer-positive relative has been my dad's sister. she also has a female partner. it's been so great having her on my team. my dad's side of the family hasn't been great, and she's pretty similar to my dad in a lot of ways...so it kids of makes me feel like i have a connection to my dad in a kind of backdoor way. she goes out of her way to tell me how proud she is of me and my choices. she talks about how much times have changed and how great it is that my wife and i are raising a family together. she's HANDS DOWN my favorite relative of all time. one of the best vacations i've ever been on was when me, DW, my aunt and HER DW spent a week at fire island together.
post #125 of 1967/10/12 at 7:52pmMy family have all been fine. That's it. Just fine. No one tripped over themselves one way or the other and they are all as welcoming of my DP and our family as they are to any partner/family. I don't have any close extended family though so didn't ever feel like I had much to lose. I love hearing stories of transformation though.post #126 of 1967/11/12 at 5:10am
Growing up, my mom had several gay friends. I still felt like my coming out was big news and had my mom sit down for a serious face to face talk. She said, "Oh, thank god!, I thought you were going to tell me you wanted to go to college out of state!" The rest of my family heard through the grapevine but if anyone cared they never said anything about it to me.
My brother was grounded a lot, so he was allowed to go out with me but no one else. He used to accompany me to queer meet-ups and flirt with the boys as much as the girls.
I've been out since my sister was 5, besides referring to Sara as my "lover" when introducing her, she is pretty normal about it.
My dad reportedly got upset when my brother told him, but he has always been supportive to my face. He really wishes I had religion and used to send me links to gay friendly churches. He adores Sara, at least partly because she has a god.post #127 of 1967/11/12 at 6:35amSeraf--ha! My mom is gay and when I called to tell her I had a girlfriend she got totally flustered and had to hand the phone to my stepmom while she sat down to collect herself. Silly.
I don't think anyone has stood out as being particularly wonderful, but coming out did have a good effect on my relationship with my sister. She had somehow gotten it in her mind that I was a conservative evangelical christian (I had been going to a church like that for part of high school, but never really got on board with the nastier parts of it, and bounced right back to my liberal self as soon as I got to college--coming out happened 8 years later or so) and that I had been judging her harshly for her entire adolescence/adulthood. Then I was gay suddenly and she realized that she'd been wrong and that we actually could be friends again (she never told me any of this until then, so I didn't have a chance to clear up the misconception). It's been really nice having her back, and she likes DP a lot.post #128 of 1967/11/12 at 8:29am
Great stories! Seraf, I love it that your mom was more worried about you going away to college!
My most surprisingly supportive people were my mom's parents. They are supportive in part, I think, because they love DW. They are not church-goers but also not unbelievers. The reason it was surprising is that when I had a girlfriend in high school and my grandmother saw the lovey way my gf signed my graduation card, she looked troubled and unhappy. That hurt a bit (we are a sensitive family), and it made me worried about what the future would bring. The relationship with that gf ended after college. I met DW, and then when my grandparents met her, they liked her immediately because she talks a lot and is humorous, which brings some liveliness to their quiet, elderly lives. Once when we visited them, they said, "We love having you, especially DW, no offense, because she makes us laugh!" I was so happy they accepted her. They couldn't travel to our wedding because they're not physically able to fly anymore, but they send us anniversary cards.
Another cool thing was when I got some supportive comments from DW's siblings about a year into our relationship. Their mom died, and they asked me to read the eulogy they'd written because they didn't think they could do it without crying. And afterward, they had a cookout, and a couple of them made comments to me (aided by the lubrication of some alcohol) about how happy they were that I was in DW's life.post #129 of 1967/11/12 at 11:42am
Great question Desert! I love reading everyone's stories. Seraf yours made my literally laugh out loud!
Although not surprising, my step-mom has been my most supportive in my family. When I came out to her I remember her just saying, "uh yeah, I kinda figured." I loved the way that she didn't seem surprised or make any sort of big deal about it, she just asked me if I had met someone new. I didn't know it until after I came out but before she met my dad she had been in a few relationships with women in the past. My whole family has been really good. My mom took a while before she really settled into everything. I think it was all just very new to her and she didn't realize that even though my DW may dress and act more male than I do, it doesn't mean she wants to be a man or be called the husband or whatever.
