I'm A PFLAG Mom

Posts Tagged "Parenting"

everyoneisgay:

Your (Book) Questions, Answered: Week Four!

This is a Book for Parents of Gay Kids comes out on September 9th! THAT IS LESS THAN A MONTH AWAY OMG OMG OMG OMG

Many of you, understandably (and awesomely) have questions about wtf this book is all about - sooooo, we are taking your questions in our Tumblr ask box, and will answer 4 every Saturday (**edit: we are a day late, it is Sunday, we knowwww**) until we answer them all!

TADA!!!!

Hi! Does the book have anything on gender identity/genderqueerness etc?

WHAT AN EXCELLENT AND IMPORTANT QUESTION.

YES! We would never have written a book that did not address gender identity and gender expression. However, we would also never be so presumptuous to write an entire chapter on gender identity/expression ourselves since we both identify as cisgendered. So, in the early stages of our writing, we formed a team of people who were either parents of transgender children, or who identified as trans* themselves, and they shaped the questions that are included in our gender chapter. 

We then collaborated directly with Zak from The Art of Transliness and his mom Sherri (aka PFLAG Mom) to create the language that went into those answers. Zak and Sherri both also have their personal stories in that chapter! 

The book’s glossary of terms also covers many identities on the gender spectrum, and the gender chapter starts with a basic discussion on the difference between gender identity, gender expression, and sexuality.

You guys always seem to have cool stories about your life so far. Are there any of your stories in the book?

Yes! The book actually begins (after the introduction) with each of our personal coming out stories!

There is also at least one story from one or both of us in each chapter, tied into particular advice questions. For example, Dannielle has a small story that goes along with the question that addresses gender expression and clothing choices, and Kristin has a small story that goes along with the relationship between sexuality and faith.

Each chapter also has two longer stories that are not from us, but rather from one parent and one kid — those stories also tie into the overall chapter theme (Gender, Religion, Telling Others, Etc)!! Stories, stories, galore!

Do you know if you will be supplying libraries in other countries apart from the US, so parents can find the book there as well?

We definitely have distribution in Canada, but past that we will be waiting to see what happens during the pre-order season (now!) and then after the official release. Those sales and that reception will determine a lot for the future of the book!

That said, if you have a specific need, please email us at parentsproject (at) everyoneisgay (dot) com and we will always forward it on to our publisher / do our best to make things happen!

About your new book coming out, if it becomes successful, are you planning on writing a sequel to it answering more parent’s questions about this subject?

Oh man, yes and how. We’d love to write another book to help parents with even more questions, but there are also tons of possibilities on writing a book for LGBTQ young people. Personal stories from us, advice, drawings of cats WHO KNOWS YOU KNOW?!

It’s probably the kind of thing where we will see what happens with this release and then talk and brainstorm and ask the universe what comes next. That’s generally how we run the whole business sooooo…

Also maybe we could write a joint memoir. It could be titled “LOL YOU GUYS THO”

This is a Book for Parents of Gay Kids comes out on September 9th (*more squeals*), and is already totally available for pre-order (*so many more squeals*)

<3<3<3

Source: everyoneisgay
Source: Washington Post

Question from lovemyself09

So about 3 months ago i came out to my parents and they were really disappointed. They took me to a psychologist and honestly i was getting tired of them pointing at me and sayibg many homophobic things that i just told them that i wasn't really gay (lesbian) that all i wanted was their attention. I know i'm gay. i've always been and i'll always be. i came out to a friend who is also gay. But i just want my parents to accept me the way i am, i'm living a lie. i wanna be who i am. help!

That isn’t uncommon. I be a lot of people reading this are saying “I did the SAME thing!” Your parents think there is a way to make you straight- perhaps shaming you, or denying it, or dragging you to close-minded, homophobic counselors.

Do you have a long time before you’ll be independent from them? You may want to wait until you’re out of their house to come out again. Or, have a heart-to-heart and explain that you tried to not be gay in order to make them happy but it just doesn’t work like that. Explain that they can “not allow” you to be gay but you simply ARE and it isn’t going to change. They could keep you from being happy until you are away from home (and come to terms with parental rejection), or they could accept and celebrate you as the real person you are.

As usual, I recommend PFLAG.org for support material for them and for you. You can download pamphlets on different queer-related topics. Ideally, you could get them to a PFLAG meeting but until the, print some of their things and see if they will read them

Question from Anonymous

I told my mother about a year ago that I was gay and she still does not accept it. I told her about my girlfriend and she told me to get rid of her so I cannot have any communication with my girlfriend anymore. I can't see nor talk to her and she's the one I truly love. What do I do.

"Get rid of her"? How very harsh! See some of my other answers on this subject. Parents plan out their kids’ lives and that includes them being straight-cis people. Get her support: PFLAG, keep the lines of communication open, don’t sneak around because getting caught could be pretty awful. Family counseling would probably be useful. Your mom needs to realize that she can’t make you straight by keeping you away from your girlfriend. You may want to mention that you are a lesbian now and will be in 5 years, 10 years, etc. So keeping you away from your gf will just make you miserable between now and when you find your NEXT gf. She can wait till you graduate from HS and leave home, but it won’t make you straight. She should know that it COULD, however, make you depressed, drop out of school, engage in high-risk behavior, and generally feel abandoned by the woman you need most in your life (her). Ask her, given your sexual orientation, what she expects from you.

Question from Anonymous

I am probably not the most typical person to ask you questions but im Elliot(FTM) and my parents are very un-accepting of the fact i like girls to the point I'm afraid to tell them that I am Transgender and prefer a different name and male pronouns. What should I do? My parents are not religious either so I don't understand why they are so against me being happy with who I am.

Actually, you ARE.  Many parents begin to plan their kids’ lives before they are even born. They continue to develop their hopes and dreams as their kids grow up. Eventually, they start doing that with their grandkids. The grandkids they also assumed they would get and that would live nearby. 

ENTER REALITY.

Our children don’t owe us anything. They didn’t ask to be born. You chose to have them. The real goal is to raise kids to be who they truly are.  If you love and nurture them, they will become authentic loving adults. THAT is your reward. That is the REALITY.

Few parents have a baby identified as a boy or girl and keep an open mind about their eventual gender identity. Most parents are FLOORED by the news that they have a transgender kid.

The GOOD news is that there are more and MORE parents realizing the joy in having a transgender kid. Many of us (parents who chat on the support group TransYouthFamilyAllies) express our appreciation that our wonderful beloved kids wouldn’t be who they are if they weren’t trans*. We love them as they are, and they are trans*. We wouldn’t change them. We all wish the rest of the world felt as we do and it breaks our hearts when our kids are hurt by a transphobic and generally anti-queer society. We would do anything to spare them that pain. 

Your question of what to do about YOUR parents? For one, you don’t know how they will react to your being trans*. They may be in denial — hoping that you will knock it off  and be the straight-cis daughter they think they’ve raised.

Get resources from TYFA, PFLAG, and other places that could help them and also give you ideas of how to approach them.

Stay true to yourself. Be yourself. Be PROUD. 

Question from Anonymous

I want to ask if you would be a pflag mom for students and other LGBT people who have parents that do not accept them for who they are. I am only 17 and I need someone to be my adult support system...

You probably need someone in real life. Find a PFLAG group in your area and go to the meeting. That is a good place to find caring parents who may love to be your support. I’m sorry that the adults in your life aren’t responsible and loving people. There are a lot of PFLAG moms and dads out there- your local PFLAG might have some more ideas too. ♥