Dear Hypothetically Gay Son | Ask Your Dad Blog

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Dear Hypothetically Gay Son

I ran across this letter on Reddit this morning. It is from a father disowning his gay son. It broke my heart. It's not the first time that I've seen something like this. Living in Utah, it's a pretty common story. I had friends experience it first hand in high school. This morning was the first time I've run across it since becoming a dad. My son is living in his mom's belly, so obviously we don't know his sexual orientation. Still, the letter I read this morning made me wonder what my letter would say if the news that my son was gay ended up being a surprise. So here it is:

Dear Hypothetically Gay Son,

You're gay. Obviously you already know that, because you told us at the dinner table last night. I apologize for the awkward silence afterwards, but I was chewing. It was like when we're at a restaurant and the waiter comes up mid-bite and asks how the meal is, only in this metaphor you are the waiter and instead of asking me about my meal you said you were gay. I don't know why I needed to explain that. I think I needed to find a funny way to repeat the fact that you're gay… because that is what it sounds like in my head right now. "My son is gay. My son is gay. My son is gay."

Let me be perfectly clear. I love you. I will always love you. Since being gay is part of who you are, I love that you're gay. I'm just trying to wrap my head around the idea. If you sensed any sadness in my silence last night, it was because I was surprised that I was surprised. Ideally, I would have already known. Since you were an embryo, my intent has always been to really know you for who you are and not who I expect you to be. And yet, I was taken by surprise at last night's dinner. Have I said "surprise" enough in this paragraph? One more time... surprise!

OK. Let's get a few things straight about how things are going to be. 
  1. Our home is a place of safety and love. The world has dealt you a difficult card. While LGBT people are becoming more accepted, it is still a difficult path to walk. You're going to experience hate and anger and misunderstandings about who you are out in the world. That will not happen here. You need to know with every fiber of who you are that when you walk in the front door of your home you are safe and you are loved. Your mother is in complete agreement with me on this.

  2. I am still, as always, your biggest defender. Just because you're gay doesn't mean you're any less capable of taking care of/defending yourself. That said, if you need me to stand next to you, in front of you, write letters, sign petitions, advocate, or anything else, I am here. I will go to war for you.

  3. If you're going to have boys over, you now need to leave your bedroom door open. Sorry kiddo. Thems are the breaks. I couldn't have girls in my room with the door shut, you don't get to have boys.
     
  4. You and I are going to revisit that talk we had about safe sex. I know it's going to be awkward for both of us, but it is important. I need to do some research first, so let's give it a few weeks. If you have questions or concerns before then, let me know. 
That's enough for now. Feel free to view this letter as a contract. If I ever fail to meet any of the commitments made herein, pull it out and hold me to account. I'll end with this: You are not broken. You are whole, and beautiful. You are capable and compassionate. You and your sister are the best things I have ever done with my life, and I couldn't be more proud of the people you've become.

Love, 

Dad

P.S. Thanks to a few key Supreme Court decisions and the Marriage Equality act of 2020 you're legally able to get married. When I was your age, that was just an idea. Pretty cool huh?


dad and family at family dinner


I'd like to thank Reddit user "RegBarc" for bravely sharing that letter. I'm sorry for the pain your dad caused by writing it. If you're ever in Salt Lake City, you're welcome at our dinner table any time. 

What would your letter say? Chime in on the comments.

::UPDATE:: I think it is safe to say that this post has gone viral. I am joyously overwhelmed by the response we've received. Just in case this never happens again, I want to try and do something that makes a difference. If you want to help spread the love monetarily, the Utah Pride Center always needs help. You can click the "donate" button on their front page. Here is a little bit about their mission. Aside from donating in the past, I am not associated with them in ANY way. I just know that "fame" (ironic quotation marks intentional) can be fleeting, and "internet fame" even more so. So if you'd like to help, please do. If not, no worries. From my family to yours, thank you. thank you, thank you for all of the love. 



429 comments:

  1. Thanks for making me bawl my face off at work.
    I wish that there were more parents in this world like you and Stevie. Your kids are very very lucky.

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    1. Thanks Ash. We're lucky to have you as a friend!

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    2. I did too. Cried like a baby.

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    3. I'm not saying that I cried, too...I think the room just got really dusty...

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    4. Grr, me, too. Glad no one walked by. Awesome letter, though!

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    5. I just pretended I was yawning...

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    6. In between my tears, I got to thinking about what wonderful parents you and your wife are. Your persona is awesome. Thank you for putting into words a message every child would love to receive when contemplating "coming out" to their parents. It's the hardest thing they will ever have to do besides dealing with the hate and bigotry the world has to offer afterwards. God bless and keep you.

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    7. Damn it you've made me so mad right now....I just wish that my parents had taken the time to write something like this instead of kicking me out

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    8. I hate trying to see through tears. If my child came to the realisation that he is gay, his Dad and I will always be family. We would open our home to his boyfriend, as long as he isn't an asshat, and make sure it's a safe place to be. My heart breaks to even think of disowning our son. It's wrong on ALL levels. Parents will sometimes stick by their children, even if they commit atrocious crimes. However, being gay is NOT a crime, yet we see parents shun their gay kids. My house is a safe house for people who are open and honest. If you can't be honest and open, you are not welcome.

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    9. I'm crying in a cafe in Melbourne, Australia. And this is a cool cafe, fella. You don't cry in here.

      Excellent, excellent post.

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    10. What a wonderful thing to do and say even before you know if your child will be gay or straight. It will mean so much to your child someday. I have a gay child. I was never really surprised when I found out he was gay. I always knew he was different from his brothers but I always knew he was wonderful and it just did not matter. What upsets me is the terrible things people say and do to people just because they are gay. I do know it is getting better and I am so grateful for that.

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    11. I understand your desire to communicate your acceptance of the gay lifestyle to your son. but would you really be so goofy in a letter to your son? I think this is a time to be serious.

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    12. Thanks for this letter. Some here might call it goofy, even absurd. But I have to reiterate the majority of people's sentiments. This is heart-felt, loving, supportive, and just right...

      The words we use are so important. When heterosexual people discuss homosexual people, almost always, the word 'sex' is among the first five words uttered; the notion is our relationships are based on sex. We don't have lives, we have lifestyles. We don't have relationships, we have sex. We have no moral vision, we have an agenda.

      Kudos to you, sir. You and MY father would have much in common, and much to discuss!

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    13. I think being light and 'goofy', as Darek put it, is just what is needed in this situation. A child telling their parent they are gay shouldn't be any more serious than if they were to tell them they like baseball. Cool. Wanna go catch a game some time? I am gay and when I came out to my parents my father packed his bags and left on an impromptu vacation for a week so he didn't have to deal with it or see me. It took him more than a year to talk to me again. We have reconciled and are close again, but it took many long years for that to happen. My point is, I would have LOVED to get a 'goofy' and light-hearted letter in response to telling my dad his little girl is a big ol' dyke.

