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Does anyone else have a homophobic family member? I have no tolerance for stupidity, ignorance or superiority. He puts the LGBTQ community into the same category as rapists, pedophiles, and other horrible groups of people in society. I have been a supporter of the LGBTQ community since I was 11 years old. It never even crossed my mind that they're bad or whatever. I did not know of his hatred until I became older.

He goes on these tangents every time I see him. He's had bad experiences with gay people in the past. But I always tell him that not every gay person is the same. He doesn't want to listen to me and I try to redirect the conversation to something else (as I learned this in some counseling classes).

It's gotten to the point where I don't even enjoy visiting him and only see him a few times a year. But I still care about him as he raised me half of my childhood when I had no one else.

vjohnson51 7 Jan 10
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47 comments

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9

What exactly is a β€œbad experience with gay people.”? Was he sexually molested or raped? Or was he simply approached and asked for a date? I know that some men react to a simple solicitation as if they have been violated in some way. They are often the same people that are most pushy at soliciting a date with a female. I have been approached many times in my life by men. I say no and we move on. That is why I wonder what your family member dealt with.

Excellent observation!

I wondered the same. What exactly is a bad experience? I expect he is exaggerating his encounters.

@vjohnson51 doesn’t sound too traumatic to me, but everyone has their own sensitivity. The two women having sex sounds rather like a fantasy come true to me! πŸ˜„

@vjohnson51 It's entirely possible that he's closeted and cannot even begin to deal with it. People like that tend to demonize and exaggerate the activities of others.
I'd still be cutting him loose.
If maintaining a relationship with you is important to him, he'll make an effort to reconcile.
If it's not, he won't.
Either way, you don't have to put up with his bullshit.

8

You still care about him and that shows that you are a good person and appreciate what he did for you in the past .His homophobic views are just one part of him .You should not end your relationship with him .

8

Just because you are related to someone, or even that they "did the right thing" for you once upon a time, does not mean you have to like them, or validate their sad prejudices by letting them spew. You are an adult now, and can calmly (firmly!l tell him you no longer wish to listen to his ugliness. If he continues, leave. Repeat until he sees you mean it! You might, as a last gasp, try asking him why anyone would Choose to become the target of people like him........

8

Feelings of "obligation" and gratitude often make us tolerate family members
we'd be better off cutting loose.
I've learned that it's in my best interests to excise toxic family members.
I've had to do it to save my own sanity, and be true to my own principles.
Past history does not give anyone a "pass".

You're going to do whatever you think is right for yourself. You don't really have
much choice.
When you've had your belly-full of his vitriol, you'll sever ties.
Or you won't, and you'll continue to put up with him.

Your call.

Best comment on this thread! I wish more people would do as you said, "I've learned that it's in my best interests to excise toxic family member." I finally learned this right after Richard past away. A rather ugly narcissist married to my oldest son has, as you say, been excised from my life, and I am much better because of it.

8

I have a few. Strong religious and political beliefs.

We don't talk.

Ever.

Life can be so much better when we walk away from toxic people!!!

@Redheadedgammy Luckily they live in Cali and I'm in Washington State. There's like two who states between us.

6

The real question is this . . . Who doesn't have a homophobic family member?

True I hate to say

@ToolGuy I haven't heard anyone use the word surmising in a long time. I like it.

@ToolGuy Small-minded people are threatened by sophisticated diction.

I am not aware of any in my extended family despite despite the whole family having converted to fundagelicalism when I was five. I think prior influences established decency and respect in them that was not able to be eroded by fundamentalism. My parents were in their mid 40s and my brothers were 15, 20 and 25 respectively at the time. And fortunately they all rubbed off on me enough that I didn't adopt the nuttier aspects of it all.

6

"He's had bad experiences with gay people in the past." Just having a gay person say your are attractive is considered a bad experience for most homophobes.

I don’t understand some folks. I take it as a compliment.

@indirect76 Yes, just as I would from a woman saying it.

6

Pleased to report that IF any of my relatives are that ignorant, they at least have the courtesy to keep it to themselves. So, as far as I know, nope - all good here.

@vjohnson51 - I was very 'blessed' with progressive parents. Well, one at least, and I was able to "optional relationship" the other at a young age, because I had the smarts (if not the experience).

Sometimes good things come from adversity, if we look to find it.

Anyways, my sibs and I tend to agree - Live and Let Live and Different Ain't Bad!

5

Are you gay.?

3

I have 4 children,,,,none of us hate anyone...I led by example, having a wide variety of friends of varying cultural backgrounds and sexuality...it is the norm for me.....mother was a racist, bigoted uneducated woman of great sorrow

3

It may not be the case here, but seems to me some of the most vocal people speaking out against homosexuality or transexuality are actually afraid they might be gay or trans themselves and are providing cover for their own thoughts (or actions) by their vehement condemnation of LGBTQ community.

Yes several persons vehemently anti LGBTQ have later been found out to have had gay relations

3

I’d just ignore those remarks if you care for him as unfortunately there seem to be quite a few people like that especially among the religious but they are still good people.

3

I actually, β€˜converted’ a friend with this thinking, I asked in a world of murderers, people that abuse animals, partners and children, what was so bad about 2 consenting adults showing each other how much they care for each other? He said, well if you put it like that. I hope he remembers and things have changed for him.
My father however, defies logic; he had a best friend who was gay for a while and was firm friends with a gay next door neighbour. But he stills says things like, β€˜it’s not natural though is it?’ But he’s not really interested in hearing an answer.

