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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » Sexual Identity » Gender Identity vs. Sexuality - and my parents' ignorance

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Author Topic: Gender Identity vs. Sexuality - and my parents' ignorance
qubit
Neophyte
Member # 95584

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My sister is an out and proud lesbian, whom I love dearly.
Problem is, we have pretty fundamentalist parents.
At my sister's wedding, my parents were introduced to a lot of people they'd normally avoid (Which is tragic, since some of these guys and gals have really affected my life for the positive). One such couple happened to be two MtF's who were in a lesbian relationship with another.
My parents could not understand why someone who in their minds "was male but is now female" would want to date a woman. They thought that if those two wanted to date women, they should have remained "men."

They seem to think of lesbians as "male" or something. I tried to explain to them that gender identity and sexuality are NOT the same thing. They weren't really buying it.

Anyone else have problems like this?
Any clever ways to get through to people on this issue?

Posts: 3 | From: Alaska | Registered: Apr 2012  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Heather
Executive Director & Founder
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So, sounds like your parents have just been long-lacking any kind of sound education on both gender and sexual orientation. I know: duh.

Do you think they're open to any? Do you think they're open to changing their minds, too? I ask because sometimes people find their bias can make them feel more safe in who *they* are and how *they* want to understand the world, which is probably the biggest barrier to overcoming bias for anyone.

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
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Posts: 68290 | From: An island near Seattle | Registered: May 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Burdened with glorious booty
Activist
Member # 93241

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Who you like doesn't change your gender - it's not that hard to explain, but you're probably going to have to beat them round the head with it a bit.

Do they think that your sister, being a lesbian, is somehow male identified? If not, you can start from there - that your sister is a woman, and her liking other women doesn't change her into a man. If they understand that part, then you can add to it - if your sister was MtF, and she still liked women, then her liking women STILL doesn't magically change her into a man. Just find out what they know and build up on it until they can understand. Hope that helps?

[ 04-17-2012, 02:52 PM: Message edited by: Derpy Hooves ]

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Ta-da!

Posts: 130 | From: UK | Registered: Dec 2011  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
   

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