About Our Boy – in honor of National Coming out Day

I penned this while sitting in my car outside of my son’s first LGBT meeting. I was more nervous than he was. It is an open letter to my ex husband, who has let his faith keep him from accepting the boy that God gave us.

How can you forget so soon that he was once your baby? That same chubby baby that you used to rock to sleep and play your guitar for. That same baby that would only settle if he were in our arms. He’s still the same boy that I got upset with you for feeding a microwave bean burrito to when he was only 7 months old. “But it is healthy!” you said. “Beans and cheese and bread” you said. And we laughed. Surely you remember your firstborn child…the son you had hoped for…back when we were still a family.

That son of ours, he’s still in there; it’s still him. He’s grown into a handsome young man. He has your same build and my eyes. How could you forget all that he once meant to you, now that he’s gay? Did the love just vanish the day he came out to you? Did your memories erase? Did you forget all about rocking him to sleep and teaching him to ride his bike? Do you really think that this is how God wants you to care for our boy?

Surely you know in your heart that putting conditions on the love that you give your child is not the way. “I’ll only accept you if…” really just means “I don’t accept you at all”. You’re going to lose him, that beautiful blue-eyed boy of ours, but not before you permanently imprint your shame and rejection upon his heart. The window is closing and I am left to pick up the pieces of his broken heart left in the wake of your rejection. I want to scream “Run to your boy! Run now before the door closes and you lose him forever!” But instead I say nothing. I keep a brave face and comfort our son and remind him that he is loved and worthy of love. And I pray that one day you will remind him of that too.

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