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Coming out to parents (LGBTQ+)

My mum is Chinese and my dad is Australian. My dad is definitely more accepting but I have never really gotten along with my dad. 

About 4-5 years ago I came out to my parents, that I’m bisexual (I think, I have never been in a relationship with a male). At that moment I had just gone through a messy breakup with my ex-gf and needed some support from my parents. I’m sure many people have dealt with the same issue as me: my mum is trying to “pray the gay away”.

 

She keeps telling me that she hopes I will stumble across a man I love one day so I can experience the happiness of men-women sexual relationships....

I keep telling her that I will love whoever I want to love. 

Still, after conversations here and there across the 4-5 year time span, my mum hasn’t changed her opinion at all. AT ALL.

I think she is literally saying the same stuff, “other people are going to judge you heaps”, “i just don’t understand why you like girls”, “it’s all in your head”, “I’ll be praying for you”.

 

How does everyone cope with stuff like this. I haven’t even been in a relationship for 4 years but I’m determined to change the way my mum thinks! 

Is there a lot of discrimination against LGBT people in the workplace? I’m still in uni so I have no idea. 

Honestly the more my mum tells me that I will find more happiness in men the less interested in men I become, the more determined I am to change her way of thinking...

 

Ah, let me know if anyone has similar experiences....

 

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Re: Coming out to parents (LGBTQ+)

Hey @sukidakedo, I am so sorry to hear that you are going through this. It must be so difficult to hear those types of comments and feel so unsupported by your Mum. It seems like you have still kept the communication open over the years which is not always an easy thing to do. It is totally understandable that you want to feel accepted by your Mum - we all want to feel supported by our parents by varying degrees. We are only in control of our own thoughts and feelings, not others. This can be disheartening to realise but it can also allow us to be reminded that the power is in our hands. So with that being said, it may be helpful for you to focus on what you can do to protect yourself throughout the current situation instead. For example, maybe you could ask your Mum to stop sharing these comments as they make you feel uncomfortable and unsupported. What do you think?

 

I really acknowledge that this is an incredibly difficult thing to face and so if you are needing further support, there is a service called QLife which offers counselling for LGBTI+ Youth. There are also some articles from teens who have shared their experience about coming out here. I know this is something that a lot of other members have struggled with, so I am sure you will hear from the community soon! Heart

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Re: Coming out to parents (LGBTQ+)

I'm sorry your mum is still unsupportive after all this time @sukidakedo.. It's not okay for her to be trying to make you feel bad for your sexuality, or to be trying to make it go away. For your question about working environments.. I think it depends on the culture of the workplace, and where you live. It's so sad that discrimination exists Smiley Sad

As for similar experiences.. I think I'm bi too but I haven't told my parents, nor have I actually been in a relationship haha. I have no idea how they'd react.. I hope you have supports that are accepting of you, your family can be who you make it to be, you know? Do you have supportive friends? I agree with @Taylor-RO, focus on protecting yourself is probably gonna be more helpful. e.g. Telling your mum that it isn't okay for her to say such things and you would prefer she didn't for the sake of your relationship with her and your own wellbeing?

While it makes sense your mum might hold these views (because of her experience growing up, etc) it doesn't make it okay for her to say such things to you, and it's not your job to change her mind but to look after yourself. Is your mum accepting of you in other ways?

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Re: Coming out to parents (LGBTQ+)

Hi @sukidakedo
I am so sorry for that your mom cannot understand and support. I also come from an Asia and I can understand how traditional Asian parents can be (sometimes it really hurts...). Well, I think there will be some people cannot accept people being LGBTQ+ and it can be difficult to go through that, but there are also many people who are willing to accept and support LGBTQ+ in current society, it is like a two-directional stuff.
Sometimes it would be hard to change parents' opinions, particularly for traditional parents. I would like to recommend that just be yourself even though your mom will be unhappy, but it is your life (and it can be a concern for your psychological health if you are listening to others and trying to persuade them, particularly your mom is keep denying your identity). So I agree that just focus on yourself, like your health, happiness and thoughts
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Re: Coming out to parents (LGBTQ+)

@sukidakedo Thanks for sharing your story, we know it can be hard when those we love don't quite understand us or appreciate an important aspect of who we are. Remember, whilst you put the work into helping her understand you and support you (as you deserve!), you need to practise self-compassion regardless of the outcome. What self-compassion look like for you in this context? Feel free to discuss!

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Re: Coming out to parents (LGBTQ+)

Hi @sukidakedo

Thank you so much for sharing, and I am so sorry to hear about what you are going through, exploring your sexual identity as a young person is daunting enough without added pressures!

 

Although it sounds like your mum loves you very much, it can be so hard when parents impose their values or point of view, even when their intention is to protect us. Is there someone in your life or even a professional you would feel comfortable working through your feelings and frustrations with at the moment? Sometimes I think it can be really important to grieve what our parents are, for whatever reason, unable to give us, in a safe and loving space? I have found that sometimes when I can really process my frustration safely and openly, it creates space for empathy and understanding for where the other person is coming from? I have found in the past, that working through my own emotional response makes it is easier to accept another's behaviour without it meaning anything about me, and I am able to develop, day by day, a sense of love and acceptance for myself while remaining open. However that being said, this is a huge process and it's so hard to maintain sometimes, and as the other lovely mod's and bob's have said, it's important to protect yourself and your space! I am so sorry you are going through this Heart