If either, or both, of my children were gay, it would not affect my love for them one iota. Quite frankly, I’d rejoice. Because for me homosexuality is not an issue. I would worry about the homophobia that seems to be inescapable and I would worry about the challenges that they would face navigating their lives in a world, where even in our back yard, the West Village, in New York City, the unofficial gay mecca, violence against gays is on the rise.
But it would not affect how I felt about my children. Not one bit.
But there are other issues, less political and perhaps emotional that give me pause.
I have no doubt that I would love my children no matter what. But there are choices that they can make that would make me disappointed in them and would be difficult for me to accept.
And I don’t mean the big stuff– like if they murdered someone or voted Republican.
I mean the less significant ones, of not participating in sports, in finding no joy in curling up with a book, of not living up to their potential. Things that are important to me and I want to be important to them.
So I’m breaking with the mommy party line of “as long as they’re happy!” and coming out.
If my kids slack off, it affects how I feel about them.
Because I cannot watch one of my kids excel in basketball, season after season only to decide to quit the team because it‘s “too hard”. I can’t stand by with the “I’ll love you no matter what” embrace while my other kid tells me that getting five wrong on a quiz “is good enough” because others in the class got even more answers wrong, so comparatively speaking, it’s not that bad.
It’s not okay, and it’s not acceptable. And it has absolutely nothing to do with not loving them enough.
And I have a feeling that there are more parents out there like me.
Why aren’t we speaking out?
Are we afraid that our love for our children will be questioned?
Or are we worried that confessing any kind of disappointment in our children is the greatest mommy sin of all?