Hot answers tagged

417

I would strongly suggest some couple therapy before you bring a child into this situation. I worked in a therapy clinic and saw the outcome of overbearing/unreasonable mothering (and fathering). Your wife needs to confront her own issues before she tries re-wiring a child to fit her agenda.


284

Perhaps I have some expertise on this, as someone who has raised one straight and two queer children... You don't get to decide that. She doesn't either. Yes, you can indeed try not to overly gender your kids as you are raising them. But that has little if any impact on who they are. Their personality and identity will assert itself very early. For strong ...


102

Kids like toys. My daughter plays with trucks and shovels and her toy lawn mower. My son will undoubtedly wind up playing with old toys that my daughter used to play with. This link from baby center would indicate that you, as a parent, are simply enabling your child's normal and healthy imagination and that: "playing with Barbies at age 2 or 3 isn't ...


72

Is my wife overreacting or am I wrong here? I don't think you're wrong. It seems reasonable - even admirable - to raise a child encouraging any beneficial interests they have regardless of gender-stereotype. (I say beneficial because some interests are not, e.g. an interest in experimenting with drugs during early adolescence.) If your wife truly wants a ...


69

First, ask yourself honestly: would you react the same way if it were a friend of the opposite gender? Or is part of your reaction based on gender and gender preference? If it is, step away from this and get hold of yourself first. She's 14 and learning about herself. She has a first crush; do you remember your first love? It seems all-encompassing at ...


67

Playing with "girl" toys at the age of five is indeed completely normal behavior for a little boy. You are correct not to worry and to allow your son to play in the way that he enjoys. It doesn't mean that he is gay, and it certainly won't "make" him gay; his sexual orientation is likely already fixed by the age of five, although he is probably still to ...


60

Your son is doing what he is doing in response to his own internal drives. His actions are nothing but a combination of genetics and life experience. Playing with dolls won't "turn him into a fag." He will eventually develop some level of attraction towards males and females that is determined by his genetics as well as prenatal testosterone exposure from ...


60

How do I express my feelings towards him being gay without actually hurting his feelings? Right now, you don't unless he asks. Even then, I'd equivocate ("Give me time to gather my thoughts. This is new to me. But please know that I love you.") You can express your feelings to your wife, or to your priest, or to your best friend. And read about it. ...


57

I think your approach is correct: dating is dating no matter the gender. You aren't discriminating, you are actually being completely fair. Children use any edge they can to get you to bend the rules, this is likely one of those cases. Stick to your guns, you have life experience on your side.


57

There's nothing whatsoever wrong with your son, but there is something very very wrong with his father. The best thing you can do is try to limit your sons exposure to this person. If he has these sorts of attitudes you should be able to argue that he is a danger to your sons emotional well-being and potentially have his level of access limited to only ...


49

You bring up many points that show that your relationship with your kid is not the best at the moment. But I'd like to focus on your kid presumably being trans. It isn't a trend Yes, there are more people openly living trans these days than ten or twenty years before, especially in the younger generation. But this doesn't invalidate these trans identities. ...


45

I worry a bit about this statement: "It's not that I'm against that lifestyle, I just not sure that at this stage that I need to be encouraging it either." First, sexual identity is not a "style", per se. Try reversing it to see how it fits: could you just decide that, from now on, you would prefer to have sex with the same gender, and have it happen ...


43

Oh dear, this is going to end up in tears. First you need understanding, then you can argue. I would suggest to discuss with your wife the mass of documentation (articles, social media posts, surveys, etc.) about how parents have tried (and failed) to force "normal" sexuality on their homosexual offspring. Please understand: I don't intend for you to ...


43

I'm going to take a slightly stronger position than most of the other people here. I'm keeping in mind the policy to be nice and simply objectively describing the seriousness of the situation. There are two enormous red flags that it could be extremely unwise to have a child with this person (at least while she has these desires). You need more info about ...


38

Is the psychological therapy a direct result of only this event? To an outsider without more information, that sounds like more than necessary. For something this critical, don't get advice from anonymous Internet strangers. Talk to the therapist instead! Your daughter's therapy is private but you should take the opportunity to discuss your role with the ...


