Comments

  1. candideinnc says

    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?

  2. Rob says

    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.

  3. Alosjs says

    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.

  4. CoMo'mo says

    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.

  5. sparks says

    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.

  6. says

    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.”

  7. Casper says

    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.

  8. DN says

    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.

  9. barilla says

    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.

  10. says

    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.

  11. Ben says

    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.

  12. Scott says

    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.)

  13. JKM says

    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.

  14. dizzy spins says

    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?

  15. Mike says

    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.

  16. Andrew says

    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.”

  17. JP says

    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.

  18. emarell says

    Jeff Gardere? A 100% dogmatic hack. Never has uttered, that I have witnessed, an original thought or anything creative or helpful in any way. It always astounds me to encounter his whining on any TV venue – why would any producer hire him?

  19. patrick nyc says

    Thanks Q for his email and contact info. I also sent CNN an email telling them of my disgust, not that I ever watch that horrible station, no matter how hot Anderson Cooper is. Cnn can be emailed @ http://www.cnn.com/feedback/forms/form5.am.html

    To JP, sorry for all the parents who lived through the nightmare of loosing a child, my sister and sister in law both lost their first borns, that was a nightmare for both as well as the whole family. Gerdere gives assholes a bad name.

  20. patrick nyc says

    I just got off the phone with Gerdere’s manager, Elva Mason. Her voice mail at the top number was full, but she answered her cell herself. She said she had many messages to answer and asked for my contact info. She said she planned to make a public statement soon and would send me an email of it.

    She was very pleasant and sounded blown away by all the blowback from this idiot. Here is a copy of the email I sent her.
    I was not as kind in the one I sent Gerdere.
    ———————-
    Ms Mason,

    I am not sure if you are Mr. Gerdere’s supervisor or not, but I was forwarded your email, along with his, in relation to his comments on CNN this morning. I don’t know where to begin, but I’m sure you will be bombarded with emails so I’ll get to the point.

    Mr Gerdere saying that having a gay child is every parents, gay or straight, worse nightmare is one of the most disgusting and obscene things I have ever heard from a Psychologist in my life.

    Mt older sister is a Psychologist and she and my sister in law both lost their first born children. Let me tell you, that is a parents worse nightmare. I hope you can either fire this fool, or at least ask to go on CNN yourself to denounce him.

    Patrick Barker
    New York, NY

  21. Tonic says

    Yeah, my worst nightmare is raising a loving, kind, peaceful, intelligent child who makes the world a better place (as many/most gays do). Whatever.

    I sent “Dr.” Jeff Gardere a facebook message to let him know that SOME of us are like this mother and provide unconditional love to our children.

  22. Ryan says

    “Dr. Gardere,

    While I may have been a nightmare for my parents, it was certainly not because I was gay. Willful, stubborn, thickheaded and obnoxious perhaps, but not gay. I find your lack of empathy, your assumptions, and frankly your subpar research on the topic to which you were speaking appalling. Further, I find that it is also hypocritical to the oaths you are bound to as a licensed psychologist, the most principle of which is to do no harm. It is callous and thoughtless remarks like yours that perpetuate hatred, and give license to those who would dehumanize minorities and violate their civil liberties and personal safety.

    You should be ashamed.”

    I highly encourage all of you to reprimand him for his thoughtless comments.

  23. Neil says

    When I told my parents I was gay they shrugged, said “Well, you know we’d prefer if you weren’t, but as long as you’re happy…..”, put their jackets on and went about their day. My Dad is a man of few words but I understood from his laissez faire attitude, his lack of tears, his not tearing his hair out, that it wasn’t his worst nightmare.
    His worst nightmare was probably his own father dying when he was five years old and having to raise his own younger siblings, then watching his mother die slowly over a 5 year period.
    Like he said to me later, I never got a girl pregnant, I never did drugs, I never smoked, I never brought the police to his door and I got excellent grades in school. That’s all you could ask from your kids.

    My (very straight, very Catholic) parents worst nightmare? No, I don’t think so.

    My worst nightmare? Giving a platform on national media to idiots which validates them and calls them “experts”

  24. Ryan says

    surprisingly he responded

    ” I do apologize becuase that was not my intention. What I should have explained and apologize I did not get to do… Is that gay parents I have worked with hope their kids are straight only because they do no want them to deal with the pain and isolation they may feel in coming to terms with being gay as youngsters. Again I do apologize.”

