I'm a single mother raising a son. My son is 17 years old and is planning a small week-long vacation to Las Vegas. He is bringing just his close gay male friends from high school on the trip. My son is also gay.

I trust him to be responsible and won't let things get wild during the vacation. It sounds like they will just sightsee the different themed hotels, take pictures of tourist attractions, and enjoy shows like magic and concerts. It is an opportunity for him to demonstrate a high level of responsibily without unwarranted imposition. Also, I'm just a call away if he needs any support, guidance, or advice.

Recently, the parents of one his invitees asked me to tell my son to uninvite their son. They don't want their son going on a trip with just gay people even if the gay people are the same age range and they are all the same gender. Their son is 15 years old. All the other people on the trip are 16 and 17 years old.

They are secretly working on making their son straight. They said the media is already making homosexuality look like a moral life choice. They don't want his gay friends convincing him more. They have this crazy idea their son will have sex with his friends, enjoy it, and may end up falling in love & marrying one of his gay school friends. They asked me to keep this secret because if their son found out he would most likely double down on his homosexual attractions to spite them. Once that happens they lose any chance of making their son straight. I don't want to meddle in how other parents raise their kids. Therefore, I promised I would keep the reason a secret.

Now, I'm having trouble finding a way to tell my son to uninvite this one friend without lying.

Any help?

  • Just saying: In Germany, about 35 years ago, the health insurance companies had a long discussion about being gay, transgender etc. from the point of view what is an illness where they would have to pay for the treatment, and what is not, and what is the correct treatment. Result: Being gay is normal. Nothing wrong with you. No treatment is needed. Actually, any medical professional who tried any treatment against being gay would be in deep trouble. Any amateur who tried any treatment against being gay would be in even more trouble. And all that was a purely medical discussion.
    – gnasher729
    Oct 17 '21 at 21:41
  • 5
    "They have this crazy idea their son will have sex with his friends, enjoy it, and may end up falling in love & marrying one of his gay school friends. " Wouldn't that be the best outcome? Apart from 15 is a bit young to get married obviously.
    – gnasher729
    Oct 17 '21 at 21:42
  • 1
    Is there any reason you wouldn't tell your son the whole truth? Presumably, if you're trusting him on this trip, then he's also mature enough to know about the reason one of his friends isn't allowed to go. And you wouldn't want to like to him and potentially break his trust, right?
    – Zibbobz
    Oct 22 '21 at 13:00
  • There's a power imbalance present between a 15yr old and a 17yr old. This doesn't seem to be what the parents of the 15yr old are concerned about, but its the one thing that I would be worried about, especially if I didn't know very well who the other kids were on the trip. I'm not a parent, so take that for what it's worth, but I cant imagine a scenario where I would be comfortable letting my 15yr old go on a trip out of town with a group of other minors, for a whole week, where they would be the youngest of the group by a non-insignificant margin. Sexual orientation irrelevant. Dec 20 '21 at 19:12

Leaving aside the moral issues (as hopefully you are aware of those), and leaving aside whether you should intervene (a very good question itself), in their mind, this is something between the other parents and their son, so why are they involving you?

If they want their son not to go, that’s their call, but they should not abstain responsibility for that call. They can tell their son if they want to forbid him from going.

  • 1
    Indeed. Not very mature of them to pawn off that confrontation on others. Maybe it's even devious and they're waiting to point out the fickleness of gay friends to their son... Oct 17 '21 at 4:12
  • 4
    If their son is fifteen, and they don't want him to join his slightly older and gay mates, then as his parents and responsible adults it is their job to keep him at home, not putting the task on you. Especially when you disagree with them.
    – gnasher729
    Oct 17 '21 at 21:36

In addition to Joe's good answer, I would say that passing this request on to your son is going to send a very clear message to him about your priorities. You probably don't want to do that.

I suggest you go back to the friend's parents and say that you've thought it over, and realised that if you asked such a thing of your son he would not only reject the request, he would tell his friend about it. So you hope they understand its probably best if you don't say anything.

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