The other day as I was visitingJasmyne Cannick's website and I came across a letter to Jasmyne from a black mother in Ohio whose son had just come out to her. You can read the letter in it's entirety on Jasmyne's page. I was compelled to write a response to her letter, this is what I would say to her and all mothers in this situation if I had the chance.
I know the information I shared with you may have come as a surprise and you're probably blaming yourself. I ask you not too point the finger at yourself or anyone else for the cause of my same gender feelings. They have always been apart of who I am, and although this side of me is news to you, I've always known and often times struggled with them myself. However I cannot continue living a lie and deceiving those who genuinely care about me.
Contrary to popular opinion, a persons sexual orientation is not learned, it's indigenous to who they are. I know you've stated that you believe I'm gay based upon the absence of a strong male figure, my lack of participation in sports, and other enviromental factors. These things couldn't be farther from the truth.
You did a wonderful job raising me to be a strong black man in the absence of a father, and my sexuality doesn't make me any less of a man, but my courage to live life in the face of possible rejection from you, the church, and society gives me the right to proclaim boldly "I AM A MAN".
Please remember I haven't changed. I'm still the same boy you birthed, the same boy you nursed back to health when I had the chicken pox in the fourth grade, the same boy that you showed off to all your girlfriends because you thought I was so handsome, and the same boy who brought tears of joy to your face when I graduated at the top of my class. Please don't treat me like a stranger, I need you.
I know you're hoping it's just a phase, and you will be praying for my deliverance from what you and many other people believe to be something evil. Well , it's not a phase and I don't believe it's something I should even ask God to deliver me from anymore. I was created in his image and he knew who I was before I even took my first breath. My life is not a mistake.
The one thing I ask of you is to love me unconditionally, and set aside all of the negative images and feelings you've been taught about gay people because they're not true. How should you know? Easy, you've known me all of my life.
Let's take this opportunity to talk to each other more about ourselves, don't shut me out. I'm still your son and you're the only mother I'll ever have. The days ahead may be rocky at times, but my love for you will never change. I hope the feeling is mutual.