  25. Joey Stocks says

    “You’ve heard of Dr. Pepper? I’m Dr. Jeff.” Forgive me for paraphrasing Wendy Wasserstein. I couldn’t resist.

    It should also be noted that Gardere frequently appears on the Today Show as their resident “expert”.

  26. patrick nyc says

    RYAN I too just got a response from him and was surprised, until I just read yours, they are the same. Stupid fuck is too lazy to write a response dealing with individuals, he has to copy and paste.
    ——————-

    Mr. Gerdere,

    So by your rational, parents who are jewish, or black like yourself, should want to adopt white christian children, because we all know how much hate those two groups go through. Just look at the hate the right wing throws at our President, mostly because of the color of his skin. You can apologize all you want, you can’t put the genie back in the bottle sir. The real apology is owed to Sarah and her little boy. My younger sister died when she was three, it devastated my parents and whole family. My older sister and sister in law both lost their first born, that too was a nightmare for all concerned.

    I hope you get fired over this and no one is ever exposed to your twisted thinking. If you are this misguided on this one, chances are you are just as foolish in your mind on other matters that people need help coping with.

    I don’t wish you bodily harm, though I would not loose sleep if a bunch of angry victims of gay bashing bashed you, but I wish you no further employment in your current field. A McDonald’s is more your level, not much damage you can do to a Big Mac or FF.

    Patrick Barker
    New York,NY

    On Nov 5, 2010, at 11:45 AM, Jeffrey Gardere wrote:

    Patrick I do apologize becuase that was not my intention. What I should have explained and apologize I did not get to do… Is that gay parents I have worked with hope their kids are straight only because they do no want them to deal with the pain and isolation they may feel in coming to terms with being gay as youngsters. Again I do apologize.

    Dr. Jeff Gardere

    Sent from my iPhone – please excuse any typos.

    On Nov 5, 2010, at 11:35 AM, Patrick Barker wrote:

    Mr. Gardere,

    I have never heard of you before this morning, but now that I have I wish I had not. I have never heard of a more disgusting comment coming from a Psychologist in my life. I went through therapy for years, and my Psychologist was a man with a kind understanding view of the world and life, who helped me recover from the true ‘nightmare’ of abuse as a child. Saying that a child being gay is a parents worse nightmare is not only wrong, it is totally unprofessional. It’s sad that people like you are giving counsel to people in need of help. My sister is a Psychologist, she and one of my sister in laws both lost their first born, that was a nightmare. You are below scum. i just hope you soon are added to the roles of the unemployed.

    Patrick Barker
    New York, NY=

  27. Rhea says

    Here’s the response that I got back from the email that I sent.

    “Rhea, I do apologize becuase that was not my intention. What I should have explained and apologize I did not get to do… Is that gay parents I have worked with hope their kids are straight only because they do no want them to deal with the pain and isolation they may feel in coming to terms with being gay as youngsters. Again I do apologize.

    Dr. Jeff Gardere

    Sent from my iPhone – please excuse any typos. “

  28. says

    My worst nightmare aside from debilitating illness or death is that my sons might meet up with an alledged “professional” like Jeff Gardere. To pose as an authority on what is healthy or a worst nightmare scenario presumes a fair and balenced perspective. It should represent some depth of knowledge about the profession. He is not fit to talk to anyone about nightmares…he is one. Dear God, the harm such a jerk like this can do to innocent and unsuspecting kids is unreal. America wanders around fearing “stranger danger” but welcomes this idiot into their homes. I think I’m gonna move to the jungle…its a kinder gentler place. To those of you who have posted about the loss or illness of your child you have my deepest compassion for what you have endured.

  29. astounded says

    If anyone came across as closeted and needing a good outing, it’s the “doctor”. Tight assed, falsely calm and prissily condescending. Girl, please! What an asshole!

    Leave the kid alone. His parents sound great. My “worst nightmare” is that that moronic “doctor”
    would get anywhere near him.

