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Here's a Letter from a Dad Disowning His Gay Son


Reddit user RegBarc posted the disturbing missive, and writes:

In August of 2007, I finally built up the courage to tell my father I was gay. The moment I said it, the phone got quiet and he got off the phone after a few "Okay"s. I decided to give him time to process the news. About a week later, and not long before my birthday, I received the following letter:

"James: This is a difficult but necessary letter to write. I hope your telephone call was not to receive my blessing for the degrading of your lifestyle. I have fond memories of our times together, but that is all in the past. Don’t expect any further conversations With me. No communications at all. I will not come to visit, nor do I want you in my house. You’ve made your choice though Wrong it may be. God did not intend for this unnatural lifestyle. If you choose not to attend my funeral, my friends and family will understand. Have a good birthday and good life. No present exchanges will be accepted. Goodbye, Dad."

It's important to know just what this zealotry from Bryan Fisher, Maggie Gallagher, Dan Cathy, et al., does to everyday people. I've never done drugs, was an excellent student, an obedient child (far less trouble than many of my classmates), didn't drink until I was 22 because it terrified me, and have had just 1 speeding ticket in my life. Yet I am still seemingly deserving of this terrible act of hate and cowardice that one person can place on another. 5 years on and I am still doing fine, though this letter saunters into my mind every once in a while. When it does, I say without hesitation: F**k you, Dad.

It's an all too familiar situation for many LGBT kids out there.

He's right. The Dan Cathys of the world are giving tacit permission to parents to act this way. Shame on them.

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  1. I'm not a parent. I don't understand how one can realize wow I am going to have a child. Plan months for that child to arrive go through life's ups and downs with that child and then discard that child for any un-loving reason.

    Posted by: Jeff | Aug 7, 2012 6:17:27 PM

  2. It is advice I seldom follow, but there is a saying something to the effect that holding resentments is kind of like taking poison in hopes of hurting your enemy. I hope the man who received the letter from his father can let go of the justifiable anger that it must cause him. I hope that after the betrayal of this fundamental relationship of father to son, he can find serenity. The first step is letting go.

    Posted by: candideinnc | Aug 7, 2012 6:31:31 PM

  3. This kid deserves a better dad. How anybody could disown a child over something like this is insane. What does his mother think? She should tell dad to put a sock in it. I would.

    Posted by: Gayla | Aug 7, 2012 6:39:21 PM

  4. This kid deserves a better dad. How anybody could disown a child over something like this is insane. What does his mother think? She should tell dad to put a sock in it. I would.

    Posted by: Gayla | Aug 7, 2012 6:39:22 PM

  5. The kid is better off without his father.

    Posted by: CHV | Aug 7, 2012 6:50:42 PM

  6. I'm sorry he hurt you. I actually cried when I read this, to think that a father could so cruelly reject to his son for absolutely no reason. I hope that your father comes to his senses some day, but you are a good, upright person and you will be fine either way.

    Posted by: athena | Aug 7, 2012 7:02:51 PM

  7. where's "mom" in all of this?

    Posted by: emma | Aug 7, 2012 8:12:34 PM

  8. How insane have these antigay Christian parents gone, well here is the proof.

    Posted by: Mike | Aug 7, 2012 8:20:34 PM

  9. Though it will put noses out of joint here, particularly among the self-appointed guardians of gay orthodoxy and approved beliefs (ironic coming from religion haters), this father is hardly the worst parent on earth. So he doesn't like homosexuality, and disowns his son. Sad and misguided for sure, but that was 5 years ago and sonny seems to be still carrying on just fine.

    But in the pantheon of miserable parents, this dude doesn't even merit mention. Is he a child beating alcoholic? NO. Is he a deadbeat who never paid child support? NO. Is he a druggie who hooked his son on that poison? NO. Is he a felon who taught his son a life of crime? NO. He just was an ordinary father who raised a wonderful son and is entrapped by the evangelical brand of Christianity which tells him to disown his flesh and blood. Don't judge all hetero fathers who have diificulty coming to terms with this as irredeemable bigots.

