Susan Cottrell is a religious woman. She is a devoted Christian who believes in the words of the bible. As such, she became an evangelical pastor. That said, even the Christian congregation can’t tell her how to treat her bisexual daughter.
When Cottrell’s daughter came out to her as bisexual, she was surprised.
“Mom, I’ve got something to tell you,” said her daughter Annie. “I’m attracted to girls. I think I’m bisexual. I prayed about it, Mom – I resisted, but it won’t go away.’”
Even worse, she took it badly. After all, her religious upbringing taught her that homosexuality was a sin. But in time, Cottrell’s thoughts began to change.
“I realized I was being asked to choose between the two most important parts of my life: my child and my church,” said Susan Cottrell in a recent TED Talk. “I chose my child.”
Eventually, Cottrell decided to leave the church that she once led and separate herself from the religious community around it. But she then found a new community to preach to and serve. The gay community.
Together with her husband Rob, who’s also a pastor, Susan Cottrell started a new ministry called FreedHearts. FreedHearts is centered on bridging the gap between parents and their LGBTQ children. They provide trainings, free hugs during pride events, and perform same-sex weddings.
If you want to hear more of Cottrell’s story, you can watch the video of her TED Talk down below.