35

Your son likes picking out his clothes. I can't see that as a gender-defining issue. One of my (now married) sons had such a great eye for arranging flowers in the most interesting and imaginative ways that I would sometimes send him to the garden with a pair of clippers and a free hand (something my other children didn't get (blush)! Playing with a wide ...


30

I think Warren Dew offers a good answer there, but if I were in your position I'd want to let my kid immediately that I know about it, that I accept it and that it will never change my love for them (since I think this addresses her no.1 fear about sharing the information with you). Now, if you don't want to be overtly blunt, when you two are on your own you ...


29

Just found out my daughter might be gay. Now what? The fact that that there may be a same gender relationship as opposed to an opposite gender relationship is totally irrelevant here as far as you are concerned. To take it further there is nothing in your OP at all to indicate that there is any sexual relationship at all. Don't confuse homosexuality with ...


29

Simple answer - these feelings are normal and not necessarily an indication of her sexuality, just a child's confusion and anxiety over physical intimacy. There is nothing to be concerned about, nothing special you or your daughter needs to do. Just let time reveal her sexuality. When it happens, she'll know it and if she believes that there's nothing ...


27

I think this is a very horrible idea. Even set of ideas. Gender-less/Post Gender This is just silly. Now I'm not saying that everyone has to be confined by the stereotypes that exist, BUT, they are stereotypes for a reason. Boys and Girls are different. You can't force them into a generic one size fits all mold. You shouldn't forge them in to any mold. ...


27

I think the main messages you need to get over are: Some people are attracted to both men and women. This is called bisexuality. Its perfectly fine and there is nothing wrong with it. Also, bisexuality doesn't have to mean equal attraction to both sexes: someone might find they are mostly attracted to men but also to a few women, or vice versa. Its normal ...


27

Well, how do you feel about your son? I suspect, whatever your feeling are about homosexuality, in general, or in this specific case, you love your son very much, and want him to be happy. THAT is what you should express. If you have feelings one way or the other about him being gay, realize that that is not in your realm to control, and expressing opinions ...


24

Great question! I don't have personal experience with this one, but have had a number of close friends who are gay. I think every one of them would agree with me when I say, Handle it the same way you would if it was a boy - almost. First, from the way you've worded the question, it seems you don't believe she should be having a highly sexual discourse (...


24

I highly doubt there is a correlation between sexual orientation and the kind of toy one plays with at five years old. I can't imagine what would cause that, anyway; 'boy toys' and 'girl toys' are social constructs mostly unrelated to biology or sexuality, but to the expected role those children will play as adults.* There is probably a correlation, however,...


24

I find myself crying at times worried for her and the difficulties that she may encounter. She's probably doing the same, worried about whether her parents will accept it or reject her. That is probably the biggest difficulty she may encounter in her whole life related to being gay (assuming you live in a Western country). It sounds like you have a strong ...


23

Ask her why she is afraid of turning out to be lesbian, and address that.


23

Am I really wrong ??? The situation you're in is truly heartbreaking. No one but you can decide for yourself if you're right or wrong. However, other people can share their experiences and beliefs. One question that comes to mind is, would you feel the same exact way if the other person were a male? In other words, if she didn't come out as gay and flaunt ...


23

I would suggest going carefully – the worst thing you could do is hurt your child or your relationship with them. Make sure that whatever you do is something that makes them feel loved and listened to. Next, I would realize that children at that age are going through a lot, both mentally, emotionally, physically and in interpersonal relationships. If it ...


22

I see a few issues here. First, is snooping through her iPhone. Is she aware of this? Is there an agreed upon understanding that what's on that phone is for you to look at? If not, the first issue is one of trust. A teenager with a snoopy parent is likely going to open up a lot less once they find out. So you're going to have to broach the issue carefully. ...


22

Being a lesbian, bisexual woman, or other is a sexual orientation, not a lifestyle. I wouldn't conclude just on the basis of what you've posted that your daughter is definitely a lesbian. However, if she is, your best bet is to be supportive-- both from the perspective of supporting her as a loving parent who wants her to be free from psychological ...


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