Sunday, June 29, 2008

What's Goin' On




Broken Heart















This is a difficult post to write. It's complicated family stuff; the sort of thing I tend to avoid writing about because of its emotional difficulty. What I have to do in order to get it out is tell the story the best I can.

As some of you know, my 21 year-old daughter, Supergirl One is gay. She's madly in love with a young woman she is in college with and they've been planning to get married. Like a lot of young couples, regardless of sexual orientation, planning this very thing around these ages is not atypical. Since SG1's Beloved is a California resident, they hope to be married next summer, before graduate school, assuming that the decision there is not reversed in November due to the ballot initiative. Though we live in Massachusetts, marriage legality here depends upon establishing residency. There is no such requirement in California.

The difficult part is the family reactions or potential reactions, as everyone in the family does not yet know. My mother, 78, does not know and is likely to take the news hard. SG1 feels that she can't keep her plans secret from people and makes very compelling arguments for it. I support her, of course, but I also fear for her, as she is a sensitive soul when it comes to her heart; and this is all about her heart. I once heard someone say that when your children leave you, it's like watching your heart go out into the world. While I've always celebrated my children's independence, in SG1's case I find myself a total wreck over this.

Yesterday, Saturday, SG1 and I drove to my brother's home in Eastern Massachusetts for a family gathering. The players in this gathering are my brother and his wife, in their 50's, their grown daughter, their grown son and his wife and their two babies, my maternal uncle and his daughter, my brother's in-laws and of course, SG1 and I - the sort of black sheep in the sense of how starkly unmainstream we are in our thinking, compared to the rest of the bunch. Don't get me wrong, everyone was having a fine time, the babies are adorable and the center of attention, the food is good and many of these folks are highly intelligent conversationalists.

At one point after dinner, there were two tables of relatives chatting it up in different rooms. At the kitchen table, I ended up sitting with my sister-in-law, my adult niece, my nephew's wife and SG1. I don't know how the conversation fell on SG1 but it came out that she was in a serious relationship and engaged. Everyone was very understanding but the concern about telling my mother seemed paramount on everyone's minds, including mine. Add to the sidebar that I believe (I'm working on this) that my daughter is too young to get married, regardless of who it is she is marrying.

So, everyone around our table begins to ask SG1 questions in an attempt to explore various options that she might take in regard to breaking the news to my mother; of which one option is to not tell her at all. SG1 was clearly in the hot seat. I was overwhelmed. The others were concerned. I failed to do what SG1 was relying on me most for: a united front. Firstly, I could barely get a word in. Secondly, when I did open my mouth, I just blurted out that she and her Beloved are perhaps too young to be contemplating marriage so soon. Although SG1 knows this opinion already, she also knows that I will support her no matter what. I failed, however, to have an opportunity to say this. By the time SG1 had finished attempting to address the various options her relatives were proposing for how to (or not) tell her grandmother, she had had it and requested privately that we go home. I was more than glad to oblige and we left.

On the drive all hell broke loose. SG1 was hurt and despondent over the whole thing and terribly angry and disappointed in me for not having taken her side more. As I said, I too was overwhelmed throughout this family discussion and it would have been well with me if we had not touched on it at all. I could not get in a word without rudely interrupting and becoming defensive on my daughter's behalf. My brother and his family and I are not terribly close, and it's a chore for me to even get enthused about a visit, though I do end up usually having a good time when I do, regardless. In this discussion, I felt perhaps just as awkward as SG1, though not nearly as hurt, since I think for some reason I went into brain freeze mode and simply couldn't think straight. If I were to pick up this conversation again with my sister-in-law only, for example, I can just hear her saying, with good intentions, "I feel for you, Gina." I would hate, hate, hate to have to hear that! I'm not a stranger to being in a difficult spot with my daughter but her being in love and truly happy is not a difficult spot for anyone but them.

