I was home visiting a good friend from high school just this past week and we had some great and very deep conversations. One of them was about how her husband has unfortunately and somewhat accidentally severed the ties with their oldest son, whom is 12. Many of us can relate about being a little distant and cold with our fathers. I know I can. Most of my teen and young adult years we butted heads and I never wanted to do much with him at all. I told my friend what I looked for from my father when I was her son's age and what I did and did not receive from my dad when I was a young boy. She worries that the barrier between them will remain, but she is trying to bridge that gap and mend the break.
Parents are a funny sort and our relationships with them even funnier. I came out to my parents late-ish, 27 or so, if I remember correctly, and I've always looked for little signs of continued acceptance. I know they love me, but they as well worry about their baby. I don't shove my sexuality in their face and truly, we as a family, are not overly sharing about relationships, etc. So when mom or dad do something to positively acknowledge that I may swing a little differently than the other two boys in the family and my sister, I do take note and I do get a little warm and fuzzy feeling.
My own personal stories resurfaced when I read the following story about what one marine dad did for his child.
Twitter user @SatanKotah, otherwise known as Dakotah, asked her father for a gay pride flag this year. Not only did she receive the flag, she also received a genuinely sincere, moving response from her father, a United States Marine.
His gift of a flag came with a special note. – aol.com
"When I saw that a gay pride flag was on your list, at first I thought it was an odd request. But after thinking about it, I think I know why. I reckon that you feel that everyone else in the family, except grandma, has a flag that represents someone we were/are a part of. I have the Marine Corps, Grandpa and Mom have the navy, and Darr has the army. So it makes sense that you would want a flag to represent something you are a part of. I present you with this flag, to display how you would like. In the spring, when I hang the flags up, I would be proud to hang yours up." – aol.com
Okay, I just teared up again and all I did was cut and paste the damn thing!
For some reason her moment reminded me of when my mother brought back a set of kazoo lips and a stuffed animal she had caught while watching the gayest Easter Day Parade in the world on Bourbon Street in New Orleans. It was a cheap ass dolphin that cost 12 cents to make in some equatorial nation and the kazoo lips were just as costly. But the fact that she kept them and brought them all the way back to Maine for me, it was just a nice little gesture to let her know that she was thinking of me during probably one of the gayest things she has ever attended. I thought it was nice.
Was there an aha moment you shared with your parents that let you know they were accepting and proud of you?
Please share with us below.