Take a Walk on the Wild SIde
February 22, 2006, 6:25 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

Loren has this week off of school. He has been busy depleting my bank account as fast as possible as he eats his way through the ski cafeterias every day. I am thrilled that he has such a devotion to snowboarding and so I bite my toungue as I run to the ATM and deliver him every morning to the designated meeting spot with his friends. My favorite part of these days, other than knowing he is spending his days doing what he loves most, is the conversations we have as we drive.  Sometimes it’s politics (or my warped, liberal views of them), sometimes gossip -just whatever he brings up, I go with it.  Yesterday as we passed our small, local movie theatre we saw the ad for Brokeback Mountain. I have not yet seen it and expressed an interest in doing so.

“Oh, yuck, Mom. Why? Do you know what it’s about?” he practically yelled.

“Cowboys, I think.” I vaguely replied, as I had a feeling where this was all heading.

“Duh, Mom. They’re gay.’

“Eww.  Mom, they have…well, they have butt, you know.”

“No, Loren, I don’t know.  You tell me.”

“You know. Butt.  Behind relations.  With each other.” He said as he looked anywhere but at me.

“Oh, so the whole movie is about butt relations?” I played along.
“Yes, they actually do it!”, realizing I was not a total moron after all.
“Well, hmmm.  That seems a bit odd. Seems like anything that drastic might not be at the local theatre.  It also seems like that might not be the most interesting movie topic. I think it is more a movie about a love story. I think it sounds lovely, brave, moving.”

“But mo-om, they’re gay.”
“So. So are alot of other people. Chances are a couple of people in your class might be gay. Some people at your school. People at my work, at dad’s work. So what. Some people have heart defects, like your little brother. Some people have blond hair. Some people speak four different languages. Some people are geniuses and others aren’t. So what. In fact, I bet we know some people who are gay and you might not even realize it. It is just a facet of their being, not their whole indentity.” I said, aiming for a tone of Cool Momness mixed with some Get-your-head-out-your-assness.

“Like who?” He asked, and I could see I now had his interest.

And here is where I may have crossed a line, delivered something I was not authorized to do so.  But I am his mom and he is my son. I refuse, absolutely REFUSE to raise a close minded fool to release into this close minded foolish world. So I said:

“Well, take your uncle, my brother.”

“WHAT?” Fully having his interest now.

“Yep. I am not sure if he is bisexual or gay, we don’t hit on that subject too often. But yes, your uncle.”

Silence for a mile or two.

“Is that why he never brings home a girl? Is that why he drinks and does drugs? Is that why he is bi-polar?” The questions came at me like a machine gun.

“Well, I would suspect that is why we have yet to meet a woman in his life (my brother is now 39). He is bi-polar because that is the way he was born. And, I believe, he was born with homosexual tendencies. But one does not lead to the other. As for the drinking and drugs, I think it is tied into his bi-polar status. And this is not to say that all people with bi-polar are drug addicted alcoholics. Nor is it to say that all homosexuals are bi-polar. This is just your uncle.” I looked over at him to if it was sinking in.

After a few minutes he said, “You know, it makes sense. He likes Hugh Grant almost as much as you do, Mom.”

“Wanna see the movie with me?” I asked, testing to see if our talk was a success.

“No. But how about The Pink Panther?”

This was one of those times when I was doing my best as I was flying by the seat of my pants. I so want to have an open minded, liberal son. I don’t want to brainwash him but the thought of him growing up to be closeminded and a Republican physically hurts.  And did I sell my brother down the river? I don’t know. Frankly, my brother has so many issues that his sexuality seems to be at the bottom of the list. I don’t think Loren will treat him differently next time we see him.  And knowing Loren, he likely forgot about the whole thing by the time he got on the chairlift.  Will I continue my Too-Much-Information chats with my kids? Oh, yes. I figure they can take what they want and ignore my rants and raves for what they are -sort of like picking out their favorite colored M&M’s from the candy bowl.


3 Comments so far
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I loved this post. Loved it. Good for you! We have very similar conversations at my house. And I am very happy to say that Sam “gets it.”

Comment by jen

I had the abortion conversation with my then 8-year old daughter. I had opened a photo on a pro-life site out of curiosity, not realizing my daughter was in the room. “Ewww, what happened to that baby?” Um… the woman didn`t want it to grow in her tummy. “Well, she should have given it to someone else instead of killing it!” Um… well….it`s not always that easy….

Damn. It wasn`t supposed to happen like that.

Comment by L.

Heather, you rock! I wish my mom were that cool with me when i was growing up. woulda saved me some serious self image issues.
luv ya

Comment by Shawn Schumacher

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