Thursday, November 23, 2017

Holiday Gatherings--Reactions to Newly Out LGBTQ Family Members Can Be Devastating

Aleksandra Nakic/Getty Images
The USA Today reports:

Holiday gatherings feel fraught for many families, but around-the-table affairs can put distinct pressures on those newly out as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender.

Maybe your cousin is going by different pronouns than last year. Perhaps a nephew makes first mention of a boyfriend from school. How a family reacts to such revelations can seriously impact that relative's wellbeing, said Jaime Grant, director of the LGBTQ advocacy group PFLAG.

Grant, a lesbian, was shunned by her mother when she came out in the early '80s. She missed a decade of holiday gatherings thereafter, she said, carrying a rejection that led to years of drug addiction. LGBT youth who feel highly rejected by families are three times as likely to use illegal drugs, according to 2009 research from San Francisco State University's Family Acceptance Project. They're eight times as likely to have attempted suicide. 

The article goes on to list ways, suggested by PFLAG, to support LGBTQ guests. See full story here

No comments: