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Monday, June 16, 2008

Reader Question...

Let's help our friend out with some advice. She'll be reading your comments...

I am a 18 year old who lives in X who goes to college in X, and I love you. I read your blog religiously. I have this problem in my life and was wondering if you, your friends, or maybe your readers have any advice. My girlfriend is currently a senior at the high school I went to before heading off for college. She doesn't turn 18 for another several months. In February she came out to her mom and told her about our relationship. Her mothers reaction was throwing up and saying how disgusting we are. Took her phone, computer, car, the works in hopes to keep us from still being together. Of course this is the 21st century and we still had ways of communicating, about a month ago she got her phone and computer back, and things have been going nicely for us in out little secret relationship again.

Her mom finally agreed that she could come to the same college I am at, believing we don't talk anymore and that my gf had no interest in talking to me again. It is the only way we knew how to get what we wanted. Anyways, her mom's fiance was snooping on her computer the other day and got onto her email and found a message from me. It was actually only a corrected paper I had edited for her, but my name showed up so suddenly all hell was set loose again. So of course the phone is gone again, as is the computer. I get home from college soon and have very little clue as to how to deal with all this. My gf is completely lost right now, not sure if she should be looking for loans for next year, or how she could get one at all for school, how to try and make peace with her mom without having to break up, it is a mess.

Has anyone ever been through something like is?
How do people do it?!

I know it is a large story, with no real way to be solved or fixed I just don't have any gay mentor to look to and ask advice from.

Thank you for all you do, you're wonderful


the one who knows said...

From what you've said, there is no hope of your gf patching things up with her family, so she'd best get over that idea as soon as possible. Sadly enough in this world, mommy and daddy don't always love you unconditionally. No matter what, her mother is not going to accept her--I've seen enough heartbreak to prove that.

After that...the first thing to do is clean your trail. Get a new email address, set it to a name from somebody from your high school yearbook, talk in code. Do NOT get found out, as this will only make things worse for her. A lot of people will give me shit for this, but your gf's safety and sanity are at stake.

Other people will be more qualified to answer about loans, moving out, etc, so I leave that discussion to them. The important thing is staying safe, sane, and anonymous.

Anonymous said...

I don't agree that its totally lost with the gf Mom. She sounds like she is a good parent, wanting to send her to college and pay for it. She is just freaking out and now she's pissed that her daughter lied.

However, I agree, you and gf need to be more covert. Use a webmail account and not your computer. Don't let the computer save your password or login info. She can call you from a payphone. She needs to do whatever she needs to do to get her Mom to pay for college.

Once she's 18 and in college, she has more power and more options. As a minor she has neither. My advice play the game, get her to college and then figure out what to do next term. (if Mom withholds college money next term and is still being an idiot-you can deal with loans then)

As a parent, I know that we just want what's best for our kids, teens make a lot of decisions that to them feel like "life and death", yet we older folks know its just a moment in life. Her Mom may just be exercising the only power she has over her daughter at the moment, afraid this will f**k her life forever. Some parents do come around with time. Hell that's why we have PFLAG!

Unfortunately, sometimes lying and playing the game of telling the parent what they want to hear, is the best course of action in order to create space and time for healing.

GOOD LUCK to you both!

Anonymous said...

As far as getting the loans goes, have your gf talk directly to the school. I was in a similar situation myself - my gf was already enrolled but wasn't getting any support from her family for school. She was short on tuition money, so we went to the financial aid office together and the loans counselor was really helpful in assisting us in learning about the types of scholarships and loans available. I ended up by co-signing on a loan to keep her in school. There's always a way if you're willing to work hard enough for it.

Anonymous said...

I have been going through a similar situation for 3 years and a half. I've kept my relationship secret from my mother. I actually confessed it to her once and she went crazy. After that my girlfriend and I started talking online rather than talking on the phone and seeing each other less. I would only call her from school or when my mom was not home. It's possible to keep a relationship a secret. Just tell her not to put your name on her contacts in her cell phone and use another name on your email accounts. That's what we've done for more than 3 years. It's not an easy situation by any means. Also, it's not the best thing to do for a long time, like for years, because in my experience, it hurt my relationship with my gf. So hopefully you're gf's mom will calm down after some time and you won't have to go through this anymore.

Anonymous said...

I disagree with the idea of being covert so your gf can have her mom pay for college.

The relationship with her mom and stepdad may someday be salvaged. They may realize they'll lose her if they try to control her, and that their reaction is bigoted, and that having a loving (or at least tolerant) relationship with her is more important than their own beliefs. Or not - this may be a sign of what is to come, varying from don't ask/don't tell all the way to fully rejecting her.

