It really a testing time for parents, when they come to know that their child is a lesbian, bisexual, gay or a transgender. However, broad minded you are, it does come as a shock to most of the parents. Well, understand that it is quite normal to feel that way. Anger, sadness, scare are all valid feelings that are bound to feel as a human. Though, there have been quite a few instances where parents have even felt happy for a reason that their child has opened up to them. In India, also more than in the west, parents find it quite difficult to understand the fact and digest it the same. But, most of parents are more scared about the outside world. Because as a parent they might even accept the fact but they always worry over how the outside world is going to treat their child.
Why go far, Bollywood is known to be an integral part of every Indian family and many Indian films are known to have made mockery of sexuality and characters that are gay. But, Parenting has the power to change things and situations and mold your child to grow up into a confident youth.
Acceptance – Once you come to know of the sexuality of your child, accept it even with a heavy heart but do it. Acceptance is the first step to make your child feel safe and supported inside his house. Talk to them in an age appropriate way and if you have more than one child, do not be bias to the one who is a different sexuality. If you are not comfortable talking to your child find a counsellor or an adult who can do so.
Get Familiar with LGBTQ terms – Never use any offensive language or sensitive LGBTQ terms, however angry you are or whatsoever the reason be. Make them feel that they are equal to other genders in every way.
Build a safety circle – Try to build a community support for your child, so that if ever the child is experiencing bullying issues then they can provide support. It’s like building a circle of safety that includes your reliable friends, relatives and family members.
Discuss about relationships – Tell them that they are not the only one in the world, but there are many like them and they can find friends who understand them and even close friends.
Correct others in front of your child – If others tend to pass negative or derogatory comments against your child, correct them there and then even if it means doing it in front of your child. This will only reinforce that you accept your children the way they are and also teaches them how to tackle these things calms and keeping your cool.