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EFFECTS OF HOMOPHOBIA: Parents. PARENTS RESPONSES o Total acceptance, find out more information, join FFLAG, provide support and understanding, challenge.

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Presentation on theme: "EFFECTS OF HOMOPHOBIA: Parents. PARENTS RESPONSES o Total acceptance, find out more information, join FFLAG, provide support and understanding, challenge."— Presentation transcript:


2 PARENTS RESPONSES o Total acceptance, find out more information, join FFLAG, provide support and understanding, challenge societal homophobia. o Total rejection, thrown out, never speak to them ever again. o Initial shock, create a scene and threaten their child not to tell anyone else; eventually come round to some level of tolerance; however, they never talk about the ‘ issue ’ again. o Some purposefully denigrate homosexuality in the hope that this will stop their child being gay. o Some go to great lengths to stop their children meeting other gay young people. o Some go to extreme lengths to try and change their child, which is impossible.

3 GALYIC NAT FINDINGS  62% out to both parents/carers  22% not out to both of their parents  16% out to one parent/carer  29% fully accepted by both parents  65% mixed response, i.e. one parent accepting, other either rejecting or half accepting and half rejecting  6% refused to accept

4 FATHER ’ S RESPONSE  62% out to their fathers  61% fully accepted  19% refused to accept  19% half accepted and half refused to accept them

5 POSITIVE “Fine” “Not bother him” “He accepts that I am what I am” “Jokes about it” “Always said got one of each, a son, a daughter and one in- between”

6 MIXED “Quiet to begin with” “Now ok” “Don't think he's that bothered but disappointed family name not continue” “Let mum explain but now fine”

7 NEGATIVE “It's wrong; I'm his youngest daughter - he doesn't want to think of me in that way” “Doesn't take any interest” “Unhappy about it” “Probably finds me disappointment” “Disown me” “Doesn't like it overt but doesn't make an issue of it” “Pretends it doesn't happen” “Take it badly” “Don't think he'd like it. Step dad” “Because I'm gay, he says that he wishes that I was never born”

8 MOTHER ’ S RESPONSE  76% out to their mothers  47% fully accepted  21% refused to accept them  32% half accepted and half refused to accept

9 POSITIVE “Cool from start” “Fine, doesn't mind, not one of the important things” “Wouldn't care as long as happy” “Supports me, worries it might single me out” “Think she's always known” “She's very supportive and is not bothered that I'm gay” “Fine, it's who you are, still love you, not going to change” “She's proud I'm happy with myself and meeting friends”

10 MIXED “Shocked at first but as long as I'm happy she's okay” “Accepts but hard to get head round it sometimes” “At first refused, wants gran kids. Ok now. Getting used to it - knowing I'm still me” “Indifferent” “She seems to be ok with it, but sometimes doesn't talk about it” “She's fine with it as long as its not in the public eye. Accepts my partner” “Love me no matter what, but I think she always imagined I'd marry my boyhood girlfriend” “Now don't think it makes any difference to her, at all” “Shocked at first but not throw me out”

11 NEGATIVE “Not like me being gay but I'm her daughter. Not like me talking about anything to do with gays” “Rather I wasn't but not force me to change like she tried to at first” “Not even want to think about it” “Homophobic” “Unhappy about it” “Gender homophobic” “If you are born that way it's mine and your dad's fault” “Ignore it and hope it will go away” “Thinks it's a phase and I'll grow out of it” “She won't like it” “She doesn't really accept it” “Ok with it, but doesn't want others to know” “Ok with everyone else being gay, except me” “At times supportive, but sometimes has reservations” “She would like me to meet a girl, so that she would have grandchildren”

12 Self-Harm v Attempted Suicide  Parental rejection or non-acceptance appears to have played a crucial part in pushing GALYIC members from self-harm to attempted suicide.

13 Parental Abuse  We need more information but it seems that LGBT young people are more vulnerable to abuse whilst growing up; this includes –Physical abuse –Sexual abuse –Emotional abuse

14 EFFECTS OF EMOTIONAL ABUSE  anxiety or depression;  eating disorders;  isolation and withdrawal from others;  low self-esteem and confidence;  children may run away from home;  aggressive behaviour;  drug or alcohol abuse;  insomnia; and  suicidal thoughts or attempts

15 Emotional Abuse: Definition 1 (Jane ’ s Sexual Assault Survivor Support Network) Emotional abuse includes acts such as restriction of movement, patterns of belittling, denigrating, scapegoating, threatening, scaring, discriminating, ridiculing or other non-physical forms of hostile or rejecting treatment.

16 Emotional Abuse: Definition 2 (Breaking the Silence) Defines emotional abuse as: “ A pattern of behaviour that impairs a child's emotional development or sense of self-worth. This may include constant criticism, threats, or rejection, as well as withholding love, support, or guidance. ”

17 Emotional Abuse: Definition 3 (NSPCC) Define emotional abuse as: “ when a parent or carer behaves in a way that is likely to seriously affect their child's emotional development. It can range from constant rejection and denial of affection, through to continual severe criticism, deliberate humiliation and other ways of verbally ‘ terrorising ’ a child. ” The NSPCC add, “ All children need acceptance, love, encouragement, discipline, consistency and positive attention from their parents. Children who are denied these things often grow up thinking they are deficient in some way and that they somehow deserved to be treated badly. ”

18 Emotional Abuse: Definition 4 (Department of Health) “ Emotional abuse is the persistent emotional ill-treatment of a child such as to cause severe and persistent adverse effects on the child's emotional development. It may involve conveying to children that they are worthless or unloved, inadequate …”

19 Exercise  Three case studies  Take it in turn to read them, discuss the situations and identify whether emotional abuse has taken place.  What could we do to support parents/carers in these situations?

20 Resources: Books  Coming Out to Parents: A Two-Way Survival Guide for Lesbians and Gay Men and their Parents, Mary V. Borhek, The Pilgrim Press, 1983.  A Stranger in the to cope if your child is gay, Terry Sanderson, The Other Way Press, 1991.  My Child is Gay, how parents react when they hear the news, edited by Bryce McDougall, Allen & Unwin, 1998.  Now That You Know, what every parent should know about homosexuality, Betty Fairchild & Nancy Hayward, Harcourt Brace, 1989.  When Your Child Comes Out, Ann Lovell, Sheldon Press, 1995.

21 Resources: DVDs  Out to the Family, Leeds Animation Workshop; six scenarios of young people coming out to their families; GALYIC helped develop this DVD and we have some copies or contact Leeds Animation Workshop.  For the Bible Tells Me So; American film documentary following the lives of several religious families who discovered their child was lesbian or gay. Available through Amazon.  Adopted The Movie: a documentary DVD about trans-racial adopted children. There are many similarities between the experiences of these children being brought up in white families and LGBT young people being brought up in heterosexual families. Watching aspects of this DVD can help parents to understand their children better:

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