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Don't Want To Tell My Family I'm Gender Fluid

Published: July 08, 2013
Dear Don't Want To Tell My Family I'm Gender Fluid,

I'm an 17 year old female, almost 18, and I'm bisexual and gender fluid. Unfortunately I live in an enviroment where my parents are kind of homophobic. I came out to my mother in October 2 years ago, and it was a disaster. I am terrified to tell my father. My sister knows, and she's been affectionate and loving. And as much as I am greatful, I don't wanna come out to her or anyone in my family about being gender fluid. I love my family, and I don't wanna cause any trouble to them. They won't let me move out until I get a job and can afford my own apartment. My boyfriend wants to move in together, despite being together for less than a year. But I love him and he's so sweet. Please help!


Dear Don't Want To Tell My Family I'm Gender Fluid,

It sounds to TeenHealthFX that not telling your father about being bisexual and not telling your family about being gender fluid is not just about not wanting to cause them any trouble, but a way to avoid any potential distance or tension in your relationships with your family members. FX can appreciate how difficult it must be for you not to feel like you can share this part of who you are with your parents and feel like (despite any initial surprise or adjustments to the situation) they can come to accept who you are. FX is glad to hear that you sister has been loving and supportive. We hope that you continue to lean on her as a source of support and that you find healthy ways to deal with whatever feelings you have about your parents’ homophobia and how this affects your relationships with them. Whether you talk to friends, your sister or even a private therapist, it is important to have a safe place to process your feelings about this.

As for moving in with your boyfriend, you have to weigh out the pros and cons of staying with your parents versus moving in with him. Is living with them too emotionally stressful because of being bisexual and gender fluid? Are you ready to move out in terms of being able to financially support yourself? Which option is better for you in terms of long-term academic and career goals? Are you emotionally ready to take your relationships with your boyfriend to the next level by living with him? There are many considerations here as far as what to do – FX recommends you put some thought into what will be best for you now and in the long-run, and to talk about your options with a trusted adult if you are having trouble making a decision.

If you live in northern New Jersey and need help finding a therapist you can call the Access Center from Atlantic Behavioral Health at 888-247-1400. Outside of this area you can log onto the US Department of Health and Human Services Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration website for referrals in your area. You can also contact your insurance company to get a list of in-network mental health providers or check with your school social worker or psychologist to get a list of referrals in your area.

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