  30. says

    Here’s my letter to CNN:

    I am 100% positive that CNN is a failed “news” organization. You should be ASHAMED of yourselves, in regards to the 5 year old dressing up for Halloween. You are adding to the irrational insanity of a small, insignificant populace in this country by taking issue with this non-story and also by having that hack “psychologist’ on your show, daring to say that the mother outed a 5 YEAR OLD CHILD ! News flash – 5 year olds aren’t able to grasp the concept of what their sexuality is – but again, that was a news flash – and “news” is obviously NOT your strong point.

  31. swashbuckler says

    Wonder if the “expert” being black has anything to do with his crappy reaction. The black community has a real problem with gay people. Their own, too.

    No wonder CNN is in the tank if this mamby pamby “expert” is the only person they can get to do a segment on their network.

    That said, “ROCK ON, little kid! BE YOU and FLY!” And good job to his parents.

  32. kevin says

    Ummmm….did you actually WATCH the video? The doctor says he’s not sure she should have outed her 5 year old son in her blog but he does NOT attack her, he PRAISES her for her unconditional love. The phrase that is taken out of context about a parent’s worst nightmare is actually the doctor saying HE WORKS WITH MANY PARENTS WHO FEEL…. he is not saying that it is every parent’s worst nightmare. Just watch the video, you’ll be surprised that he is very positive toward the mother (and even though he says he’s not sure she should be writing about her 5 year old on the blog, he conceeds that the blog is a very powerful tool that is showing millions that you should stand behind your kid no matter what).

  33. justiceontherocks says

    i know when i’m looking for ethical or moral guidance, the first thing i think is “what would they do on the Maury Show?”

    Of course, the mor you watch CNN the more you realize it isn’t a lot different than the Maury Show.

  34. StillMarriedinCalifornia says

    wow. Just wow. What an asshole. So unprofessional it hurts. CNN does this shit all the time. They have some “expert” or pundit from the looney bin and treat him/her as if they have a legitimate point of view.

  35. naughtylola says

    Worst nightmare? I’ve seen the worst nightmare that a parent can endure, and that was my 17-year-old cousin’s death at the hands of a drunk driver.

    Surely this person cannot be suggesting that Robbie’s parents, on the balance, would be more content with him being dead than possibly gay. That cannot be what I’m reading here.

  36. Randy says

    The boy is 5, and doesn’t express a sexuality. (He probably does express a gender identity.) But even if he was 15, there is no such thing as outing. There is only the truth.

    The worst nightmare of gay couples is that some douchebag on CNN is going to say gay children are their worst nightmare.

  37. patrick nyc says

    KEVIN I have to disagree with you on this one. I have seen the video, and watched it again after your post. The first thing that stood out was his body language, especially his raising his eyebrows clearly showing displeasure in a very condescending way.

    Just after the 2:00 minute mark, when Sarah says that the other parents and kids all knew and were supportive, Gerdere’s eyes raise in surprise. Then just after 2:20 he says it was a natural reaction from the Mothers who were upset by her choice, he did not question them for being off base, not only in their views but it was none of their dam business to begin with.

    At 2:38 he says it is a parents worse nightmare, not that they think it is, that it is. He states that it is at the forefront of their minds. He never says that he does not believe it, nor does he say he tells them it is not. While it may be a typical reaction to homophobic people, there is nothing natural about it.

    What is natural is raising a child in a loving home, and his back handed compliments are no excuse for his failing as a Psychologist. It never ceases to amaze me that people defend shit like him, just bothers me that people who are gay, or other minorities should know better.

  38. Asher says

    Oh my God, will you stupid queens calm the fuck down?!

    I swear to God half the time we’re just looking for a fight where one isn’t necessary!

    The man chose the wrong words, that’s all. He was clearly implying that having to see one’s child grow up with all the difficulties!

    If he had any problem with the mother it was the fact that she put the pic of her so online. Which I sort of agree with.

    You guy are calling for blood but did you really watch it?

  39. MrRoboto says

    Umm, Asher, I’m not sure you’re aware of it, but there is an epidemic of gay and perceived-to-be-gay kids killing themselves over words.

    I’ll grant you that perhaps this dimwit chose the wrong words, but instead of trotting out your bully uniform and calling those who were offended by those wrong words as “silly queens,” perhaps you might come up with a more reasoned response like: “I think you’re all overreacting a bit. He chose the wrong words. I’m going to join those calling on him to ask CNN for the opportunity to correct his misstatements.” Instead, you contribute to the heat with your own words.