      Side note: after reading this I believe I got something in my contact... both of them... Very well written hypothetical letter.

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    14. My daughter is gay and I would not change one single thing in our lives. She is beautiful, intelligent, ambitious and an all around wonderful kid. Luckily, I am not one of those parents who are surprised. I just accept.

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    15. Here I am shedding tears in my cubicle and thinking to myself what a beautiful letter. I am not out to my parents. I love them and would rather not even risk hurting them by telling them. But - I do wish I could and if I did that they would be as accepting as you would be / are.

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  2. I try my hardest not to comment/post on issue's that could cause any kind of debate. I feel that I am heavily passionate about the things I believe in and can come off a bit defensive. So I'm taking the time today not to share my feelings and/or opinion on your post, but to tell you how great I think you are...You are brilliant when you write and your passion shines through in a respectable matter of fact way. Your wit and charm is just an added bonus to all who follow you. You dear John, is what this world needs more of!!

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    1. Thanks Jessika! That means a lot. I've really enjoyed writing this Daddy Blog and the comments are what make it worth it.

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    2. OMG amazing. You are one of those people who makes this world a better place. Blessings and love :)

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  3. i wouldn't write a letter, the convo would go something like:

    him: dad, i'm gay.
    me: please, i've known for years. you think i just leave our firewall logs around to collect dust?

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    1. I wish there was a "like" button.

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  4. I had a similar conversation with my daughter. She's only 10 and not expressing a sexual preference yet, but the topic came up. It started with the "there are weirdos on the internet" conversation and grew from there.

    To sum it up,I said "you might one day find out that you are homosexual. Neither your mother nor I will be upset. Honestly, we don't really see what there is to be upset about. I know it all sounds weird now, anyway. When it comes up, I want you to be able to talk to us about it. That being said, we want grandchildren. So, if you ever think you're gay, start looking into adoption agencies. This isn't negotiable."

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    1. But... what if she doesn't want kids?

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    2. More importantly, what if she's not competent to raise children?

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    3. I suspect that last line was tongue in cheek. :)

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  5. Someone privately brought up a good question. What if your son is only out to you and not his friends? Are you going to make him keep his door open with them? Wouldn't that risk outing him? That is a good question that I hadn't thought of in my hypothetical letter. I guess I'd have to revisit that decision under those circumstances.

    Anyway, thought I'd throw that in there since I thought it was a valid concern.

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    1. just make your home an open door rule for all the kids that way your covered. no need to close a bedroom door when friends are over no matter what thr gender.

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    2. What the other anon said. Seriously, I wouldn't want them doing any other stupid things, no mater what the gender combination inside the room is. Me and my girlfirends did stupid stuff when they came over too, specially because they thought we where all girls and nothing bad would happen.

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    3. perhaps he's straight and this was a devious way to get you to let him shut the door while he gets it on with betty bigtits.

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    4. Plus, there are bi folks out there. I think open doors should be standard for everyone.

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  6. John, I have loved you and have been so proud of you from the first time I laid eyes on you. I didn't think it was possible to love you more or to be prouder of you. I was wrong. Your children, and I hope you have a bunch of them, are incredibly fortunate to have you and Stevie as parents. Every child should be so fortunate!! Love you, Jan

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  7. This is seriously one of the best things I have ever read. I am saving it and recommending it to every person I know. Fantastic.

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    1. You, sir, are my hero. I think this should be required reading for all new parents.

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  8. This is seriously one of the best things I have ever read. I am saving it and recommending it to every person I know. Fantastic.

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    1. Thanks Ashley! I'm stoked that you enjoyed it. Please keep reading, and yes, by all means... share share share!

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  9. "Fucking epic" doesn't even come close to describing this. THIS GUY KNOWS HOW TO RAISE KIDS.

    I'm heterosexual and 37. My dad's pretty already pretty awesome, but can I adopt you as a second dad?

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    1. Ha ha! Thanks Benjamin. It would be difficult to be your dad since we're pretty close to the same age... well same decade at least. Thanks for the compliment though! Please keep reading!

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  10. That was beautiful. Thank you for restoring a little bit of my faith in humanity.

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  11. BRILLIANT. We just welcomed our second little girl into this world two weeks ago, and I can only hope that our society will continue to mature about the way they view the LGBT community. My hope is that it won't even be an issue to be concerned about by the time my girls are young ladies and they start falling in love. Wishing you the best with your family!

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  12. BRILLIANT. We just welcomed our second little girl into this world two weeks ago, and I can only hope that our society will continue to mature about the way they view the LGBT community. My hope is that it won't even be an issue to be concerned about by the time my girls are young ladies and they start falling in love. Wishing you the best with your family!

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    1. I agree wholeheartedly. If I ever do get to approach this topic with my son, maybe it will be a non issue inside the house AND outside the house. Wouldn't that be fantastic!

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  13. I think if my HGS made a big deal of coming out, I'd have to troll him mercilessly by threatening to tell him my own sexual preferences, in cringe-inducing detail.

    Seriously kid, I think we'd have twigged when you brought your boyfriend home to meet us. And if you haven't yet, hurry up and do it already. We have all *kinds* of embarrassing baby photos we've been saving up all these years. :D

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  14. This is beautiful. Absolutely beautiful. What a lucky little man your son will be. Thank you for your transparency! I actually sent this to my parents who are 100% against my brother's sexual preference. He is one of the kindest, compassionate souls I know and it breaks my heart that he has to deal with hate and ignorance from his own parents.

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    1. I'm sorry to hear that. I hope both your parents and your brother find some peace. Please send them my love.

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  15. Amazing. I hope this ignites more of a notice on the "Blog-O-Sphere" I read it with my 2 year old son on my lap. He was watching Super Why, I saw it on a Reddit post. I cried. Just amazingly beautiful and the kind of Dad I aspire to be. New reader here! :-)

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    1. Glad to have you! Thanks for reading.

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  16. Fantastic letter to your hypothecatly gay son. I give you the highest of fives.

    If our daughter or if when baby 2.0 comes along and either one say that they're gay, I hope to be as eloquent and San thoughtful as you.

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  17. John kinnear- my folks made me have the door open when friends were over even though they knew I liked the opposite gender. Sex isn't the only concern some parents have- others worry about drugs, alcohol or internet access. His parents could easily spin it as them being strict about that to cover for him.

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    1. Good call! I'll keep that in mind if the situation ends up presenting itself :)

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  18. That was beautifully written. It gave me the chills and made me cry. Every parent should feel that way about their kiddos. You are a good man John.

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  19. Love this. I was living in a bubble thinking that everyone in Utah was loving and accepting of gays. Just seemed like everyone I associated with was. Till the Chick Fil A fiasco. ....ugh! My best friend is gay and I love him more than life itself. Our son is named after him even. Being gay doesn't make you any better or worse. You're just human.

