Holiday bigotry

Posted on 09 Jan 2006 at 3:39pm
By Candy Marcum Counselor’s Corner


Dear Candy,
My boyfriend and I have been together almost two years. I want to avoid what happened last Christmas, our first together, when we went to his mom’s house for the family dinner.
His brother, a good ole boy from White Settlement, wouldn’t acknowledge me and acted like I wasn’t even there. Then he blew a gasket and told his brother (my partner, Tony) that God didn’t make Adam and Steve that he hated that we were flaunting our lifestyle. I went ballistic. I called him a homophobe, a bigot and said that God created all people. He made Tony and I just like we are he loved us, too.
Needless to say, we left before the dessert was served.
Things have cooled down since then. We still have a relationship with his mom. And this year, Tony wants to go back to his mom’s for Christmas. She wants all her family there. And yes, Bubba will be invited.
Should I stay home or go with both barrels loaded? I’m thinking I should insist Tony choose Bubba and family or me. I’m so angry, I could bite nails. I don’t know what to do.
GGGR

Dear GGGR,
I understand your anger. Last Christmas, your partner’s brother was very offensive. But you shouldn’t be surprised that Tony wants to return home for the holidays. They’re family they all want to be together for Christmas.
I suggest you support your partner’s Christmas wishes. I think you should go home with him, too. Next time someone in that family offends the two of you, let Tony handle it. It’s his family. Since you expressed yourself last year, they already know your feelings.
Let Tony’s family deal with accepting a gay family member. Be supportive as Tony gets through this journey. Let him know you’ll be able to handle the insults without losing your temper. This is more traumatic for Tony than for you. Go with him to his family Christmas and be cool. Good luck.
Dear Candy,
I’m bummed about the Proposition 2 election results. But my partner, Rich, is devastated. His dark mood concerns me.
He wants to sell everything and move to either Vermont or Canada. He says the vote proves we’re not respected that we should heed Gov. Rick Perry’s advice and move elsewhere. Sometimes I feel the same, but I don’t want to leave. I’m a third generation Texan. My family, friends, my job and my history are here. I think we should stay and fight the politicians who are using us as a way to raise funds for Perry’s re-election bid. Rich won’t listen to me. How do I get him to rethink this. Or should I start packing?
T for Texan

Dear T,
Both gay and straight fair-minded folks are alarmed, angry and saddened by the passage of Proposition 2. The vote threatens the happiness of same-sex couples all over Texas. But the quality of communication between partners is critical to resolving distressing emotions.
I hope Rich will calm down and listen to your point of view. Listening is half of good communication the other half is talking. You each have valid points of view. Selfishly, I hope that fair-minded people will stay in Texas to fight the good fight. It will not only be a loss for you to leave you family, job and roots, but a loss for Texas as well. Good luck.
Candy Marcum is a licensed professional counselor in private practice in Dallas.
E-mail: DearCandyLetters@aol.com.

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