Sunday, July 8, 2018

Best Compliment Ever

The other day, Alyssa told me that her girlfriend, N, said that I am the soccer mom for gay kids. She was referring to my black t-shirt that has the rainbow freedom flag on it as well as the rainbow shoes I sometimes wear.

I was flattered, to say the least.

But honestly, it's a fine balance for me. I don't want to make Alyssa's life about me. I want to be a support to her, an ally as she travels this journey called life.

I want her to know that I support her, that I want her to be happy, loved and safe.

We had a bit of a...struggle the other day. She didn't want to go away with me and Liv and my mom for a couple of days to visit an aunt of mine. See, this aunt had made some pretty awful statements about homosexuality a couple of visits ago. I'd tried hard to gently steer my aunt away from her horrible bias and at the time Alyssa said she was fine.

But this time, on the eve of our leaving for the visit (the aunt lives on a lake, so we stay in an apartment attached to her house and swim for days) Alyssa declared she was uncomfortable with staying with this aunt. She was worried that Auntie would make another horrible comment (she didn't) and she said that if Auntie knew about N, Alyssa was worried that it would change Auntie's feelings/thoughts toward her (Alyssa).

I wanted Alyssa to go but I also didn't want to force her into a situation where she was uncomfortable or felt attached, even unintentionally.

It was a tough few hours. There were tears.

In the end, it was revealed that Lyss wasn't so much against going to Auntie's house, she just didn't want to go for three days and nights. We compromised, and went for two days and nights. She was happy, I got to spend time with her and Auntie behaved herself.

At one point during the discussion, though, I told Lyss that I kind of thought that if Auntie knew about N, it might actually go further in changing Auntie's mind about homosexuality rather than changing her feelings about Alyssa. I told her that Auntie loves her and I don't think finding out she has a girlfriend could change that.

I followed that statement up with something along the lines of, "I am not suggesting that it is your place to change the world or even our small part of it. I am not asking you to come out more than you are ready. I want you to do that at your own pace. I want you to feel safe in your world, whatever that takes. If Auntie says something, I need to know how much you want me to defend both you and the ideal of bisexuality and homosexuality. I want to honor your feelings, your story, your place in this world."

We hugged it out and all is well again in the Ordinary world...for now. :-)


Julie said...

That's a pretty deep conversation! Was the three days because she wanted to get home to her friends or because she didn't want to be with the aunt for three days?

Tommie said...

The three days were because she didn't want to be away from her friends for that long. Auntie was fine, very hospitable and no homophobic comments were uttered by anyone. it was a nice time.