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Watch: CNN Psychologist Scolds Mom for 'Outing' Son Who Wanted to Dress as Daphne on Halloween


Sarah, the Missouri mom whose blog post about her son dressing as Daphne from Scooby Doo went viral over the past few days, spoke to CNN about her blog post.

She was also scolded for "outing" her son by psychologist Jeff Gardere, who says it's the "worst nightmare" of both heterosexual and gay couples "to have to fathom that their child might be gay."

How do you gay parents feel about that?

Sarah, who seemed caught off-guard by Gardere's admonition, first explains that gay also means "happy" but then goes on to tell off Gardere, explaining that if you read her post she says he might not be gay, but even if he was, she'd love him anyway.

"First of all, he's five years old," she says.


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  1. Worst nightmare? WTF! I am a gay parent. I would be just as happy if my kids had turned out gay or straight. They turned out straight. Big F'ing deal. Where did this guy get his psych degree? Liberty U?

    Posted by: candideinnc | Nov 5, 2010 9:31:09 AM

  2. The world is changing and some just can't handle it. Hell I had a random conversation last night at the store and the woman just started talking about asking if a man had a wife, then she stopped and said partner. She said she didn't want to assume anything anymore because it wasn't right.

    Granted, I live in RI, a blue blue state, but still. It was amazing. I thanked her and we had this amazing gay rights conversation. She said she wants to be sure her son (who is young) knows it's okay to be gay and she'd love him no matter what.

    The world is changing.

    Posted by: Rob | Nov 5, 2010 9:41:38 AM

  3. So what if she "outted" him. Maybe he is, so with that he will be happy & comfortable with coming out to his mom when he knows he is. So what? A mom can't be proud that her son dresses like how he wants? It is NOT WRONG she outted him, it is scandalous that she outted him because out there there are bigots & ignorant people who can't stand watching someone different who isn't a robot of society. So she did SOMETHING GOOD, the ones who are making something HORRIBLE because of the outting are all these homophobic, ignorant & stupid bigots.

    Posted by: Alosjs | Nov 5, 2010 9:42:57 AM

  4. The liberal media (CNN here) is at it again...

    *please note the tongue-in-cheek

    Posted by: Baby Jane | Nov 5, 2010 9:45:52 AM

  5. It's a really sick society that has mental health professionals assuming that a 5 year old who wants to dress as a girl is automatically headed into gaydom. Boys can't play "pretend"? They can't like bright colors and imagine being something else than a merely human child? Good for his Mom.

    Posted by: CoMo'mo | Nov 5, 2010 9:48:03 AM

  6. I don't think it was appropriate to accuse her of "outing" her son because, as she pointed out, he MAY or MAY NOT actually be gay -- at no point did she even suggest it as a probability.

    As for writing about it on her blog, I can imagine there are thousands and thousands of anxious parents whose child likes to dress up in clothes traditionally worn by the opposite gender. Those parents NEED to hear that this is common play activity and their kid isn't weird; but more importantly those parents NEED to see positive examples like Sarah who reinforce the idea of supporting kids no matter what their sexuality.

    I'm disappointed in the psychologist. Heightened rates of suicide among gay youth is EXACTLY why it's wrong to suppress kids who we think might be gay. There is nothing more damaging to a child's self esteem and sense of worth, than to feel like their parents are ashamed of them.

    Posted by: sparks | Nov 5, 2010 9:49:59 AM

  7. Funny, my worst nightmare would be my child dying. Or getting hurt. Or being kidnapped. Or something horrible. Having a gay kid? Yeah... I think I can deal with that.

    Someone fire that "psychologist."

    Posted by: Jasun | Nov 5, 2010 9:53:49 AM

  8. He calls himself a psychologist?.....Give me a break!......He wouldn't even make a good dog catcher.....Where did CNN come up with this Idiot....Shame on CNN, I hope this snake oil salesman never shows up on public Media again.....He is an embarrassment to the Psychological profession.

    Posted by: Casper | Nov 5, 2010 9:54:17 AM

  9. I don't know how my parents handled having three worst nightmares over the span of 18 years.

    Thank *GOD* they had three other non-worst-nightmares to fall back on.

    With all due respect, Gardere, go fuck yourself.

    Posted by: DN | Nov 5, 2010 9:57:25 AM

  10. I just sent this to Dr. Gardere on his Facebook page:

    Your vague assertion that it is hetero and homosexual couples' "worst nightmare" to "fathom" that their child "might" be gay is, honestly, the most homophobic, ignorant, and small-minded thing I've heard in a very long time, just this side of McCance's rant. Not cancer, not Down's Syndrome, but being gay. Disgusting.

    It may come as a surprise to you, but not everyone thinks being gay is second best anymore. Can you imagine, Dr. Gardere? Some parents or parents-to-be actually believe that it's just another characteristic.

    You owe those people, and all the gay children who just heard you call them their parents' "worst nightmare" an apology. You've contributed to the national dialogue in a very damaging way, and you must now try to undo the damage you've done. You should be very ashamed of yourself.

    Brad, Montreal

    Copy and paste if you like.

    Posted by: barilla | Nov 5, 2010 9:57:27 AM

  11. CNN should be ashamed of itself for giving a platform to this charlatan. What he said was nothing short of outrageous, false and deeply offensive. His language endorses the notion that it is a justifiable concern ("worst nightmare") of parents "to have to fathom that their child might be gay." How can any responsible person say that at a time when gay kids are committing suicide? What is this psychologist telegraphing to struggling LGBT teens? He is saying YOU ARE YOUR PARENTS' WORST NIGHTMARE. Really? This is the message CNN wants to get out there?

