I logged on to the internet today and saw a story going viral that could be straight out of the pages of my novella Over Your Dead Body.
It makes me so sad that this boy and so many others who come out have to go through this terrible rejection. I was also struck at how the son doesn’t hold the father’s cruel words against him and hopes they can still work out a relationship. I was stunned at how the son is obviously way more mature than his own father! I applaud Tyler’s bravery and hope he finds as much happiness as he has found support from around the world. I also hope his Dad finds it in his heart to get over himself and his bigotry in order to work out a loving relationship with his son.
[Reporting from www.dailymail.co.uk]
“You are so brave, many admire you”: Outpouring of support for 15-year-old boy who was told his coming out was ‘worse than death’ by his FATHER in Facebook messages posted online
A teenager has received support from around the world after he revealed his father had called his coming out as gay ‘worse than death’.
Vancouver-born Tyler, 15, posted the Facebook conversation he had had with his dad on his Tumblr account, in which he is told that news of his sexuality is an ’embarrassment’.
He reveals that he first told his news to his sisters, who were extremely supportive, and then came out to his mother, before telling his father.
In response to Tyler’s news, his father wrote back: ‘We took care of you since you were a baby. We loved you, took care of you when you’re sick. Lost many days and nights in all your fifteen years.
‘Now this is what we get in return, shame and embarrassment.’
He continued: ‘If only you didn’t reject God and His teachings in your life you could have been strong enough to stay from evil and scums that surrounds you. Stay away.’
In further messages, perhaps in response to Tyler’s Tumblr post, his father went on: ‘Take out your post from social media.
‘You embarrass me from all the people I knew.
‘I’m going to puke. Whatever you do it reflects on me. People will ridicule me, insult me, and I might turn out to be a criminal. I have enough of all this bulls***.’
He concluded: ‘You are trying to ruin me. This is worse than death.’
Discussing his father’s messages in an interview with Huffington Post B.C., Tyler, who lives with his aunts, said: ‘I’m hoping there’s still the possibility that he could change, even if it takes a while.
‘Maybe he could accept me, because that’s all I want… I just want him to be there for me.’
Well here I am facing into my third Australian Christmas and I have to admit to not being altogether thrilled about it. It’s one thing when you sign on for the big adventure, when you agree to up sticks and travel to the other side of the world and in the bigger scheme of things you are fine and enjoy all that your new place of abode has to throw at you. However, hiding in the seams of the bigger scheme are those times when you just can’t get your head around where you are. Christmas in Australia is one of those times for me. The Aussies love their summer Christmas – as they should but for me it’s just not Christmas.
Christmas for me is so many things. It’s about home, open fires, over the top decorations, seeing family and spending time with friends, wrapping up against the cold, walks in frosty forests or on wind-swept beaches, sharing wonderful food, having a few drinks in the local pub, impromptu sing-songs, fun and laughter. The west of Ireland is an incredibly special place to be at Christmas time. Decimated by emigration over the years it is a time when people come home and it is this that creates an amazing buzz. People are happy to be home and those who are at home are ecstatic to have their family members back even if it is for only a few short weeks. Christmas Eve in any of the west of Ireland towns is a day for last minute presents, picking up “the bird” and joining the old friend you just ran in to for a drink or two.
Later on in the evening most people make their way home and their journey is lit by candles twinkling in the windows of all the houses. This is a tradition that dates back to ancient times and is rooted in the old Brehon laws of hospitality – whereby a stranger knocking on the door must never be refused. In later times it was understood to symbolise the lighting of the way for Mary and Joseph as they searched for somewhere to stay before the birth of their child. Nowadays it is seen as lighting the way for Mary and Joseph but also for those who are returning home.
One of my favourite things to do on Christmas Eve is to stand, in the darkness, at the window of my parents house, high up on the hill, and look out across the island as it twinkles in the night. It’s a beautiful sight and one I’m looking forward to seeing again, just unfortunately not tonight.
Wherever you are this Christmas I hope you enjoy it – Roisin.