Humans of Toronto: Dad Problems

The following interview was conducted by Sandra Gonzalez, a grade 11 FHCI English student. 

“I’ve been out for about a year and a half but I’ve known I wasn’t straight since I was 12. I told my mom first, but I didn’t tell her in the traditional way. I didn’t sit her down and say “Mom, I have to tell you something.” We were driving in the car and I kind of just blurted it out. I said “Mom, I’m pansexual.” And she stopped the car immediately. She stopped right in the middle of the street and was silent; she kept looking forward and didn’t look back at me. Finally, after about ten seconds of this uncomfortable silence, she started driving again. After this moment in the car she didn’t say anything, even as we got home, so neither did I. She didn’t talk to me for days, maybe weeks. After that she pretended like nothing had happened, so we didn’t talk about it whatsoever. Until two years later, when I was fourteen and I brought it up again. I think she convinced herself it was a phase and didn’t take it seriously so she ignored it again. I was thinking “this is okay, this is fine, I guess.” But then about two months ago I asked her, “you know I like girls, right?” And she said, “it’s okay if you like that. It’s okay.” She didn’t react like it was a horrible thing. She just wants me to get an education and have a successful life. I’m really surprised because she’s a Christian and a Jehovah’s Witness and believes Jesus is the answer, but she was okay with me liking girls. The only thing that matters to her is that I take my education seriously and try my best. It’s amazing. I don’t think her mindset ever changed. What I think changed was that after four years of feeling this way, she could finally take me seriously, because I was older and I know who I am as a person. So she was finally able to be there for me. Since I live with my mom it makes things easier to handle, but because I don’t live with my dad it’s different. I haven’t told him yet because I’m scared of his reaction, even though he is an atheist. He doesn’t believe in god but he says “Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve.” He is a hypocrite on his own and I’m not going to argue with him. He doesn’t need to know this about me until I’m eighteen and have a say in my life. I’m okay with this.”