Backing up a bit to the drive home with SG1, she cried bitterly and expressed her utter and complete hurt that I didn't defend her. I could barely drive. I desperately tried to explain my position, including that I had only one opportunity to speak and how sorry I was that what came out was indeed not supportive. I had waited for a chance to finally say my piece but I never had that chance, I explained, before SG1 declared that she wanted to leave. The whole thing, I explained, felt like a bad dream. It was painful and SG1 looked small and frail and vulnerable and if I could have run out of the room with her, I would have. But I couldn't. We managed to hold our heads high enough, I guess, as we left. And in the car we both fell apart.

We did work it through but I wonder at what cost to my daughter and perhaps, I fear, to our relationship. I failed her. I let her down. I betrayed her. And all, perhaps, because of my own misgivings and my cowardice at not wanting to alienate my very small, extended family, with whom I am not even close with precisely because I can't be myself with them. I froze and was unable to step up to the plate.

I haven't questioned seriously who I am and what I stand for in the face of what my family thinks, in a long time. I thought I had long ago accepted the fact that my family and I are different from my brother and his. That although I love my family, even my aunts and uncles and my cousins; that their value systems and lifestyles are not what I have chosen for myself. And then something like this happens and I am asking myself, like a child: why do I have to be different? Why is it me who has to have the child with the unpopular, misunderstood and even despised situation? Why can't things ever be in neat little rows for me like they are for my brother? Why is my emotional life so damned fucking hard all the time? Why can't anyone just be happy that we are good people and appreciate us as such? Why do I have to care what they think? And how is it that their version of reality has to be one that everyone gets in line for? Fuck. Why can't my daughter's engagement be celebrated? No one even said congratulations to her at that fucking table!

It's no wonder that I have difficulty writing and discussing truly difficult personal matters. It's easier to let the confusion swirl around in my head: thoughts, snippets of conversation, "tapes" that have played in the back of my head for years: negative, painful, self-doubting but not properly articulated.

And yet I have to publish this. I need your feedback, your opinions, your advise, even. And though painful, I think I'm clearer now, having sorted through what happened. I still feel lousy but at least now I have a bit more understanding of how I came to take so many steps back when I thought I was moving forward.

35 comments:

  1. Pagan: I have just commented on your blog page where you awarded me the a special award. Please read and I will get back to you on your current page because I really need to read it thoroughly . I have been gone a few days and am trying to catch up with you

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  2. Dear Pagan--how sad I feel for you. It is hard to be the black sheep and to be different. I would call your relatives up and explain to them how much they have hurt your daughter and ask them to call her and apologize for it. No, they probably didn't mean to hurt her but they have and being family they should offer her some support at least.

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  3. My daughter and I are very close. My son and I not as much. However, they are both grown, and gone - son is 37, daughter is 35.

    You would think that, as adults, we would not have blow-ups. Nevertheless, we do. And I have learned that when my daughter feels I have let her down, or betrayed her, all she wants to hear from me is these words: "I am sorry, I let you down. I love you and will try to do better."

    Your daughter is quite young to be considering marriage, regardless of who it is. But she's 21, and an adult, and so it is your job as a mother to step aside and let her make her decisions and choices, and hope you gave her a solid foundation AND, most important, a safe place to turn to when and if the shit hits the fan.

    The example I will use is this: my son married a woman who was a complete sociopath. We all knew it, we all knew he was making a huge mistake, and we all knew we had to keep our mouths shut and let him take his journey. His marriage lasted, oh, 30 seconds. And after all the dust settled, he said to me "I am so grateful you just loved me and let me walk my own path." Had we tried to give advice before hand, he would have dug his heels in and it would have been worse.

    My daughter is separated after a 7 year marriage. And I am the safe harbour she turns to when she needs to vent. I have to keep my opinions to myself, and simply listen. That is what your daughter wants, and needs. She needs you to be her safe harbour.

