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Title: Coming Around
Author: Anne Dohrenwend PhD, ABPP
Publisher: New Horizon Press
In this day and age most people have a different perspective on life and thoughts in regards to the different races, religions and even marriage. But, there is one thing that could tip the scales to change the thought process. For example, let's say your son or daughter comes home with someone they care about and this friend is either of a different race, religion or is of the same sex, what is your reaction? Would this teeter you over to one side? The one scenario that still has some growing pains is the issue of being gay. If you are a parent who isn't sure what to do or what to expect when your child announces they are gay, Anne Dohrenwend PhD ABPP, has created a helpful tool that will get you the answers you need.
This short informative read covers five key issues: Tempering First Reactions, Homophobia, The Path To Healthy Adulthood, Health & Sexuality and The Fight For Equality. Each of these topics is broken down into more detailed chapters that actually get to the meat of “Coming Around.” Ann first introduces readers to the terms used by LGBTQs group. If you think you are a liberal you may still experience an emotional reaction such as: shock, guilt, disappointment, shame, fear, and anger. According to Anne,
“For some of you, the shock of discovering your child is gay is complicated by the fact s/he wouldn't or still won't talk about it or even lied about it, perhaps for years. You don't know whether to blame your child for not trusting you or to blame yourself for not being perceived as trustworthy.”
Anne covers what to say and what not to say so that you can avoid any further pain or mistrust.
It's not just about reading, there are actual accounts and shared stories here too. Jeff's story was a story that many gay teens found familiar. He was sixteen and in love. He told his mother but was afraid of his father, due to rude comments he made in regards to gays. Jeff was planning to run away but disguised it as going away on a trip with a friend. The advice to his mother was to protect her child and offer a loving environment, because Jeff was still her child. She must even consider leaving the father temporarily for Jeff's protection. Anne also offers methods for coping and talking things out.
Anne helps readers better understand homophobia and how to address it. Parents can learn how to deal with changing situations as their child grows into an adult and breaks free from their parents and possibly never return. In the workplace and because of discrimination at a job parents can support their transgender child by maintaining a connection and offering healthcare. Suggestions like this will help children cope with job loss and also help them get help and care for themselves. The world is coming around but still has a long way to go. With healing and hope families can pull together and support the LGBTQs in their lives. The back pages contain a long list of resources and links so that parents and children can gather strength and information.