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Hey Son, It's OK to Be Gay!

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I want my 4-year-old son to know that it's totally OK with me if he's gay. In fact, deep down, I might secretly want him to be.

Mom talking to son

Radical Mommy: I don't claim to know what it's like growing up knowing that you're gay and having to hide such a big part of yourself from the world. But I do know that the gay men and women I know who were accepted and embraced by parents and friends when they came out say they are much happier, and are much more secure now because of it.

Having a gay child has never, ever been an issue for me, and when I met my husband, I was thrilled to discover it was a non-issue for him as well. Of course, like all parents, we want the best for our child, and I would never want my son to suffer because of who he is and how idiots might see him if he's gay. But gay people do not chose to be gay -- they ARE gay.

According to some of my friends, they knew they were gay from a very young age, some as early as 4. Well, if that's my son, then that's great with me -- I only hope he feels comfortable enough to tell us when he is young so he doesn't have to feel shame or fear, at least in his own home.

Now don't get me wrong, I'm not saying I want him to be gay (well ... maybe a little -- after all, then I could have TWO sons when he meets someone), but I'm not saying that I want him to be straight either. What I want is for my son to be who he is, not who society or bigots (or even my husband and I) tell him he should be.

In an effort to let our son know that we love him exactly how he is, whenever my husband and I talk to him about his future, and how one day he'll fall in love with someone, we ALWAYS make a point to say, "You may meet a girl OR boy who you fall in love with."

I am proud of the way we are raising our son. If he isn't gay, so be it -- but hopefully he will take with him all the love, affection, acceptance and tolerance that his parents have for ALL of humanity and spread it wherever he goes.

I hope our attitudes will teach him that it's not OK to judge people, make fun of people, or ostracize people just because you don't like or agree with something about them. I hope our attitudes will teach him that it's OK to stand up for other people, even people who are different than you. I hope our attitudes will teach him that love and respect are the ONLY things worthy of filling his heart and head with.

I wanted to know more about what my husband and I can do to raise a child who is comfortable with who he is and accepting of people who aren't the same as him, so I spoke to parenting expert 'Gay Uncle' Brett Berk. Here's what he had to say:

Sounds to me like your current pro-gay practices are pretty spot-on. Normalizing homosexuality for young kids -- through casual exposure to gay friends, by providing awareness of the idea that there's a range of human sexuality, by suggesting options beyond hetero-normativism -- is the best way for them to think of being gay as ... normal (which, obviously, it is).

My only concern would be not to overdo it on the whole "falling in love" thing. I find that parents often tend to focus in on this stuff too much from an early age, and it just feels like a silly form of pressure to put on kids' nascent social relationships (see my post on BFF BS). When a 5-year-old tells me that they just broke up with their boyfriend, I think that someone in their life has done them a huge disservice. Oh, and being gay, like being straight, isn't only about love. It's also about genetics, and animal magnetism, and attraction, and fun and sex. But you certainly don't need to tell your kid about all that.

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116 comments so far | Post a comment now
karrie. March 17, 2009, 9:12 PM

i love this aticle! i am not gay, nor am i straight. i call it karrie-sexual. if i fall in love with a girl, then i fall in love with a girl. i live with my grandparents, and they force god on me all the time. i have to go to church every sunday, and it’s made me not believe in god even more. i haven’t told them that i’m also attracted to girls, and i’m not going to! but if i had a mother and father like this, i would tell them. you’re gonna be a great mom and i can tell that you and your kid are going to be close! jeez, if only…

Anonymous March 18, 2009, 10:41 AM

Christianity via the Bible says many other things and puts boundaries on a myriad of things today that I’m quite certain even the most devout do not follow. The moment you introduce religion into the debate your argument fails. As I said, do not appeal to a controversial authority. Were I to belong to a religion that said all anti-homosexuals be stoned, you would most naturally not take too kindly to that. If you can’t see what I’m referring to, tell me: would you abort a child in utero if you could forecast he/she would grow up with homosexual tendencies?

As for necrophelia, bestiality, one doesn’t have to belong to a religion to hold the view that sex should be an expression of mutual romantic love. There can be no mutual romantic love in bestiality and necrophelia therefore these practices are immoral.

