When a child first comes out as gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender, parents often wonder if it’s a phase or they’re just wanting to fit in.

A phase or they’re just wanting to fit inI think parents wonder this because they just don’t want it to be true. I didn’t have those thoughts when my son came out but I sure didn’t want it to be true. I would fantasize that he’d change his mind as though this was a decision he made.

Kids pretend to be straight or cisgender because they want to fit in. But when you think about it, why would someone pretend to be gay or transgender to fit in, to be like everyone else. The truth is, everyone else is not gay or transgender, even if some of their friends are.

As for it being a phase, chances are your child thought about this a long time before telling you. If it were a phase, it would have passed by now. And when you think about it, was being straight or cisgender ever a phase for you? When did you know you were straight? When did you know you were cisgender. When I think about that, it almost seems ridiculous. It was not something I ever thought about. I just am who I am. The same is true for your child.

He/she/they are just who they are, gay or straight, cisgender or transgender. Just like they are the same child you’ve loved from the first time you held them in your arms. Nothing has changed. They now get to live authentically and they deserve that.

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