My Parents Kind Of Know Now.

 But it's not that simple. It all started with a bumper sticker I got at Berkeley. I was looking at this booth full of bumper stickers, trying to find one that suited my personality so I could decorate my car: a minivan handed down by my mother, who now has a beautiful Lexus. They all had to do with bringing the troops home except one that said "Celebrate Diversity" in colorful letters. "That's great!", I thought. My dad thought it was good too. We bought it and on our way home, my mom called wanting to know where we were. I told her about the bumper sticker and what it said. And her reaction was laughter and "That's for the gays!" Of course I protested, saying how diversity ranges from religion to ethnicity, and, well, obviously sexual orientation. But my point was that it wasn't just "for the gays." Anyways, she forbade me to put it on my car because she didn't want her friends and our neighbors to get the wrong impression of me - even though a gay couple lives right across from us. I'm such an embarrassment, right? God. When I got home, I insisted on putting the bumper sticker on, but she was like, "Are you gay? Because if you are, you can tell me. Otherwise, don't put it." I was really really really tempted to yell, "Yes, MOTHER. I am a lesbian. You're daughter is gay." But I didn't because I know her tactics. She's trying to embarrass me by associating me with the gay community. As if that's something to be embarrassed about. 

 

I really liked the bumper sticker and put it on my car anyway. 

The day of my senior portrait was here. My mom and I spent about 45 minutes getting my hair and makeup just perfect. As we were pulling out of the driveway in her Lexus, she saw the bumper sticker on my car and flipped out. "Why the hell did you put it on when I clearly told you not to? Come on, tell me. Are you gay? Are you? Are you? ARE YOU?" It was her psychological trick again to embarrass me to take off the bumper sticker. But I couldn't pretend anymore. I sheepishly said yes. One advice I have to offer from this experience: DO NOT COME OUT WHEN YOU OR THE PERSON YOU ARE COMING OUT TO IS OPERATING A MOTOR VEHICLE. 

I think she thought I was joking to get her off my back. She kept asking, "Really?" and I kept nodding. "No...no," she kept saying. I kept nodding. Keeping this fact about myself hidden from my parents was extremely easy because I am very feminine. Just thought I'd throw that out there. Now back to the story.

We got to the picture studio about twenty minutes early. Awkward silence in the car. "I think we should wait inside," I shakily said. She was silent, her eyes moist with withheld tears. "A lot of girls at my work tell me they never plan on marrying." "So?" "Maybe it's the same with you." "Mom, are those girls attracted to other women?" "No..." "Well, that's the difference between them and me." Harsh, I know. But I was getting annoyed. She cried a little bit. "Your father cannot know this." "Why not?" "Just...he can't." "But I want to tell him." "NO! I'm afraid that something will happen to him." "Uh...what do you mean?" "I mean a ******* heart attack. His family has a history of cardiac arrest." That brought tears to my eyes which I was forced to keep back as to not ruin my makeup. I took the pictures and we went home. They're beautiful, by the way. My favorite pictures of myself.

She had a hard time keeping it to herself. Not telling anybody made her physically sick and she seemed to be always crying. Of course, my dad picked up on this and kept asking "Come on, what's wrong?" She tells him that her and I have been fighting. He knew she was full of BS, but knew not to pry. It was the day before my first day of school that he overheard Mom telling me that I should give boys a chance. He figured it out, of course. Peeping behind the wall he was standing, he had an expression of confusion and surprise. Not knowing what to do, I got up and speedwalked to my room. 

A few hours later that night as I was packing my backpack and preparing a cute outfit for the first day of school when I heard my mom calling me into her room. Nervously, I made my way over there. It was a confrontation. Her and Dad were sitting on the floor, so I sat down too. "What is this I hear?" Dad quietly said. "I dunno." "Tell him," Mom said. After a long pause, "I think I'm gay." (I added "think" in there to lessen the impact. I am actually a lesbian. No doubt about it.) His face distorted and a tear rolled down. "Have you told anybody?" "No, of course not," I lied. I have told all my friend last summer. "Get these filthy thoughts out of your mind. No, no, not MY daughter." "They're already gone. Don't worry." ****, I wanted to get out of that room as fast as possible.  My mom was silently sobbing this entire time. After a minute of no talking, I slowly got up and went back to my room. My younger brother of 14 was playing his XBox this whole time. I have yet to tell him. 

I was just about to get into bed when I saw my dad was just standing in the hallway, his eyes showing deep thought. After some hesitation, I went over to him. "Goodnight, Dad." I hugged him. He started crying on my shoulder, his strong back shaking with each sob. I must be strong, I thought. I held back my own tears, stroked the back of his head and whispered, "Don't worry. Don't worry." He pulled away, held my face in his big, rough hands, and kissed me on the forehead. I saw my mom watching from the crack of their open bedroom door. 

I waited this gay drama out, thinking it's what's best. It's impossible for them to forget such an experience, but they're acting as if it never happened. When we're with our family friends, they still joke about finding me a good husband and making sure everyone approves of him. I smile and chuckle a bit while I'm screaming inside. 

I have a completely different life at school - I am a completely different person. I am vice president of our Gay-Straight Alliance. I have a girlfriend, kind of. (It's complicated. Don't worry about it.) Basically, I'm out. But at home, I'm simply a daughter and a sister whose only responsibility is getting good grades and get accepted to a good college. I don't know what to do. I am NEVER bringing the topic of being a lesbian up EVER AGAIN...until I am finally out of the house and not dependent on my parents anymore. 

"Celebrate Diversity" is now taped on the wall of my room, without disapproval from my parents. A sign of what's to come, hopefully? I'm still confused as to whether or not I'm considered "out" to my parents. 

watermelon098 watermelon098
18-21, F
4 Responses Feb 8, 2010

At least that screaming feeling of never telling anyone is gone. I'm 22 and I haven't even told anyone

This is a good story, similar to mine. I'm glad for you that your parents, albeit slowly, seem to be coming around. Good luck with everything!

Thank you both :]<br />
I hope what you said is right, jp, on how love lives in our parents and they will ultimately see through this one little fact about me and realize that I'm still the same person, despite who I desire to share my body with.

Thanks SO much for posting this story, It's frustrating trying to lead the dual life like that, I remember doing it myself. Some of the things said in your story remind me very much of my mom first finding out I was gay.. although I did chuckle when you pointed out not to break the news when the person you're telling is driving :) Thanks again for sharing :)<br />
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-Blas