What I said was that those people who take a more liberal view of sex, that it is a pleasure (like eating for example) should find it more difficult to drive the wedge. However, these sexually liberal people don’t really find a need to. Sexually conservative people however CANNOT argue a correlation between homosexuality, necrophelia and bestiality, for this inherently contradicts their conservatism.

Also, by your argument that sex is solely to create life, it would then be immoral for older heterosexual couples, who cannot conceive, to have sex.

not gay March 18, 2009, 10:15 PM

yes karrie, encourage little boys that there is nothing wrong with a little buggery, hope he never goes to camp with older boys that that think like that. The gay world seeks to hurt and corrupt little children. what else do you expect from pagans.

Anonymous March 19, 2009, 3:56 PM

You’re obviously not even reading these comments with any bold thought, as it’s quite clear that karrie is a she and not a ‘he’

xoxo March 20, 2009, 8:04 PM

dont listen 2 anything the million churches say. they lie. they say thou shall not kill yet they let you eat dead animals. weren’t they alive?
the bible was written by people who wanted only their views put across & if they didn’t like homosexuality they would say it isn’t natural but it is
i couldn’t become gay if i wanted to just like they can’t become straight. if they say so they are lying.

Teresa - A Lesbian March 21, 2009, 12:02 AM

To all who assume that “God” created us - you are wrong. Your God is who you believe in that helps you, fine, but the fact is that we all crawled out of the mud.

We do not choose to be gay / lesbian / bi, it is who we are. I scoff at the attitude that being gay, etc. is a choice.

What business is it of yours anyway about who we love? You never hear a glbt person say something about a hetro person sleeping with the opposite sex.

Even in what most call the “animal” world (we as humans are animals too) there are gay “couples.”

not gay March 21, 2009, 12:11 PM

wow, so a person attracted to animal sex is who they are- they didn’t choose it, so that must be ok. The choice is whether you actually engage in the perverted behavior that is wrong. Somedbody might really love their married neighbor, they didn’t choose that, but having the affair is the wrong part. Every action you make is a choice, you sleep with homos, animals , children, your neighbors wife- all choices. Anyway, animals don’t have souls like humans-we can reason a right from wrong unless YOUR ancestors were monkeys unlike mine. Some animals also practice cannibalism. I don’t aspire to the animal world but to a higher more intelligent God creator.
To xoxo-don’t listen to the 2 million psyciatrists that say sodomy is ok, they me be just after little boys like the author of this article- that’s really a man.

Zaif March 22, 2009, 5:10 PM

I’m glad I live in a Muslim society, where at least such concepts (gayness & lesbianism) are still considered a big deviancy and socially, religiously rejected. Parents who have already made genuine genatic families would like their kids to offsprins to stop breading by not marrying the opposite sex.. so shocking really?

Oscar March 26, 2009, 2:22 PM

Wow, I learned a new word today: Heterocentrism. Apparently it’s dangerous, but somehow it’s gotten us to this point in history. Somehow humanity has survived thousands of years of “Heterocentrism.” I wonder how that could’ve happened, maybe because it’s supposed to be that way? No, I forgot it’s dangerous… Give me a break - homosexuality is 100% choice, how you get there is different for everyone.

Loving Parent March 27, 2009, 1:18 AM

At four years old? That may be a bit extreme, but I still think that this type of education on the truth that being homosexual is completely normal and observed in nature. Apparently, animals cannot make their own choices or something absurd like that, and homosexuality is observed in bonobos. Actually, 75% of all sex between bonobos is sex.(Bonobos are primates.) So this is evidence for all of you bible thumpers. I have taught my children that it is okay to believe in what they want, and to do whatever their heart tells them. I told them it’s okay to be gay, bisexual, and even transsexual, I wouldn’t care. I would love them for who they were on the inside, not for who they are in bed with at night. My kids know that it’s okay to ask us about sex, and other things involving bodies. My son, who is fourteen, was attending a bible class at his church, and he went to a 2 week camp. When he came home, he was talking nonsense about my wife because she is bisexual. He told her she was going to hell, and a bunch of other bible crap. So we said if that’s what he believes then it’s okay just don’t shove it down our throats, and he said that the pastor said he would go to hell if he didn’t tell his own mother this.

I don’t know if it’s just me, but the Christian churches are a load of bullshit. They’re worse than a cult. Homosexuality is completely natural, and anyone against it needs to be taught a lesson or two on what’s natural. Hell, 60% of people who attend church in the bible belt have committed some form of adultery, most of it is incest.

