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I think my daughter is a lesbian? - Page 2

post #21 of 54

One thing I've found since my kiddo's coming out is that they are SO much more comfortable in their skin. So much happier. So much more the kiddo I remember from years back. Nothing to hide, nothing to pretend. There is more of an ease about them. And us. 

 

Yes, their life will be much different than I envisioned when I gave birth. I laugh because I had pictured my son as my athlete, and my daughter as my girlie girl. LOL So much for that assumption. My daughter is my athlete. And A's... my girlie girl. I have to say - if I looked half as good in a dress as A does? I'd wear one all the time. 

 

;)

post #22 of 54
It takes a lot of strength to admit where you are and to say "I'm trying to change". Many people live there whole lives and they never get there.

It is hard to let go of a dream, but you need to make space for a new dream to come in. One where your daughter can live as her authentic self. She will be happier this way. And you will as well.

It sounds like you really love her. Good luck with everything. It sounds like you are heading in the right direction with your research and possible attending one of those meetings.

Hugs!!
post #23 of 54
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by mtiger View Post

One thing I've found since my kiddo's coming out is that they are SO much more comfortable in their skin. So much happier. So much more the kiddo I remember from years back. Nothing to hide, nothing to pretend. There is more of an ease about them. And us. 

That is another thing that hurts me about this situation. If she is gay, I wish that she would feel comfortable enough with me to tell me. I thought we were close. I don't like the idea that she is hiding from me or that she feels she can't be herself around me. I'm going to make an effort to be more accepting, and hopefully she will open up to me.

post #24 of 54
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by dalia View Post

It takes a lot of strength to admit where you are and to say "I'm trying to change". Many people live there whole lives and they never get there.

It is hard to let go of a dream, but you need to make space for a new dream to come in. One where your daughter can live as her authentic self. She will be happier this way. And you will as well.

It sounds like you really love her. Good luck with everything. It sounds like you are heading in the right direction with your research and possible attending one of those meetings.

Hugs!!

Thank you so much for the kind words of encouragement! I feel that I gave a bad first impression with my initial post, but I do love my daughter and just want her to be happy.

post #25 of 54

I have a gay daughter...we live in the bible-belt, in a place where being gay is a choice, a horrible nasty sin, gay people shouldn't be allowed to adopt, and interracial marriage is still looked down on to the point I know gay men who won't date out of their race!! I have missionaries and deacons in my family, I was raised on James Dobson's teachings. No rock music, no dancing. I totally broke away from how I was raised, before even having kids, so I guess that is why it was not a big deal to me. I do realize my daughter will have a harder time in this area, but she has GREAT support in us and dh's family. She has a gay uncle, and we are very close to he and his partner. In fact I was friends with the uncle through high school, and married his brother later lol.

 

There's the whole line of thinking from parents thinking they are being supportive, that goes, "Well I don't agree with what you're doing but I love you anyway". I have been told by some gay people how very hurtful that is to hear. My own daughter says if anyone says that to her she will not ever speak to them again. People are going to say it...they LOVE her, but think being gay is something people choose bc they have a choice. Many religious people believe they are supposed to make sure everyone knows how they feel, no matter how hurtful. She hasn't come out to my side of the family, and I'm leaving it up to her.

 

And to throw it out there, there are lots of straight women who like lesbian porn.

post #26 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by AConcernedMom View Post

That is another thing that hurts me about this situation. If she is gay, I wish that she would feel comfortable enough with me to tell me. I thought we were close. I don't like the idea that she is hiding from me or that she feels she can't be herself around me. I'm going to make an effort to be more accepting, and hopefully she will open up to me.

 

I think that, no matter how close the relationship, telling a parent that you are fundamentally a different person than they thought you were is very, very hard. And one must be completely comfortable as that person to admit it. And it's still hard. 

 

It could be that your daughter is still coming to terms with her identity herself, so doesn't want to jump the gun. It could be that she senses how difficult this will be for you. It could be any number of things. I know that, for my kiddo, it took time to identify and accept their identity. And then it took time for them to be able to tell me. Not because there was the possibility that I wouldn't be accepting, but that it would fundamentally change everything I thought I knew about my child. And despite our closeness - there was the fear that I wouldn't be as accepting when it came to my child. It was hard and scary for them to take that step. Yes, there were tears - on both sides. Their's were of relief to have it out, and mine were sadness that there could have been any thought that it would change my feelings for/about my child. But also happiness that they come to the point where they were able to share with me. 

 

Don't forget, too, that it can be hard for a lot of kids to discuss their sexual identity, desires, etc. with their parent. 

post #27 of 54

First and foremost, if the books in question are indeed by Alison Bechdel, have you read them yet?  Do.

 

If you think the relationship with the friend is "more than it seemed," my guess is that it probably is.

 

If you believe that being lesbian will make her life more difficult or complicated, if you think she is now subject to hardships she would not have faced as a straight woman, if you fear that she is going to be subject to prejudice and hate as a result of who she is, then make sure that you are the opposite of all of that to her.  I don't think that being gay or lesbian is a hardship in-and-of-itself, but I think hiding your sexuality from your parents or family or friends is exhausting and overwhelming and stifling.  Make sure she knows she is safe to be herself with you.