I am just as worried about those aggressively LGBT people who get hostile when I express no attraction to them.

Multiple family members of mine have been targeted by Catholic clergy. I do not understand what it is about my family that is so irresistible to these perverts.

@SanDiegoAirport sure, being disrespectful of other’s wishes and responses to your advances is never ok. Unfortunately some people do abuse positions of power, these people tend to target people who present a certain way and groom them. There are patterns πŸ™
Encouraging children not to keep secrets, tell their care givers if their space is invaded or they feel uncomfortable with what someone asks or shows them and making sure siblings know what is and is not ok when it comes to boundaries can help.
The terrible two’s is important as kids learn they can say no, hopefully, with understanding parents who are respectful and know when they can refuse and when they cannot.
Also stranger danger is a myth, unfortunately, it’s often those the child knows well and has a trusted position that can be the danger, which is why children should be listened to when they change their minds about going somewhere or spending time with someone. Even not wanting to be hugged should be accepted, it is a boundary about their own comfort and they should be listened to.
Anyway, essay over, needless to say it’s something I have some knowledge of and am quite passionate about!

3

My entire family is homophobic except me. Traditionally, people in heavily religious societies are taught to be homophobic and are taught that homosexuality is epuivalent to those terrible things.
Seeing that he is someone that seemingly means a lot to you, in an effort to protect your relationship I would suggest you politely ask him to refrian from bringing up such topics when you are around. If he isn't making an effort to understand your point of view then the conversation regarding that is over. If that doesn't work then it's best for you to keep your distance if you don't want to be in such uncomfortable company.

3

Anybody who opposes the LGBTQ community is merely flaunting their own deficiencies of personality. More specifically, they feel threatened by the behaviour of other people with whom they have no involvement.

@anglophone you are so right. Why would anyone be bothered how others choose to live their lives including the sex of the partner's they choose to live it with. We've got no right to pass judgment and like you say, those that judge are flaunting their own deficiencies. I've always stood up for gay people because people can become unnecessarily ugly and cruel. I worked in a company once where a (white) colleague of mine set up his gay PA to get fired just because he was gay. I got wind about about it (his PA confided in me). I employed his gay PA. This colleague was furious with me. He had a meeting with me and I gave him a piece of my mind. He started talking about what the Bible says. I said don't even go there, that it's a book designed to be cruel to others, divide people, advocated and condoned apartheid and slavery and not tolerant of differences in people. I asked him what about compassion and respect for fellow human beings regardless. He got to know me better in that meeting. This was way back in 2005. I assisted my (white) PA to get ahead in his career, assisted him to apply for a study bursary through the company and now he's his own boss. He's a year younger than my older son. I too was prejudiced against (because I wasn't white!) and subjected to inhumane and unnecessary circumstances. ...not that these prejudices have stopped. The law says one thing but (those) people haven't changed.

@TimeOutForMe Thank you for sharing all that. πŸ™‚

3

Specifically my out-of-state uncle, who persists in mass emails of crazy, unsubstantiated, right wing, racist crap. I spent years gently countering with references, explanations, tolerance. But he would just laugh and dismiss me with comments like, "I always know you'll fact check me" or some such. Even knowing my brother is gay, married, and raising (an amazing) multi-racial son, and being reminded of such, he persisted with nasty stuff. But it's upsetting to us on a long term basis ... and makes me feel kind of dirty. We finally blocked him several years ago. It's a bit rough on my mum (it's her brother), but she lives with it.

3

Hence why I live three states away from family and rarely visit....

3

I think most most of family members 55 and over are homophobic due to religious up bringing. I just ignore it, because the poop will hit the fan if came out as bi.

3

Being a bi male person I have ran into many homophobic people . They equate being bi as being a pedophile.

3

Who is "he"? Father, brother,, uncle, gramps?

@NoPlanetB lots.

@vjohnson51 why did you post then? Just a rant?

@NoPlanetB it seemed to me that if there was a purpose if any for her post was to get advice, she can post whatever she wants and so can I, but the advice would differ based on who was she referring to. No hypocrisy, you f/u, then I f/u, it's called conversation. But you seem to have an aversion to converse online.

3

That's a bummer, but I used to be unenlightened myself, so maybe there's still hope for him.

3

I do, but he doesn't talk about it. He's also pro trump, but I told him I don't wanna talk about politics...

2

My brother is a Christian and so is his wife. They both just rejected my nephew when he finally came out to them, he also married a young man and is very happy. The rest of the family supports my nephew and we are all happy for him and his husband but because of that my brother and his wife want nothing to do with us anymore. Our parents never raised us this way, they raised us with an open mind! I can't believe he has denied his own son! Just hurts me but there is nothing I can do about it, I tried talking to him about it and he just yelled at me and left.

2

Yes, my mother, but after banging heads with her many times over the subject I realised she was never going to change and I was damaging my relationship with her because of the conflict, and I love my 93 year old mother. After accepting she wouldn't change I decided to just avoid the topic with her and she has done the same. I realised that in some instances the fight isn't worth it because it is impossible to win and the cost of fighting is too high. That isn't always the case and in another instance I might just avoid the person or topic. I'm fortunate in that I can do this but I can't imagine how hard it might be for someone who wasn't hetero.

2

Some people are afraid of things they do not understand, and react highly negatively toward the things they do not understand.

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