What would you say if your child told you that they were gay? Former homosexual and author Christopher Yuan help parents understand the importance of reacting in a positive way if their child says they are gay.

“Our words can sometimes feel like a hit in the stomach to our kids. So I would say, be very careful with the way we talk with our kids when they share something as personal as their sexual attractions.”

If your child wants to discuss their sexuality with you, it means they trust you. However, they are probably apprehensive and waiting on pins and needles for your response. Parents and grandparents should be careful not to react in a negative way.

“Just listen, don’t jump to conclusions. Say to them, ‘tell me more, tell me more about this journey’, and then most importantly ask, ‘how does your faith fit into this.‘”

After you have listened and reacted in a measured way, it’s important to express your unconditional love for your child, no matter the circumstances, the same unconditional love God has shown to you.

“At the end of all of that, regardless of whether or not they say they’re going to begin pursuing same-sex relationships or not – I think first and foremost you need to say, ‘I love you no matter what.’

After you tell your child you love them, you might be tempted to begin to correct them or steer them away from a homosexual lifestyle. However, according to Christopher, this might not be the best idea, at least initially.

“I would leave it at that for now, I wouldn’t go into the ‘but.’ I know people that will say, ‘I love you but’ and unfortunately, what happens is, all that kids hear is what follows after the ‘but.’

Christopher suggests that parents save their rebuttal for a few days after and even then, express your concerns in a loving and gracious manner.

‘Coming out’ is a fearful experience for many young adults, as they wonder if their relationships they hold dear will ever be the same again. As parents, if you can show that your love will remain constant despite your child’s sexuality, it will make room for the relationship to continue.

Highlight: What do I do if my child says they’re gay?

Responding to the LGBT community with love and grace