    Posted by: Contrarian | Aug 7, 2012 9:08:08 PM

  10. welcome to xtianity and a religiously poisoned society

    the catholic church is very very opposed to gays marrying

    Meanwhile the pope also showed his ABOLUTE TRUTHS ABSOLUTISM BY UNexcommunciating a holocaust denier, Bishop Wiilamson


    Posted by: Katie Murphy | Aug 7, 2012 9:29:05 PM

  11. Best quote ever: Disowning your child means that you failed as a parent. Period!

    Posted by: ryderdad | Aug 7, 2012 9:38:06 PM

  12. The two ugliest words in the dictionary ever spoken or acted on are violence and prejudice. I am so sorry sweetheart that your Father does not have the ability to love you past your choice of lifestyle. Hopefully, one day, he will understand that homosexual or heterosexual, black, white, red, yellow, christian, pagan, muslim, jew; you are his son and he will be able to accept you and who you have become. Please do not let his words dictate your attitudes in life. Try to understand that our parents were raised in a time that prejudice was taught and fear of the different was preached. Believe me when I say that separation from ones child is punishment enough. And maybe, if he comes around some day to apologize, you could be the bigger man and open your arms to him and say, 'I understand'......wishing you many blessings and love to fill your days while we wait for the world to change...........Momma Fae.

    Posted by: C. Renee Killian | Aug 7, 2012 9:42:18 PM

  13. "Truth", this man deserves no compassion. He disowned his son for something that his son did not choose. Should his son have pretended to be straight and lived a miserable life just to appease his father? The answer is no. This man just proved to the world that he loves his beliefs and himself more than he ever loved his son, if he ever loved him at all. I'd also have to ask what's wrong with you if you think that rejecting your own child based on something they can't change isn't abusive. This man is despicable and you are too for defending him.

    Posted by: Logan | Aug 7, 2012 9:42:38 PM

  14. @ Truth,

    You refer to forgiving ones enemies and the like. Very well than. I forgive you!

    Posted by: Emile | Aug 7, 2012 11:12:42 PM

  15. Shameful. Simply shameful.

    Posted by: Nino | Aug 8, 2012 12:08:24 AM

  16. RegBarc (James),
    Keep the lines of communications open. Not that you need to ever communicate with him. But stay classy and keep the lines of communication open. You'll come to see the wisdom in this advice in years to come when the day comes he no longer can communicate with you.

    And I would attend his funeral...proudly and stand tall.

    Posted by: cowboy | Aug 8, 2012 1:02:31 AM

  17. He should've handed out photocopies at his father's church that Sunday with the question "Did God as us to hate or to love each other"? It may not make him the bigger man but some people who call themselves Christian really need a slap to wake up.

    Posted by: andrew | Aug 8, 2012 1:29:13 AM

  18. This man is not a dad hes nothing more than a sperm donor

    Posted by: Richard Golden | Aug 8, 2012 4:37:26 AM

  19. I admire this man's courage to stand up to his son's evil lifestyle and refuse to be bullied. Homosexuality is evil and unnatural. I sympathise with him as his son is lost and I pray for his son to repent

    Posted by: alex | Aug 8, 2012 5:24:18 AM

  20. Someone please post the complete name, current address and photo of this man (the father, I mean). I wish he's already died of some cardiovascular disease or cancer or vehicular accident or theft/mugging by a white Christian heterosexual thug who needed the money to support his drug habit as well as his 8-month pregnant blonde blue-eyed girlfriend.

    Posted by: Manny Espinola | Aug 8, 2012 7:29:35 AM

  21. Someone please post the complete name and address and recent photo of this father. If not retired, where does he work? There's a good chance that he's unemployed, so it would be less difficult to have him talk to the camera about his views on homosexuality and America and the rest of the world.

    Posted by: Manny Espinola | Aug 8, 2012 7:49:30 AM

  22. The son should take out an ad in the local letter. Ad should be just the letter and the names of the people involved.

    Posted by: Christopher | Aug 8, 2012 7:54:58 AM

  23. opps----should have typed 'local newspaper'

    Posted by: Christopher | Aug 8, 2012 7:56:04 AM

  24. Perhaps he should not have come out over the phone, but face to face....
    Where is Mon in all of this??
    I even wonder if this is a real letter.
    If it is, very sad....

    Posted by: Liz | Aug 8, 2012 8:52:33 AM

  25. @Joe - Do you truly expect anything but outrage by commenters over someone abandoning and disowning a child? Also, you ask whether "homosexual tendencies" exist? It seems for bisexual people they might.Why does that matter?

    @Liz and anyone else doubting if this letter is real: if you think this letter/reaction is unusual, then I doubt you know many gay people. While many are blessed with loving parents who would NEVER react like this man did, there are many others who are thrown out on the streets, beat up (even by their own fathers), sent letters/messages like this and disowned. It's not uncommon at all. Very sad, but it happens more often then you might think.

    Posted by: Elias Barton | Aug 8, 2012 9:27:59 AM

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