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Topic: Reality check

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Subject: Reality check
Date Posted: 8/3/2007 11:27 AM ET
Member Since: 12/1/2005
Posts: 1,023
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Yesterday, DP & I had to go to our local LGBT center to sign a check (2 steering committee members must sign this sort of thing) to help out a college aged person who was just recently kicked out of their home by their parents because he/she is gay.

The mother said she/he is a 'disgrace' to the family, took away the house key & told this young person to make an appointment to collect their belongings.

This person is staying with friends right now and seems to be ok.  Our small but great LGBT community/organizations are stepping up an doing what they can to help this person out.

This attitude by parents and others just makes me ill.  Parents will go to great lengths to get their kids help if they are doing drugs or alcohol, but god forbid if you are GAY. It seems such insanity to me.  It probably is really bothering me because my own family has very little acceptance of my relationship with DP.  But I'm an adult, this person is college age and the reality of the situation is that this goes on every day. 

It just strengthens my resolve to keep on being as 'out' as I can & keep trying to educate.

Thanks for letting me vent here - I needed to talk to people who understand....

Date Posted: 8/3/2007 11:39 AM ET
Member Since: 7/5/2006
Posts: 4,669
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Mary it's people that are out and proud like you that do give courage to those like this teen to not ignore their feelings.  I applaud what you and the community are doing for this poor soul. I hope this young person finds strength and encouragement to keep going and prosper in the future (with or without the family).

 

 

Date Posted: 8/3/2007 1:00 PM ET
Member Since: 11/10/2006
Posts: 2,946
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I hate to hear things like this. How could you disown your child for something totally beyond their control? I think it is great that you are in an area that has resources for these young people. What I think would be wonderful was something like a group home where these kids could live, paying something toward the upkeep - but, less than "normal" rental costs - so they can be in a place that is safe, accepting and enable them to continue with their education.

When they make their appointment to get their belongings - I can't believe the parents would even do such a thing! - is someone from the GLBT center able to go with them to, hopefully, diffuse what could be a tense and possibly heated encounter?

Date Posted: 8/3/2007 1:33 PM ET
Member Since: 9/14/2005
Posts: 5,499
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This makes me so unbelievably sad.  I can't begin to imagine what kind of person could throw their child out of the house, simply for being gay.  Like they have a choice!  The parents are the ones who should be ashamed of themselves.  They're a disgrace!

Mary, I applaud you and your GLBT center for standing up for these young people.  You're a testimony to what a wonderful human being this young person can become.  :)  *hugs*

Date Posted: 8/3/2007 1:47 PM ET
Member Since: 5/29/2007
Posts: 13,347
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Last Edited on: 1/18/09 10:19 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 8/3/2007 2:20 PM ET
Member Since: 4/20/2006
Posts: 5,562
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That makes me so sad.....what is wrong with people?

Date Posted: 8/3/2007 9:42 PM ET
Member Since: 7/25/2005
Posts: 24,210
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This ties in to a book I'm reading that I was going to mention.  I'm reading The Night Watch.  It is set in England during WWII and several of the characters are lesbian.  At one point, one of them tells others that she's so tired of slinking around and keeping secrets.  She's almost at a point in her life where she's ready to marry a liberal (man) just so she doesn't have to be in the shadows anymore.

I wondered if it were still that way today.  I have many  LGBT both in real life and online.  And when my son came out, my only regret was that not everyone is as openminded as I am. 

But what Mary reported makes it seem that many people do still lead a shadowy life and I am so sorry for that.  

My son left home before coming out (not due to that).  I'm trying desperately to get him home for a visit again.  I can't imagine ever turning away my children because of whom they love.

Date Posted: 8/3/2007 10:09 PM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2005
Posts: 94
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That's very sad to hear.  It has to be a very dark feeling to know that your family just threw you away like that, and with such harsh (& final) parting words.   It can be hard losing your family so suddenly, especially if you were close.   Hopefully the kindness of strangers will help to keep this young person's spirits up.

Date Posted: 8/3/2007 11:08 PM ET
Member Since: 12/1/2005
Posts: 1,023
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Thank you all for your support, it really feels good to be able to come here & talk about stuff like this, because sometimes it does feel real lonely out in the real world.

Our center is only a few years old and we run on a very slim budget, but we have been helping people, mostly adults who come to us so damaged emotionally.  We started a 'Helping Hand' fund to help people who needed a little bit of monetary help and that has been a real blessing for a lot of folks.

Ani - a lot of GLBT people lead shadowy lives.  Lots of people don't dare come out at work, even places where GLBT people are 'accepted' because not every department in has accepting management.  Shoot, I left a corporate job because the supervisor they put me under wasn't out & she was threatened by me because I was AND I am friends with her ex.

Fortunately this person has friends outside of his family who know who he/she is & are accepting.  He/she is supposed to be going to a university this fall & from what I hear has been formulating a plan on how to make it through college.

We live in a fairly conservative area which is why the need for a small center like ours was necessary.  The YWCA has caught some flack for sponsering us as a program.  But the exec. director is one of our biggest supporters and she and the board won't back down, thank goodness.  This is where we volunteer a LOT of time ;-)  http://www.outcenter.org/

Thanks again everyone for your support & kind thoughts!

Date Posted: 8/4/2007 9:55 PM ET
Member Since: 1/4/2006
Posts: 576
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Mary, you said, :"Parents will go to great lengths to get their kids help if they are doing drugs or alcohol" Maybe it's a good thing the parents didn't seek help for this person. Remember when gays & lesbians were given shock therapy? And put into institutions to "straighten" them out? How about those religious/cult camps that promise to take your G/L/B/T person and make them over to be straight? It is a very sad situation, to be disowned by your own parents. Hopefully, in time, this person's parents will get used to the idea and open their hearts. Colleen
Date Posted: 8/4/2007 10:53 PM ET
Member Since: 7/25/2005
Posts: 24,210
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I apologize for all the stupid straight people out there.  I just can't imagine what you go through and I applaud you all for your bravery.

 

Date Posted: 8/5/2007 11:28 AM ET
Member Since: 7/15/2007
Posts: 225
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I think it is wonderful you have a supportive community to help people in need.  Unfortunatly in our rural area, there is nothing available for people who are put in a situation like this.  The local college started a LGBT group last year, but they are mostly straight kids who want to fight the injustice.  They are having a hard time  We have a spare room in our house that we consider a 'safe space' for anyone that needs a place to stay-- its the best we can offer in this intolerant, conservative area.

Thank you for all you and your center does!!!

L. G. (L)
Date Posted: 8/5/2007 3:13 PM ET
Member Since: 9/5/2005
Posts: 12,412
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It's the sad reality of our world today.  It makes me depressed. :*(  Hope this person can heal and get on with his/her life.

Date Posted: 8/8/2007 5:08 PM ET
Member Since: 11/10/2006
Posts: 26
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Mary, it really is sad that this still happens today.  It makes about as much sense as disowning your child because they have green eyes.  But thank you and your GLBT Center for helping out. 

About GLBT people and "shadowy lives"... there are way too many companies, careers, communities, families, etc  that are not accepting (take the military, for instance)...  and if you live under those circumstances for many years, it is very difficult to break away from the need to be at least partly closeted.  It can be destructive and damaging to your self confidence and your self image. 

So thank you to everyone who is brave enough to be out and helping others.

 

--bjk

Date Posted: 8/9/2007 12:19 AM ET
Member Since: 12/19/2005
Posts: 5,091
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Stories like this just make me ill.  Soemtimes I worry about the entire human race.