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  20. When I was younger me and my siblings got sat down by our father and told that "if at any stage we thought we were that way inclined.." we needed to "tell him as soon as we know so he can fix it" .... needless to say it lead to me being 24 and still keeping a secret and holding resent for a man that doesn't want to get to know me.. Parents remember to not just talk at your kids.. talk with them.. well that's my 2 cents :-) .. wonderful letter above,, had me in tears.. and feeling a bit jealous of your children :P

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  21. I am currently holding my month old son and can honestly say I don't know what I'd do. I'd probably bawl my eyes out. His father would probably rage and yell. Don't get me wrong, I'm an advocate for LGBT and have even struggled with my sexual preference in the past. But somehow staring at this tiny being in my arms... I really can't say what I'd do. Same goes for my daughter. I don't know that my husband would disown him or her, he's not a cruel man, but when we discuss the possibility even in jest he is against it completely. Sure I'd love for my son to come home and say "Mom, I found the perfect girl and I want to marry her." but I'd support him and love him just the same if he said he'd found the perfect guy.

    This is just one of those things were you have to say "We'll cross that bridge when we get there."

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    1. Well, I doubt you'll get there, because kids figure out what their parents (and society) expect of them even without being told directly. They will intuit that Dad doesn't want them to "turn out" gay, and that is when they build a closet... And I don't want to be harsh in the comments of such a great post, but did you really have kids because of what YOU could get out of THEM? I'm sorry your husband is "against it completely" but he really doesn't have a say in the matter, and if he is not capable of dealing with it in adult (i.e. loving) manner, maybe he should have held off having kids until he grew up some more. Think if it this way, would you have a kid and then think it was fair to expect that kid to fulfill your wish of having them be a doctor when they got older? They at least have more of a chance of being a doctor if they apply themselves than being straight if they are gay. I'm troubled by the fact that you "struggled with your preference" and yet you would be sad if your kid happened to be gay. I guess I just don't get it.

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    2. Cloudie, if/when the time comes look into your heart. There you will find that boundless love for your child that only a parent can truly appreciate. Trust that love. My parents did. It took a bit of time, but they came around. My dad said to my mom, after he found out and railed against it for a while: "He's happier than I have ever seen him. How can we be against that?"

      Love wins. And love wins when we let love win.

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  22. Beautifully written letter. I don't know you John, but rest assure this will go viral. As a girl whom has an amazing father, it makes me happy knowing that others have amazing fathers as well. Keep doing what you're doing!!! I'm sharing for sure!

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  23. I came across your letter by chance, in a link on Twitter. I have retweeted it on both my Twitter accounts. It is so beautiful and honest and hearfelt. Thank you for writing it.

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  24. So I am a first time mother and my daughter is barely 11 months old and I am FREAKING OUT. I worry all the time about how I am going to keep her feeling awesome about herself when it feels like the rest of the outside world is meant to destroy her. The section in your letter about how home is a safe place for your son and how he is loved there no matter what is exactly what I have been struggling to articulate for now and the future. If you don't mind, I plan on borrowing your words.

    Thank you for being a great father.

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  25. What a beautiful letter. Your children, no matter the sexual preference they have, are lucky to have you as a parent.

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  26. You will be different, sometimes you'll feel like an outcast, but you'll never be alone. You will make my strength your own. You will see my life through your eyes, as your life will be seen through mine. The son becomes the father and the father becomes the son. And I will be with you always.

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    1. That was fantastic. Thank you for adding it!

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    2. Hey look, it's a quote from Superman Returns.

      Also, nice work, John.

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  27. This is gorgeous, and you very nearly brought me to tears. I've saved it, just in case it comes up in my life in the future. I have two boys, ages 8 and 10, and who knows what will happen? I hope you won't mind too much if I borrow your beautiful words.

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    1. Thank you so much. Use them all you like!

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  28. Just beautiful, thank you. Letting you know I will be including this post in my monthly round post up of "What I Loved on OTHER People's Blogs" at the end of August.

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    1. Thank you so much! I'm so glad you enjoyed it. I'm also very excited to have found your blog. I'll probably be spending a little too much time looking through your archive! Thanks for reading, and for the shout out.

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  29. After all of the hatred we have recently been seeing out there in the blogosphere (and in our own communities), seeing this has restored my faith in humanity. THANK YOU. This was so beautiful it made me cry.

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  30. I don't have much to say except thank you. I grew up in a very small, right wing town in Utah, and as a teenager I would say things like, "If I ever have a gay son I'll disown him so fast his ears will bleed." I was young and ignorant and everyone else felt the same way. Luckily, only a few years later I had opened my eyes a little and when a good friend of mine came out I couldn't have been more proud of him. I still know a lot of people, many of them close family, who feel very differently about this, and it really hurts to see so much hate coming from such good people. In summation, thank you for just loving. It's so needed right now.

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  31. If teenagers have to leave their bedroom doors open, how are they supposed to fuck? Don't make no sense.

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  32. Dear Son/Daughter:

    I'm sorry if my reaction was underwhelming last night when you told me you were gay. Raised in this household for better than a decade you know that I am supportive of gar rights etc. The fact that its "in my own home" now doesn't affect me at all.

    Which is why I'm apologizing. Like turning 16 or being a debutante or whatever you only come out once. I didn't mean to not make it a big event for you. So if you want a coming out party or something let's get together soon and get planning.

    I also want you to realize that this gives you no special benefits. You still need to be home by curfew, I still want to meet who you're dating, and if anyone hurts you - they gotta come thru me. I still expect you to treat others with courtesy and respect.

    If you were expecting some negative side effect I do have one for you. We are going to have to have a longer and more detailed discussion on disease and safe sex. I'm sorry if it makes you squirm, but Lord knows where you will get your information otherwise, and you need to hear the facts at least once, and so it lands to me.

    We can plan your party afterwards if it helps.

    Love, mom

    P.S. Remember when you got that bad haircut and some kids teased you? I said if they didn't pick on your hair it would have been something else - your name, your clothes, some hobby. They would have found something. Well, being gay is like that. Some people will hate you. And those people usually have a long list of people they hate - immigrants, Muslims, women who vote, whatever. Because haters hate, it's just what they do. Being gay will open a lot of love and wonderment into your world and make it better. But it will also bring some ugly people. Try to be respectful, ignore them as much as possible, and if they physically attack... your dad and I already taught you plenty of self defense. Stay within the law and you'll be fine, but try to avoid conflict, okay?

    Lastly, obviously your father and I are straight. Please don't call us "breeders". I really hate that term. You sound like the GOP when you reduce me to my ability to reproduce. I'm not a 'breeder' I'm your mother.

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    1. Thank you so much for posting your letter! I loved it!

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  33. so.. can you win "Dad of the Year" now, or do you need to wait for the package actually to arrive?

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  34. Well said. My son is now 9 and probably not gay but I was thinking of writing something like this anyway, just in case. But instead we just talked. It was good.