    So these words: "I am sorry, I let you down, I love you, and I will try to do better." That's all she needs right now. You have not failed her, you have not betrayed her, all you have done is allowed your emotions to enter the fray and this is human. You want to protect her at all costs. But you can't protect her, and she needs to know you will support her no matter what she does.

    It is a high emotional place - but you can just love her and give her this small thing. It will make a world of difference, believe me.

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  4. Pagan, I'm so sorry. This was and is a hard situation. Probably it's easier for us with a gay daughter because we are living states and states away from any other family. We've lived away from all family for 30 years, and so it is a little bit easier long distance.

    I think it's hard for us as mothers and difficult for our children to see that we are doing the best we can. You did the best you could in the situation. Try to accept yourself where you are. You'll grow, but you cannot force the growth.

    This probably isn't helping much. Just know I care.

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  5. Dear Pagan,
    I'm so sad you have found yourself in this terribly difficult situation. Neither you nor Super Girl 1 deserve this pain. Please don't be too hard on yourself. You did your best in a very trying place. Just ensure Super Girl 1 knows how much you care (which I'm sure she does anyway) and how sorry you are that she felt let down.

    Life certainly isn't easy, is it? I know what it's like to look at others and think, 'How come they seem to sail through life without any emotional/financial/health etc. problems?' and then I think, 'They probably don't; it just looks that way and even if they do, maybe they don't have the blessings that I have'.

    I can't offer any real, useful advice and if I tried I know it would sound pompous or crass or something. I haven't experienced a situation like yours but I want you to know that I'm thinking of you. I'm sure your daughter knows you are doing your best but tell her how much you love he as its always good to hear. Even if the rest of your family aren't yet ready to support you both, I'm sure they will come around eventually. Hang on in there and remember what a good mother I'm sure you are.

    Sorry that's not a lot of help but you're in my thoughts.

    Peace.

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  6. Lib: Thank you. I'm not close enough with them to make those kind of demands, particularly when they're unaware that they were doing anything unsupportive to begin with. But you're right, they should be supportive but I know with my brother and his wife, in other situations, there has been no support what-so-ever. When SG1 was in and out of psychiatric hospitals a few years ago, I naturally told my parents. My brother called me up to tell me that I shouldn't be "dumping" my family's problems on our elderly parents and that I was "killing" them. I have forgiven him (for many things) and I accept that he's not a loving brother and that it's not my fault and I can't change that. But I also expect nothing from him; especially any kind of support. His wife never communicated with me about the situation.

    Thank you for thinking of me. I appreciate it greatly.

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  7. Jood: While I think she is too young to marry, I'm not pressuring her NOT to and she has my support. As for love, we have more of than we know what to do with. While that is a good and lucky thing, sometimes it doesn't feel like it's enough. SG1 and I have talked at great length after I posted this and our relationship is just fine. Thank you for sharing so much with me. It means a lot.

    Jan: your comment is a show of support and it means a lot to me. I thank you.

    Bear: She does know how much I love her and we're actually concocting a plan to stay in solidarity if a similar situation should arise. I know she loves me and forgives me, for she told me so late this morning. We spent the whole afternoon together and we're good. Just tired.

    Thank you, my dear friend for your kindness and understanding. I appreciate it more than I can say.

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  8. P.S. Apologies for all the angst.

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  9. Pagan, we have never met and have known one another only a short time. Still, I see so many similarities here. My youngest is so like your eldest, if I am reading it correctly. I'm glad to read that you two are now back on a smoother plane. When my daughter was her age I often felt I was walking on eggs. She frequently misread what I said or did, and was very hurt, and became very emotional. I have no answers for you. I just got through it, as did she. We knew we loved one another, and that had to be enough. At the time, I often felt so guilty, as you are feeling now. Today I do realize there should have been no guilt. I didn't fail her. Life simply deals us a bad hand some times, as it did you that day. You haven't failed her in any way. Circumstances dictated how things went, that's all. Be at peace.