 

If you think her inability to marry in most states will decrease her quality of life, FIGHT for her right to marry whomever she pleases.  Maybe you'll be part of the change that makes her life better.  Or maybe she'll just know that you get it, that you care, and that her relationships--whether legally sanctioned or not--are legitimate to you.

 

And if it turns out this "friend" is just a friend, and your daughter likes boys, and she ends up married to a man and she bears a bunch of babies that she conceives through sexual intercourse with that man, will all that love and acceptance you heaped on her back in college be wasted?  I don't think so.  

 

And if she does turn out to be straight, STILL FIGHT for her right to marry whomever she pleases--someone else's lesbian daughter will thank you.  

post #28 of 54
You are getting some wonderful advice, but I think it's true that the books don't necessarily mean she is gay. When it comes to porn, different people look at all sorts of stuff that doesn't necessarily reflect what they do/who they are in reality. It's a fantasy. They may not even want it to come true.

She's young as well, and those books may be the only things she could get her hands on. Perhaps it was just what was available through whatever channels she used.

All that being said, perhaps you already suspected and this was just the confirmation? Good luck with everything. Regardless of what happens it sounds like this experience will be good for your relationship with her.
post #29 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by AConcernedMom View Post

That is another thing that hurts me about this situation. If she is gay, I wish that she would feel comfortable enough with me to tell me. I thought we were close. I don't like the idea that she is hiding from me or that she feels she can't be herself around me. I'm going to make an effort to be more accepting, and hopefully she will open up to me.

 

I just want to point out that college is a time when most of us try on a lot of identities, some of which will stick and some of which don't, and when we also take a lot of steps of independence away from our parents. I think that not being comfortable telling your parents what you're doing is just part of the package. It doesn't necessarily mean that she's deliberately hiding.

 

I made my mom very uncomfortable when I was in college when I stopped shaving my legs/pits, became a vegetarian, insisted on wearing mostly black, and threw myself into really weird art projects. My brother made her uncomfortable when he got horrible grades and dropped out after 2 semesters to start his own sound company (for rock bands...which has led him to a very productive career, incidentally). My sister made her uncomfortable when she joined a fundamentalist Christian group and started coming home talking about sin & hell (my mother's Christianity was very love-based and liberal). My mom didn't live long enough to see my youngest sister start college, but no doubt something would have made her uncomfortable. Cuz that's what college students do to their parents.

 

Just some more perspective, which you can take or leave as you wish!

post #30 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by AConcernedMom View Post

That is another thing that hurts me about this situation. If she is gay, I wish that she would feel comfortable enough with me to tell me. I thought we were close. I don't like the idea that she is hiding from me or that she feels she can't be herself around me. I'm going to make an effort to be more accepting, and hopefully she will open up to me.

 

That's a reasonable thing to wish, but...  Here you are, having a quiet, internet freak-out about the notion that your daughter may be gay.  You've described yourself as feeling sick over it. 

 

I don't think these reactions mean anything for your relationship with your daughter in the long-term, but your daughter might expect the freak-out, and might NOT understand that it's a short-term, adjustment reaction. 

post #31 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by AConcernedMom View Post

That is another thing that hurts me about this situation. If she is gay, I wish that she would feel comfortable enough with me to tell me. I thought we were close. I don't like the idea that she is hiding from me or that she feels she can't be herself around me. I'm going to make an effort to be more accepting, and hopefully she will open up to me.


I totally understand where you are coming from. There are a lot of options here:

 

  • She's straight, which is why she hasn't told you she's gay. This could be true -- you really just don't know.
  • She's confused about how she feels, and rather than the problem being that she doesn't feel like you could hear her, she isn't sure what the truth is about herself so she isn't sure what to say. A conversation about one's sexuality is difficult enough with a parent without adding in something like, "I'm trying to figure this out -- may be I'm bi, but I'm not sure if that is a real thing."
  • She is a lesbian, but isn't ready to talk to you about it yet.  

 

(May be there are more options, as well).

 

My advice -- focus on the core of what you want for her and want for your relationship with her. You want her to be happy, you want her to have people in her life that are good to her, you want her to be true to herself and live authentically, you want her to know that what ever is going on in her life, you love her 100% and will always have her back.

 

By suspecting this ahead of time, its given you a chance to think through what you would like to say to her, so that if she does come out to you, you will be prepared to speak from your heart (not from your fears). You can tell her how happy you are that she told you, that gay or straight she'll always be your baby, and that you will always support her 100%.

post #32 of 54
Thread Starter 

Thank you for all the wonderful responses. You have all been so helpful to me.

 

 

 

Quote:

That's a reasonable thing to wish, but...  Here you are, having a quiet, internet freak-out about the notion that your daughter may be gay.  You've described yourself as feeling sick over it. 

