Lisa | 62 | Tuscon, Arizona, USA
I think it's different now, but perhaps that's a cop out. I know that growing up in the 50's and 60's it wasn't okay and to tell your folks was beyond difficult. I for one never told my Mom. She died in 1991 when I was 41 so it's a moot point now. My Dad knows.....not because we had some heartfelt conversation but because his second wife brought it to his attention.
"I often think how different life would have been if I could have lived my life as a whole person. No hiding, no lies, no fake boyfriends. I know this feeling sorry for myself is a waste of time but maybe I just really want today's young gay and lesbian kids to know and understand what a huge difference it will make to come out and to be true to your self."
Your parents will love you and if you question that.....leave it to them to work through. You are not the one with the problem. If you are a good Catholic kid and your church has you confused just think about Jesus....would he love you? You know the answer to that....and that's what really matters.
Listen....do this for you, first and foremost but maybe as an afterthought, do it for the thousands of us who grew up right before it was okay and suffered through the hiding and embarrassment and shame that we let ourselves feel as we stayed in the closet to all but our closet friends and sometimes siblings who loved us enough to tell us they knew and still loved us as they always did if not more.
"At almost 63, I am so grateful to see the changes in the world and the love and recognition
we finally have begun to receive. Don't stop. We have a long way to go to total equality.
Perhaps not in my lifetime but some days I think it may be."
And it's at those moments that I think back at my life sometimes with regret, actually often with regrets, but sometimes I think I was an important part of the movement that brought us to the time and place of today and I feel proud. That is the feeling I most want to keep.....even if it is somewhat naive. I am an aged, worn warrior and I did help make this time happen. I need to remember that and so do you.