The most surprisingly supportive of my family members have been my grandparents. They are fairly religious and when I told my grandma she started to tear up. She told me that she was just scared that I would have a harder life because of it. She loves my DW and is now just so happy that I have found someone who she knows treats me they way she thinks I deserve. I feel so lucky that I didn't have any family members treat me any differently after I came out. I truly wish that everyone could have that experience.post #130 of 1967/12/12 at 12:44pmThread Starter
Thanks for sharing your stories everyone. It's wonderful how people can surprise you and embrace you. I only had one grandparent left when I met my wife and she passed away before we got married so I never came out to any of them. I think my grandma would have loved her. I've enjoyed most that my wife and my father and his wife really like each other and have a lot in common. We spent a couple days at their house when we went home to have a reception with our families. We watched the Steelers game and ate rigatoni and meatballs and had a lovely time. DW talks about it all the time. She'll say "I wish we could watch the game with your Dad and Linda." Their embrace of her has brought us closer together. My Dad is Catholic, and he wasn't thrilled when I came out. Neither of us is good at talking about sensitive stuff so we just didn't talk much about it for a while. I think them getting to know my wife has made a big difference. It's not that I would choose my partner based on what my family thinks, but it's great to be with someone who loves my family and they love her back.
QQOTD - Who has had the most difficult time with your queerosity that surprised you?
This would be my sister. At first, she didn't say anything negative. She was very supportive and accepting in her behavior and words. I thought we were totally cool. She is a born-again Christian, and several years ago she told me even though she was ok with me, she still believe being gay is a sin. I felt like she had punched me in the stomach. It wasn't really an issue until recently. She has 2 children, and she didn't tell them I was getting married (the younger was too little to understand so that was fine.) She said she didn't know what to say. I said to just tell her I was getting married and to whom and answer any questions she had. She didn't. When I went home to visit after the wedding I was showing my sisters pictures and my niece came in and was looking too. She asked why I married a girl, and I said because I wanted to and that was that. I was disappointed that my sister didn't mention it at all. Then we learned that they weren't talking to their kids about DW at all. They didn't know who she was or call her Aunt. My wife was very upset. I talked to my sister and her husband and they said they weren't encouraging their kids to call her Aunt but they weren't discouraging it either. They felt the kids were too young to understand sexuality of any kind but that when they were old enough to talk about it, they would tell them that being gay isn't what God wants for them. This really made things worse. I told my sister that their views could have a big effect on our families when we have children and that I want our children to have good cousin relationships. I don't think she totally agrees with her husband but she believes in letting him be the leader of the family. There's a lot more to it, of course, but it's a mess. Fortunately, my family lives thousands of miles away so we don't have to see them that often, but it's bad and it will probably get worse. My niece and nephew don't know who my wife is, but my other 2 sisters are totally great and their kids call her aunt, and she loves it. Maybe I should tell my Dad about it so he can give my sister a hard time.post #131 of 1967/12/12 at 2:14pm
I can't think of anyone in my family who cares. Pokey, I'm sorry your sister acts like that. I don't think my kids are old enough to understand sexuality, but I still encourage them to call my brother's wife aunt (partly to clear up confusion, since her name is ALSO Sarah). I guess I don't consider it a sexual title.post #132 of 1967/12/12 at 10:45pmFirst question: there's no one who stands out as being exceptionally supportive. DW's 2 BFFs were amazing when we met (DW was straight until she met me, now she's labelless! She also came with the toaster and knife set). They shrugged their shoulders when she told me about me, and they could clearly see how into me she was, and told her to go for it if that's what felt right! I think the (baptist) church I grew up in was the most surprisingly supportive. Except for my crazy youth pastor, who tried to pray away my gay (who was subsequently fired for it). A bunch if my mom's church lady friends came to the wedding shower our moms put on too!
2nd question: my GAY uncles (my moms brother and his partner) were the most surprisingly unsupportive. I emailed them when I was 16, days after I had come out, and asked what my mom's reaction had been when he came out to her. He never responded, although I know he got the email because my cousin told me that she had tried to badger him into replying. He said that it wasn't his business, which is bullshit. Our family is incredibly small too. My uncle and his partner of 35+ years have never met DW, and we didn't invite them to the wedding (my mom was more than fine with that, since she wasn't too impressed with his lack of support for me).
Love the questions!!!
