Someone close to me recently “came out” and disclosed to their family that they are gay. This person’s parents have had a hard time dealing with this, and there has been a gap of I think hurt and anger between the parents and their child.
My views on alternative lifestyles are clear to those who have read other posts in this blog, which is that we are all God’s creatures, and that how we live our own life is between us and God, subject to whether our lifestyle hurts or compromises the lives of others.
In this light, my friend’s “coming out” really hurts no one. It does cause emotional stress for the parents, but only because they are not emotionally or intellectually prepared to deal with this new reality in their lives. Their reaction to this is (I think) a mixture of anger, hurt, and “how could my child do this to us?” They need time to adjust, and need to be willing to love, and to be changed by their love.
My advice to all those in such a situation is to remember that your child, particularly your adult child, is a child of God even more than they are your child. And, since they are an adult, it is no longer up to you how they live their lives; it is up to them.
As parents, when our adult children do something (like this) that we cannot comprehend, we need to be willing to realize that their telling us of it is a major challenge for them, because they know they are likely to be rejected, just as they have felt shame, hurt, oppression and anger all of their lives, trying to hide this inner self that they feel is an inescapable part of who they are from the world.
So, my advice is to remember that your son or daughter’s life is hard enough, living with this reality. As parents, we may not understand their lifestyle, or like it, but they are our child. As such, it is important to remember that our Father in Heaven loves us the same no matter what we do, and even though none of us are perfect. Regardless of who we are, we are called by Jesus to love others, most especially our children, in the same way. Even though they are just as imperfect as us, God sees the perfection that is within.
Copyright (c) 2011, Allen Vander Meulen III, all rights reserved. I’m happy to share my writings with you, as long as you are not seeking (or getting) financial benefit for doing so, and as long as proper credit for my authorship is given (via mention of my name on your site, or a link back to this site).