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#1 of 6 Old 06-23-2010, 12:52 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm actually a regular member at MDC but I have to post underneath another name due to privacy reasons. I'll get to that in a sec...


BUT, I'm really happy to say that my sister called me tonight to tell me she has a gf! I was pretty surprised at first. I knew she had big news but I was more worried that she'd gotten pregnant and was dropping out of college or something.

I feel really happy for her. She's been in a long term relationship for awhile now but I'm the first family member she's told (and most likely will tell for a LONG time because we come from a VERY, VERY conservative Christian background). Honestly, before, I always worried about her. She was so obsessed with boys but never had a bf. She kept meeting random guys off the Internet, etc. DH and I were just really worried that something was wrong, that it was a self-esteem issue or something. After talking to her, it just seems she was in denial and needed some time to work through that. She just seemed so much happier, more self-confident. I saw some pictures of her and her gf and they just look so cute together! A lot of things really make sense now and I feel kind of silly for not realizing this sooner, but I'm just glad to see her happy.

Ok, but besides me being happier for her. I'm also nervous for her (and I know she's really nervous about this too). Like I said, our family is VERY conservative. Her dad might be ok with it but will certainly tease her to no end. Our mom... wow, I know her opinion and it's not good. We've had so many arguments about homosexuality and the Bible it's not even funny (way before any of this with my sister came out, I just hate to see people being discriminated against in general). Plus our mom and my sister are really close and my sister is used to telling her everything so I know it's just eating her up inside.

Does anybody have any suggestions on how I can help my sister deal with this? I want to be as supportive as I can. I feel honored that she told me and that she trusts me with this when she won't tell anybody else in my family. I've told her already if she wants me there when she tells our mom, I certainly would be. Is there anything else I can do? I have also sent her some links from a good website that talks about homosexuality in the Bible (and is supportive).

I also made it clear I'm still expecting to have little nieces and nephews someday and she said that wouldn't be a problem.
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#2 of 6 Old 06-23-2010, 07:20 AM
 
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Could you send her books? Or find some online resources for her? This definitely isn't an easy situation, but she isn't the first person to have had to deal with it.

Here are two books I think might be useful. I think other people might have better ideas.

What the Bible Really Says About Homosexuality by Daniel A. Helminiak (I wonder if there are more recent books on the same topic--I don't know)

The Family Heart: A Memoir of When Our Son Came Out by Robb Forman Dew

Good luck supporting her!

whistling.gifMe, love.gif my wife, blowkiss.gifour son (2.5), and luxlove.gif our daughter (5 months)
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#3 of 6 Old 06-23-2010, 08:29 AM
 
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Hey !

Just be there for her ! Respect her wishes too... telling parents is not an obligation...... in some families, parents are ok if the words are never "said"..... I would have never suggested that before but my ex-gf had an extremely painful experience with her parents and in retrospect, it might have been better to just not come out and let it sink in over 10-20 years !!

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#4 of 6 Old 06-23-2010, 11:10 AM
 
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It is good that your sister could tell you at least.
I hope my 2 cents is helpful....
I come from a conservative catholic family, attended catholic school for 8 years, my mother required church attendance every sunday without fail until 18 years old. Even on vacations she would find a church near the hotel! So my perspective addresses the religious mother portion of her predicament.

I broke up with my first GF at 19, and my mom was helping me move my stuff out of ex-GFs place. I had absolutely no intention on coming out at that point. Everybody thought we were best friends, so my mom was making comments about how it was just a fight and we'd be hanging out again soon. Being very emotionally distraught about the break-up and tired of her well-meant but way off target comments, I blurted out that we were not friends, we were girlfriends. My admission was met with silence. Since I had nowhere to go, I had to move back in with my parents for an interim period, and I was woken up on several occasions over the next several weeks at odd times like 2am and 5am to my mother kneeling at the foot of my bed sobbing and praying. she would say heartwrenching things through her sobs like "what did I do wrong to make you this way?" "Why is god doing this to us" "Why are you doing this to me?" "I'm praying you'll find your way back to the right path" etc.

This went on for months. I finally moved out into my own place, but it was an ongoing uphill battle. For years she would refer to GFs as my "friend" (which is very common) she would tell me to keep an open mind and the right man would come along, and she would continue to tell me that she prayed for me all the time. When my current partner and I had been together for several years, and got professional pics taken, my mom said she wouldn't put it on her wall because we were touching each other and people who came over "would know".

At some point about 5 or 6 years after I came out, she overheard me making a comment to one of my brothers (who were very accepting) about how unaccepting she was. A few days later she told me that she had come to a conclusion: That God made me this way, and God doesn't make mistakes, so it must be ok.

It has been 11 years now since I came out, and my mom has made tons of progress in her road of acceptance. She is not any less religious, but she is accepting of my DP and I, and is even sharing in the joy of our TTC process. We agree to disagree about religion, and I think she has realized the bible is somewhat about interpretation. We still hit a snag every once in awhile, but overall its a vast improvement over the course of a decade. There was a lot of tears and a lot of hurt feelings, and some shouting, but progress was made.

I realize that not every conservative christian will work through their feelings and come to a place of accepting their gay child, but if you had asked me 12 years ago if my mom would ever accept me I would have told you "no" and been wrong. My advice is that your sister should tell mom when she is ready, and be prepared for a hard road....BUT DON'T GIVE UP HOPE and keep being true to herself. She can be true to herself without rubbing it in mom's face all the time, and either mom will come to terms with it, or she won't. But i think it is unhealthy for anybody to hide such a major part of who they are. I wish your sister the best, and I hope she can take something useful out of my story.

DP and I together 12 years stillheart.gif Mom to DS nocirc.gif born 4/4/11

belly.gif #2 kiddo due 3/13/14

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#5 of 6 Old 06-23-2010, 03:08 PM
 
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I would suggest For the Bible Tells Me So.

You can check it out on youtube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=04AVRslVRbY

or buy it: http://www.forthebibletellsmeso.org/index2.htm
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#6 of 6 Old 07-01-2010, 10:07 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you so much for all the links and book suggestions! I will certainly send them my sister's way.

I've had more time to process this and I have mixed feelings now. I'm still very happy for my sister in the sense she realized who she is and she seems to be so much more happier now. On the other hand, I really am worried about her telling our mom. I really did a lot for my sister growing up and took care of her quite a bit so I think there's definitely a need for me to protect her, you know what I mean? I know she's an adult now and has to make her own choices, etc but it's just so hard for me to think that she could get hurt because of this (especially since this is something that it's really hard for me to understand why people react so negatively to).

DH and I have been talking about it... my sister is still in school and the parents are paying for her. We were thinking of telling her to hold off on telling them until she is out of school. Simply because their reaction could be very unexpected and I wouldn't want her to all of a sudden not be able to finish school (and possibly be kicked out of the house). DH and I would certainly do everything we could but we currently just have enough money to scrap by so it's not like we'd be a big help... I also have so many visions of my mom having her entire church pray to "heal" my sister. It wouldn't be the first time that she's used her church praying to manipulate our family in some way.

jenmostoften- thank you so much for sharing you story. I'm so sorry that you had to deal with that but it is very encouraging that your mom has come around more! I hope our mom is able to do the same.
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