In the meantime, your gf is nearly an adult and wants to be treated like one. That means not misleading someone just so they'll pay for college. That means finding her own way (loans, a job, community college) to finance her education, if her mother is unwilling to accept her. Your gf doesn't have to be nasty about it -she can give her mother space while she stands on her own two feet, and hopefully things will heal between them. But lying, "playing the game", misrepresenting who she is - that dishonesty won't help her feel good about herself, and will (understandably) hurt her mother.

(Please note: if your gf is in a dangerous situation, where she could be mistreated or abused for her orientation, my advise would be totally different. In that case, she needs to lie for her protection, until she can get out of the house. But that doesnt' seem like the situation, thank goodness.)

freedomgirl said...

Honestly I think it's probably better to conceal your relationship and get the mom to pay for college. Every little helps and college is a huge opportunity both career-wise and personally. Better if your gf can get to a more stable place and then re-open the topic with her mom.

My gf and I were up against a lot of pressure from her mom to break up, and it didn't get better until other people in my gf's family stepped in and spoke to her mom about how unreasonable she was being. They said, 'you can have a gay daughter, or you can have no daughter. You can't change her just by force of will'. It made a huge difference, but if there's no one in your gf's life who can go to bat for her she'll have to do it for herself. Maybe if her mom has a taste of how it feels to be cut off from her daughter she'll come around. But as long as she's a minor, the situation is pretty delicate. She shouldn't do anything that will put her in danger, and she should find another adult that she can talk to like a guidance counselor or therapist. It can make a big difference just having one adult on her side. Good luck -- being grown up rocks and she's not so far away now!

Anonymous said...

I would have to agree that keeping it from mom is best. Keep her in your cell phone under a made up name change all your sn's and myspace. Clear your history every time after you use the computer. The mom doesn't sound like the type to ever change her mind about homosexuality. I know how hard it is, my fiance and I live together with our 3 yr old daughter and her parents can't know we're together. They live right down the street. I'm not allowed to wear my engagement ring 70% of the time because her parents would disown both of them. Some things will never change or be easy but you do what you have to in order to keep the relationship together. Some people have to lie to keep their family together, unfortunately she sounds like one of those people. Good luck and if you need any more tips on secrecy send out another post.

Underage and Gay said...

it sounds like your girlfriend doesn't have too much time left in her mother's roof. and unfortunately, it would benefit her in more ways than just in your relationship to move out on her own. it sounds like mom has a few power struggles seeing as she still takes away computer and phone from her almost-legal daughter. your girlfriend needs to make a decision as to whether she wants to go out on her own after high school [and go to school where she pleases] or stay under her mother's roof. it might prove useful for your girlfriend to suggest therapy with her mom...maybe they could sit down with a mediator and talk through some things? either way, your girlfriend will have to start making her own decisions sooner or later, especially if she's going to be an adult soon.

as for financial support, it might prove more fulfilling to sit on some debts and live freely rather than appeasing mommy and living with her dignity in a jar.

however...i don't think it's a great idea to keep relationships secret. secrecy suffocates love...and i personally believe that nothing is worth going back in the closet. it may be that your girlfriend has to just say, "mom, this is the way it is," and not talk about it anymore until her mom is ready. that way her mother has some time to heal from it and get used to the idea, but she's not lying flat out. that's not healthy either.

hope everything works out.

Kristyn said...

Nothing is going to be solved by continually sneaking behind the back of your gf's mother. Lying is never something that helps any situation. It only will lead your gf's mother to continually distrust her and you. Not to mention it makes YOU look like the bad gay. Like you're manipulating her to disobey her parents. The smart decision would be for your gf to man up and just be like "Mom, this is who I am and you can take it or leave it." It's a hard move to make, but ultimately one that is necessary.

And the whole college know, everyone has their own path to follow in life. And first of, I certainly hope that the reason why your gf is going to be attending the same college as you is because the academic program she wishes to be involved in is one that is highly regarded at that school and not solely because you are there. That could lead to another slew of issues. But back to the point. Where there is a will there is a way. If your gf really wants to go to college, but her parents won't pay for it, then there are countless numbers of options for her. Some of those options may include taking a couple years off to work to save up money for school, but they are options nonetheless. The important thing is to just be really supportive of her no matter what her decision is.

As someone who has been in this situation before, I wish you all the best. And make sure to let Arlan know how it all pans out! I'm sure we'll all be interested in knowing the conclusion.

kim said...

tough real advice just wanted to say good luck hope whatever you decide to do works out for you.
all i can say (from experience) is that going behind her parents back will only ever cause u both more heartache in the end.