My son had apparently seen me watch the soap opera “Modern Family” on TV a couple of times and probably caught a glimpse and ran some opinions based on it in his head. I learnt that he noticed mostly two things, although I haven’t quizzed him for his thorough knowledge on the soap opera (Btw, did you ever wonder why TV serials are called soap operas?, well because soap manufacturers were amongst the first major sponsors of these serials). So like I said, the two things he noticed was the existence of “Sofia Vergara” and the “Gay couple”. During one of these brief watching sessions he asked me looking at the screen casually “Mom, are these guys (characters, Mitchell Pritchett and Cameron Tucker) BROTHERS?! “ After a tiny bit of shock or say the feeling when the words are churning in your mouth but you aren’t sure if you have to let them out. I swallowed all that was churned and just said “YES” instead. May I get your attention : Before you jump out of your couch to call an LGBT activist on me, let me tell you that “ I am not homophobic”. Everyday I am stretching my capacity to understand the sexual orientation and gender diversity positively, to support Human and their right to feel the way they do. Why did I not correct my son then ? I don’t know. But what I know now is to be open with my child about this and provide an age appropriate explanation to this. But, what I’m unsure is the right age for him to know about this, given the most popular concept of marriage is between a lady and a man. While I dwelled deeper into this subject , these are the tidbits of information I found, could be a good learning for any parent who plans to explain this to their children :
- When same-sex marriage was legalized in Massachusetts, children were given literature including that said it’s a myth that marriage is about children and a myth that children are best served when raised by a mother and father. When parents complained about a picture book shown to children with a same-sex couple kissing, their school said that they’d continue to read these books. They took the matter to the court but the court found that schools now have an obligation to normalise same-sex marriage.
- A Jewish school failed three inspections as they didn’t teach about homosexuality and gender diversity, and therefore as same-sex marriage is legal, the students were not being provided a full understanding of fundamental British values. And that school now faces closure.
- According to a seasoned sexual educator, as mentioned in psychology today , “It is never too late to begin your conversations with your child. But it can certainly be far better to start early. I advise parents that the age of 5 is a wonderful time to lay a foundation for what homosexuality is and to instill in your young child a sense of tolerance and acceptance for being lesbian or gay. “You know, just like a man and a woman can love each other so can a man and a man or a woman and a woman. A man that loves and is attracted to another man is called a gay man. A woman that loves and is attracted to another woman is called a lesbian woman. Gay men and lesbian women are also called homosexuals. It is very important that we respect people who are gay and lesbian”. Your 5 year old will happily say, “Oh, okay” and be done with it. ”
- The educator also suggests that by starting our discussions about homosexuality early in our children’s lives we increase the likelihood that they will grow into tolerant and respectful adolescents and adults.
- Another way to put it is “”Most of the time boys like girls, girls like boys, but sometimes boys like boys or girls like girls”.
- Another user commented “Depending on the child’s maturity. If the child brings up the topic it should be spoken about as if it were about straight people. Children are not born homophobic, racist or with hatred towards others. And for parents that don’t agree with it, don’t encourage hate and resentment. Enough depression and suicides happening.”