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  10. Pagan, I am glad you and SG1 have had a chance to talk. She's going to be just fine, and your extended family needs to back off.

    Here's the thing, though. Are children are always going to make us crazy. That's there job.

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  11. Pagan: I don't know if anyone of us could have handled the situation better than you did. As Mothers we always lead with our hearts and I can understand your apprehension about SG1 marrying so young, especially when she will be starting a life away from you and your protection. We all want to protect our childrenand then they reach an age were we can't always be there. It is hard.

    Let me tell you a bit about my experience, maybe it will help in some small way to ease your fears.
    My youngest daughtemet and fell in love with a young black man she met while in college.She became pregnant by this man at nineteen years old. My husband and I were terrified! Her is our youngest child, about to set on a journey alone and face consequences even she could not foresee. How very wrong we were. We confronted this young man and made many false accusations against him, mainly because of our fear. I will never forget him standing up to us and saying" I DON'T KNOW WHO YOU THINK I AM BUT I LOVE YOUR DAUGHTER AND WILL ALWAYS BE WITH HER" They had a a premature son with many difficulties have been married and together for twenty years and have had a good life. I wish the very same for your daughter tenfold.
    Mothers aren't always perfect and sometimesI think we burden ourselves with to much guilt Let SG1 take flight as she will know you will always be there when she needs you.

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  12. Bobbie: Thank you, dear friend. Knowing a little something about your family's story and how you raised your family, I'm greatly appreciative for your very experienced perspectives.

    Both my girls are very complex, emotional and passionate creatures, highly intelligent and very intense. They are also loving, affectionate, compassionate and hold deep convictions. The apple doesn't fall far from the tree, as they say.

    Minne: Thanks for sharing your story. I do need to stop harping on SG1 being too young and let her live and learn. Over the course of last night and into today, we've talked a lot and I think I have finally been convinced of what a wonderful relationship she has with her Beloved. I do really like the Beloved and I must trust that their love and support of each other will see them through the rough times.

    This whole experience was a lesson. I really took a beating but I learned. Must be why I'm so exhausted.

    Thank you all again and again for your support, your stories and your wisdom.

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  13. Oh my dear heart- how I wish you peace and healing.

    Take these words for what they mean and not for any overtly denominational overtones - there is no way to get to paradise without crossing the desert. Forgetting religion, time immemorial is made up of people on their pilgrim way.

    As you, and SG1 are on yours.

    So much has already been said, so other than my above thought, I will simply wish you all peace, wisdom and healing.

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  14. i would just say, i'm sorry. i tried as best that i could at the moment. explain how your family makes YOU feel. maybe she really can not grasp the fact that many times even tho we age we still react as we always have with family. as if we haven't aged at all.
    this is an emotional time for you as well. your daughter is in love and planning to be married. gay or straight, that's a very emotional time for any parent.
    some day your daughter will understand that. now, her youth and her life is about all she can think about. that's very normal.
    so, i'd just sit down and tell her that you love her very much but that if she cuts you some slack and the two of you make a deal to work thru this together, then whatever happens with her gandma, you two will face it together but she has to understand her grandma is your mom and put herself in your shoes.

    i think it will work out fine.
    as i said. weddings are freaking stressful for everyone involved at best.

    you guys have an extra stress, but you'll be o.k.

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  15. This in my email from Homeyra:

    Just read your last post. Since you asked for advices here is my feed back.
    It is difficult to see clear when you feel all that pressure. And there is no need to be a pressure. These decisions- a marriage - are important ones. And the worst thing that could ever happen ... is not something that can't be fixed later.
    It is a sort of complicated situation with your mother, there is maybe no easy answer - that' understandable. Sometimes there is no good solution.
    So give yourself and your daughter time, without adding to the pressure, you are so wise that I am sure you could handle it :)
    Take care:)
    H

    Thank you most kindly, Homeyra. You're so right, there are no easy answers in these situations. The best we can is to try to see our way through without compromising our ideals, while at the same time maintaining our dignity. Easy to say, hard to do.

