So where are we now?

Those who are adjusting to the idea of a gay child can still find it hard to accept. Silver Fox and Green Pepper, who have known about their son for a year and a half, struggle to find a positive side, as does Maya. Others, like Bianca and Jon, take a practical point of view: ‘She is less likely to have an unwanted pregnancy.’

Some are still finding it hard, despite their love for their child. Gabrielle says: ‘Although my son is very masculine (hence my surprise), he is also very intuitive and sensitive. Just the way he is altogether is very special. I am searching to be fully embracing with no hidden thoughts. To be fully present in the love I give. Not because I am politically correct or fearful to be homophobic but because I recognize the beauty of my son who has suffered so much’.

Some have no reservations: Bianca and Jon just say: ‘She is amazing’Rosie says: ‘I’ve always got on with gay men and now I have two of my own. My sons are fabulous. I wouldn’t change a thing.’

Others, like Lesley, see positive attributes in LGBT people generally: ‘…many gays are the kindest and most thoughtful of people’.

At one point it seemed as if Maya could see nothing positive at all having a gay son. However, later on, she says: ‘As hard as it has been coming to terms with my son’s sexuality, I am finding since coming to the group meetings that I am becoming stronger and less emotional about the situation. I wish I’d known about the group a long time ago. Ultimately in the future I would like to give my support to young black/ethnic minority young people who are not only coming to terms with their sexuality but also those who have not been fortunate enough to have understanding parents’.

For Mercedes one good thing about having a gay son is that it has meant: ‘Meeting parents via who love and support their LGB&T children unconditionally and are prepared to agitate/advocate for positive changes in legislation for the benefit of all LGB&T people in the UK and worldwide. FTL has been very helpful. I am still sad and angry about the hostile treatment and lack of basic human rights towards LGB&T people in many countries.’

Those who are active in the LGB&T world, either supporting parents or active in campaigning, see the benefits. Claire says: ‘Life will just be a bit more complicated. They and we will have to keep educating others for the rest of our lives.’Marcia feels that: ‘It has given me a fuller understanding of the LGB&T community. I feel more rounded.’ Rosie says: ‘Making things better for my children is something I feel passionate about. I want to change the world and that’s a very powerful feeling.’ For Eliza, the advantage is: ‘The people I have met and places I have been as a parent of a gay son’.

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