Churchgirlgonegay’s Blog

{July 24, 2012}   “open” letter to my parents

it’s been ages since my last post.  i think ever post begins with that, but i think this is the largest stretch.  i wanted to share a letter i wrote to my parents.  i am praying that they will actualy read and absorb what i’ve written.  since i came out the 2nd time in the summer of 2010, i feel like i have been holding back from saying what i’ve been thinking and saying.  now, however, i feel like it’s time to start talking about how i feel.  


Dear Mom and Dad,

I’ve been wanting to write to the both of you for a while now.  Please forgive me for not doing this sooner.  I know you do not appreciate my lack of response to your emails and I apologize for that and do not mean to do that to hurt you in any way.  I seem to have a hard time finding the right words to say to you to communicate how I feel and how I’ve been hurt these past few months.  I, in no way, want to accuse you or blame you or hurt you.  I understand that communicating to you through this medium may not be the best (the best being in person, or at the very least, on the phone) as tone and intention can easily be misinterpreted. 

I suppose I can start by responding to dad’s email he sent on April 12th regarding his announcement of retirement/resignation when he said that “this is the worst thing to happen to our family and our church.”  It was very hurtful for me to read that.  In your email, dad, you had said that you were planning on stepping down from church – contingent on what I was planning on doing about my relationship with M.  Correct me if I’m wrong, but it sounded like if I were to stay with M that you would resign from the church.  That felt like you were blaming me for leaving the church.  However a few weeks later, mom called me to tell me that you were not resigning, per se, but you were announcing your retirement, which is a completely different connotation.  And, in fact, mom said you were doing so to set a precedent for other pastors to retire from  the Church at age 65 as well.  After your announcement, mom also told me that you had, in fact, “promoted” yourself to “founding pastor.” I’m assuming you made no mention of my situation (“the worst thing to happen to our family and our church”).  I’m not sure if you are aware of how this sounds from my position.

From my position, it sounded like you were saying two completely different things.  To me, there was blame and guilt – indicating that because I have partnered myself with M, you were forced to resign from the church in shame.  However, to the church, there was a celebration of your departure, and, in turn, growth for the Church as it stepped into a new phase in its life (which, I believe your leaving should be anyway).  Those are very contrasting reasons for leaving the church.  Dad, you made no mention to me about the latter reason that you told the church.  It comes off to me that you’re lying to either me or to the church.  Had I written back to you immediately, I would have told you that I have no intention on leaving my relationship with M and that I would hope that you will be honest with  the Church and tell them exactly the reason why you are leaving the church (which at that time, was b/c of my relationship).  It was hurtful for me to feel the blame and guilt you directed towards me.  It was even more hurtful to find out that you were telling the church something else entirely.

Mom had said that you did want to distance yourself from  the Church b/c of me.  What I don’t understand is how you would only want to distance yourself from  the Church but not your other ministries – specifically the ones that pray against homosexuality.  Wouldn’t you want to distance yourself the most from those ministries when your own daughter is gay herself?  It just seemed inconsistent to me to blame me for leaving  the Church, yet you would continue in anti-gay ministry. 

You have always taught me that God neither blames nor uses guilt with those He loves, yet I find that your emails have been full of both.  In your second email, dad, you said: Your greatest pride is my deepest shame!  I’m not even sure why you said that.  It was beyond hurtful.  I thank God for the supportive church that I have found here.  God confirmed to me that this church is where I am supposed to be at this point in my life because the Sunday following those hurtful words was a healing service (they have one once a month) where everyone can receive healing prayer.  It was timely and provided some healing for me. 

