A Wonderful Family
As a teen, I was very lucky when I came out. I had two older cousins who both were openly gay and sort of paved the way for me. My mother was first to ask if I thought I might be gay – I explained that I had already figured out that I was. She cried, told me she loved me, and nothing would change that. I was TERRIFIED of my father finding out – I think I hid from him for two days after that. I had asked Mom not to tell him but they’ve been together so long, I figured it would happen (though she is adamant she didn’t say a word). I remember vividly the Wednesday afternoon when my father, the stern iron worker/farm hand, asked me to talk to him … alone … outside. I was so scared – I thought this was either the end of me, or I would be homeless, or this or that would happen. We sat in the van and I had a smoke while he talked. He told me “It doesn’t matter who you love, as long as you are happy and safe.” I knew right then that everything would be OK. Things were strained between my father and me after that, but not in a bad way – it just wasn’t discussed further and there was no need to discuss it. After graduating high school, I moved away. My father always tells me that I can bring my boyfriend home when I find one – it’s his way of showing me we are good. I am truly blessed to have the wonderful family I do – they’ve accepted me for who I am and don’t care who I love, as long as I do love.