 

I don't think these reactions mean anything for your relationship with your daughter in the long-term, but your daughter might expect the freak-out, and might NOT understand that it's a short-term, adjustment reaction. 

Point taken. I guess it's good that I'm getting it all out now, instead of in front of her.

 

 

 

Quote:

I totally understand where you are coming from. There are a lot of options here:

 

  • She's straight, which is why she hasn't told you she's gay. This could be true -- you really just don't know.
  • She's confused about how she feels, and rather than the problem being that she doesn't feel like you could hear her, she isn't sure what the truth is about herself so she isn't sure what to say. A conversation about one's sexuality is difficult enough with a parent without adding in something like, "I'm trying to figure this out -- may be I'm bi, but I'm not sure if that is a real thing."
  • She is a lesbian, but isn't ready to talk to you about it yet.  

I just don't like not having a clear answer. Ever since I found those books, I've been obsessing about the possibility that she might be gay. I think that if I knew for certain I could handle this better. I wish I could just ask her so that I could get a straight answer, but I'm afraid that will scare her away if she is gay.

Also this is kind of stupid (I'm just going to say it so I can get it off my chest), but I can't help thinking, what if she is gay and decides not to come out? I'm paranoid that she will never come out (if she is in fact gay) and that 30 years down the line, she will still be hiding in the closet.

post #33 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by AConcernedMom View Post

Also this is kind of stupid (I'm just going to say it so I can get it off my chest), but I can't help thinking, what if she is gay and decides not to come out? I'm paranoid that she will never come out (if she is in fact gay) and that 30 years down the line, she will still be hiding in the closet.

Think about six months or a year from now. You can cross this bridge then, if it comes to that. Six months or a year from now your daughter may have come out to you, or she may have gotten a boyfriend or proclaimed herself as straight, and it might not be an issue. But if nothing has changed and you think she is still closeted, you can approach the matter better then and you'll be a lot calmer. It's not like your window to discuss it is now or never. 

post #34 of 54

I dunno... I think it should be up to her to decide when/if to come out and to whom. Simply being the parent doesn't give one the right to make that decision.

post #35 of 54

I think it is ok for us to ask if our child is gay, like any other question we wonder about our kids.

post #36 of 54

I disagree, but that's okay.

post #37 of 54
Quote:

Originally Posted by AConcernedMom View Post

 

I'm going to make an effort to be more accepting, and hopefully she will open up to me.

 

its one thing to 'be' accepting, its a whole nother matter 'showing' it.

 

the possibility of this being a 'not gay' thing might be equally a possibility.

 

she might also be figuring out if she is bisexual. 

 

like others pointed out she might indeed be experimenting. 

 

and if she is not sure how is she going to talk to you when she is trying to figure things out for herself. 

 

i think there is a fine line with asking questions. if you want purely to know - dont ask. if you want to help her coming from - it can be done. but its tough asking the right way. it could go either way. deepen the relationship or make it worse. 

 

i think you need to do a LOT of homework to gain knowledge of the whole issue - gay, transgendered, bisexual and others - emotional too - before you directly ask her - if that's what you want to do. 

post #38 of 54
If she is gay, she won't stay in the closet for 30 years. That's not really a thing anymore. So let go of that as a worry.
post #39 of 54

Regardless of your daughters sexual preference, you really need to take a hard look at yourself OP, because you have a lot to learn about gay (and other not straight) people. Why is it that the idea of your DD being gay is so horrible to you? Why would you hope she is not gay? if she is, that's like wishing for a different kid. If you are truly worried about her happiness, then acccepting her for who she is is the best thing you can do for her. You say you are worried about her life being harder, but if she is gay, your negative feelings about it are probably the thing making her life the most difficult right now. 

 

I am gay. Let me tell you what my life is like: It's great! I met my wife when I was 19, and we have been together ever since. We have a wonderful daughter and are trying for another baby. Sometimes I don't get enough sleep when my toddler wakes me up at night, sometimes we worry about money, last week we all got food poisoning at the same time, and let me tell you, that was hard! But I'm pretty sure that can happen to straight people, too, lol. Every once in a while I'll encounter a little bit of discrimination, a few weeks ago a woman at play group asked which one of us was the "real mom", for example, but that makes me think that I just need to keep working to make the word a better place, it doesn't make me feel like my family shouldn't exist! We have gone through some very hard times, including the loss of a baby, but not because we are gay, because we are human, and sometimes life is hard for everyone. We got through the tough times because we love and support each other. 

 

After you have seriously examined your own attitude (maybe PFLAG can help you out), you can just say, "Hey, sorry if I'm being nosy, but are you and ____ dating? You know I'll love and support you no matter what".  

post #40 of 54
I think the OP has been really upfront and honest about where she is at and that she knows she needs to work on some things. Everybody has to start somewhere. I am very impressed with the fact that she has really done some soul searching and has dug deep to explore her feelings. She is from a very intolerant part of the country, as am I. It's not easy coming to terms with what is right among so many that disagree.
I'd say that if she is using this to be honest with herself and say "I am trying to change" that that says a lot of her character.
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