So…as y’all know I’m non-binary (they/them pronouns plz) and have since started going by a different name. I have not yet told any of my family in fear of what their reaction will be. The reaction I got when I came out about my sexuality was painful enough. I don’t need to be hurt like that again, or worse, right before I go to college. When my mother and grandmother talk about how proud they are of me, they ignore the side of me that I want them to acknowledge and accept the most. I want them to be proud of all of me. Not just what they want to see in me. I’m so scared to tell them I’m non-binary because I don’t want the “I’m losing my daughter” card to be played. They aren’t losing me. I’m still the same person regarding my personality and my morals and whatnot. None of that has changed. I’ve just discovered what I’m not. The way they talk about transgender individuals makes me so afraid of what they’ll say about me. Do I have a right to be scared? Is what I’m feeling valid? Hearing them talk…it makes me feel like this makes me less of a person. I went through my deepest depression when I was hiding my sexuality because of fear. Now I’m doing the same with my overall identity. I’m scared the darkest times are yet to come.
Hey, thanks for sharing this part of your life with us.
That sounds like a rough situation. It sounds like your family does have love for you but might have issues with processing through and accepting the changes that are going on. This stuff can be very unique on parents when they have no reference point from when they grew up. That’s not to defend them at all for what they do to out you down about who you are. You are loved for who you are no matter what that looks like because a positive oath forward is the best way forward. When you continue to become positively assertive in your efforts you can become successful.
I wonder if possibly you would consider having a counselor or therapist be a mediator in a conversation with you about this situation? Maybe find one and get comfortable first (if not fire them and find a different one if possible). Parents can be a lot more receptive when a third party who is a therapist tells them that it’s ok for you to be you and be happy. I know in my life i did have a therapist who point blank told my mom some of the things she thought i was doing which were hurting me (like sleeping 10 hours at night) were not bad for me because i would be able to get up and feel better the next day because i was able to get into a proper sleep cycle and that i just needed more sleep than other people sometimes. (And other stuff i won’t discuss that’s more deep than that).
Also have you talked to your friends about their experiences with what is going on too? They can be of some great support. I want you to stay here and talk with us about what’s going on too. Those were just a few thoughts i had off the top of my head.
I think it’s hard when your family sees you change because they are overly protective sometimes of their “little one”. They don’t always get that there’s sometimes differences in cultural and society that they didn’t have back then. Like back when my mother was a kid, my great uncle was certified crazy solely because he was white and dated only BIPOC.
But times have changed now and this is not where we are, we as a society and as people are no longer that way. So have some comfort in knowing that you have friends here who respect you, care about you, love you, and want you to be happy and fulfilled.
I have stories of people who i perceived as very much against the LGBTQIA community who i came to realize were supportive as they themselves matured. We all mature in different things at different rates. We all find our path to loving others at a different speed, and the first step is to love ourselves. So i definitely think making sure your loving yourself is a good start, and that includes being bold and saying you are who you are.
I do wonder, what does it mean exactly to you to say and show this to your family? How would you go about talking to them? Do you have a plan and course of action? Do you have any ideas you’ve talked to anyone about? Have you considered making a safety plan just for you? I know a safety plan is always good and since you’re here, why not take the moment again to either do it, do update it, or just do it again.
I am just waking up so i apologize for the ramble like post, i need to get my morning sunshine in so i can wake up more.
You’re loved, you matter, and you’re cared for greatly!
I don’t know if this is the right or healthy way to go about it, whether in general or for you, but I saw one unique sequence I’ll share.
I had a friend who grew up in a relatively well-adjusted household, with parents who were proud of her. She came out as a lesbian in college. Her mother denied it, insisted it was a phase, but couldn’t help being proud of how my friend was living the rest of her life. The same thing happened when my friend came out as trans. Her/his (I’m not sure about pronouns during transition) mom had a much harder time with that, and again thought it was just a confusing time that would pass. That caused some tension between them. Finally, my friend transitioned, and his mom was faced with the choice to accept or reject him. It was no longer a phase, it was undeniably permanent. He was still the same person at his core, just bearing an identity and a body that better fit who he knew he was. His mom accepted him, because the only other alternative was to reject him. He was a good son, a high achiever who led an admirable life, a child any parent would be proud of.
If your parents tell you they’re proud of you, I believe that to be true, because that’s not something a lot of kids hear very often. If they’re proud of you, they need to be proud of all of you. They may be conflicted, but they’ve got to realize that they can’t separate the parts of you. They’re either proud of the whole you or not, and while it may take years for them to accept something they don’t understand, eventually they’ll have to realize it’s part of the whole you that can’t be denied and can’t be line-item rejected.