    Matt
    "Love is all you need" - John Lennon

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  35. A bit ago I was discussing computer programming with some friends. One decided to tell us he is gay. Keep in mind this had nothing to do with our discussion of computers nor was he hitting on anyone in the room. It was just a statement. I replied with "That has nothing to do with anything. You don't tell us who you sleep with and I won't tell you about my three years in a Federal Penitentiary." Of course NOW the room was aghast. I told them I was a guard, but the point is, no one cares and it is not relevant, so why make a deal out of it?

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    1. Being gay isn't just about who you sleep with. It's about who you love. Being gay isn't some personal sexual kink that propriety obligates us to keep private. It's about dating, love, marriage, raising kids ... If you wouldn't have a problem with some guy talking about his wife and kids, then you shouldn't have a problem with some guy telling you he's gay. If you can't help but picture the guy having sex when he tells you that, the problem is yours, not his.

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    2. Amen, mediatedlife! The end of DADT has allowed me to finally be out, to share with my colleagues the 25-year relationship I have with my husband. No more secrets or lies, just honesty.

      No one cares? Tell that to the crowds who fight against my freedoms every day. Obviously, THEY care. And if supporters do not show that they care, too, then it is the enemy who wins.

      Not relevant? Some day, maybe. But seeing my husband and I are denied the right to adopt, to share the legal benefits, rights, and privileges of our marriage, to be protected in our jobs and homes from dismissal . . . it is extremely relevant.

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  36. Darn it ... this made me cry at work, and I even wore mascara today.

    This is just lovely.

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  37. no need to write this.
    your kid will know all of this before he can make out all the words.

    Bravo.

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  38. Very very lucky kids to have parents with such beautiful, caring thinking. They must be very proud of you. God bless you all.

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  39. Being gay, even today, doesn't have to be a "hard path" - my father told me that when I came out to him at 24 in 1994. But looking back, it seems like a lot of things are only as hard as you make them. I've experienced a few cases of discrimination, but I was thankful the people were so transparent so I could make a better choice to be in a more supportive environment.

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  40. I'm trying to type through tears! I read the letter from the father disowning his son earlier this morning and was disgusted and heartbroken that a parent could disown their child. I just read your letter and my faith in humanity has been restored. I don't know what to say other than thank you for being a wonderful human being. It's so important for children to know that they can go to their parents with anything and not worry about being judged or worse, disowned. Your children are extremely lucky!

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  41. "I will go to war for you." I wiish this was the mantra of every single parent to every single child...no matter what "surprise" the child comes out with. As a parent you should never think otherwise...IMO. Thank you for this letter.

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    1. It just goes to show we always need to be ready for surprises. And this could well be a surprise since it is a minority and I'm guessing doesn't always fit the stereotype.

      I might say something different than "going to war" though... that seems to be a favorite activity of the haters :) Maybe something about leaving those haters behind and building a better world. Just my 0.0001% improvement to something nearly perfect!

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  42. Bravo! Way to be! The world needs more understanding, acceptance and unconditional love...ESPECIALLY from parents.

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  43. Thank you so much! This will be something I keep forever.

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  44. Great letter. I especially like the idea of it being a contract of support.

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  45. First time reader here, but I promise it won't be the last. What an amazing, beautiful post. You, sir, are amazing.

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  46. I really enjoyed reading your post. It struck a cord with me but for slightly different reasons as my girlfriend and I are raising our little boy as part of a same sex family. I have always tried to answer any question he has and have found the questions becoming more frequent recently as he's coming up to his 10th birthday this October. We too have had the "when you're older you may have girlfriends or you may have boyfriends" chat and he knows that no matter what as long as he's happy then that's all we want for him. I've given him a basic birds and bees talk but have said that if he's got a specific question I'll always do my best to answer it. We have some great male friends that I can ask for info!

    Nevertheless I am thankful everyday that he knows he is loved. I feel such a sense of pride when I hear him say he's got to go because his parents are here when he sees my girlfriend and I. He tells us he loves us both and likes having two mums.

    My only wish would be that my Mum could have been more understanding but the fact that she wasn't can not change who I am. Thank you again for your inspirational post.

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  47. Thank you for writing something so beautiful and compassionate. It will stay with me always.

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  48. first time reader, but what a joy. thank you for posting.

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  49. I love this. Thank you for writing it.

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  50. Oh, crap, now I'm crying at work. Thank goddess no one's around!

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  51. You are going to be an incredible father. Lucky kid. Thanks for writing this.

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  52. Wow, what an awesome letter and what an awesome father you aspire to be! You go boy! I just have one comment on diction. You used the phrase "sexual preference" in your opening paragraph. Bondage is a sexual preference. Being gay is a sexual orientation. Stay proud, dad.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Richard. Great point. Anytime I write it in the future I'll use sexual orientation. Thanks for reading!

      Delete
  53. My heart goes out to any gay man or woman whose parents decide to disown them by letter. Cried while reading, I hope the man that posted the letter is living a fulfilling life. I'm always disgusted when people tells others that I don't want to see you unless you live your life as I want you to.

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  54. Dear Hypothetical Father,

    Thanks for reducing this very personal and intimate moment as an opportunity for you to get validation from the internet.

    Sincerely,

    Your hypothetically gay son who wishes he had a different hypothetical dad.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ricky,
      I assume that you're not familiar with how common being disowned due to sexual orientation is and what a toll this takes on the individual. The more we talk about these issues, less of a stigma it will be. More people that have been disowned - for whatever reason - could talk about it openly and find there to be more support available than they thought available. And find comfort in that. It strikes at the very core to be disowned, or be made less of a person by the people who are supposed to be your very foundation, those that are supposed to love you unconditionally.

      Delete
    2. Dear Ricky,

      Shut up.

      Sincerely,

      Everyone Else

      Delete
    3. Dear Ricky,
      You are a jerk.

      Delete
    4. Dear Ricky,

      Thanks for reducing this very personal and intimate moment as an opportunity for you to get validation from the internet.

      Sincerely,

      People who read on the Internet for interesting things such as this, not just self centered morons who need everything to be about them.

      (see what I did there?)

      Delete
    5. I'm going to tell you what you all do that keeps people like "Ricky" in that stunted intellectual state. YOU all acknowledge him!! People give ignorant people attention and the ignorance is fueled. Ignore this person and he grows because if he doesn't he'll never be seen. The worst thing you can do is fan the ignorance which fuels the flame and the person only learns he can remain ignorant and bring you with him to that ignorant place when you call him names in response.

      Delete
    6. Dear Ricky,

      Shut up and remember that you're hypothetical.

      Delete
    7. Ricky,

      If you read John's other posts, you'll see that the tone & nature of his blog is light-hearted, yet very intelligently considered. He evaluates both sides of the story, and reaches a conclusion.

      More importantly, he seems to have recognized what it takes to get a message noticed. The disown letter had gone viral. Here we have a straight father (I'm presupposing) who has taken the time to get offended about that, and to counter it with humour and a positive, up-lifting message.

      At the end, he "self-promotes" to the extent of asking people to support his local "Pride" organization.

