Teen Parenting - Dad, Will You Accept Me if I'm Gay?


  • Author Ian Knabel
  • Published September 12, 2011
  • Word count 920

I can't seem to find a good reason as to why I have to delve deeply into this issue, now that all four of my boys are all grown up and are all healthy and heterosexual. But I think I want this blog to be an eye opener, and I want to put lay emphasis on gay teens and parental acceptance.

Probably, most of you would say, "You don't have gay teens, so how would it be possible for you to know anything about the subject?" I know I can be biased towards certain points, but it can actually be easy to learn to accept gay teens just the way they are without being stubborn and thinking about your societal image. Even if most don't accept this idea, the fact that most parents can't accept gay teens for fear of their societal image collapsing screams for worldwide attention.

If my memory is not mistaken, there was a time in the past when I also worried about my teen boys becoming homosexuals. I'd say those were some tough years and I was lucky none of them became one. However, if one of them did turn out to be a homosexual, I would be accommodating even though it would be difficult. Perhaps, this alone has given me the privilege to speak about parenting heterosexual and homosexual teenagers. Most parents would not agree with me, but a few I'm sure would definitely be glad seeing my concern over the issue.

How will you respond or how will you react when your teens confess that they are homosexuals? This is a nightmare most parents especially dads face. It seems that the impact of homosexuality among teens has greater effect on fathers than mothers for certain reasons. And, there seems to be no exact reason why teens are predisposed to homosexuality, but it is linked with a few factors such as upbringing. So, basically there should not be an issue on gay teen parental nonacceptance considering that as parents, we are responsible for the existence of teen homosexuality.

Going back to the question, each parent would typically manifest various responses to the confession. This is absolutely normal, and it may take some time for parents to finally decide whether they can accept their teens or not. However, whatever you decide, bear in mind that the crucial stage of teenage years brings many discrepancies, doubts and identity crisis among teens. Knowing this should help you think about your decision, and should lead you to accept them whether they are homosexuals or not. As I was saying earlier, homosexuality among teens can only be a part of the process in which you as parents must go through.

Acceptance means accepting the the entire process. I have learned of this in my many years of being a father. And, there is no full hundred percent assurance of learning the whole thing after its completion. But, I'd say, learning to accept gay teens or homosexuality always begins with recognizing the long periods it may take for you as a parent to learn it. Whilst you take your time understanding the whole thing, shower them with your unconditional love wrapped in care and understanding. Assure them that you accept them as they are as this will be the only thing they can hold on to. Never let them feel that you are questioning your love for them, but rather divulge your doubts and fear about having to deal with their identity in general. Let them realize your points as parents and that at times you are caught incessantly between those thoughts and you are not yet ready to face it and that it takes time.

Ask for their patience, is what I mean. In all the other issues that parents of teenagers face, this has always been a second option. At times, teens may show their impatience and may tend to become rebellious in many ways especially when they do not understand as to why you cannot accept them the way they are. So, a lot of explaining is necessary. Do not ignore them after their confession. It's been very difficult for them as well - accepting their own identity, and if you compounded it by ignoring them, negative possibilities can occur.

One negative possibility I often hear and read about over the Internet is imperfection in the future. When you keep them thinking about how significantly different they are from other teens, they are taking a back seat with their relationships causing them to feel imperfect and alienated. I am sure you would not want this to happen to your teens. So, we should not be uncomfortable embracing this teen feeling of imperfection among homosexual teens.

Further, continuously communicate with them, as this helps a lot while you learn to accept their identity. Finding a good time or taking a moment to spend some memorable event with them will help them feel good. They would appreciate it so much, and it would make them feel genuine acceptance from you. Remember, your teens expect so much from you and rely strongly on you accepting them through any action. Here the saying, "actions speak louder than words" is applicable in this case.

Parents going through this crucial trial may question my credibility with this issue. And, I don't have the right to impose on them my ways - I am just sharing my own opinions. However, I can say that these ways are proven to be helpful in most teen issues.

Ian Knabel Parent of 5 Children from 25 to 9Owner of www.parentingskillsfortoday.com a blog and newsletter dedicated to provided information to help parents manage and improve their relationship with their teenage children.

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