    NEWSFLASH: Parents who are not able to cope with loving a gay, lesbian or trans child as much as a straight child have a problem and should get help. I speak as a parent: I know of no other parent I have ever met that has expressed to me that having a gay child would be their "worst nightmare." WAKE UP CALL: Every parent should fathom that their child might be gay and should be prepared to be the most loving and supportive parent possible. A good time to "fathom" this would be before having children. If you cannot be a loving, supportive parent of a gay child, don't have children.

    Posted by: Lavi Soloway | Nov 5, 2010 10:03:18 AM

  12. Seems to me like the psychologist didn't do his homework - as if he only read the first few paragraphs of the blog or skimmed through it quickly and is jumping to conclusions about what the mother's intent was. I love that she kept saying "If you READ the BLOG..." to clarify what she was saying. He was clearly letting his own biases regarding the perceived femininity or masculinity of the child inform his argument, which is kind of the point the mother was making in her post.

    And oof... using the words "worst nightmare" to describe parents' reactions is just so poorly worded. I get that it might create anxiety for parents who are worried about the physical and emotional safety of their children, but come on. Their "worst nightmares" are probably more along the lines of the child, oh, dying.

    Posted by: Ben | Nov 5, 2010 10:05:26 AM

  13. Call or email "Dr. Jeff" and challenge him about his ridiculous "outting" allegations:

    Personal Manager
    Elva Mason
    Mason Management

    Office 434-984-6664
    Cell 434-825-5142


    Posted by: Q | Nov 5, 2010 10:09:47 AM

  14. Wow this, Jeff Gardere guy is a joke. What an asshole

    Posted by: Andrew | Nov 5, 2010 10:13:35 AM

  15. Wrong, wrong, wrong for so many reasons. Who needs enemies when we have "friends" like Jeff Gardere? Even his body language is wrong.

    Posted by: excy | Nov 5, 2010 10:16:41 AM

  16. Well, not that academic standing always translates into professional proficiency but this may be a case 50% of all psychologists graduated in the bottom half of their class. (I also know that this is probably not true because a number may not go into the field but it makes a point.)

    Posted by: Scott | Nov 5, 2010 10:17:11 AM

  17. Worst nightmare...really? As a gay parent my worst nightmare are the bigots my children might face in their daily lives and this so call psychologist is a quack for imposing his own homophobia on this wonderfully supportive parent who did the right thing. I wish more parents would be as loving, supportive and understanding of their children. To let them grown to become the best possible human being who are true to themselves. We might then actually have a civilized American society. Hate is easy, love take effort and hard work.

    My mother encouraged me to attend school during the sixth grade dressed as a nurse from one of the Alfred Hitchcock movies for a haunted house …heels and all. It was a smashing success. Thought my father and brothers were distressed, my mother came through and has always encouraged me to be me and helped me find my own way.

    Posted by: JKM | Nov 5, 2010 10:22:43 AM

  18. I looked up Gardere online, and he's basically a talk-show charlatan who made his name as "America's Psychiatrist" (his term) on Maurey and Sally Jesse Raphael. Really CNN...REALLY?

    Posted by: dizzy spins | Nov 5, 2010 10:27:47 AM

  19. When I was a child, I used to play Transformers and pretend to be Optimus Prime. To this day, I have yet to turn into a truck.

    Posted by: crispy | Nov 5, 2010 10:27:48 AM

  20. Wow! "I think we'll agree to disagree.." What an arrogant prick!

    Posted by: Matt | Nov 5, 2010 10:33:05 AM

  21. CNN lets the Fox crazies on to look "fair and balanced." From Bachmann lieing @ Obama spending $200 million a day on the SE Asia trip to Andrew Card scolding Anderson Cooper for even discussing it last night - the network is becoming unbearable to watch. Remember, CNN first gave Beck a pulpit from which to stir up the radical right.

    Posted by: Mike | Nov 5, 2010 10:34:57 AM

  22. @crispy: Hahahaha!!!!!!!!!!

    Posted by: ghostwhitehorse | Nov 5, 2010 10:35:04 AM

  23. @Barilla, Good letter!

    Posted by: Fenrox | Nov 5, 2010 10:40:08 AM

  24. Even if the exposure of this did make this child suffer because of the backlash that I think he is referring to because she "outed" in the sense that she showed his picture for all to see, that is NOT the problem. The problem is the backlash itself. There is NOTHING wrong with what happened, the wrong is people's negative reactions. That is what this "doctor" should be addressing. You know even if he did say that people are going to react negatively and that is justified because hey we all have the right to our emotions and reactions, then go on to say that we need to not look at this as a sexuality thing or a boy dressed as a girl thing, but just as a person who wanted to dress as his favorite character for halloween thing. I would be so fine with that. But no he choose to say that somehow those people who fear that their child is somehow less of a human being if they dress up as the opposite sex or god forbid turn out gay, that they are the victims in this story. What a joke of a psychologist. HE is perpetuating the very suicides that he apparently is trying to "stop."

    Posted by: Andrew | Nov 5, 2010 10:44:23 AM

  25. As a gay parent that watched their child die of a horribly cruel disease I can unequivocally state that had my son been given the chance to be gay it would not have been my 'worst nightmare'. I'm pretty sure I actually lived through that.

    I want a fucking apology from this asshole.

    Posted by: JP | Nov 5, 2010 10:47:24 AM

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