It's A Dangerous LifestyleWhen I came out to my dad, it didn't go that well. He had no idea it was coming, and it really took him by surprise. After asking for a few days to collect his thoughts, I went over to speak to him.
He had been to a local Baptist church (he is Baptist, but hasn't been to church in several years) to talk about this stuff. They told him the answer was simple- people change from gay to straight all of the time. Over the next year, my dad did his own research on both sides of the issue, and he has decided that he was misled about the possibility of change. He still doesn't agree with me being gay though.
Now, when we finally talked, he told me he didn't know much about being gay. All he knew, he said, was that it was a dangerous lifestyle. He went on to say that this lifestyle was full of drugs, alcohol, and promiscuity. I was kind of stunned by this. All of my life, I have been the good kid that didn't have sex, never did drugs, didn't drink at all until college and then only very rarely. Why now did he think because I was gay I was going to start doing all of this stuff?
So, I told him what I just wrote. He said that he knew from what he saw and people that he talked to that that is what gays did. I tried to explain to him that I had not changed as a person, that I was the same kid I'd always been. He tried to listen, but these imbedded stereotypes were hard for him to let go of.
No wonder people are so against gay marriage and gay rights in this country. If the stereotype can make my own dad think I had done a 180 degree turn and become this sex and drug-crazed monster, why would someone that didn't even know a gay person think any differently.
If being gay is a sin, let it be a sin. Why spread stereotypes as a way to dishonestly demean an entire group, and thus, individual people? It doesn't make sense.