In this audio talk, John Freeman maintains that parents face unique challenges when dealing with the news that their son or daughter has identified as gay. Freeman covers basic aspects of homosexuality and its effect on the family including: Homosexuality can affect any family – there’s no ‘child proofing’ – and different parents respond differently. No parent can prepare themselves for this kind of news (feelings of devastation, feeling like they experienced a death, the end of dreams, and a mind that goes everywhere). Common initial responses to the news include guilt, anger, and grief. Freeman discusses the difference between relinquishment and abandonment: Abandonment is giving up on someone, relinquishment is giving someone to God. Most families are committed to self-protection (keeping the secret, energy spent, suffering in silence, and uncovering one secret means uncovering more). Freeman ends with steps parents can take to cope biblically and develop a strategy for survival and going on: (Coming out of their closet dealing with the ‘what ifs’; Walking the line of telling truth and showing mercy; Getting grounded in the truth; Agreeing on a unified strategy; Setting boundaries/limits; Keeping the lines of communication open; Understanding the two long-term issues; and Calling to a ministry of prayer).
Key Scripture: Jude 20-23