After a very close honorary member of the family decided to share to the world she’s into dating and loving girls, I felt the overwhelming urge to write something about an issue so close to my heart.
Years ago, I was in love with a beautiful woman named Maria. She made me feel a real love that I hadn’t felt in years. I’d ended my relationship with my daughter’s biological father and was single for the first time in over 6 years ago. I adored her, my little daughter adored her, and I felt safe in her arms. I made long drives each way to pick her up and spend the weekend watching movies or listening to music. For the first time, I felt like things just might be right in the world.
Then I lost it all.
She told her family, very traditional and conservative Catholics, about us. She answered her mother’s question about why this girl from near San Antonio was driving so far to just visit a friend so often. She called me up and I raced to see her, wondering if her family was going to live up to the Texas stereotype of not wanting any kind of queer daughter in their life. But they didn’t – they understood and as we drove to my place, we began to talk of my family. By the time we made it to my house, she wanted me to tell my family and be out with our relationship to the world. She felt this freedom and wanted me to feel it too.
She wanted the world to know she was mine as I was hers. I said no.
I was in the middle of a custody case in South Texas in the late 90’s. While it was more socially acceptable to be a lesbian or bisexual woman, the courts were still ruling against parents like myself who were “out” with their relationships. Having a relationship that might expose such an innocent child to such deviant behavior in their minds would be unacceptable in any form or fashion. I had a family that I feared would completely reject me and try to take custody of my daughter for the same reason the courts might have. While I was out to almost anyone outside my small town, I was the world’s underground bisexual while at home. I already had so few friends left after my breakup that I was afraid of losing the little I had left.
I was a chicken. I was a fool. I was pathetic. I lost her.
Years later, after my custody case was over, I came out to my sister about my sexuality. I told her about Maria. She was the first person in my family I was telling and I was terrified. She was the one person I thought would possibly just kick our fragile relationship to the curb but she didn’t. She told me she just wanted me to love someone that loved me as much as I loved them. She told me she just wanted someone to treat me right and she didn’t care if that was a man or a woman. While there were some that chose to not associate with me or hear about my “lifestyle choices”, more accepted me for who I was. I felt loved and free.
Over the last couple of years, the hate started creeping back in my life. I started losing people in my life who didn’t like my facebook posts on marriage equality. Rather than just scrolling by the posts they didn’t like, as I do with theirs, I was just dropped. It hurt but I thought it might be the best thing for the time and maybe they’d come back.
Then my father removed me. I thought maybe it was a mistake because he has quite a few followers. I noticed that he didn’t remove my daughter or my husband; just his eldest child. I had no explanation from him as to why he deleted me. I found out a few days ago that it was because I was posting about accepting everyone, regardless of sexual orientation or religious beliefs.
It seems so silly to be upset over a click made online. But I don’t live near my father and I rarely get to see him. Despite things that happened during my childhood, I was the daughter that still always talked to him. I was the daughter that checked on him and never stopped loving him. Because he didn’t agree with a cause I believe in and has personal value in my life, he deletes me from his life.
The day I found out why he deleted me, this was waiting on my DVR.
The part that sticks with me is this:
Blessed are the merciful for they shall obtain mercy! Jesus: blessed are the pure in heart for they shall see God! Jesus: blessed are those who have been persecuted for righteousness sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven! Jesus is my savior daddy, not you! And Jesus would be ashamed of you for judging me! He would be ashamed of you for turning your back on me. He would be ashamed.
Regardless of my religious leanings or for those out there who might read this who don’t identify at all with any religion, this quote can still have so much meaning and power. It’s a woman expressing her hurt at being judged by a parent who is supposed to love her unconditionally. She is saying the words I’ve tried to say to my father and those friends who I lost but couldn’t quite find the words. I ‘m married to a man, we have a new baby, and somehow I am still seen some kind of bad person because my choice might have been a woman if the circumstances might have been different.
I write this for the young girl who was so brave to tell her family she is bisexual. I write this for my sister Courtney, who kinda proves that homosexuality/bisexuality is genetic, who tells people proudly she dates both women and men. I write this for all my daughter’s friends who have come to me, come out to me, and tough it out during some very confusing times. I’m so proud of you all. Despite all the hate out in this world, there is love and understanding. While those filled with hatred tend to have the loudest voices, those that support you have the biggest hearts. They are those people just waiting to show you how much you are accepted and loved in this world.
I am sad that I couldn’t tell the entire world sooner about this wonderful woman who made me believe there was something else out there. For those newbies to the LGBT party, don’t make my mistakes and don’t let anyone get you to feel you are nothing but truly special, human, and worthy of love all at the same time.
Even if it’s your father.