      Really, overall, he seems pretty self-less to me. I'd welcome him as a friend, any time.


      Stephen B. in Toronto.

      Delete
  55. I think this is a beautiful letter. If I was gay I'd want you for my dad!

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  56. I'm crying, this is so amazing.
    Thank you.

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  57. Very well done. I applaud it. One nitpicky thing, though. A lot of us abhor the term "sexual preference" because it implies choice, which, as you already know, isn't something we have when it comes to who or which gender we're attracted to. Sexual orientation isn't my fav either, but at least it doesn't imply choice. If I HAD a choice in my sexuality, being gay would NOT be it! I love seeing every time a parent is open and loving enough to say I love YOU in all the myriad forms that may represent itself.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Talon, Thank you. I usually don't edit my posts once they've been published, but it is a really good point. I've made an exception and changed it. I'm so glad you enjoyed the post. Please keep reading!

      Delete
  58. Your future son has a wonderful father!!

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  59. I don't know you, I don't regularly read your blog, but I just have to say that this is beautiful.

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  60. "I will go to war for you." - such powerful and humbling words.

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  61. I believe a parent's duty is to do whatever is BEST for their child(ren). It's ALWAYS best to love them, and make sure they know you love them, NO MATTER WHAT. Bravo to your wonderful "letter."

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  62. Like many, I was smiling and had tears running down my face at the same time. Just knowing a dad like you is out there make me feel better about the world. Whatever the orientation of your son turns out to be, I hope he sees this letter someday and it will be one of a million things reminding him what a great dad and family that he has.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks! Hopefully he sees this one and not the one where I asked the internet if I should circumcise him or not!

      Delete
  63. Thank you. I'm just hoping we can get to marriage equality a little sooner than 2020!

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    Replies
    1. I'll be honest with you Kirk, judging from the day I've had, I think we can make it happen. I truly do. There's a hell of a lot of love out there. Thanks for commenting! Please keep reading :)

      Delete
    2. Yes! That was my thought as well, Kirk. PLEASE let it be much much sooner.

      Delete
  64. I wish I had parents like you. My experience was not so good. Surfice it to say, I don't get to see my parents anymore. I look forward to a day when all dads will be like you. You show what true unconditional love is all about. Thank you so much, you are an inspiration.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You should print-out this letter, and send it to your parents. Sometimes broken relationships need a 'push' to get them moving on the right track.

      I can only imagine that parents who have disowned a child (unless they've been brainwashed) must spend every day regretting it....maybe the different perspective John K. has offered could help them re-open the door.

      OR, if not...it gives you a chance to show them the parents they could have been.


      Stephen B.
      Toronto

      Delete
  65. I have two boys (8 and 6) and whatever sexual orientation they end up, they will always be my sons and they will always be loved. One of my proudest moments so far was when my youngest had to write a paragraph about himself in school last year and he wrote: "I am Milo. I like myself. I am happy to be me. I love my mommy" (his poor father got left out, but he loves him too!). And that's all I ever want for them. I want them to like themselves, not be ashamed of who they are, to be happy to be whoever they are, and be secure in the love of their parents.

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    Replies
    1. You sound like a great mom! Thanks for commenting. Please continue reading!

      Delete
  66. I can't... I don't even know how to respond to this. Something like this shouldn't make me sad, or angry. But it does. It does because seeing good dad's makes me angry about not having one, and sad that my experience is much more closer to the first. Although my letter came in the form of fists, and a man twice my size trying to strangle me while drunkenly screaming how horrible of a person I was.

    So despite my anger, thank you, thank you for being a good dad. Thank you for being awesome and understanding. You know, a lot of us jokingly make comments about how we wish that the worst homophobes get a dose of reality by having a gay kid. But I wouldn't wish that upon anyone, especially after having lived through it.

    I hope that all gay kids can have a dad that us as awesome and compassionate as you are.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. David, It hurts my heart to read how rough you had it. I hope you've found some peace. I'm glad you enjoyed the blog despite it bringing up some negative emotions. My love to you and your family.

      -John

      Delete
  67. You are an amazing human being. The world could use a few more like you.

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  68. You, Sir, are made of awesome. And you children will be, too. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. According to Neil Degrasse Tyson I am made of exploded stars... which is pretty awesome. So I guess you're right!

      Delete
  69. John,

    When I came out to both of my parents, they said something very similar to what you just wrote for your hypothetical yet-to-be-born gay son. Their basic message was "we love you no matter what". When I came out to my 3 straight brothers, they all said the same thing, only with one variation: "if he breaks your heart, we will find him and do what Liam Neeson would do". You do your children proud, John, thank you for this wonderful letter.

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  70. YES. THIS. EVERYTHING.

    I am a heterosexual, married female. I do not think I will ever have kids. That is why I am so incredibly glad that there are people like you out there who are procreating and raising children with integrity, with respect, and with unconditional love.

    The world needs so many more of you.

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  71. That was really beautiful. Thank you.

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  72. Dear John,

    This is to inform you that son is going to grow up to be an awesome Man, just like his Dad. He will be a Man you are proud to know. He will be well adjusted, caring, respectful & accepting. He will be safe in the world, because you set up him up to be strong.
    I came out to my parents almost 30 years ago. It was a different world back then, but I consider myself so blessed that they told me from day one that they still (and always would) love me. It was incredibly hard on them though. This was in the early, devastating days of the AIDS epidemic. They were scared for my life. They are devote Catholics and were scared for my soul. My Dad grew up on the tough streets of Southie, (Boston), so he was scared for my safety. They never wavered in their love and support for me, they embraced my Partner of 18 years now, as another son, and it turns out, they really had nothing to be scared of. I turned out just fine.
    Thank you for this letter, and enjoy the journey ahead with your son!

    Jay

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  73. This was AMAZING! You expressed precisely what I was feeling last week, when our oldest shared with us a desire to no longer be referred to as female (nor male). Specifically, when you said: "If you sensed any sadness in my silence last night, it was because I was surprised that I was surprised." And "Our home is a place of safety and love." And "I will go to war for you." Oh heck . . . the whole thing resonated!

    If only all children could know this amazing unconditional love. No one would ever hear the sort of soul crushing comments made by the father in the letter you referenced. What a wonderful world that would be.

    Best of wishes to you and your family!
    Amy

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  74. Great post. But it's sad that something so OBVIOUS feels like something unique and almost rebellious.

    Like you said, hopefully it should change soon. With the President's endorsement a few months back, I think it might. I actually wrote about what his announcement might mean to the next generation on my blog: http://goo.gl/rnTyQ

    The more of us who parent like this, which is to say like HUMAN EFFING BEINGS, the better the world will be. Keep up the good work.

    www.dadandburied.com

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  75. ♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥
    It's that ^ simple. Good job you've earned yourself a brand new fan.

