PFLAG Chapters' Link Pages

Imagine that you firmly believe you were born gay, and you're thinking of coming out to your parents. You're thinking of giving them the website address for your local PFLAG chapter, so you check out the website to get an idea of what they'll learn there. You click the links on the PFLAG links page and are shocked to discover that one of the sites contains a FAQ with the following entry:

Q. Why is my child gay?
A. Your child chose to be gay. Here are the facts about how homosexuality, bisexuality and transgenderism are chosen . . .

You're not going to be very happy about that, are you? Of course not. But a large number of PFLAG chapter websites do link to sites that say the equivalent to the parents of those of us who consider ourselves queer by choice.

Your child was gay from a surprisingly young age, and never made a conscious choice to be gay, so no-one could have recruited him/her. Here are the facts about how homosexuality, bisexuality and transgenderism arises. . . .

—Scott Bidstrup's "My Child is GAY!..." website

The most common such sites that PFLAG links to are two websites by Scott Bidstrup (one aimed at parents of queer people, and one aimed at queer teenagers) and one page from the American Psychological Association.

"Q: Is sexual orientation a choice?
A: No."

—the American Psychological Association's
"Homosexuality: Common Questions and Statements Addressed"

Anyone who thinks that queer by choice people's parents would be better off listening to Scott Bidstrup or the American Psychological Association than to their own children who say they chose to be queer should consider what they would have been saying if they'd similarly advocated the views of the American Psychological Association in 1972 when their official statement about homosexuality was that it was a mental illness. The American Psychological Association is a predominantly heterosexual-controlled, profit-motivated association with a history of saying whatever the American public wants to hear. They are not the first ones to get concerned when their viewpoints harm lesbian, gay, transgendered or bisexual people. Why would anyone promote the viewpoint of the predominantly heterosexual-controlled American Psychological Association at the expense of the viewpoint of queer people like us?

If your PFLAG chapter website is going to include links to websites that categorically deny the existence of queer by choice people, then the only way for your chapter to indicate that you recognize us as part of your constituency as well is to also include links to websites that explicitly acknowledge the reality of our existence. This site and any of the many sites listed on our Choice Links page would all be good candidates. Feel free to take your pick. Or are you worried that any book that says it's possible for some people to choose to be queer will do some kind of terrible harm to children who consider themselves to have been born gay? Well then . . . think how much more harm a book that says it's completely impossible for anyone to have not chosen their sexual orientation would do. That's the equivalent of what Eric Marcus's book says to the parents of people who consider our own queerness a choice.

In case you're having trouble finding sites for parents that don't categorically deny all possibility of choice, we can also give you a few suggestions there.

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© 2000-2009 by Gayle Madwin. All rights reserved.