Telling My Parents - Part 3 of 3

It’s funny how much more comfortable I felt with everything as we naturally began speaking again of my issues. The warm sun was shining through the window and I curled up into the rectangle of light cast on the carpet, expressing how great it would be to be a cat.

My parents began by making sure I knew that they loved me exactly how I am and that they would always love me because I am their son. I mentioned how great this “coming out” experience had been—surpassing any expectation I ever had. I told them about my fear of the worst case scenario in which, after telling my parents, they would refuse to speak to me again and stop paying for my schooling (and rent… and food…). I guess deep down I knew I had nothing to fear because I knew the awesome love of my parents; I suppose I was just nervous, not scared.

Earlier at church, a former seminary teacher had asked if I was dating anyone at school (I’m not) and recommended setting a goal, like her son had done recently, such as asking one girl out a month. This fueled a discussion with my parents about dating possibilities for me and more about the possible reality of being alone until I die. My dad, full of concern, said, “I think the worst thing you can do at this point is to give up and think that things will never work with a girl.” I agreed and resolved to keep trying.

Speaking to my mom, my dad said he would be more worried for me if I were younger and hadn’t had some of the experiences that I’ve had. But, knowing that I’ve served a mission, come so far and accomplished so much, and recognizing my strong character and immovable testimony, he knew I would be fine.

The real reason we had gathered that last time was for my dad to give me a blessing. I hadn’t even considered the opportunity before coming home and was excited; I had desired a blessing while at school but was reluctant to approach anyone about it. In preparation, my dad asked if there was anything specific I wanted help with. I thought for a while and, getting up from my sunny rectangle, fought back emotion as I told him, “I guess I just need help with endurance. Loneliness is something that’s hard to be patient with.”

I think the tears began spilling from beneath my eyelids as soon as my dad placed his hands on my head. This was an amazing expression of love. I felt perfect comfort. The things he expressed were full of love and wisdom and were clearly guided by the Spirit. He warned me to choose wisely those with whom I associate. He explained that when the temptation is at its strongest and I feel I can’t go on any longer, that there would always be a means of escape; that I had to find that escape that would allow me to regain my perspective.

I don’t recall ever seeing my dad cry. Now, though, he had trouble getting the words out as he spoke for both he and my mom and expressed that they would do anything to let me not go through this; but that somewhere there is purpose in the trial. I felt the burning of true parental love and knew I was experiencing something similar to the love that the Savior has for me.

When the blessing ended I remained sitting in my chair as I wiped my face and expressed silent gratitude. My dad wasn’t going to wait for the traditional post-blessing hug, though, and embraced me from behind as he buried his head in my shoulder and sobbed. It is a moment I can never forget and that will never fail to bring me to tears. I felt infinitely connected with this man with whom I’d shared few hugs that didn’t feel forced.

We got up as time required that my dad get to the airport. He told me to call him any time, day or night. He added that one thing that was reassuring to him (in terms of possibility of change) was that I don’t have some of the typical effeminate mannerisms of gay guys. I shared a knowing smile with my mom, recalling our gaydar talk from the night before.

They asked if I wanted to ride with them to the airport and I did, but faced the dilemma of how to get upstairs and into the garage without my sisters seeing my puffy red eyes. Luckily my mom offered to sneak my shoes into the car while I escaped to the backyard through the downstairs window and met them in the driveway. A simple drive to the airport was never my idea of fun, but that day was different. I felt truly happy to spend another hour with my two new best friends.

10 comments:

Ron Schow said...

Calvin

I'm happy you were able to have a blessing and get such nice support from your parents.

Have you looked at "A Guide for Latter-day Saint Families Dealing with Homosexual Attraction?"

You can find it on the website www.LDSResources.info It was sold at Deseret Book for a while and is quite brief. It was largely written by two bishops, one who is a former mission president and currently is a BYU professor. They have sold it for some time at the BYU bookstore. You might take a look and see if you think it would be helpful to your parents. Also, they might benefit by watching "Go Forward" which you can find on www.youtube.com or under Video on the previous website.

drex said...

Yay Calvin! What a fantastic example to all of us - I can't imagine things going better than they seem to have gone for you. I'm so glad, too. I suppose I have some other things to say, but they're best left for email. Remind me if you don't see anything pop into your inbox soon.

mulan said...

Calvin! I'm so happy to hear that things went so well! Your parents sound like amazing people that really love you. Congrats!

Oh, and it was great starting the hugging tradition last night... maybe that'll help me lay off on the random touching/poking ;)

Gimple said...

I understand where you were coming from now when you were explaining your position last night. I kind of want to talk to you again about what I said. After I talked with my mom, I gained a few insights into the gospel. I want to share them with you. My family has gone through a lot these past four years and my mom gave me a whole new perspective on it.

I'm really glad that you can talk to your parents. I really enjoy talking to my mom. I'm starting to think that whenever I have a question, I'm going to go to her. Again, thanks for talking last night and thanks for sharing.

Gimple

PS I'm glad that we can still be friends! LOL! ;)

iwonder said...

I am very glad that your parents are so supportive of you. Coming out to my parents was also really difficult for me, but absolutely vital. I am really glad that they understand better what I am going through, and even if they don't quite know what do do or how to help me, it is good to know that they know and still love me just the same.

SG said...

Calvin:

I've read your blog for awhile but never posted before. I felt it's time I do. I'm touched by your desire to tell your parents, by the way you told them, the way you prepared for it, and for your responses to their concerns and questions, and particularly for your father and his blessing.

I've been dealing with SGA issues since before you were born. My purpose in commenting to you is simply to offer hope to you. I'm very happily married, have been for over 20 years. I have 5 wonderful children. I have never been rid of my SGA feelings. My wife knows about them. But through the atonement, it is possible to experience a change, sufficient to be able to be attracted to one woman, to be faithful to her, to love her unconditionally, to have a wonderful emotional, spiritual and physical relationship with her. It is not always easy, but it is always worth it.

The bottom line is that there is hope. You are not a victim of your attractions unless you choose to be. You still have a choice. There are many of us who made the choice to marry, to put our whole selves into that relationship, who have made it work, and been successful at it.

Abelard Enigma said...

I sort feel like I did after the last "Lord of the Rings" movie - I want more!

Can we have a part 4??? Pretty please with a cherry on top?

Seriously, you have fantastic parents.

Charlie said...

Dang, you made me cry. I love you and your family so much and I'm glad all of this has gone so well. I'm also glad the personality of your family still stands amongst these tender moments ie the shoes and effeminate qualities. lol

Tell your dad "Coo do do do" for me.

SSA said...

This was such a beautiful scene. It was hard to read, because that's not my scene. It was really helpful though to read about it.

D-Train said...

Thank you for sharing your experience. For someone who is not quite out, this was truly inspiring. As I contemplate coming out to my family, your story gives me hope.