In a recent conversation with my mom, we discussed some problems that I am having with my roommates and what I should do about it. We also talked about possibly reasons why this was happening. Among many of the good ideas that my mom presented, though, she decided to engage in a topic that I no longer want to discuss with her: my "same gender attractions."
To her the problem between my roommates and myself was that perhaps I was being too noticeably obsessed and chatty about my having same gender attractions. There is some humor in this because of the simple fact that all my roommates are gay. For them to be offended by my being gay is a bit ludicrous and odd. But as strange as it was to me that my being gay would be the problem was perfectly reasonable to her.
I would guess that this logic is couched in the beliefs of her religious experience and it saddens me. I ended up sending her an email last night asking her to stop talking to me about my being gay until she could do so reasonably and respectfully.
What concerns me most with this situation is that ten years of trying to help her adjust to this understanding of who I am as her son as resulted in stagnation and entrenchment. Now she seeks to discuss this rather private and personal side of me as though it were a disease that just needs a little understanding shed on it to cure me of it. And while it may be said with meaningful intent, the results do not match up. Rather than achieve more kindness and understanding between us, alienation and hurt feelings are fostered.
Once more I have to wonder at the intentions of my mother. What sort of relationship does she want to create with me? I realize that for her this is a very difficult situation for her to find her place in. Her son is admitting to not wanting to be a part of anything she holds precious and dear to her. Now she must sort through her priorities and figure out what she truly wants in life and what truly matters to her.
But...and I must be harsh here. How long does it take to finally adjust and figure things out? For ten years she has had the chance to ask questions, adjust, and seek some kind of meaningful relationship with me. Now, she makes no effort to communicate with me. When we do talk, it focuses on the fact that I'm gay. So, on the one hand, I understand that it's difficult to accept that I have changed in a way unfamiliar to her. Ok. All right. That's difficult. That's frustrating. That's emotional painful and hurtful. But how long must this stage last?
What I found disappointing and revealing about her attitude towards me is that she was more upset that I might not be going to my cousin's wedding than about the fact that I will have to find a new place to live. It's good to know where her priorities are.
So...for now I feel I must exercise love and forgiveness for now. But I feel that I must establish boundaries with her. I sent her an email explaining that what she had said on the phone was offensive and not all right. I asked that for the time being that she refrain from talking about my being gay with me.
My life is caught up in being busy with work, spending time with friends, spending time with the boyfriend; and in general, just working on improving my life in little ways. When she claimed that I have an obsession with being gay, it struck home to me how little she knows of my life. How little she understands. And how little she wants to know and understand.
So, Mom, you have chosen this path. I have done everything I can to reach out to you. I have done everything I can to help you understand me better and you have rejected every single time I have attempted to do so. It is with a heavy heart that I must shut you out of my life even further. When you are ready to be my mom again, let me know and I will respond.