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  76. I have a gay daughter. I was divorced when she came out ... it was like, Mom? I am gay. Me: OK, pass the salad. Reality is that when our kids are born, they come with certain body parts. Boy parts means, scouting, football, baseball (fill in whatever) and Dad....Girl parts mean: Bride, wedding, mom etc. and you as a child are placed into the box. Labeled with Boy or Girl. When you first tell us that you are gay, you must give us time to digest what you have said -- basically you blew our box apart and it takes a bit of time to reassemble the box. Sure, we may cry - for the loss of a dream, but we still love you, we just need to reassemble our box. I love my daughter for the honest, beautiful person that she is ... I don't care who you sleep with and you shouldn't care who anyone else sleeps with. It is none of your business.
    No one's marriage will harm yours.

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  77. Awesome job John. for all you who cried. tears are 1% water and 99% feelings, and as a gay man i am so greatfull that some people have feelings and no resentment, your son is so lucky to have a dad like you, my dad is supportive of my partner and I . Over the years before my mom passed she was a mom to all the men and women in our community the were rejected by or disowned by there familys. Thank you mom for all that you taught me about acceptance.

    Love Adam

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  78. I have a really good feeling that this is a letter you will never have to give to your son (or a similar letter to your daughter). I'm fairly confident your children are going to be growing up in an environment where they will already know everything you wrote... because I don't get the feeling you're the kind of man to wait to say these things to your children. You'll be instilling them right from birth.

    One thought though - why wait to be an advocate for LGBTs (particularly LGBT-youth), and why wait to educate yourself on safer sex practices for LGBTs? If you're not doing so already, write the letters and sign the petitions starting now. Though again, I have a feeling you are actually already doing this part. ;)

    The reason I ALSO suggest educating yourself on safer sex practices for LGBTs is this: you're raising your kids in a loving, cherishing and supportive environment. Their friends, however, may not have that same amazing experience. And one day, chances are excellent that even if you never have to have that particular "talk" with your own kids, one or more of their friends are going to need a trustworthy adult to look to for guidance... and they're going to think of your son's/daughter's parents. They're going to think of you. I know this path - I've been down it with a few kids myself. :)

    Every parent has the power to change the world for good or ill. We forget that our power doesn't only reach our own kids, but can extend to their friends as well. We're constantly in a position of setting an example for children, and thus helping to shape the adults they'll become. I'm glad your kids will have you to look to... and I'm also glad that their friends will have you as well.

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  79. Shared this. Love it. A lot of what was said here are things EVERY child should hear and know. (And yes...I cried!).

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  80. I didnt like it, sorry, but I dont think that facing the reality is the same as imagining it. I tell you because for several years I thought I was a lesbian, and I wouldnt want my children to be gay. I'd love them and accept them and I accept gay people, but the feeling I had while I was lesbian, I really wouldnt want it for anybody else.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You probably weren't "temporarily" a lesbian. As the saying goes, it may have been a phase....but that would mean you were a straight woman going through a phase of same-sex attraction.

      That's entirely different from being gay / lesbian. In this latter situation, it's who you are. There is no 'other'.

      It also sounds like you were conflicted (and some people are) by this phase. Are you religious? This seems to be the most monochromatic of the brainwashings... I could understand your discomfort, but would suggest it was related to the breach between the teachings and the reality.....not the simple fact of the reality.

      Delete
  81. Thank you. Yes I cried. I would have given anything for this letter or one anywhere near it to have been my parents response. Thank you for already loving and supporting a child that has yet to be born! If more parents were like you more youth would be safe.

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    Replies
    1. This was so profound. I'm a gay 28 year old man, and I had a very accepting, yet "quiet" response from my dad. I think this letter somehow expressed what he has yet been able to articulate even after 10 years. Thank you. I needed this!

      Delete
  82. Man, I don't know you. I stumbled across this on Facebook. I am 37. I don't have children of my own. I'm a straight, single male. So honestly, a lot of people would think this wouldn't impact me, but it did. My father is no longer with us but I have no doubt had I ever come to him with something like this, he would have supported me too. It's a shame that what you expressed in this blog isn't what ALL parents would think and feel.

    Anyway, I just wanted you to know that your words made this fella shed a manly tear. Love it.

    Brad Nicholas, just some dude.

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    Replies
    1. Awesome response. :)

      Delete
  83. I am the very proud mom of a gay son and I could not have said it better myself....brought tears to my eyes. My son came out to me when he was sixteen, but I always knew. He is twenty six now , works ,goes to school and is one the most honorable, honest, intelligent, funny, good looking men I know and I love him like crazy, he has always been a good son. Your letter made me think of how I reacted when he told me and I had to laugh....Thanks so much for sharing!

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  84. John,

    My wife and I welcomed two wonderful boys into the world in January. As a two mom household who has children biologically related to one of us we have thought a ton about what we would say if one of our sons (or both) are gay. My 'wife' and I (thanks Ohio for not letting her legally be my wife and therefore unable to adopt our sons) have decided that it would be insane for us to even worry about having the talk with the boys. Hopefully by the time they discover their sexuality we will have instilled in them the value of each human being and when they tell us with the swooning look of first love in their eyes the name of that love we will be full of joy for their journey in life.

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  85. John - Thank you. I only wish my dad had been half as evolved a human being as you are. Thank you for this.

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  86. You know, kids these days are weird, and not a bad weird, particularly when they're raised by accepting parents from the beginning. I was never a prouder mother than when someone talked negatively about "trannys" in the house and my son, who was 14 or 15 at the time, turned to the person (an adult) and said, "We don't talk about people like that in this house. If you don't like it, please leave." I have a feeling that if my son is gay, I'll find out not by him coming out but by him introducing me to his boyfriend because he has always known that it won't matter to me as long as he's happy.

    Thank you for the letter. I too cried. But I hope that you don't ever need to give it to your son... not because of whatever his orientation is but because he already will know.

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  87. I love this. So much. You truly understand what love is. My mother and I had an argument the other day because she was saying how she believes gay marriage is wrong because it goes against the Bible. Keep in mind, this person is a raging alcoholic who has been convicted of drunk driving 5 times, dabbles in heavy drugs, and is one of the most selfish, negative, abusive people you could ever meet. None of that is really relevant, other than to say that those who think being gay is wrong, are wrong in so many other ways that they have a choice about. I am pregnant with my first child and if one day he tells me he's gay, I will make sure he knows how perfect I still think he is. Thank you for knowing how to love.

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  88. Thanks for this lovely and funny antidote to the fried-chicken-fueled hatred we've had to endure these last few weeks. The world needs more good folk like yourself :)

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  89. Beautiful letter! Thank you for posting and for being such an amazing example of unconditional love.

