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Dear Emma,
I’m trying to wrap my head around something that is a recent bombshell in my family. I have a grown son who recently came out as gay. I love him dearly, but I’m from a conservative family and being gay just “isn’t done”. I have accepted him and his lifestyle, and even his new boyfriend (who is 20 years his senior), but several family members are very critical and judgmental, and have even stopped inviting him to family events. His brothers have always teased him and each other about their masculinity, long before he came out, as did his father.  Now, it’s just awkward. I’m hoping you have some suggestions on how to cope with all these new family dynamics.

– Peacemaker Mom

[/vc_column_text][vc_column_text]Dear Peacemaker Mom,

PFLAG (Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays) is a great organization with chapters all over the place. Talk to other parents and hear how they dealt with a child coming out. It’s wonderful that you are able to embrace him as the son you have always loved, but I’m sure you had to do some adjusting yourself, and maybe some letting go of the life you had imagined for him.

For me, if a relative did not invite my child to a family event because my child made them uncomfortable, I wouldn’t be able to attend that event myself. Talk with your husband about the teasing; see how he’s doing with the adjustment. The other brothers will come around if the two of you set the example. Don’t forget to breathe.

– Emma

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