    Peace to you my friend.

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  16. Dear Fran:

    You never have to worry about being denominational here. You come in peace and with love. That is all that matters. I thank so for your kind words and support.

    Gina

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  17. off topic: I made that incredible watermelon/prosciuto salad yesterday (without radishes). Oh, my god, fantastic.

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  18. Dearest Sherry: Thank you. Really. SG1 and I have been engaged in dialogue over "the incident" and about my family and how they make me feel. One interesting component of such a conversation was when SG1 told me that I had no right to be so blunt about her being too young to get married "in front of strangers". While for her this is almost true (she's referring to my brother's family and the uncle that was there with his daughter; not to my mother and other family we're close to)I had to explain to her that before my brother and I drifted apart, I did have a closer relationship to him, his wife and his kids at one time, before she was even born. And also that even though I don't like my brother, he is my brother and I love him as such. She understands a lot better now.

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  19. Jood: I'm so glad you liked the recipe. I almost tried it without radishes because I don't really like 'em a whole lot but when I saw some nice looking ones at the grocer's I added them anyway. I'll probably not use them next time.

    I tried to think of something to substitute the radishes with but I came up short.

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  20. pagan - as I read your post and all the comments I went back to many situations in my own family.

    My son is mutli-racial - a black & white cookie he used to like to say. My family is not especially tolerant of differences. It was a clear battle with the elders - they were racist and it wasn't acceptable. What I have now is far more difficult. Closet racism and just plain stupidity.

    I'll use my baby brother as the example. I love him, he is a good soul and wouldn't hurt anyone BUT he is also a product of his upbringing and has never looked to expand his horizons. So when we're all together it is not unusual for there to be race jokes. Oh and gay jokes and immigrant jokes as well. I despise them all and almost always speak up. Then I get the eye roll and the "Oh Dianne is such an activist, politically correct, too serious, too sensitive" - the fill-ins are endless.

    I have tried to explain how this makes me feel on a personal level - as in don't f'ing use the "N" word and I have tried to explain how this feels as a citizen of the world. Crap like this is like an invisible toxic cloud - it permeates, it poisons, it creates a place where people (especially children) think it's OK.

    I am the family downer to them. The one who couldn't find a box to think in.

    It has grown worse since my son married. His wife's family literally refused to accept his existence for 10 years!! they referred to him as the "nigger" she was sleeping with. Dear God - I can't even type that word without my hands shaking.

    My DIL has done little to deal with her family, even now when everyone has "accepted" my son! "Accepted"!!! Kiss my ass I think (and sometimes say) - what was there to accept!?

    It's funny - my son wishes I'd tone down my objections, he is far more Zen with them than I am - or will ever be. I have listened to people talk about "what if the children are very dark" - "what if they have twins and one is white and one is black" - my response to that was - "I suppose we'll need to kill the black one" - then I stormed out.

    But I get so tired of the fight! And my brother and my DIL's family are all so friendly. They live near each other and often socialize. I attend when my nieces are around, otherwise I can't take the stress.

    I find myself in the peculiar position of telling my son he didn't defend himself enough and then feeling like who the hell am I to decide how he should deal with this!

    So have I answered anything, solved anything. NO. I hope I have made you feel less unmainstream. I KNOW we are the stream, we just need to keep pushing the flow in the right direction, keep pushing against rocks of stupidity.

    for my future granchildren - and so many others - I'm going to keep getting my energy back.

    Knowing people like you makes me feel less alone.

    Oh - and I think 21 is too young :)

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  21. I am sorry you are both going through this, and my feeling is that the sooner you tell your mom the better off everyone will be. All hell may break loose, but that might be better to clear the air than subterfuge.

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  22. I'm sorry that you're going through this. You haven't failed your daughter any more than she has failed you. Sometimes things don't go smoothly. That's all that happened. When you love people, it's important to get past the pitfalls and carry on.

