Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Thinking About My Dad

I was thinking about my dad today. He lives in Hawaii. Our whole family used to live out there back in my elementary years, but then after the divorce I moved with my mom to California. For just about a decade, my relationship between my dad and I was rough. I took the divorce pretty hard and I suppose he took me choosing my mom pretty hard (at least from my perspective). We were pretty distant emotionally and I was pretty bitter. As i grew up, I learned to be independent of him - i didn't need him.

Things changed three years ago when I told him on the phone that I was gay. It seemed that the distance between us shortened and he became really supportive. This was a time in my life when i really needed support so i allowed myself to receive it. Just a few days prior to making that phone call, I found out from my mom that my dad is gay. I guess, me telling him about me finally gave us something in common - in his eyes. (He has never spoken to me about himself - being gay that is. In fact, I only have my mom's word for it because he's never indicated anything to me.) It's okay though, i suppose. I'm sure he'll tell me when he's ready. In the mean time, i like the fact that we talk positively to each other.

Anyway, I was thinking today about how i was really angry at my dad after my mom told me (before i spoke to my dad). I could finally blame him for me being gay. He made me gay. He "passed" it on to me. I know things are good between me and him now, but there are still times when i think that i don't want to be like him. Growing up, i never wanted to be like him. I wanted to be a real father to my kids. And maybe part of me, also doesn't want to be gay like him either.

But there's another part of me that wants to explore what its like - not just the being with a guy part - but the lifestyle of being with the person you are interested in or care about or even love but also having that fear of the wrong people finding out. I suppose a part of me may begin to understand my dad better. It could answer alot of the questions I had growing up about why he was so emotionally distant from us - even before the divorce.

Growing up with these struggles, i know what its like to not be able to connect with other people. I never feel like I fit. Since I never fully embraced the gay lifestyle (because i got saved at 16 years old), i don't feel like i fit with gay people. Naturally i don't feel like i fit with straight people. With this struggle, there are times when i don't feel like i fit in the church because of all its stigmas, judgments, and beliefs about "those" people. I also don't feel like i fit with asian people (i'm filipino) because of some racist experiences i had which made me hate my own culture. Being asian, i don't feel like i fit with white people either. What the hell? Where am i supposed to fit? (I'm over-emphasizing a bit - of course i don't feel all these things completely today because God has done awesome things to help me heal through things. But there are remnants of all these dynamics in me still).

Maybe this is another reason why i'm feeling like i connect at The Tab. These are gay people who really love God and have made God a part of their lifestyle just as they have embraced the reality of their sexuality. I envy the fact that they have resolution about whether or not its a sin. I want resolution too. Whether i come full circle and believe confidently that it is a sin, or if i believe confidently that loving monogamous relationships isn't what was referred to when the word homosexuality is used in Scripture....I just want resolution. I want to own it. Maybe then, i can feel like i'm moving forward with a message.


Anonymous said...

I just wanted to drop an encouraging line. From one struggler to another, I'll be praying for you.

Eric said...

Thanks, i really appreciate that! I'd love to continue having your input, insights, and frustrations! Bless you!