Stories have the power to change the world … they inspire us, teach us, connect us. This is the third installment in the “Stories That Change The World” series.
The following story was told by Glenda Guess when she introduced herself to a private Facebook group for moms of LGBT kids.
In August of 1991 Jim and I had just celebrated our anniversary. We went to dinner and recounted the years focusing on how perfect our kids had been. Both of our kids were educated and doing well.
Dana, our daughter was a teacher and Ben had just graduated from Vanderbilt and was an ordained minister. Jim and I had retired and were ready to play the rest of the time.
Dana came to tell us that she was getting a divorce and that Ben was gay.
Dana told us there were horror stories about parents who did not accept their gay children and if we did not accept Ben we could not have her either. They were sticking together.
It felt like our lives were falling apart.
Ben was waiting to find out our reaction by circling the neighborhood and waiting for a signal.
If we put a light on in his bedroom window it meant he could come home to unconditional love.
If Dana’s car was gone it meant we did not want to see him.
You have to picture our two story house. It was the kind children draw in grade school … white house, black shutters, front porch. Ben’s bedroom had been in the upper left corner.
The thought of any parent not accepting their child still haunts me today.
I quickly shouted, “Turn on the light. Turn on all the lights…the flood lights…the post lamp….the patio light…even the closet lights.
Ben came home to a beacon of lights and love that day and we have continued to love him every day after that.
Little did I know that day, when we turned on all the lights, that I would find such joy in having a gay son.
The experience has made my life so much richer and motivated me to live my faith out by helping others.
May Glenda’s story inspire all parents of LGBT kids to
” Turn on all the lights”!
If you are interested in joining the private Facebook group for moms of lgbt kids please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and put “Mom’s Facebook Group” as the subject.