    For me, I’m offended by his words and contacted him privately that I don’t want his canned copy/paste answer, I want him to contact CNN and say he made a mistake and would they provide him with an immediate opportunity to address that mistake on the air. I’m also offended, as others here have mentioned, that the CNN host, Kiran Chetry, didn’t immediately question his risible assertion. I think she should answer for that as well.

  40. Zach says

    “The man chose the wrong words, that’s all. He was clearly implying that having to see one’s child grow up with all the difficulties!”

    This same asinine point was brought up before, about steadfastly liberals parents still not ever wanting to have a gay child because of the inherent ‘difficulties’ of being gay.

    But here’s the thing. If parents are clear and unequivocal in their support, then most gay children will build up the necessary self-esteem to endure social invective. It’s when that support system is not in place, or when there are underlying issues of depression (which may be exacerbated by perceived stigma) that kids can’t deal with being gay.

    My mother said she would never ‘wish’ being gay on anybody. And I thought, fine. I wouldn’t wish being gay on anybody, just as I wouldn’t wish ‘straight’ on anybody. I want people to be who they are.

  41. natalie says

    he could have chosen better words. if what he said has no merit at all then why are so many people abandoned/shamed by their families when they come out?

    let’s acknowledge the truth.

  42. gaydad05 says

    The not-so-good doctor needs to go viral with an apology to the lgbt community and especially to every parent who watches CNN. “Worst nightmare”? Yeah, right. Any licensed psychologist knows the power of language, including body language, and this dude shows some powerful discomfort with the idea of gender non-conformity and gay and lesbian folks in general. This message is toxic to the lgbt community and we deserve a thoughtful apology from him. Will he respond?

  43. says

    This “psychologist” is a prime example of how difficult it is to get unbiased, effective mental health treatment in America today, or get unbiased judgements from disability judges and the like. You simply do not know how ignorant they are when it comes to human sexuality, nor do you know how much their sick ideas will affect your life – usually you find out when it’s too late.

  44. ScooterRoo says

    Like most of you I am appalled by this guy’s comments, so I wrote him and CC’d GLAAD.

    Here is what I said:

    “To Whom It May Concern-

    Though I doubt “Dr” Gardere will ever read this email himself, I could not sit back and let go of his awful, awful comments on CNN with regard to the child who dressed up as a female cartoon character.

    I am appalled that Mr. Gardere would have the nerve to say that its a parent’s “worst nightmare” to “have to fathom that their child might be gay.” There is absolutely nothing wrong with being gay! And as “America’s Psychologist” (as Mr. Gardere calls himself)—he should know that. Mr. Gardere’s viewpoint is completely out of date.

    I am more offended by this man’s remarks than any of the other blatantly homophobic comments I’ve seen in the media lately. He is hiding his own homophobia behind his credentials- and making very hurtful and dangerous remarks on national television. Regardless of the situation— for him to insinuate that a parent’s worst fear is that their child would grow up to be gay is infuriating and insulting to parents. How does Mr. Gardere think a closeted, gay child would react to hearing his comments on CNN, and learning that coming out to his/her parents would be his/her parents’ “worst nightmare”?

    GLAAD- I implore you to reach out to this man, or at the very least to comment on his menacing language—especially since this man makes a career of being a TV psychologist. Subversive homophobes like Mr. Gardere can be much more dangerous than the run-of-the mill bigot.

    I thank you for your time, and I do hope that Mr. Gardere will apologize and learn from his unfortunate mistake.”

    MINUTES LATER I RECEIVED THIS RESPONSE FROM HIM (or likely his PR person):

    “Hello Scott,
    I actually have talked to GLADD.
    I do apologize becuase that was not my intention. What I should have explained and apologize I did not get to do… Is to explain that gay parents I have worked with hope their kids do not have to deal with the pain and isolation they may feel
    in coming to terms with being gay as youngsters. Again I do apologize.

    Dr. Jeff”

    Sounds like a half-assed apology to me. For others who are as offended as I am- I would urge you to email this man, AND to CC a gay-support organization like GLAAD, AND to contact CNN directly. Hopefully if enough of us respond we can get further action taken.People like this man should not be allowed to have a platform like CNN to make subversive homophobic comments.

