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Reading Material: Heterosexual Parents of LGBT Children


Memoirs and Anthologies

Beyond Acceptance: Parents of Lesbians and Gays Talk About Their Experiences:  When a parent or friend hears for the first time that someone they love is gay, the feelings can range from bewilderment and confusion to fear and anger. Based upon discussions and interviews with parents of gays and lesbians, "Beyond Acceptance" provides knowledge and information that will help parents come to understand their children and build stronger relationships with them.

The Family of Heart: A Memoir When Our Son Came Out:  Most books about parents dealing with their child's announcement of his or her homosexuality are cast as "self-help" or educational. In the absence of informed, nonjudgmental material, these books are important, but more personal stories are also important. In Family Heart: A Memoir of When Our Son Came Out, novelist Robb Forman Dew tells the story of what happen to her--and her family--after her son Stephen came out.

A Journey to Moriah:  When her gay, teen-age son was outed in their community by the pastor of her church, Rhea Murray believed life was about to cave in on her. Instead, the event turned out to be the harbinger of a brave new beginning.


Support and Experience

Always My Child: A Parent's Guide to Understanding Your Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgendered or Questioning Son or Daughter:  This book is primarily targeted toward parents struggling to help and deal with their questioning or coming out teenage child.  So what is the secret? The title says it best - "Always My Child."  Your child's needs come first, no matter what.  Love your child; don't pressure them, but encourage them to discus their feelings, fears, and problems.

Coming Out as Parents: You and Your Homosexual Child:  This book helps parents of homosexuals understand their feeling and reactions to that knowledge and clarifies what it means to be homosexual.

Coming Out to Parents: A Two-Way Survival Guide for Lesbians and Gay Men and Their Parents:  Listed by American Bookseller as "among the most important gay and lesbian books that should be represented in any general bookstore," Borhek's original edition of this book (1983) has also been praised as "sound, sympathetic, and helpful" (St. Luke's Journal of Theology). In this thorough revision, Borhek brings an additional decade of personal knowledge and experience to bear on the subject of coming out.

A Family and Friend's Guide to Sexual Orientation: Bridging the Divide Between Gay and Straight:  Power and Ellis' book is a great next step for families and friends in various stages of coming to terms with a lvoed one being out. A Family and Freind's Guide to Sexual Orientation is rich in emotional depth....The book seems to ofer something for everyone, whether dealing with these issues in personal or professional life, from a spiritual place or some other perspective.

Family Outing:  A smart, sensible, and supportive guide for parents who learn that their child is gay, lesbian, or bisexual, based on letters written by British parents of gay, lesbian, and bisexual children. Distributed in the US by Dufour.

Jocks: True Stories of America's Gay Male Athletes:  Find out what happens when the final closet door--that of men in sports--finally swings open. Is there life for gay athletes after coming out to their teammates? Journalist Dan Woog, himself an openly gay soccer coach, interviewed dozens of gay jocks and offers over 25 inspiring stories of men who are truly today's champions.

Mom, Dad, I'm Gay: How Families Negotiate Coming Out

My Child is Gay: How Parents React When They Hear the News:  My Child is Gay is fift parents sharing how they coped and in some cases did not cope with news that their son or daughter is gay. Parents discuss how they felt when they first found out, what they found helpful, who they could talk to, and how they feel today.

Now That You Know:  A Parents' Guide to Understanding Their Gay and Lesbian Children:  If the coming out process is difficult for gay people, it is often equally difficult for their parents. Confusion, anger, and fear frequently cause fathers and mothers of gay men and lesbians to disavow, strike out against, and even resent their children.

Queer Family Values: Debunking the Myth of the Nuclear Family

Straight Parents, Gay Children: Keeping Families Together:  Bernstein, father of a lesbian daughter, writes of parents' pain and confusion when they learn their children are gay. He realistically describes the initial feelings of grief and disgust almost universal among such parents, who, after all, have always considered homosexuality to be wrong and alien. In specific chapters, he also addresses the experiences of growing up gay in a straight world, the movement toward gay rights, the fight by accepting parents for tolerance for their children, celebrities with gay children, and myths about homosexuality, and he offers a survival guide for parents who have just learned they have a gay child. Especially valuable is the chapter "Parents Speak Out," which tells the personal stories of families who are incorporating gay children into their familial identity.



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