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  90. I think that, not only are you a very forward thinking person, but a great father as well! Your kids are going to be excellent people, just because you are their father! I'm pretty sure my middle daughter is a lesbian, but she's still young, and I will leave it up to her to tell me :) I, myself, am bisexual, and refuse to tell my father's very Irish Catholic family. I'm not ashamed, I just REALLY like christmas dinner, and don't want to be banned from it! I told my Mom and Grandma in a very awkward, blurt it out, sorta way. They were both very loving and understanding, and supported me all the way! I was VERY worried about telling them, and to give them the utmost credit, after the stunned silence passed, my Grandma said, "Well, honey, you'll always be loved, we don't care who you love." My mom gave me a big hug. The first time I brought a girlfriend home they both were AWESOME! I very much applaud you, sir!

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  91. HOLY COW I am crying!!! Everything positive said up there ^^ and a whole bunch of other stuff that I'm not eloquent enough to articulate right now because I'm totally dumfounded by your awesomeness.

    *HIGH FIVE*

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  92. The "original" letter is quite likely a fabrication. People with agendas don't mind lying.

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    Replies
    1. Indeed. Like people who assume such letters have to be forgeries produced by the people who seek freedom and justice for all, not just white straight Christians.

      Delete
  93. this was SO touching. I wish that parents would support their kids no matter what, like they are supposed to. Give that unconditional love, emphasis on unconditional.

    This letter was so well written, I hope any parent who sees this will take it to heart and remember it if/when their child tells them they're gay

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  94. Made me cry. I have never understood parents who disown their children - how can you sever all those million little quirks and genes and memories? And it your religion commanded it, wouldn't you turn and question your religion. This is the one love in the world that should never fail. I have always told my daughters, if they ever needed me, for whatever, I would be there. Even if it was murder. My reply to their panicked call would be - "Well, you must have had a damn good reason. what do a you need now? A shovel or a lawyer?" So thank you - your journey in parenthood will be a joy.

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  95. This is probally the third article i read, buit the first one that i have sctually made it through from begging to end with out having to get up and go to work!! I am 27 and it took my mom about 11 years to get use to the fact that im bi, as on the other hand my dad, who retired of of the NAVY after 20 years just straight out told me if it makes me happy, continue being happy no matter who you are with!! I myself have a 7yr, and when the time comes that if he dose come out hell know that the first thing that i want to do is meet the other person and for him to also know that no matter wat HE IS MY SON AND I WILL LOVE FOR HIM, NO MATTER WHAT HIS SEXUAL ORENTATION IS!!!!

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  96. Hi John,
    As a mother of a wonderful, beautiful, intelligent human being, who is to be gay, I am so touched by your letter. We have always been open with our children and happy to say that there was no drama with the "coming out" episode. We love our perfect(at least in our eyes)child and the perfect partner who is her soul mate.

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  97. Thank you, thank you, thank you for having the heart, the wisdom and the courage to write this beautiful letter. To say it is an inspiration is an understatement. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

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  98. What a gorgeous letter and I agree with many posters that you will never have to use it because your kids will already know that you will accept them for who they are. Also, you're the kind of person who I think will have said these things in person. In terms of the open/closed door policy, for me that wouldn't be an issue. I trust my son enough that if he wants the door closed, he can have it closed. I don't think having a rule that everybody has to keep their door open is going to stop kids from doing anything; they'll just do it somewhere else, somewhere less safe probably. What stops or at least helps discourage kids from doing unsafe things is being respected, being informed, and having a sense of self-worth. I would talk to my son about safe sex, about early sex, and then assume he is capable of chaperoning himself in his own room. Telling him to keep the door open is telling him that I don't trust him and that if he wants to do those things, he's going to have to sneak around.

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  99. I told my son's ex-girlfriend when she came out..."grab a deep seat and hang on tight because it is a rough ride." Fortunately, her mother was very supportive. I have been with my partner for 20 years....we are still relegated as "friends" at family events. I am hoping that it will be different for my grandchildren, but letters like this give me hope. We are changing one person at a time. Thank you!!!

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  100. Your son is lucky to have a dad like you. Well said.

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  101. I'm a boy who also has birthday in November, and I am gay. My dad isn't as loving as you are, and I would just like to say that your son is so INCREDIBLY lucky to have you as a father. Not every person in this world has such a loving, and accepting, and supportive like father like you. Me included. I'd personally like to thank you for already being such an amazing father, and all around human being. I can't tell you enough how I wish I had a father like you. Thank you for making this world a little better, for your boy, for the people in your community who may be having troubles with their families concerning sexuality, and for all of us out there who dream that our fathers and mothers would write us a letter as amazing as the one you wrote here.

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  102. I'd have given anything for my dad to respond this way. Thank you so much.

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  103. Vote 1. JK for boss of the world! I've been plagued by James' hate letter. Now I'm content! Got my vote mate.

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  104. Thanks for this. IT's a beautiful and profound piece of writing. But moreover it's a profound piece of parenting. You'll be a good dad. I know, because I have one.

    A few years back my dad was going through some health difficulties so for the first time in a while he went back to church. It was his birthday and it was Father's Day and Pride weekend, so off he went with Mom. Expecting a nice Father's Day themed homily, he got instead a screed about the Pride Parade. The priest railed against homosexuality and said nothing about love. My Dad stood up, and slowly, on his cane, walked out of that church.

    My heart swelled with pride when I heard that. It still does. The power of love of a Dad is incredible. Don't ever forget it.

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  105. Best letter ever. If my son, who is now 5, is gay and he has the courage to let us know, this letter is exactly what my husband and I would want him to know. Loved without reserve for who he is.

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  106. I am literally crying. Fight hate with love... That is the path. I hope RegBarc's "father" reads this and lets it become the change he needs to go back to being a "dad" (I fear, however, that he has never really been one...).

    All my love. You and your family have a place at my table in Madrid (here is already 2020 and gay/lesbian couples can get married with exactly equal rights as straight people).

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  107. I am profoundly honored to have read this. I am incrediably sad that it was needed. I find it astonishing in the world we live in today that this is still an issue. I don't understand and I don't get it.

    I have been in the position of having the privelage of helping a young teenage male through this. He is not my son but I consider him to be one of mine, he sleeps at my place often and he is part of my home.

    Everything that you have said above you said so much more graceously than I was capable of doing.

    Thank you.

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  108. Fabulous letter! I was crying.... The only part I dont understand is why the boy would have to "leave [his] bedroom door open". I mean, m2m sex has no potentially disastrous consequences such as pregnancy, and is therefore more like harmless playing. But I definitely would not delay in having that safe-sex talk because there are some really nasty sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) out there.

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  109. My parents have been openly ashamed and embarrassed since I came out (13+ years ago) and are terrified still that someone who knows them might find out. Yet, they insist they love me "unconditionally." This doesn't feel unconditional to me, but when I tell them how much it hurts me they say I have no more right to ask them to change their minds than they have to ask me to change mine. I almost think this purgatory of acceptance is worse than just plain rejection - at least then I could have walked away and started healing years ago. After all this time I still don't know what to do. Any insight from anyone is appreciated (except the ones telling me I'm going to hell and stuff - I know that already, no need to repeat yourselves).

