AIBU to be upset by my parents' views on same-sex relationships?(16 Posts)
I am in a same-sex relationship. This came as quite a shock to my parents when I told them about it a couple of years ago, because so far as they were concerned, I was completely straight. I had been single for several years, was divorced with DC (teens) and had never discussed my sexuality with my parents before. Although they are not at all "old" in their views of the world, they reacted very badly when I told them I was in a committed relationship with a woman. They said awful things about how wrong and selfish it all was, and we had no contact for months.
Eventually I broke the ice, they met my partner (who is lovely), liked her a lot and we all moved on. I think they were still bemused by what had "happened" to their "straight" daughter but seemed to have accepted it. My partner and I both have good jobs, we love each other, and the DC are happy. (Conversely to my parents, the DC could not have been less bothered when I told them about this relationship.) So far, so good.
More recently, my partner and I have talked about marriage and having a child together. I cautiously told DM that this was on the cards and how much her support would mean to us. She was not pleased at all. Said things like "this will be a nail in your father's coffin" and "maybe your generation think kids turn out ok with same sex parents". I thought she might have some reservations, but I guess I'd hoped that they might not be so negative now that they can see that the reality is that everyone is happy and life goes on. But they don't agree with same-sex marriage and definitely not with same-sex couples raising children. I think they feel they've been good in accepting the relationship, but that marriage/kids is just too much and I am selfish to want that. AIBU to feel so upset by this and think they should be more accepting?
They haven't been 'good' accepting your relationship. That's the very bare minimum a parent does (barring abuse or something). Your partner is perfectly nice and you want to raise a child with her. Your parents object based on what exactly? Because it will be you and your OH raising the children.
I'd consider no contact because you don't want your child to be raised with that toxic attitude around them.
I think you might need to accept that the majority of that generation (I'm thinking 60plus) will have a very very hard time accepting gay couples marrying and raising children. It probably took a lot for them to even accept you being in a same sex relationship. It's a cultural and generational issue and I doubt you will change their minds. Maybe just agree to disagree on this one and move on. You're a big girl and I don't imagine you desperately need your parents support for this? You have your partner and kids on board and I'm sure that's enough. Good luck!
My DM has many gay friends and colleagues and seemingly is fine with it. She does think that same sex couples adopting/having children is very wrong though. Not helpful, but I don't think it is that unusual and you can't force someone to accept something. I get that it must be very upsetting for you.
I don't "need" their support but I love them to bits and felt so sad the time before when we had no contact. I just would like them to acknowledge that the relationship I am in now is a wonderful thing for me, even if it's not what they would have chosen for me. It should not be disappointing for them to consider I might want to marry my partner and have a child together.
YANBU to want their support, but YABU for expecting their views on the subject to change substantially considering their ages and the length of time that these views have had to set.
Do what you and your partner want to do. If you get married, invite your parents, and it's up to them if they can put their views behind them for the day.
Lots of my parents' friends would struggle to accept this, I think. I'm sure they will come round.
I think you might need to accept that the majority of that generation (I'm thinking 60plus) will have a very very hard time accepting gay couples marrying and raising children. - Completely disagree with this comment!! My sons Nan is married to a women, her parents and her ex husbands parents are absolutely fine with it. My nan has no objection to same sex marriage etc - perhaps you just know the wrong kind of 60+ people but all the ones I know are fully accepting of it.
I wouldn't agree at all that you should just accept it because of their age. There are previous generations who would have disagreed with interracial marriage, that doesn't mean that people should accept that viewpoint
They might get used to it or they might not. You just have to get on with it if that's what you want to do. If you try to keep channels of communication open they might change their minds when a little one actually appears.
My DGM struggled to accept my cousin being married to another woman, particularly them becoming parents. She was a campaigning CND, Anti Nazi League Labour voter but as they hadn't the 'equipment' between them to make babies they shouldn't have them.
But she was nice to them when she saw them and loved the babies when they arrived. She kept her feelings to herself.
Your DM and DF might come around when they see your new baby. I'd not try to dig into their feelings too deeply though.
YANBU or remotely selfish. The chances are that your parents will come round in time, but if they don't, that is down to them not you.
Thank you for your replies. I think after my parents met my partner, I was so relieved to have my parents back that I've done just that: not dug too deeply. DM in particular has said some odd things here and there, which I've just let go. DF is much more one to keep his views to himself unless put on the spot but I've known really what they are.
I love my parents so much and in my personal life I feel real regret that I didn't feel able when I was younger to be more accepting myself of my feelings. It has been incredible for me to see through my DC how in the space of just one generation the whole "gay" thing is no longer even really worthy of comment. They have loads of gay/bi/not sure friends at school and it's totally ok for them to be open about with no stigma at all - wonderful. I just feel sad that at the time of my life when I am happiest, it isn't something my parents can really, deep down, feel genuinely happy about too.
You're not at all unreasonable but like others have said it can be an age thing. I came out to my parents 20+ years ago (now I feel old!) and they didn't take it well. Quite a few shitty comments so unsurprisingly I took a step back (couldn't really go NC due to family circumstances at the time) and kept my private life to myself. They've improved with time but now I'm single & unlikely to have another relationship so it's irrelevant!!
Give them more time (like a few years) & maybe if you have another child they'll be won round anyway by it. And if they're not then it's their issue, not yours. You can't change their opinions, only how you deal with them.
Can I knock the "it's an age" thing firmly on the head please? Bigotry has nothing to do with generations or age. It has a lot to do with a narrow view of the world and a narrow mind whether that's a 20 year old mind or a 70 year old one.
Goodluck Op with your forthcoming marriage and future addition (s) to your family
Of course you are not being unreasonable. My parents are very similar, only decided last minute that they would even attend my wedding and left straight after the meal at the reception. I didn't even tell them we were thinking about children till 20 weeks pregnant because I know their comments would have been the same but to be fair to them they have been brilliant with my DS so if you go in to have another child they may surprise you.
Try to build a support network outside your family to give you a bit of a buffer from their comments. Good luck OP I know how hard it can be when they don't truly accept who you are and what you want.
Thanks fourquenelles. I feel really excited about our future.
I am lucky that my friends and DP's family are fully supportive, and it's not as though I wouldn't do something that is right for us just because of my parents' views, but I do hate the feeling that they'd prefer me not to do what will make me happy.
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