She was your demon first. This work is considered exceptional by our editorial staff.

By , Temecula, CA
Gosh, there's so many freaks here, sweetie.”

“Well what do you expect? We're in the gay capital of the world.”

We were driving through San Francisco; Dad and the Stepmother were expressing their opinions – loud and uncensored.

“D***s.”

“Trannies.”

“Why do the men have to sound so girly? Just because they're gay doesn't mean they have to talk like they're twelve.”

“It's just disgraceful.”

I sat in the back seat, listening to them talk with my glazed-over eyes, pretending not to hear or have an opinion, when really it felt like a steak knife was sliding down the back of my throat. I looked at my brother. He was three years younger, and about six years less mature. It doesn't matter, though, how old we are or or how 'grown-up' we act; the feelings are just the same. I didn't have to look at his young, pre-teen face or hear him suck in sharply through his teeth. I knew he was corroding on the inside, just like me.

When Dad and our Stepmom, Wendy, get together, they get like this. He's got a little more reservation when it's just him and us. However, when we visit her down in California, any sensitivity he still had following his most recent divorce seems to melt away, just as quickly as our faith in him.

I'm never going to be as close to Dad as I was before him and my mom split up, but I will certainly never open up to his girlfriend – not about the stuff that matters to me most. She'd rather hear me argue with her religion, or her strict anti-abortion policy, than let me make any attempt at changing her opinions of the 'slime of the Earth: the gays'.

You see, Dad's not the only one who found someone new after (or during...Mom and Dad both claim the other cheated) the divorce. I'd like to know how many kids out there, with biological parents, have two step-mommies. My brother and I can add ourselves to the tally.

Yep, Mom's gay, and Dad's girlfriend is a born-again Christian.

I don't have anything against the Christian religion. It's kind of ironic actually. When Dad's soon-to-be-wife dragged us to church, I immediately went home to Mom's girlfriend, Anna, and sulked about what a terrible place it is. I expected her to tell me not to go again. Instead, the woman whom churches hate told me to go back, with an open heart and unbiased mind. She told me not to take everything with a grain of salt. That's right, Dad's girlfriend hates people like Anna, and yet it was Anna, a woman society still can't seem to accept, who taught me to be accepting of Wendy and the people 'like Wendy' who can't accept people 'like Anna'. Oh, sweet irony.

That's the situation. That's my life.

You would think as a child of a gay couple (I guess I'm actually also a child of a heterosexual couple, at the same time) I would be stronger, and I would stand up for my beliefs more. Though I think I am one of the prime candidates for lack of bias regarding the whole gay/straight issue, I'm just as silent as the rest of you.

Right now, it seems like the only people who really let their voices be heard are gay themselves – and many of them can't do it either. I don't know why the rest of us, the daughters, sons, friends, family, and any other supporters can't speak up. Maybe its because we are too weak. Or maybe it's because we are a strong, fierce army, and we just don't know it yet.

Nonetheless, I disappoint myself. I can't speak up. I lack the spine. But someday, perhaps when I am out from under my parents' (yes, all four of them) rooves, I will defend what I believe in and teach people to be as accepting of their neighbors as I was of Wendy and her church.

Hopefully it will happen sooner, but until then, I'll just keep a steak knife slithering down my throat.

Years ago, we used to try to protest – weakly – when Dad and Wendy talked trash on homosexuality. We attempted to reason with them, but that failed.

Last week, I was driving the family to the airport in San Jose (it's near San Francisco, and Wendy's actual place of residence) so we could fly back home. I was cut off on the freeway by another car, and cursed a little under my breath.

Apparently, Dad had seen the driver of the other vehicle, and apparently she fit the 'gay stereotype', because he said bluntly, “Just more proof that d***s are crummy drivers.”

Of course, I wasn't feeling any real affection for this woman who'd jammed her car in in front of me, but I felt my cheeks light on fire.

“DAD!” I shouted, my car swerving slightly as my hands jerked on the steering wheel in an automatic outburst of rage.

I didn't mean to do it, and I'd shocked myself with my own reaction. But not Dad. He just kind of laughed it off and said, “Whaaat?”

“It's an offensive term,” I muttered, feeling the ice of my somber, detached expression sliding back over my face.

I went numb and silent on the outside, while on the inside I was screaming. The anger would subside in afew minutes, but the memory, even now brings hot tears to my eyes.

I still don't have the guts to stand up to you, Dad, nor the rest of the world.

But none of you biggots have the guts to allow acceptance into your lives. And Dad...you don't have the guts to admit that you hate gays mainly because you spent well over a decade married to and madly in love with one. You don't have the guts to realize that you resent them because your children are the children of one of those 'd***s' and you love us more than anything, no matter where we came from. You don't have the guts to tell yourself, and the world around you, that they're just people. You can't see yet that every prejudice comes with some personal reason; many of us just have yet to see this reason, be it love, or religion, or a dirty word our grandpa used to say.

And world, they're not demons, not scum.

She's not a demon. She's my mother. That's my mother you are calling a d***e, and a lez, and a freak, and someone not fit to be a part of society. If someone said that about your mother, if they spouted such ignorant lies as those about the woman who brought you into the world, you'd punch them out. Wouldn't you?

So why do I have to take it? Why does my 14 year-old brother have to take it? Why did kids at his school get to call him a f*g when they found out? Why world? Why do you condone that? Why Dad? Why do you let your children hear people say that? And why do you say it, too?

Because she's different? Is that your justification?

Well, she was your demon first.

She was your co-worker. Your neighbor. Your cousin, brother, wife or husband even. My mom, or someone like her could have been your mother, or your father. And who knows, maybe she could be your child.

We can't be living life dooming people to an eternity in H***. Don't talk down on my mother. Don't let others do it either.

I belive someday none of us will have to sit next to our own father with a steel blade in their throat, if only you could “Love thy neighbor”. I just pray to God it happens soon.





Join the Discussion

This article has 4 comments. Post your own now!

jadem said...
Aug. 1, 2011 at 11:12 am
wow . your story was fantastic . i really dont understand people who hate so much, it should be something you grow out of like being afraid of hot topic and heavy metal . like you grow and accept that people are different . i apologize for all the people who will imediatly hate on this just because they dont understand or are just plain idiots . i hope someday the world will be more accepting . i loved your article, you have a unique situation that lets you see both sides . i hope you continue w... (more »)
 
annmus replied...
Aug. 2, 2011 at 11:26 am
Thank you, I really appreciate your comment and your views. I completely agree with your examples. It's great to hear such supportive feedback. Thankyou
 
SecretNonConformist said...
Jul. 27, 2011 at 3:59 pm
No matter what you say, you have guts. You had the guts to write and post this essay on the INTERNET where EVERYONE can see it. If that doesn't take guts, nothing does. Keep up the great work!
 
annmus replied...
Aug. 2, 2011 at 11:30 am
Thank you so much. That really means a lot to me. I was so afraid to post this; i'm so relieved to hear that people actually like it, and even better that they agree. Thank you for your comment
 
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