“A place to be accepted” by Lia – PFLAG Mom

My gay kid and I came to Omaha PFLAG on the recommendation of a therapist.  We were told PFLAG would provide a supportive environment. Finding support was important to us because my kid is diagnosed with Bipolar I Disorder, Anxiety and Depression.  They were bullied in High School to the point they tried to take their own life. I can’t make it any clearer, therapeutic support is a necessity for them not a luxury.

We came to our first meeting over a year ago and we keep coming back because what the therapist said was true.  PFLAG is amazing.  My kid finally has a place where they feel accepted. I have seen them bloom with the support of the wonderful people we have met through PFLAG.   What I didn’t realize was how much PFLAG would help me as a mom.  Especially one who wants to advocate for not only her kid’s rights but everyone’s.  It is hard to explain how good it feels to be able to be open and honest about my kid with no scorn, judgment or uncomfortableness at the meetings.  PFLAG has given me the opportunity to meet people who have gone through similar homophobic situations as us.  We learn and improve from our shared experiences because we find we are not alone.  Where else could I explain how it felt to go to the theater and receive a round of applause just for showing up with my kid because they are gay?  What other parents gets applause just for showing up?  It’s mind boggling to me.  When did it become OK for parents to stop showing up and supporting for their kids?  When did loving our kids become an option?

PFLAG’s mission is to “build on a foundation of loving families united with LGBTQ people and allies who support one another, and to educate ourselves and our communities to speak up as advocates until all hearts and minds respect, value and affirm LGBTQ people.”  All I know is PFLAG made me a more open and loving person.  It has helped me feel less isolated and alone.  It has expanded my limited thinking.  It has certainly made me a better mom to my kid whether they are gay or not because the truth is they are my kid no matter what.  I love my kid.  I’m trying to love everybody.  My hope is others struggling know PFLAG is a wonderful resource available to all.