Cultivating Hatred 2: A Perfect Example
“to the bloggers, dont believe everything you read. A very important part of that article in the paper is not true, and Mrs. Beighley needs to speak the truth about "her" children....
My son is gay, and my husband and I certianly dont focus on that and that alone as the Beighleys do. They have some REAL issues. GOod luck, and remember to tell the TRUTH. You know what Im talking about, Mrs. B.
oh my, I dont think she will approve this one...........
just goes to show...”
Obviously “readers” are not “bloggers” but we’ll fly past that one.
Let’s dive in. First of all, she writes with such mystery about that which she says is untrue. There is neither further comment nor substantiation. Next.
Onto the “her” children comment: This is some kind of code. Does this refer to my beautiful Ari and Chloe? Well, I was quite present when they were born. They're mine. Or is it a very mean-spirited comment about my stepsons Nate and Collin? If so, I would only say that my relationships with Nathan and Collin are some of the most beautiful gifts I have received in my life and they show me grace and love by calling me “Mom.”
I also consider my daughter-in-law Sarah one of my kids. Is this a challenge to that relationship? If so, I would add that Sarah is one of the great teachers in my life, and anyone who knows her can attest to the fact that she is ferociously loyal to her family. I’m definitely claiming her! As far as children go, I could not forget our beautiful Jeremy who lived with us one winter when living with his own family was no longer possible.
I do not say that these amazing individuals BELONG to me, if that’s the inference. But I would say my life is rich because of each of them. I am grateful to say they are part of my family. And, though I annoy each of them in the ways that mothers do, I sleep just fine at night knowing they would each claim me as well.
Regarding her son being gay: Interestingly enough, in the over 10,000 emails I’ve received in the past three years since Ari’s coming out, when a parent refers to his or her son being gay, it has always been followed by a pronouncement of love. That’s blatantly missing from this writer’s statement.
About the claim our family only focuses on Ari’s being gay, I have this to say. I could read these words and claim that I know something about the writer based on the spelling, grammar, and punctuation challenges presented. But I don’t know her. I don’t know who she loves, who loves her, what she is passionate about. For this writer to say that she knows anything about our family is a statement made in complete ignorance. In fact, if she knew our family, she would never make that claim.
The assertion that our family has real issues and "remember to tell the truth" made me laugh. It brought a visual of some nightmarish first grade teacher standing over a six-year old hoping to shape the child’s behavior by shaming her. The shame thing -- it's a no-go with me. As a family therapist, I believe every family has issues. In fact, those issues are what we call “life” and are woven into the very fabric of our experience. This writer’s statement is both condescending and arrogant … as is calling me “Mrs. B.”
“You know what I’m talking about” is a kind of “I Know What You Did Last Summer” attempted intimidation ... and, again, completely lacking in substance.
David and I have been the recipients of unsolicited and generous media attention in the past year. One of the reasons I believe this is so is that we are willing to lend our names and faces to bring into the light the bigotry that exists in our communities and to say that our gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender brothers and sisters are not only being denied the basic human rights this anonymous writer enjoys but are also daily the victims of discrimination and hate violence.
“Just goes to show”: Just goes to show what? It just goes to show that writing an anonymous comment which trashes someone’s family is an act of cowardice. It just goes to show that hatred is cultivated in the dark places – in places where people say judgmental, ignorant, arrogant, and condemning words while enjoying complete anonymity -- in places where people put white hoods over their heads and conduct heinous acts.