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    Replies
    1. I'm sorry to hear this, your Purgatory analogy makes a lot of sense. They are clearly uneducated about the matter and steeped in their own anti-gay world.... Maybe you can ask them to do some reading that you provide, or spend some time with you and your partner (if you have one) with as open minds as possible? But maybe, for your own emotional health, you need to be the one to pull away as living proof that their love is not, as they say, unconditional. Then maybe they'll have incentive to try harder to "get" it, or you can start healing.

      Delete
  110. so I just wanted to say thanks for restoring some of my faith in humanity. I have a very caring and loving support system myself, but with the influx of negative news because of all the hate its so good to see that other people in the world are loving and care. Also, this letter is amazing, but you wont need it, not even if you're surprised. You're gonna be a great parents and they will know that you're home is always a place of safety and love.

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  111. I just cried like a baby.

    We know what is it like to be happy, for we have felt sadness. We know what it is like to hope, for we have been hopeless. We know what it is like to feel the light, for we have felt darkness. We know what it is like to love, for we have hated.

    Thank you for giving so many so much hope...

    H.O.P.E = Hold On, Pain Ends

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  112. Infinitely way more cool of a dad response than my father's. But then again, "get AIDS and die" leaves lots of room for improvement by just about anything. Still, excellent way to love your son, not just some future dream of who he will be.

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  113. My mother told me when I was 18 (in 1981) that if I was gay, I should never tell her. She didn't want to know and didn't think she could take it. Except I was gay and I had known since I was 12 years old. I was terrified my parents would abandon me if I told them. I finally did tell her when I was 27, and while saying she loved me, she said she was afraid for me and that I shouldn't tell my father. She wouldn't listen to anything I had to say about even the simplest details about my life -- like I'd been dating a guy for a year (an MIT grad student, while I was a Harvard grad student), we broke up, etc. I started wearing an earring at the same time and my father would not let me in the house for 3 years if I was wearing if, even though he didn't officially know I was gay. I had to force him to learn to deal with it just before I was getting my PhD at the Harvard Commencement in 1993. He really thought he would skip his son's PhD graduation because of an earring. It still boggles the mind. I finally came out to him a few years ago (when he was 90 years old). He took it OK. He says he still loves me. I thinks I should desist so I don't catch anything. He won't talk about it. He least he hasn't disowned me, and otherwise his attitude toward me (pretty neutral and distant anyway) hasn't changed.

    So to read your letter to your son is really heartwarming, if difficult to read for those of us who will never have the wonderful father that you are to become. We will have to temper our sadness with the hope for the future that you and other parents represent. Best wishes, Roland Dunbrack

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    1. (small typo: "He thinks I should desist...")

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  114. As the parent of three kids, one gay, one bi, one straight, I can say, "Well done." That's the kind of letter every parent of a gay child should write.

    My oldest, who is gay, has heard horror stories from some LGBT friends who came out to their parents and were hit, disowned, etc. She almost feels bad for the fact that my response to her announcement was, "Yes, sweetheart, I know. Could you please hand me that mixing bowl?"

    The response should got from me should be the norm, not the exception. Kids are beautiful and perfect just as they are. It's high time society, and most importantly their parents, started to realize that.

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  115. Another one in tears. I'm a mom of a boy and girl and I'm with you. Nothing will change if my children turn out to be gay. They are only 8 and 9 and they know that gay is okay in this house. (My niece is gay). So this is a house of acceptance.

    But your letter, it's amazing and that little boy in your wife's womb is blessed to have two wonderful parents.

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  116. THANK YOU for writing a letter the world needed to read! I saw a link to the Huff version on Pinterest, read it and cried, emailed it to my husband with the line "this is how to father" (for when our time comes... he loved it too of course), shared it on Twitter.

    a couple of my favourite parts include "I would go to war for you" and at the end, "you're welcome at our dinner table anytime."

    Beautiful!!


    Jennifer in Canada

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  117. This made my day. Not crying. No, not at all. There's just... dust. Everywhere.
    My family took it well when I told them, but I think every parent should be like this.
    Thank you for writing this. :)

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  118. Thank you for your example - THAT is the unconditional love of a parent. Your child (and may you have many) is lucky to have you - no matter who they turn out to be.

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  119. A lovely letter. I'm glad you have changed "sexual preference" to "sexual orientation".
    I am a straight, married woman with no kids. My husband and I will have been married for 25 years come this September. And I want to make it very clear that, gay or straight, NO ONE else's marriage threatens my own. How ridiculous! And if I'd had kids, their happiness would have been what was important to me, NOT their sexual orientation.
    I came to read your lovely letter via a friend posting it on FaceBook, where it wound up on my newsfeed. Just FYI.
    One of my very best friends (male) from college was gay. As was my college room mate (female). In our freshman year, within days of each other, they both came out to me. The conversations were almost identical: "I have to tell you something." "What?" "You know." I thought I did, but I didn't want to assume. Once they told me, my response was something along the lines of "OK. That doesn't change anything between us." And it didn't.
    My parents, who were old enough to be my grandparents (both born in 1916), had no problem whatsoever in welcoming both into their home for any occasion. (The year was 1980. Graduated in 1983.) My mom was sad for Vlad because of the difficulties that would lie ahead for him. Unfortunately, she was right in that his own father was, to say the least, not a supportive man. But he did have the support of his mom & sister. And my mom and all of his friends.
    When speaking with my parents after I'd finished college and I'd mention that I'd spoken with Vlad, my dad would sometimes ask if Vlad was "still gay." And I would that yes he was "still gay" and always would be. I explained that it was part of who he was. It wasn't a phase or a choice. He finally got it. My mom never asked that question. She only wanted to know if he was happy.
    I had wonderful parents.
    Like your children (born and not yet born) have.

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  120. This stupid letter didn't make me cry. Not a bit. I was an active duty Marine, for pity sake. Totally didn't cry.

    Now, what the heck is this in my eye?

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  121. After reading this it makes me realize how disappointing I am in my own father, that he could not have this amount of compassion and support for my brother, his son. I implore others to share this letter to boost the awareness of this mindset. It may save a lot of people, from a lot of pain, rather... I know it will.

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  122. As a parent, I salute you. Your words embody unconditional love.

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  123. Wonderful. Your son will be a very lucky boy to get a dad like you.

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  124. This is exactly what I would say to my child if the situation presents itself. Beautifully written!

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  125. This was amazing, and made me cry. Your children are incredibly fortunate to have you, and I hope parents all over the world read this.

    You have the love.

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  126. Being the mother of potentially gay children, I would expect nothing less than a letter like this from a parent who loves their child for who they are, not what they want them to be. That being said, I've already decided to be open to whom ever my children connect with. In fact, I'll be so over joyed that they connected with someone, I will be beside myself. Here is a potential quote: " You are a man who likes to wear women's clothes? Fabulous, let's go for a girl trip to Value Village...!" " Women are confusing to you? Well, they confuse me and I am one..." " On a really hot summer day, I actually wish I was a guy, so that I could go topless, I get so jealous."

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