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  23. I can't add a thing to what the others have already said. All I can add is my virtual hug: {{Pagan}}

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  24. Dianne: I don't know where to begin to express my appreciation for your story. It just joggles the mind, doesn't it, how people different from ourselves can cause such fear and even hate. How can anyone find it in their conscience to dismiss someone because their skin, religion, ethinicity and sexual orientation is unfamiliar to them? I will never be able to understand or accept this. Ever.

    I'm so saddened that you went through this with your son. I have to say, though, your comeback about the possibility of one baby being white and the other black, made me chuckle sarcastically. Good one.

    At any family gathering, my brother is the only person allowed an opinion (though in fairness to him, he was not present for the discussion with SG), anyone else is either cut off or their contra-opinion is dismissed. At least he hates Bush Co. and supports Barak. Phew. At least there's a little common ground there, in the political realm.

    It was so good to hear from you on this. It makes me feel less alone as well. Thank you, my friend.

    Peace to you,
    Pagan

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  25. I realize I'm late and I've been trying to follow the comment thread, but I wanted to tell you that I hurt for you and SG1.

    I suspect your relationship is stronger than the difficulty.

    Please try to forgive yourself for not doing what you think should have done.

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  26. Until our country stops making it a disgrace to be born gay, this whole issue will hurt family after family. It's such a shame as it is natural for some to be homosexual and it's not something anybody should have to hide. I like how far we have come but there is farther to go.

    When my then boyfriend and I decided to get married in 1965, we were both 20. His parents were not pleased and I thought for years that I wasn't the woman they would have chosen from him. It only dawned on me years and years later that it wasn't me. It was our age. We were married when he was 21 and I was almost 21. I definitely would not have wanted my kids marrying that young.

    It's unfortunate that the gay issue still represents stigma to so many because your very real concern about your daughter's youth is being mixed up with something which has nothing to do with it. I would advocate now waiting 'til 30 to get married because I see how much growing we do in our 20s and it's a shame to be locking in our options before we truly know what we want for so many things. If your daughter was marrying someone society was comfortable with, she might still have been upset that you weren't excited about her choice, but she wouldn't have this side issue thrown in.

    I keep hoping our culture is changing in how it sees homosexuality as it is the hope for so many that it get realistic. I have said all along that it matters the most for the youth. It's wonderful that they can now marry and expect to have normal lives, but it is disappointing that it still represents failure to some families. When it's treated as nature, things will be better and you could argue with your daughter freely about waiting to get married. She still might not listen.

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  27. Gina, I'm sorry I didn't see this sooner, but really glad to see how your excellent community of friends has been here for you. That's a blessing which comes with blogging from the heart.

    We've had a lifetime of rough patches, us four, and we're a long way from done with that. But despite the temporary blindnesses we suffer due to pride or fear or rage or confusion, there's a bond of love here which we keep coming back to.

    As long as we appreciate that when times are good, we'll bump along through the bad with some sense of our shared destinations.

    Our Gurrrlz know what love is because we know what love is. If we fail to stand up tall enough for each other, that becomes an opportunity to do better next time.

    Stating that intention was as good a resolution as you could have wished for.

    Namaste, My Friend.

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  28. Pagan Sphinx,
    The one bit of something I can offer you is that from what Have garnered from reading previous posts about SG1 and your relationship is that you and your daughter will not be damaged from this unfortunate, yet, odd as it may sound, needed episode.

    You're strong. SG1 is strong. Together I am sure you have faced tougher odds. Time. That is all that is required. You shouldn't doubt your convictions. From what I know of you...they are what has kept SG1 from feeling alienated when it comes to the non-compliant.

    I say tell her grandmother! The sooner the better. And if that weight is lifted from SG1, and I assume it is (even to you), there is nothing that will keep you from hammering your conviction home the next time it is summoned.

    Damn the torpedoes- full speed ahead... right?

