“Two months ago, our daughter Helena (15) came out to us as gay. (She identifies as a lesbian.)
It wasn’t a surprise to us. About a year and a half before, she told us she thought she was bi but for a long time before that, we suspected she might be a part of the LGBTQ community. Now she has more clarity and understanding of herself as a lesbian. We’re sharing this here at her urging and will later share an essay she wrote about her coming out experience.
For now, though, we’re sharing this to communicate something important for this space here.
We are an affirming, welcoming, supportive, LGBTQ ally family. The space we’ve created here is an affirming, supportive, LGBTQ place.
We’re so proud of who our daughter is (who all of our daughters are) and see this as being no different in terms of how we see her and love her than if she felt compelled to tell us she is straight. We do recognize she may need more support because so much of the world doesn’t like her being who she is as a lesbian. She will likely encounter those with straight privilege who want to hurt her, so we give her all of our support and all the protection we can while respecting her space and her voice.
At her request, we will be discussing her journey and her thoughts on coming out publicly.
Before we really get into sharing that, there are some ground rules for the spaces we manage. While we don’t unfriend or block easily in real life or on social media when it comes to caring for and protecting our children, we have no issue cutting people out of our life swiftly, harshly, and permanently. We promise you, she matters more to us than your opinion or thoughts on any issue.
We don’t want to hear that you’re ‘sorry’ for us. We’re not sorry and there is nothing to be pitied. Save it. We don’t want it.
Don’t tell me you’ll be praying for her to see the light or in any way imply she’s sinning or wrong.
Don’t think of mentioning ‘hate the sin, love the sinner.’
Do not dismiss her as being young and therefore say she cannot know who she is or that she’ll (hopefully) grow out of it. She is who she is and we trust her. We do not feel homosexuality is something to grow out of any more than we feel heterosexuality is something to grow out of. She may yet evolve in her understanding of herself, but we do not tolerate any kind of dismissal of who she understands she is today.
We don’t want to hear about ways to ‘fix’ her. You can take that garbage and shove it. She’s not broken.
If you can’t say anything nice, DO NOT SAY ANYTHING AT ALL.
Some of you may know us from a time when we thought being gay was wrong, sinful, broken, etc. Let us be clear: WE WERE WRONG. We have believed we were wrong for a very long time. We know all the reasons why we believed that and why some still do believe that. We are convinced that it was an arrogant and incorrect interpretation of Scripture and the twisting of theology and doctrine. We are deeply grieved we hurt many because we held to such false teaching that made us feel superior. We regret much of what we said to others when we held those beliefs.
Because we understand that thinking and because we used to hold to it personally, we see it as our responsibility to be able to converse calmly about the issue and share how we have come to believe differently. We don’t judge those who we now believe are in the wrong in their stance against LGBTQ.
But…that is not a conversation we’re willing to center our daughter in. Nor are we going to tolerate any kind of judgmental, hateful, or bullying speech against the LGBTQ community — not even when it is couched as an opinion or belief.
We will not entertain antagonistic or homophobic comments. Not now, not ever. Not for a second. If you want to hear how we came to change our beliefs (long before our daughter came out), we’re happy to share but not within our daughter’s story and her journey.
This is a privilege. That’s the case for anyone sharing their story. We have our daughter’s permission to share. She ASKED us to share. These are the terms of getting to receive this particular story.
Jeremy and I love who our daughter is and someday, when she is ready, we will love who she loves because she loves them. We are honored she has shared this part of herself with us so openly and are happy for her as her confidence blossoms in her understanding of who she is.”
This story was submitted to Love What Matters by Jessica and Jeremy Martin-Weber of We’re All Human Here. Follow We’re All Human Here on Instagram here. The article originally appeared here. Submit your story here, and be sure to subscribe to our best love stories here.
Read more stories from Jessica and Jeremy here:
‘She came to us asking why she felt so much anger. Jeremy gave her a hammer. The slightest thing sets her off, boiling just under the surface.’: Daughter ‘relieved to know she wasn’t alone’ after parents help her to ‘release anger safely’
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