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"I came out 2 years ago to my parents and at first they seemed cool with it but lately they have been making offensive comments and refusing to let me see my friends/date. I’m 18 and have a decent job and a really good friend offered a room in his house for cheap for me to live. My parents hate the idea and want me to stay home, but being at home make me super depressed, what should I say to them?"

- Question submitted by Anonymous

Dannielle Says:

I think the best way to handle this is to say you’re going to try living on your own to see what it’s like and to let them know you appreciate them. You appreciate that you have a home with them and you feel supported in knowing that if something happened you could come back home.

THAT is what I think you should say to them, HOWEVER, I want you to know that getting out of a home environment that doesn’t make you feel comfortable / safe / loved is very important to your mental and emotional health. If you have the ability and the resources to live in a place where you can be yourself and start to live the life you want to live, you should absolutely do it.

I think it’ll be scary and hard and you might get some flak from your parents, but I think that flak is worth the lifetime of of misunderstanding.

Besides, how much longer would they REALLY keep you there? 2 years? 4 years? That’s such a small difference for them to let go of, you know? You are making the right decision.

Kristin Says:

I agree with a couple of the sentiments that Dannielle has offered, but I have a thing or two I would like to add. Yes, I agree that you should get tf out of your house and move in with your friend. Yes, I agree that there is a positive way to talk to your family about this, without doors slamming and eyes rolling and spit flying…

However, I think your parents need and deserve to know what has pushed you to make this decision.

Let’s stop there for a moment: You should only speak to them once you have made the decision. This means you know how you are paying the first month or two of rent, it means you have a plan for when you are moving, it means you’ve discussed all the particulars with your friend/future roommate. Once that is all settled, then you sit down with your parents.

And yes, you should absolutely sit down with them. I would let them know, either in a note or an email or a conversation, that you want to have time to sit down and discuss some big life-things with them. This is a big deal for you and for them, and it is rooted in a place that needs a lot of attention for you to have a good relationship with them in the future, so it deserves a proper sit-down.

Cool, so now here we are at this sit-down talk. This is where you tell them that your friend has offered you a room, that you have prepared your rent and made arrangements, and that you love them very much, but you know that this is the best decision for you. That part Dannielle covered… but I don’t think you stop there. They need to know why you have made this decision. They need to know that their comments have hurt you, and that their restrictions have made your home environment extremely upsetting. You don’t have to say this in a way that makes them feel like the scum on the bottom of your shoe… in fact, you should speak to them as their child who is very hopeful that they will be able to grow, learn, and become a supportive force in your life.

I would give them This is a Book for Parents of Gay Kids, and I would also let them know about The Parents Project and PFLAG, and any other resources that you might have in your area. Tell them you love the person you are, and that you want to work to a place where they also love all of the pieces of that person.

Tell them you want to have weekly family dinners. Tell them that you will miss them and that you love them (it’s okay to hit this point a few times). Remain firm in your choice, because it is a very, very important choice to make. You are choosing support and positivity, and you are giving yourself the space to be yourself and your parents the space to learn and grow.



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One thought on “Moving Out of a Hurtful Home Environment

  1. Reading this article actually helped me with a decision. Next week, after years of mental abuse, depression and being controlled, I’m deciding to apartment hunt next week. I’m telling my parents that I’m doing so, and doing it in a nice way. I don’t have to resort to yelling and screaming. A part of me is scared that I’m gonna either get killed by them or kicked out or who knows what else.

    But I also have to realize that I’m 26 now. I can’t keep going in this endless circle of depression, hiding who I am, living a double life because the way I am isn’t supportive by my mom and dad. I’m gay, and I’m proud of that, and I’m not gonna hide it and play pretend anymore.

    Yes my mom’s’ gonna cry. Yes I’m gonna get yelled and screamed at and berated. But considering the abuse I’ve grown up with, and everything that’s happened to me, that’s a small price to pay for me to grow up. I need my own life and freedom, and if that costs me my life, then so be it. I’m not gonna hide anymore.

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