So what do your words mean, dad?  “Your greatest pride is my deepest shame.”  Does that mean that all the happiness and joy I will find in my life will bring shame to you?  I reject that.  You and mom have always taught that words can be used as curses.  I have found that I have had to reject many curses you have placed on me.  I understand that a lot of your reactions have been based out of love and desperation because you truly believe I am damning myself to hell.  But, telling me that I am committing suicide?  That is a curse that I reject.  Telling me that God will not heal me when I am sick?  That is a curse that I reject.  Telling me that mom had cancer because of me?  That is a curse that I reject.  Telling me that I am going to hell?  That is a curse I reject.  Telling me that I will not be able to find a permanent job?  That is a curse I reject.  Telling me that the only reason why God protects me is because you pray for me?  That is a curse that I reject.  God will always protect me – I am My beloved and He is mine.  There will be nothing that will change that!

It has been very difficult for me to talk with you guys since summer 2010.  It seems that whenever I do you hurt me (and I hurt you in some way as well).  Mom, the last time we spoke on the phone I felt distance from you.  I have become aware that I need to protect myself from the hurtful things that you both have said to me.  I suppose it’s a self-defense mechanism at this point.  Please don’t mistake whatever coldness you may feel from me as me not loving you.  I love you two very much. 

I feel like you make no efforts in seeing where I am coming from.  I understand that I am your daughter – but I am your GROWN daughter.  At this point in your life, you were already married, had me, and started  the Church.  It seems to me that you two have come to a place where you are no longer surrounded by peers or mentors.  I may totally be wrong in this, but over the decades I have noticed that you have less friends and more church people in your lives.  Have you even told your siblings about me?  That is a hypothetical question because I know you haven’t.  I know because I have talked to them and to my cousins about my journey and our journey together.  Mom, when I was growing up I remembered you having friends outside of church – fun white lady friends that I never hear about anymore.  When was the last time you spent time with someone outside of church or with someone not involved with ministry?  Over the years it seems like you both have slowly surrounded yourselves with people who follow you and listen to everything you say.  I’ve worked with you in ministry – everyone, for the most part, is scared to say anything contrary to you.  And when they do, you ostracize them or demonize them (actually that is probably the same thing).  Please do not get me wrong – I am proud of what you have done with  the Church, your healing ministries, and especially with LSV.  I am always happy to tell people what my parents do and tell them with great pride. 

However it seems that you have come to a place where you do not accept any other viewpoints other than your own.  I am not sure why I first came out to you when I was 28 when we were in Miami.  I don’t know why I thought you would act differently.  Perhaps I was hoping that you would explore things with me.  Along with this letter, I’ve enclosed a DVD of the documentary “For the Bible Tells Me So.”  I would ask that you at least watch this DVD for me – at least once.  I am grateful every day for how you have raised me to be a strong, independent, vocal woman of God who thinks for herself.  If it were not for this, my story might very well have ended up like Anna, whose mother is Mary Ann Wallner.  I would ask that you at least watch this DVD and not throw it away like you did with the books I asked you to read so we could discuss. 

Mom, you said that you wanted to only hear about certain parts of my life – work and my health.  But that you did not want to hear about M or any of “that” part of my life.  We are soon coming to a crossroads where this will no longer be acceptable for me.  just like you cannot pick and choose in the Bible, you cannot pick and choose parts of me.  As painful as it is for you to hear, M and I are domestic partners and we have plans to get married next year.  She is an amazing child of God who has shown me unconditional love and support.  I am truly blessed to be a part of her life.  We plan on having children together soon and I would want you to be a part of our lives.  However, that won’t be possible if you do not come to accept M.  Mom, you said that the house in Los Gatos is also my home, but I do not feel that to be the case any longer.  You told me specifically that M is not welcome to the house.  If she is not welcome, then neither am I.  We will be staying with my friend when we come for my cousin’s wedding.  Even if I come home without M, I do not plan on staying at the house. 

I want you to understand that this is very hard for me to do.  I want you to be a part of my life – my WHOLE life.  But this does not seem acceptable to you right now so I don’t see how this is possible.  I will be quickly approaching some large life events (marriage, children) and I would want you to be a part of those things as well.  It saddens my heart knowing that those life events will only bring shame to you.  I hope you will reconsider, or, at the very least, consider to reconsider.

I love you both with my whole heart.


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