The other day I mailed Katrina's mom a birthday card (let's call her Mrs. K), and I told her some things I appreciate about who she is, and that I'm looking forward to spending more time with her and her family once I'm living in town. Both of those things are quite true.
However, there are a few more things I'd like to say to her that I did not include in her birthday card. So until the day comes that I can say these things, I thought I could at least post them here--so maybe if another mom of a daughter in a relationship with a woman stumbles upon this, it may help her deal with some feelings she's having that are less-than-thrilled.
Dear Mrs. K,
1. Your daughter being in a relationship with me does not mean she doesn't love you.
You implied to Katrina that if she "really loved you" she wouldn't be "doing this". That is the most hurtful thing you could say to K--she goes above and beyond to do things to make sure she shows you how much she loves you. Don't negate everything she's said and done because you're unhappy with this aspect of her life. I've rarely met anyone that loves her family as much as K loves hers.
2. Stop placing blame.
You've blamed yourself, you've blamed the place where we went to school together, and you've most likely blamed me. I'm sure the list is longer than that. Katrina falling in love with me is not anyone's "fault". It was not "caused" by anything other than attraction and love--just like any relationship.
3. Come out of denial.
You seem constantly astonished that we are still together. It's been over five and a half years and we are getting a place together. It's time for you to stop acting like this is a phase in her life and wishing me away... I'm not going anywhere (except getting closer...).
4. Stop taking every opportunity to let her know you disapprove.
"I'm proud of you as my daughter EXCEPT for this." "Give this thing to Ruth, BUT that doesn't mean I approve of you two together." "Here is something for your house, BUT that doesn't mean I'm ok with it." You take the "love the sinner and hate the sin" approach very seriously, but you should never suffix your love for Katrina with hate for "this thing". This is hurting your cause more than helping... it pushes her away and makes her not want to tell you things.
5. I believe your intentions are good.
I believe that in your heart you believe you are doing something good for her by doing these things. I believe you love her with an unconditional, immeasurable love of a parent, and you believe that you are just trying to rescue her from the sin of homosexuality and separation from God. You think that I think you hate me, but I have never thought that. I know that you have a good heart and good intentions. I want to get to know you more and become closer.
6. Is it such a bad thing....really?
I'm not going to get into a theological debate with you about sin...etc. Maybe sometime. But if you just take a step back, and look at your daughter... is she happy with me? Am I good to her? Good for her? Do I encourage her to be her best self, believe in her, support her, challenge her and unconditionally love her? I hope you see that those are the things I strive for. I am committed to her, I will look after her, and I will love her with everything I have. Isn't that what a parent wants their child to find in a partner? I will always, always encourage her to spend time with you, give you the benefit of the doubt, and honor you and her father. It seems shallow to me that the only reason you don't want her to be with me is because I don't have male body parts. If she doesn't mind that... why should you?
Her disapproval doesn't change anything, obviously. But I know it does make Katrina sad to know her mom is so unhappy about it. I wish her mom could just... let it go and love her daughter completely as she is. Maybe we will get there. Maybe things will change...
Sometimes it's hard to picture.
I designed some moving announcements to send to our friends and family. However, we will not be sending one to K's parents, as she knows it will upset them to see it. I just wish she didn't have to edit her life with them and was able to include them in all of it... I wish they could just be happy she is happy.
|front of card - I drew a little picture of the house|
|back of card - with our kitties!|