Friday, February 11, 2011

When is the right time?

On my daily journey of taking my niece to school, I decided to renew "the talk". I considered what was most appropriate to say to her about my life, about my sexuality. I remember having "the talk" before but I've always believed it necessary to keep the conversation going. 

Phrasing the first question was the toughest part... How to start? I pondered for a while... I phrased, re-phrased, phrased some more  then I just came out with it. This is never easy... As a teacher to student. ... The question went - Do you know the meaning of the world homosexual? From her response I was able to explain who is a gay or  lesbian, if she hadn't known already. She was well aware as these terms are loosely and hurtfully thrown around in my small country. 

From my own life and the life of others around me I believe I got her to understand "the talk". ..... I got her to understand that dating isn't always man and woman.. It can be woman and woman, man and man ... and that there is nothing wrong with a person wanting to date someone of the same sex. She listened attentively... I believe she got it......... time will tell. 

I breathe once more .... I didn't keep a secret and I didn't ask for a secret to be kept. I wanted her to understand. It is not a burden shared but the imparting of knowledge that is necessary. For now this new knowledge may not mean much but as she grows and matures, "the talk" will continue as she learns to appreciate differences and exercise tolerance towards others.

In her knowing perhaps, if only perhaps, she will be better equipped to deal with societal prejudices all around her... At 8 years old, her life can only get richer and more rewarding as she learns about the bountiful and beautiful uniqueness of "the talk" and the people it impacts, her aunt included.

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