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View Diary: The most important Coming Out story of the year (147 comments)

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  •  Yes, the Children's Hour perpetuates the tragic (3+ / 0-)

    myth, that same-sex loves are doomed.  But the explanation hungrycoyote's mother proferred to her ten-year-old, was completely matter-of-fact.  And I doubt the mother who spoke those words believed or was conveying the idea that doom OUGHT to accompany same-sex love.

    "The extinction of the human race will come from its inability to EMOTIONALLY comprehend the exponential function." -- Edward Teller

    by lgmcp on Fri Jul 06, 2012 at 09:20:49 AM PDT

    [ Parent ]

    •  It doesn't sound like she meant (4+ / 0-)

      any harm at all, but unfortunately this is the message that the media used to send out about gays and their relationships.

      Think about the context that hungrycoyote first heard of same sex couples - it was a woman's suicide.

      I'm not trying to place any blame here, I'm just pointing out why people of a certain generation feel the way they do.

      My mother and father worried for years that I was going to kill myself because they thought that was what all gay people did eventually.

      •  As the person who was that 10 year little (5+ / 0-)

        girl, I can tell you that my perception had nothing to do with same-sex love. My reaction was that Audrey Hepburn character was in love with the man in the story and it was sadness over unrequited love that caused the MacLaine character to hang herself. She could have just as easily been in love with the man in the story and done the same thing.

        Let me tell you the rest of the story. Fast forward 10 years later when I was 20 and met Charles in college. It was a case of instant friendship. We could talk about anything. It was just so comfortable. Within six months of our meeting, he graduated and moved to another city. We kept in touch by phone and letters. However, there always seemed to be something distant in the friendship. Anytime I suggested my driving over to visit him, he came up with excuses. Meanwhile, a mutual acquaintance told me that Charles was "bi-sexual," and it occurred to me that was the reason that he didn't want me to come visit.

        I didn't want to lose the friendship that was so important to me. So I called Charles and told him that I was coming to visit him that weekend and refused to take no for an answer. I drove over. When I arrived he had several male friends visiting. We all went out for lunch, and when we returned Charles went into a bedroom where I overheard his roommate yell at him, "If you don't tell her, I will."

        Charles came out and told me he needed to talk to me. He took me into the Master Bedroom and we sat on a chest at the end of the bed. Charles said: "I have something to tell you that I have never had to tell anybody in my entire life." I just looked at him and said, "Okay."

        Charles sighed and then blurted out, "We're all gay." My response was: "Yes, I know. So what?" He asked why I didn't tell him I knew, and I simply told him that was something he needed to tell me. It wasn't my place to pry.

        The relief that came over him was immediately obvious. He jumped up, ran out of the room jumping up and down with excitement, announcing to everybody, "She already knew."

        Charles was the closest friend I've ever had in my entire life. I could tell him anything, and he never judged. For the next dozen years no matter where we each lived, we'd visit each other. We talked often.

        The last thing Charles ever said to me was "I love you" over the noise of an oxygen mask on the phone on the 13th of July 1987. He died the next day ...  AIDS.
        -----------------
        Do you think if I had a mother who taught me that there was something wrong with same-sex love, I would ever had known the joy of my friendship with Charles?

        For me, Mitt reminds me of Jeff Bridges in Starman. He's like an alien that hasn't read the entire manual. You know, he's going, "Nice to be in a place where the trees are the right size." -- Robin Williams on Letterman 26 Apr 2012

        by hungrycoyote on Fri Jul 06, 2012 at 10:17:56 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  It's true, unrequited is unrequited (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          hungrycoyote, TiaRachel

          and hurts like hell no matter who you are.  My perception has always been that there is a special sting that comes from the often-justified belief that heterosexual privilege may have played a starring role in causing that unrequitedness ... but life and love are complicated, so parsing the reasons can be useless.  

          "The extinction of the human race will come from its inability to EMOTIONALLY comprehend the exponential function." -- Edward Teller

          by lgmcp on Fri Jul 06, 2012 at 11:45:59 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  Well, *intended* to convey. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      leonard145b, lgmcp, a gilas girl

      I haven't seen that movie (though of course I'm somewhat familiar), so I don't know if the knowledge that the motive was 'love denied' would be quite clear... or whether there was enough 'things were different in the old days' for a kid differentiate...

      Of course, we're not talking about the entire conversation. But it seems to me that the mother answered the (to her) complicated-and-on-her-mind gay question, not the more difficult 'and some people are bigots enough to think that's worth destroying someone's life for'.

      •  It was that clear ... see my long post just (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        TiaRachel

        above.

        For me, Mitt reminds me of Jeff Bridges in Starman. He's like an alien that hasn't read the entire manual. You know, he's going, "Nice to be in a place where the trees are the right size." -- Robin Williams on Letterman 26 Apr 2012

        by hungrycoyote on Fri Jul 06, 2012 at 10:19:38 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

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