  45. patrick nyc says

    SCOOTERROO if you read the above posts many of us contacted him and got the exact same response, word for word, except our names. He clearly is getting bombarded with emails, as is his supervisor, Elva Mason. I emailed her and spoke to her on her cell phone.

    She was very pleasant and said she would respond to all emails, poor woman, and that she was going to make a public statement soon.

    To those like KEVIN and ASHER who criticize us for complaining, ASHER’s comment ‘Oh my God, will you stupid queens calm the fuck down?!’ being the most offensive, I say back to them, FUCK YOU. It is people like them who are almost worst than the douche bag Gerdere, but being gay does not give you a free pass from being an asshole.

  46. new jersey girl says

    I cannot believe that every hasn’t realized the obvious:

    This kid dressing as ‘Daphne’ (read girl) doesn’t point to his potentiality as a GAY

    …but as a TRANSVESTITE.

    Someone should correct Dr. GARDE and the media jerks about this too!

  47. Peter says

    a 5 yr old child isn’t thinking of gay or anything sexual at that age, he is NOT gay and if he is he will discover it later on in life.Let him be a child and do what he likes.

  48. Thomas Cardellino says

    Jeff Gardere, Ph. D., what a Phucking Phraud you are! Worst Nightmare!? Somewhat like your black child bringing home an Asian or Caucasian child for a first date!? It’s just like CNN to pull in some numb-nuts with a Phony degree from where-the-fuck-ever to pontificate about what is “Natural” for bigoted fearful small-minded Missourians Moms to find distasteful! Consider resigning from CNN, you haircut & suit of a “Doctor,” so that 5-year-olds worldwide won’t be tainted by your pre-doctoral prejudices! You, “Dr.” Jeff, are a self-serving dim-wit. What do they call the bottom of even Yale’s graduating class of Doctors of Psychology? Sadly enough, as in this case (times a million excess Ph,D.’s) we still mistakenly lend them credence by deferring to the Phony Ph.D. moniker of “Doctor!” And furthermore, you just have no sense of humor, nor an understanding of childhood psychology at its most basic, you pretender to the throne! The little kid is 5 Phucking years old! Go pathologize the adults who are misinformed enough to pay you, from the Psychological bottom of the barrel, for your dimwitted & completely clueless off-the-cuff observations void of any scientific research to back your casual claims. That your clients, if you truly retain any, would pay you their hard-earned cash in search of deeper meaning in their lives is a travesty! I pity those poor fools and despise the fame machine that a chance on CNN gives to counterproductively low IQ candidates who somehow endure enough time to secure a Ph.D. despite their obtuseness. Doesn’t Laura Schlesinger have a Ph.D. in something, too? Hopefully you are not a parent Mr. Gardere, or else I can easily see one of your children writing another version of “Running with Scissors” due to your atrocious misunderstanding of childhood consciousness & infantile unconsciousness. You are a danger to your patients, you CNN puppet on a string!

  49. TampaZeke says

    I don’t know whether I should be more offended as a gay son or as a gay dad by this mans insanely ignorant and hurtful statement.

    He’s a psychologist? Where? At NARTH?

    What a douchebag!

  50. TampaZeke says

    My worst nightmare, other than death, illness or injury, is that my son would grow up to disregard the values that I have tried to instill in him and become a racist, misogynist, homophobe or any other kind of ignorant bigot.

  51. TANK says

    This guy’s a douchebag…but, given the current state of lgbt equality, would you want your potential kid to be straight or lgbt? And this also applies to black and hispanic…and even female given the wage gap and likelihood of being assaulted or the victim of domestic violence. The list goes on and on. I wouldn’t want a kid who wasn’t good at math, either…given the practical economic pressures that we will continue to face…I wouldn’t want a kid, though.

    But ya know what, life isn’t about what you want. It’s about adjusting to less than ideal circumstances brought about by less than ideal circumstances–that is, circumstances that are not preferred. Success is measured in how one acclimates to disappointment. And if all you can do is talk about what you would want in a kid, then you aren’t fit to parent (because that’s not what you have), and you aren’t doing ANYTHING to change the situation that would evoke such a desire. So fuck you, “dr.” prick…and good for this mom.