Johän March 27, 2009, 1:35 AM

I honestly don’t understand why it’s any of your business, or the government’s business, or anyone else’s business about what another person does with another person of the same or opposite sex in bed. That is wrong. It’s almost like stalking, but in an unconscious bug-like way, where you try to shove your absurd beliefs down someone’s throat, when you are in fact the sodomite, who is trying to peak into someone else’s bed during the night. You obviously must be at least a wee bit homosexual for you to want to know what a man is doing with another man under the covers.

As for the Folsum street parade, those are extremist gays, like the extremist christians who hold anti-USA rallies(See Westboro Baptist Church, KillUSA Organization, or the extremist islams, who bomb and kill innocent people (See Al-Qaeda)

Religion is bullshit, and every one of you know it, but you’re too afraid of your superiors to have your own opinion, or believe the scientific truth. I don’t understand why everyone just can’t mind their own business, and get along. If you just put your stupid biased opinions aside, and took a look at the world in a universally agreeable perspective, then MAYBE we could make sense of the world. If we had one day of peace in this world, where not one person was intentionally killed, I would give all of my money, all of my personal items, and anything else of value, to the poor. I would also be so happy, I’d probably cry so much that my eyes would melt out of their sockets. Can’t you just imagine the tears of joy on the day that nobody was killed? I would love for that day, no, I can’t even imagine the love I’d have for everyone. Even the worst criminals, I’d love them for doing that. I’d love every single being on this earth, right down to the little nightcrawlers deep below the topsoil.

Don’t you just want to cry and sob just thinking about the peace? It makes me utterly happy thinking about it.
So take my words, and think about them. Imagine this, dream about it, and then start arguing.

not gay March 29, 2009, 1:23 AM

Yes Loving Parent-Let’s look at animals to determine what is right and wrong, like lions killing their young, cannalbalism in pigs and spiders, incest in alley cats, dogs eating other dogs’ crap- animals do it, it’s natural, so it must be ok for humans. That’s probably because you might not aspire to a higher God that calls us to be human and decent. It almost sounds like you aspire to live like sodomizing filthy apes. Sorry, I do not want to ape monkeys(no pun intended), like you think is ok to do. We are all made in the image and likeness of God, not filthy animals.

Monica Culp April 7, 2009, 4:37 AM

This is repugnant. Especially what was said at the end “Oh, and being gay, like being straight, isn’t only about love. It’s also about genetics, and animal magnetism, and attraction, and fun and sex. But you certainly don’t need to tell your kid about all that.” It is indeed sexual deviance. Which clarifies my thoughts that its more about personal desire and sexuality. This is wrong to indoctrinate a child’s thought about sexual normalcy. A range of human sexuality? Saying that is like saying bestiality is okay or pedophilia is okay. Animal magnetism? Animal do what they want at will? We are not animals we are human.

Jazz April 7, 2009, 8:51 PM

dee, you are SOOOO right! A bigoted life of a houlier-than-thou attitude and condemning others for their lives (that doesn’t even affect) is a MUCH richer life to provide for their children.

Because that’s what god wants, right?! Fill your children’s heart full of hate. You can’t pick and choose what to hate and what you follow in the bible. Using the bible as a tool for hate seems pretty wrong, too.

Guess as long as YOU don’t agree with it bad! Classy.

David April 14, 2009, 9:19 PM

Read the Bible. Homosexuality is a sin. Why would you want your son to think that it’s okay to sin?

Casey May 29, 2009, 1:18 AM

Its kinda crazy that Christians think that everyone believes in the same thing as they do. Religion Kills.

Anonymous June 7, 2009, 6:48 PM

I wish my parents had been this open and accepting when I was younger, rather than what I had; a mother pressuring me to get a boyfriend when I was 12.

Little kids should know that their parents will love them no matter what. It should be made clear to them, especially with this matter. Growing up with the uncertainty of how your family will react and the paranoia of them finding out tears you apart.

Gabriel June 11, 2009, 7:58 PM

I like how someone posted on here that God “did not create gays, he created everyone the same.” Makes ya wonder what God was thinking when he “created” different races (not in a superior sense, but the fact that they aren’t “the same”), people with illnesses, handicapped, etc… Something to think about.

Macbvyia June 25, 2009, 5:45 AM

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