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  29. Oh. An afterthought-

    SG1 is certainly old enough to marry... at least from what I have read of her here she is old enough and more than ready... and so are you... to let her be ready.

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  30. Kenju: Agreed. We will be telling Vo vo (grandmother)as soon as she arrives at my home for the last leg of her visit. I'm actually looking forward to the weight being lifted and so is SG1. Thank you, my friend, for your support.

    Lin: Thank you. SG1 and I are moving past those pitfalls. When she had her bout of strong emotion, what was running through my mind was how young she seemed. But again, don't we all look young when we fall apart in front of another? But in the last few days, as we've tried to work through this, I've seen a maturity that has been awe-inspiring.

    Juan: A virtual hug feels real good to the heart - and that's not virtual. :-) Thank you.

    DCup: I'm trying to forgive myself. It's getting better everyday. Thank you.

    Rain: Nice to meet you. You bring up so many salient issues regarding being gay. I can only agree and tell you that I think you've hit on the what's at the core of family battles over this issue. Thank you.

    CR: (( R )) The fact that our marriage is over and the four of us can still hold that family love in our hearts is nothing short of a miracle. I love you guys. And now I'm getting kind of weepy. Of course, these last couple of days, I'm sort of used to it.

    PMan: My dear friend. Vo Vo has to know and soon. SG1 and I are preparing our torpedoes. :-)

    Love and peace to all. I'm overwhelmed by your kindness and generosity of spirit; your ideas, your convictions and your collective heart.

    Namaste (deep bow)

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  31. Dear Pagan,

    this raised up my own alienation (it's total) with my family of origin--a brother and a sister--in fact, I've dreamed about it the last couple of nights. Thus I am late in offering my support. Nor did I want to offer easy advice to a very tough position.

    I've seen my daughter through a number of bad relationships, starting when she was thirteen. Love them. Back them all you can. Admit it when you fail. You've done all of these.

    Vo vo needs to be told, and how she (and the rest of the family) react to that is not for any of you (counting the whole family, CR) to force or determine.

    From the black sheep in exile in New England (and damned happy to be here, and not there)

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  32. Johnieb - Amen. Thank you for your support and friendship. I think dinner with you, Fran and CR would be grand, don't you? :-)

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  33. PS, lemme (a complete newbie here: Howdy!) offer you some Magic Words:

    PreMarital.Counseling.With.An.LGBT.Pastoral.Counselor!

    One YOU will help SG1 find---and whom YOU know (on the QT) will REQUIRE at least, best case scenario 4 months worth of face-to-face sessions (regardless the number of sessions) between SG1 and her beloved.

    Do NOT say "You're too young/too immature": this will only drive 'em to a Las Vegas, scratch, California drive-by.

    Whatever she (SG1 and Beloved) need to hear, they NEED to hear from another queer: you can't do this (the voice of a dispassionate professional will help, also).

    Note: this is NOT a clever attempt to get 'em to put it (marriage) off. It IS a way for THEM to find out if they're really ready (and if the therapist is a good 'un, s/he won't have to tell them, they'll know).

    I really suggest, if at all possible, said queer counselor be the marrying clergy (assuming the couple are amenable to a religious wedding). The clergy-counselor can also probably get them to hold off too many "We've Set the Date!"-type announcements, until counseling is well under way.

    HTH: PS, hang in there! :-)

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  34. Well, thank you kindly but they're not religious at all. Since counseling has failed us on many levels, many times throughout our lives, I'm a bit gun-shy. Still, it is not a bad suggestion; just one that I'm not sure they'll go for.

    And they've postponed their marriage for another year, which is good news as far as I"m concerned.

    They will have been together at that point, for almost three years. They lived together all of last year; successfully. They are highly compatible. SG1 is more sure of this than I've seen her sure of anything. I'm beginning to rethink if they're ready. They may very well be.

    Thanks for th thoughts and wishes.

    ReplyDelete
  35. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete

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