• As a mum, I really liked how my Benjamin came out to me. He sat me down and said, “I’ve got something to announce, something important.” (Supplied to SBS )Source: Supplied to SBS
The real Jenny taps into her parental expertise to suggest how one reader should tell his mother his sexual orientation (hint: not via text message).
By
Jenny Law

17 May 2017 - 5:09 PM  UPDATED 7 Dec 2018 - 2:52 PM

Dear Jenny,

I’m planning to come out to my family this year. I don’t know how! If I had my way, I’d send a group text, but that won’t go down well with my parents. As a mum, what would work best for you? 

JENNY SAYS:

Oh, never come out in a group text – especially to your parents! It’s a big disrespect to them! It’s very tricky. There’s no other way than sitting them down. Not while eating dinner – only after dinner and dessert, and all that. In my books, that’s the only way to tell your parents. Face-to-face is most respectful.

Don’t let them hear it secondhand. That’s what happened to one of my friends and even now she’s still very hurt. One of her other kids found out from social media instead of directly. It’s done now, you can’t undo it! And if anything happened to your parents, they’d be so depressed, get sick and die, then you’d feel so guilty for the rest of your bloody life. 

Parents! Accept your kids for who they are. That’s it. 

As a mum, I really liked how my Benjamin came out to me. He sat me down and said, “I’ve got something to announce, something important.” So you get ready: Oooh, what’s this big thing? Is he pregnant? (Hahahahaha.) Did you make someone pregnant? Are you on drugs? Oh, you’re gay! There are only three possibilities, nothing else. It’s like: “Whatever! I’m gay! Very gay! Bye!”

Anyway, it’s in his book – if you’re a fan, you’ll know. What went through my head? Just love. I think I said something like, “There’s nothing wrong with being gay, it’s just you’re different.

In Asian countries, your parents might be like, “Ooooh.” They may look at you like you’ve got a disease. But eventually, and hopefully they’d say good luck. If they love you enough, they will. It’s all about unconditional love and lots of support. Parents! Accept your kids for who they are. That’s it. And my advice for you? Don’t be scared – it’s your family. Everything is about love. And if your family doesn’t like gay people? Well, then move interstate. Live away from them. Disown them. That’s what I’d do!  

The Family Law episodes one and two air on Saturday, 12 January at 8.30pm on SBS and SBS VICELAND simultaneously. All six episodes will also be on SBS On Demand that night.

Seasons one and two of The Family Law will be available on SBS On Demand from Saturday, 29 December.

Jenny answers your parenting questions: How to survive the terrible-twos
Here's the real Jenny's tips on how to raise a two-year-old boy without turning him into a jerk.
The (real) Jenny Law advice column: Pregnancy tips
What tips does Jenny have for mothers-to-be?