Edited by darthtunaqueen - 7/13/12 at 8:35pmpost #133 of 1967/13/12 at 7:11am
I don't have a serious horror story about a negative surprise, but I've had a disappointment, I would say. My (very close) sister cried when she found out. She said it was because that might mean I wouldn't have children, and our kids wouldn't grow up as cousins. Since we were teens at the time, I didn't really have the wherewithal to answer her about what, if anything, I would do about having kids. Now her kids are 1 and 4, and I've been working on pregnancy since she was pregnant with the first one. I was also a little disappointed that she wasn't more sensitive to my feelings of ambivalence about her wedding (before gay marriage was legal anywhere in the US) and her not making any effort to include me in any of the planning. Then, since she's four hours away and our bodies are the same, I asked her to just have the maid of honor dress (which she picked out without involving me) fitted to her. Instead, she just bought one off the rack and didn't have it fitted, so it was loose, which made me look fat and frumpy in all the photos, which are now displayed in all the houses in our family. Egad! The photo reminder of that sucks, but I realize it's a relatively trivial incident. I just kind of wish I had had more of the PFLAG type for a sister instead of the, "Well, I'm treating you equally, right?" type. Great expectations.post #134 of 1967/13/12 at 8:38pm
Outdoorsy, I hope that she's a little more sensitive the rest of the time... I realize weddings sometimes bring out the absolute worst in people, but that's pretty harsh!!! And sometimes it's the trivial things that reveal people's true colours, especially under stress! I hope all is well now! :Dpost #135 of 1967/17/12 at 10:55am
darthtunaqueen - Thank you for your supportive comments. Just having someone acknowledge that it was insensitive made me feel a little better! All is pretty much well now. I'm not sure if she fully realized what she was doing. There's a history of not making a fuss over weddings in our very small extended family, where there hadn't been a wedding or baby since the 70s until hers. But since she married her HS sweetheart, I still feel a little bit of the sting of how she suddenly had zero time for me because of him. Oh, well. That's life, I guess!
Next question, anyone?post #136 of 1967/18/12 at 5:18am
WHat travel plans does anyone have this summer? And what types of traveling do you do?
We are homebodies this year. Two babies and two maternity leaves has kept us closer to home. We have two camping trips planned in September. Kentucky with friends and Tennessee with my brother's family and our dad to make up for a missed july trip. The yurt is getting a bit tight for all of us, so I'm looking into building something else.post #137 of 1967/18/12 at 6:18am
We're heading up to Kelowna this weekend to visit DP's bro and sis in law. Next week we're hoping to go camping with starling's family and some other families! We're also going camping at a local lake with some other friends in August. Out next big trip this year is at the end of October. We're going to Fort Lauderdale, Miami and the Keys. I have a work conference in Fort Lauderdale so DP and DD are tagging along and we'll tack on some vacation time and do a mini road trip.
post #138 of 1967/18/12 at 6:22am
Portland, Maine, for a long weekend in Sept for the 5-year anniversary of our wedding (we've been together 11 years). We're going to take a schooner ride and check out the arts district. I'm open to tips for other things to do. Anyone current on lesbian nightlife there, if any?
I've only been to Europe once (short, whirlwind high school French trip), and I really want to go. But, I have to admit, it's hard to leave our little only-child cat, whose sister died last year and who hangs on our every move. We leave her to visit family in the US (sister in law looks in on her), but to do it for a big vacation seems worse! Between that, the cost, and the planning, I haven't gotten off my butt to do it. Plus, I'm afraid of flying, even though I fly out of state to visit family about once a year.post #139 of 1967/18/12 at 11:34am
DP and are planning to go away for about a week in early September. we were looking at Morocco and Tunisia, but i think i would be too worried about food poisoning and it would be a waste of a trip if i couldn't just eat and eat. at the moment, it looks like we are either going to drive or catch a cheap flight to Spain, probably Catalunya or Andalucia. Spain is my absolute favorite place on earth, and i miss it *terribly*. of course, all of this depends on us being able to find a cheap place to stay...
outdoorsy: you must let me know if you manage to get over here!post #140 of 1967/18/12 at 9:29pm
Camping! Next week we're going for three days with a small posse of homeschooly-types, and hopefully Carmen will join us! I hope, I hope! Anyone else want to come? PM me!
We'll likely go again in August too. Other than that, not much. We just got back from Costa Rica in May, my DP is in NYC as we speak, and we're planning a big trip abroad for my 40th (two and a half years away). I hung a gorgeous poster of the Eiffel Tower at the wall opposite our bed so we can all wake up and see it first thing and remember our goal to save up. We hope to go to Paris (a lifelong dream of mine ... I've always wished that I could've been around on the Left Bank circia 1920) and then spend three- or four weeks travelling Europe. Got to fill up that piggy bank! Especially because we'll likely go to Ontario next year to see DP's family. Oh, to be rich!
ps. Carmen, we LOVE Florida, especially the Keys! DP proposed to me in Key West, at the beach as the sun set. After secreting the ring all the way from BC to ON and then on the long road trip down to the Keys from Ottawa. It has a very special place in our hearts.
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