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I don't know what I can do.

Community Member

Hey guys. I came out to my parents as genderfluid, with preferred pronouns of they/them and a preferred name of Theo, which isn't my birth name. They were... unhappy.

Since I came out as gay three years ago, my father has believed I'm not actually gay, and that it's just a phase I'm going through in my journey of growing up. He says I'm not old enough to know yet, but I know that I am. My mother got upset that I didn't want the name she gave me and essentially guilt-tripped me into letting them use my birth pronouns and name. I'm not happy with being forced into a name and gender I don't want, especially when my desired gender and name could change at any moment.

What can I do? They try to barge into my personal life so roughly then expect me to open up to them, to the point where I'm snapping and finding myself getting easily angry at them. I just want to know how I can help them understand that there's a certain way I want to be referred to, and that I want to be more of my own person.

1 Reply 1

Champion Alumni
Champion Alumni

Hello TheoWulf

Firstly congratulations on being so very brave to come out to your family, and to knowing who you are and what you want. I am sure that it was a huge relief for you to express your sexuality and your desire to be referred to by your chosen name with a non gender label. I am just so very sorry that your family are struggling with this and that they are not able to commit to your decision.

It does hurt and it is really painful when our family cannot support us in the way that we need, this can be anything from basic love and support, to career choices or sexual orientation, anything really. We do have expectations that our family will support us no matter what,this sometimes does not happen, and it hurts.

I hear you in that your family believe that this is a phase for you, that in time you will revert back to your born gender and that everything will be just dandy. What we cannot do in life unfortunately is make people do what we want them to, what an amazing world it would be if we could. I can hear how painful it is for you that they will not hear you, accept you as "TheoWulf" and essentially hope that if they close their eyes and put their hands over their ears it will be ok.

There are a few other members on this forum that are going through the very same thing you are, they might even come and join your conversation, to give you some support in how they are coping with this sort of difficult family situation.

My advice to you is this, patience, understanding and modelling how you want them to treat you. I think if you can try to remain calm and say to them that you do want to be referred to as X, that you understand that they believe this is a phase, that time will tell, however, in the meantime if you could please respect my choice and refer to me as them/they and not by my birth gender. As you have said they do not wish to do that but if you stand strong, but calm, in time they will see you are not "going through a Phase" and that this is who you are. It might take some time for this information to cement with them, for them to accept, sure 3 years has passed already but give them as long as they need. There is also the issue that they may never choose to accept it, however you are entitled to be who you are and if they are not able to accept you for who you are then this is unfortunately an issue they have to work through, as I said before, it is hard when our family cannot support us the way we need.

We are here for you.