  52. TANK says

    But what is undeniable is that the mother in this case has the right attitude and beliefs. She’s making it worthwhile because of her understanding…and that’s the story…not what the kid “is”…which is ancillary, and concentration on that feeds nothing worthwhile.

  53. Sam says

    I am glad this woman is proud and supportive of her son, but I really take issue with her posting a photo of her 5-year-old son dressed like a girl on her Blog. This picture will remain on the Internet forever, and will follow this boy for the rest of his life. And there is no way its going to remain a secret. That wasn’t a decision she should have made for him, to prove how supportive a mother she is.

  54. Shiyne says

    The problem is, why did he even bring up the topic of her son being gay or not in the first place? And why is everyone else who’s attacking Sarah bringing up sexuality? AT ALL?
    How a person dresses has nothing to do with their sexual preference. NOTHING. I know TONS of homosexual friends, and they do not universally dress like the opposite sex. On the other hand, I know some very effeminate men and very masculine women- who are NOT gay.

    Just like Sarah wrote- nobody would bat an eye if it were a girl dressing up as Batman. So whats the big deal if its the other way around? Especially a FIVE YEAR OLD? I am a woman. I wear clothing made for men as well as womens clothes. Nobody’s ever given me shit for it.

    Besides from the fact that this Gardere dude is an unprofessional idiot, this whole situation is ridiculous. This is America. This is the 21st century. Catch up with the times, people.

  55. Michelleanon says

    I urge all to email CNN…the WORST network on television. This being the same CNN who did 2 segments on “Is it possibly to cure homosexuality” with an ex gay being the ONLY talking head in the segment and a blubbering idiot of an anchor. CNN is not our friend, is not as well informed as some would like to believe and it is most definitely time for the gay community to not respond back but FIGHT back against this misguided sense of “truth” blurted out on television, not for us, but for our kids who are suffering on a daily basis because of the pure crap displayed by networks like CNN.

  56. Asher says

    My comments were of the same tone and nature as many of the posts here calling for the man’s head on a platter. Everyone is SERIOUSLY overreacting by leaps and bounds.

    The good doctor and his manager are decent people and just because he he didn’t hold your hand in explaining to you what he was obviously saying, doesn’t change that.

    Everyone is just looking for a reason to be upset and angry, there are far better things to be doing than focusing your attention to a non-issue.

    I understand that being gay comes with a tendancy to be on the defense all the time. But seriously, we need to chill the fuck out and learn to distinguish between friend and foe.

    Worried about gay teens? Volunteer at a suicide hotline? Make an “It Gets Better” video, but trying to destroy a man because you couldn’t interpret what he was obviously saying is not fair.

    It’s not his fault you got duped into being pissed about a non-issue. He didn’t do anything wrong, he didn’t commit a hate crime. The man works with LGBT youth and their parents so I’m pretty sure he has an idea of what he’s talking about, even if he flubbed a few of his words.

    When you keep attacking your allies, don’t be surprised when you have none left.

  57. Kayleigh says

    This is yet another case of someone seeing the headline or first few lines of a blog, tv show etc and making assumptions. The blog wasn’t about a 5 year old who is gay, it is about acceptance and about those bigots that are all too frequent in this world (even in playschool) and anyone who had actually read the whole thing would know that. I’m sick of news shows giving these fear-mongers a platform to issue their filth from!

  58. DrKeith says

    Dr Gardere’s apology:

    AfterElton.com just spoke with Dr. Gardere who wished to clarify his statement.

    Said Gardere, “What the full statement should have been and what I always say because I do work with straight and gay parents, it is a real issue for them because they are afraid, and this is the part I didn’t say and what I should have said, and you can go back and research it and you’ll see that I’ve said it in every other place. And that is my fault and I accept complete responsibility for not saying that. Those parents, even gay parents say it, as controversial as that will sound, do not want their children to have to deal with the pain and the isolation and a lot of the emotional trauma that they have to go through as far as coming to terms with their sexuality. They know that they went through it and they prefer that their kids not go through it. And that’s what the full statement should have been.”

