Dear Abby, the famed columnist who offers advice, once again went viral this week with her heartfelt reply to a woman who signed her letter “Heartbroken Gay Granny.”
The woman wrote to Dear Abby asking for advice on how to handle her son and his family who, because of her sexual orientation, no longer allow her to see her two grandchildren.
“DEAR ABBY: I came out of the closet when my son was 4. I thought I had taught him not to judge because of a label. He’s now 30, with a wife and two adorable children who own my heart.
When my granddaughter was born, my partner and I were at the hospital and have visited with them often and they with us. However, after my grandson was born last year, my son quit speaking to me.
I have asked him numerous times what the issue is. His response is: “I have to protect my children from people who are gay. I don’t want them to know anyone who is gay.” His wife and her family are very religious, and I feel this is the real reason. What can I do?
-Heartbroken Gay Granny”
It’s a reversal on the all-too-common stories in the news about parents rejecting their children because of their sexual orientation — a son who, despite knowing that his mother is gay for the majority of his life, is now refusing to have contact with his mother because of that, and is refusing to let her be in contact with his own children.
Dear Abby, who has long been known as a staunch supporter of gay rights and gay marriage, offered “Heartbroken Gay Granny” advice that has resonated with many, advising Gay Granny to leave the door open to her son in the hopes that he and his wife may change their minds at some point. However, in the mean time, she could redirect her maternal instincts by reaching out to gay youth whose parents, like her own son, have rejected them on the basis of their sexual orientation.
And although the letter written to the so-called Gay Granny is tender, Dear Abby still managed to express just exactly what she feels about people who believe they are “protecting” their children by isolating them from a faction of the population.
“DEAR HEARTBROKEN: If your son is under the mistaken impression that he is going to somehow “protect” his children by isolating them from gay people, he must be living in an alternate reality. Does he also plan to emigrate to the moon?
I suspect you have put your finger squarely on the reason why your son is now ostracizing you. His wife appears to wield the power in that family, and could benefit by learning more about homosexuality and her religion, which I assume preaches love and tolerance for one’s fellow man rather than judgment and exclusion.
You can’t force your son and his wife to have contact with you if they don’t want to. Leave open the possibility that they may, over time, reconcile their love for you with their faith.
For your own emotional well-being, it’s important you find other outlets for your maternal instincts and go on with your life because any child would be blessed to be a part of it. Sadly, a large number of LGBT young people are rejected by their parents when they come out. These kids would benefit greatly from having a positive adult mentor like you. This could be your golden opportunity to make a significant, positive difference in someone’s life. Contact Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays at pflag.org to find out how to get involved.”
What do you think of Dear Abby’s response?
For more on Dear Abby, click here to read her response to a Florid couple who initially shunned their gay neighbors, but then complained that they felt “excluded.”
[Image via myfusionmobile.net]