My daughter, S, and her partner, E, are visiting today. I write mostly about my other daughter, J, who suffers from Bipolar, anxiety, OCD, and an eating disorder, but today I will explain more about my youngest child.
S is only 15 months younger than her sister and they were very close while growing up. J was the drama queen and S was the quiet, more serious one. S was as reliable as J was unreliable. She has the same dry wit that I have, and she can make me laugh like no other. I believe she struggled a lot because she saw the pain that her sister was in, and she sees my suffering, and she cannot fix it. S wants to think things out logically and then make it all better.
As a child, S was the rough and tough tomboy while J wore pretty dresses and played with Barbie. I remember some of the closed-minded people from the small town in which we live asked me what I would do if she “turned gay”. I simply told them the truth: I would love her. I didn’t even bother to discuss the “turned” gay comment because you cannot change small minds.
I never forced gender roles or racial stereotypes on my kids. I am sad to say my parents are racists and homophobes; in their defense, they grew up in a different world. Somehow, despite their attempts to mold me, I never developed a dislike for “those who are different from me”. In fact, I rarely notice a person’s race, and sexual orientation is a personal choice that does not concern me.
Two years ago S, on the verge of tears, said she had to talk to me privately. She was being very secretive, and I knew something big was going on. We got in my car (the only private place I have at my house) and went for a drive. She haltingly told me she was bisexual. S explained that she didn’t really see gender, she just saw characteristics that she liked in people. It didn’t matter to her if they were male or female. We both cried, but had a big laugh together when I told her I thought she was going to tell me she was pregnant!
Soon after our talk she met E, who is now like a daughter to me and I care for her deeply. She is as much a part of this family as anyone else. They have been together a year and a half now, and E even gave up her job and moved when S graduated and got a job in a city four hours away. It is obvious to anyone who sees them they are very much in love and have a great relationship. S and E have exchanged rings and are committed to one another. My daughter is happy and enjoying life.