    Asked about having criticized the boy’s mother for “outing” him, Gardere says, “It was never my intention to criticize this mother. I think what she did as far as supporting her child and allowing him to express himself in anyway possible is 100% admirable. I think at this point in our history this is what more people need to be able to do, to step up in that way.”

    Gardere again emphasized he was taking responsibility for his words:

    I accept full and total complete responsibility for using that unfortunate choice of words. I think if I were able to say the other part of that, that it wouldn’t come out that way. But I think that is a lesson for me to learn to be even more sensitive even though if you Google my name, you’ll see anything that I’ve ever written or said about sexuality has always been 100% positive for whatever someone’s sexuality might be. But certainly, I feel horrible about it. And I’ve gotten some call from some folks — I can’t talk about who they are — but some folks who want to exploit it. Who say, “Come on and you can say what you want about it.” But I say “No.” I was absolutely wrong and I understand why people are upset about it and I need to learn from that situation. Again, I accept full responsibility and offer a full apology.

    I agree with the above posters: his body language sucked. He kept on glancing skeptically to the CNN reporter as the mother defended her decision.

    It’s my belief that it is the responsibility of all prospective parents to analyze and take account of their feelings about LGBT people, because there is NO reason to believe that their children might not potentially be a member of the LGBT community. They need to challenge any latent homophobia etc. BEFORE they make a baby. They would all be so much better equipped to deal with a possible coming out, and it would be so much better for the health of the entire family.

  59. Frederick says

    As both a gay man and a parent (between my partner and I, we have six adult children), I found this psychologist’s statement that “having a gay child is a parent’s worst nightmare” extremely offensive and demeaning. I wonder how he would’ve felt if a different psychologist stated “having a child of color is a parent’s worst nightmare”?

  60. gaydad05 says

    Okay Folks – I e-mailed Dr. Gardere, received his boiler-plate response, pasted it into another e-mail to his management with the request that he use the power of the medium to send out a heartfelt apology, and received a personal e-mail from him with his phone number included. I think this guy’s the real deal. He was honest about his mistake, seems genuinely sorry, and took full responsibility for it. I couldn’t have written a better apology. I hope what he’ll understand from this is that the stars are aligned right now. The LGBT is saying we’ve had enough, quit bad-mouthing us. Gay is good. Bigotry is bad. We’ve got a lot of bottled-up rage, and he seems to see this through a clear lens. I just hope he’ll be able to speak about this on camera.

  61. Chris says

    Just send “dr” jeff this email:

    Dear Dr. Jeff,

    I have to take issue with your outlandish and dare I say completely
    unprofessional generalization that you made on CNN earlier today. In
    it, and I paraphrase, you claimed: it is the “worst nightmare” of
    parents gay or straight to have to fathom having a gay child. This
    comment is not only a gross generalization, but it is incredibly
    insulting. Having a child carries with it burdens and many
    responsibilities, and your homophobic comment does little to ease the
    mind of parents. Perhaps you fail to understand that this comment was
    completely out of line: imagine if you will a couple with a son. They
    have to worry how to feed him, educate him, allow him to grow and be
    happy. Given the economic times the last thing, yes the LAST thing
    that should be on their mind is whether their son or daughter is gay.
    And can’t they be happy gay? Or in your world is the notion of a happy
    homosexual an oxymoron? You have pathologized and problematized
    sexuality. And if you consider yourself a clinical psychologist, then
    surely you should have some sense of shame.

    What you have just done, sir, on national television, is said to these
    parents who had hitherto no worry about their child’s sexuality: you
    should worry. You should be concerned about the sexuality of your son
    or daughter. You have essentially intensified homophobia, which as a
    clinical psychologist you should find simply abhorrent.

    Perhaps in the Freudian lala land that you live in, parents should
    constantly monitor the sexuality of their children, but in the real
    world– the REAL WORLD sir a place which I sincerely doubt you would
    be granted a visa– parents worry about other things.

    Your comments are completely reprehensible and I demand that you make
    an on-air apology: That you retract and clarify your position. Perhaps
    you are a homophobic Freudian, but somehow I doubt you cling to a
    psychology born from the anti-masturbatory movement. Perhaps you think
    I am attacking the study of clinical psychology (?). I can assure you
    sir that I, unlike you, do not make sweeping generalizations about
    groups of people I have had only fleeting and professional contact
    with. All I can comment on is your ill-advised and outdated comments
    you made on CNN. I trust that you will do the right thing and retract
    your comments.

    I await your response.

    sincerely,

    — —

    feel free to email him the same thing

  62. gregv says

    “…if what he said has no merit at all then why are so many people abandoned/shamed by their families when they come out?”

    @ Natalie: So many kids are abanodoned or ashamed because there is no test to become a parent and that means that there are far too many hateful, horrible parents in the world.

    My own parents are wonderful, and are proof that his statement is completely wrong. When I told them I was gay they said, “This isn ‘t a problem for us at all. We’re happy you’re able to love someone, but whether you choose a man or a woman is not an issue.”

    His statement is parallel to a quack saying that, “No matter if you’re a black or a white parent, having a dark child is every parent’s worst nightmare.” Or: “No matter what color you are, thinking that you’re child might someday love a black person is every parent’s worst nightmare.”
    IF he had said such a thing about another minority, surely the host would have corrected him innediately and he never would have been invited back on any mainstream show again.

    It is NOT “every” parent’s worst nightmare. Issues like these are only the nightmare of bgioted and hateful individuals who do not have any business being parents in the first place.

  63. says

    As a mental health professional myself, I feel it’s massively irresponsible for someone to take his 15 minutes of fame and tell a loving a supportive parent her greatest fear should be about having a gay child. (My favorite comment from the mother was after other moms accused her of “turning her son gay,” was, “So do you think you’re kid is gonna grow up to be a Ninja?”

    But hey—don’t listen to ME—listen to the homophobic psychologist. Here’s his e-mail response to me after I wrote him about his unacceptable remarks:

    Hello Ty, I misspoke when I articulated that gay and straight parents would consider it their “worst nightmare” to have a gay child. I did not articulate my full thoughts on this and should have. What I meant to say and have often said is that many straight and gay parents I’ve worked with have voiced concern when they believed they had a gay child because they worried that their children might face hostility and bullying from people who are anti-gay. My comments about the mother “outing” her child were not related to his sexual orientation. I was simply questioning why she put her son’s photo out on her blog. As I said in the interview I believe this mother has been very courageous in supporting her child. Her acceptance and unconditional love is a model for other parents in a similar situation. Still I completely apologize for hurting yours or anyone else’s feelings. I am attaching my phone number if you want to discuss this with me personally. Dr. Jeff917.312.4497Dr. Jeff Gardere Sent from my iPhone – please excuse any typos. – Show quoted text -****

    And here’s what I wrote back:

    You know, years ago I was part of an NBC community group when Seattle had an situation where a cross was burned on the lawn of a Black family. This was SEATTLE, where, “we” don’t do things like “that.” But the reality is–there’s an inverse relationship between overt racism and the economy. When one goes up, the other goes down.

    I’m American Indian. When I pointed out some of the problems the NBC affiliate had in terms of dealing with the various communities of color (26 of whom were represented at this meeting—the most diverse group I had ever experienced), the station manager replied, “Well, we here at KING-TV consider ourselves to be pioneers…and you know what they say about pioneers—you can always recognize them by the arrows in their back.” The audience of people of color drew in their breath. I responded, “That’s not the most appropriate metaphor you could have chosen.”

    He then ended the meeting. He turned to me and said, “I know a lot of people of color think all decisions to keep them down are made by White males in a smoke filled room. But it happens like this—this is something I’ve said for years, and never once thought about what it really meant.”

    And I answered—“It really doesn’t matter if you said this out of carelessness or out of racism—the results are the same.” And “Dr. Jeff—America’s Psychologist”—your remarks have the same results in terms of directly harming both children and parents. Your apology to me or to a few individuals won’t clean up the stain you’ve smeared against innocent children and their loving parents on a national level. If you’re actually sincere, and not just trying to do damage control—or trying to prevent me from filing a formal complaint at an APA or licensure level—then make the same statement on CNN.

  64. Jay Dub says

    I agree with Gardere. He didn’t say “all heterosexual as well as gay parents” he said “many”. A lot of gay people as well as straight parents do NOT want their children to be gay. Thankfully, none of you are these types of parents. He’s referring to those who he has dealt with. That doesn’t make him a charlatan, a prick nor an asshole.

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