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How to come out to your parents?


Guest peely
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I'm in my early to mid teens and I recently found out that I'm demi/ace(like, a month ago). I kind of want to come out to my parents, but I'm scared. I live in an Asian household(probably cause I'm Asian and they're my parents) and most Asians can probably say that Asian parents are really strict. I'm 90% sure my parents are both homophobic and transphobic. I don't know how they'll react to me saying that I'm demi/ace. I'm still into the opposite gender, I'm not looking to become the opposite gender either, I'm just demi/ace. 

I'm currently wondering if I should ever come out to them, cause in the end, I don't think it makes that much of a difference imo.

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Hi! Congrats on getting to this point of learning more about yourself!

I am in my mid-twenties, but I also have Asian parents, and I'm also not sure about coming out to them. 

I guess it depends on what kind of relationship you have to them. You say you kind of want to come out to your parents, what makes you feel that way? Is it important to you that they know about this part of yourself?

For me, I'm still not sure. I'm not super close to my parents, and I don't think they would really understand. But also, I don't think they would outright reject me either. But right now, it's not so important for me. My parents hardly understand my job, so I don't really need them to understand that I'm aro and ace. That might change in the future. But for now, I'm just focused on building a better relationship with them as an adult. 

But I totally get that it's hard with Asian parents! There's this huge cultural gap and I imagine it would be very hard for them to grasp the complexity of attraction and identity. Good luck!

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Thanks a lot!

I'm not super close to my parents, in fact, I don't think I talk to them all that much. Maybe just up to 1 hour a day total?

I just kinda wanna tell them to get it off my chest I suppose. Only my friends know that I'm ace/demi right now, in fact, they're the ones who helped me figure it out.

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18 hours ago, Guest peely said:

I just kinda wanna tell them to get it off my chest I suppose.

That's a fair reason

ask yourself if you think it is worth it.

If you feel unsure it might be possible to ask some adjacent questions to gauge how they might feel. just test the waters about their views on single people maybe. I don't know what questions would be best for you but you might be able to get a better idea on how they would react to your coming out before you come out to them.

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I haven't come out to my family because I figured it wasn't worth it. They don't pressure me to do things I don't want and putting a label on it would just lead to other assumptions. But I am close to most of my family and they know me well already. 

If your family is pressuring you for the traditional 'partner & breed' life plan then maybe come out to them as an explanation? It is harder for you than other people because orientations are something you can't control? but then they may take it as you asking for help in getting a partner. 

(Saying you live in an Asian household is practically meaningless to me, because our common knowledge must be wildly different (it is a continent, and the diaspora population varies again). Are you from a family where arranged marriage is accepted/expected? are babies/breeding the most important thing? is social status and legitimacy only reserved for married people? how much of that have you internalised?)

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I think for most aces what most people think about are not our orientation but to our life choices. Specifically if we marry and have children. So if you feel your orientation will affect those aspects you could begin with talking to your parents about that, not your orientation specifically. Ask them how they would feel if you never married or never had children. You can use their reaction to that to decide if you want to tell them more.

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On 9/26/2022 at 3:48 PM, Storm_leopardcat said:

Huh, why, what kind of job do you have, if you don’t mind me asking? 

I'm a community worker in local government. I don't think I have a very confusing job, but again when you have parents from a different background or are not as well educated, it can be hard for them to understand who you fully are sometimes. For migrant kids, there can also be a literal language barrier between you and your parents, and the language for your specific experiences and identity may not exist in certain cultures. I don't want to generalise because different people will have different experiences with their family. But it can be hard sometimes!

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2 hours ago, such said:

I'm a community worker in local government. I don't think I have a very confusing job, but again when you have parents from a different background or are not as well educated, it can be hard for them to understand who you fully are sometimes. For migrant kids, there can also be a literal language barrier between you and your parents, and the language for your specific experiences and identity may not exist in certain cultures. I don't want to generalise because different people will have different experiences with their family. But it can be hard sometimes!

Hmm, no, I understand. It’s that way in Pakistani culture too, for Urdu. And I guess for most desi people as well. Being Asian can be hard. Overseas, even more difficult. I may not exactly be an American Asian immigrant, or child of one, but I am an overseas Pakistani. 

That sounds like an interesting job, I have never heard of it! I’ll do some more research what that job is all about (unless you would like to tell me yourself; I didn’t ask as I thought you would be busy). 

 

~N

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On 9/27/2022 at 10:49 PM, Storm_leopardcat said:

Hmm, no, I understand. It’s that way in Pakistani culture too, for Urdu. And I guess for most desi people as well. Being Asian can be hard. Overseas, even more difficult. I may not exactly be an American Asian immigrant, or child of one, but I am an overseas Pakistani. 

That sounds like an interesting job, I have never heard of it! I’ll do some more research what that job is all about (unless you would like to tell me yourself; I didn’t ask as I thought you would be busy). 

Yes I'd imagine there would be a lot of commonality if you're an overseas Pakistani!

I do a lot of things in my job, mostly running programs, projects or events that respond to issues in the community. One that I'm excited about is a queer movie night we are holding at the library! Our local council has never done any activities for LGBTQIA+ people before, so it will be nice to provide a space for queer people at the library. 

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7 hours ago, such said:

Yes I'd imagine there would be a lot of commonality if you're an overseas Pakistani!

I do a lot of things in my job, mostly running programs, projects or events that respond to issues in the community. One that I'm excited about is a queer movie night we are holding at the library! Our local council has never done any activities for LGBTQIA+ people before, so it will be nice to provide a space for queer people at the library. 

Yep, I’ve heard that most/many Asian cultures, especially ones in families, have a lot in common. They are generally same. The same brown/Asian aunty who asks you personal/insensitive questions, lol.

Well, that sounds like an interesting job! Reminds me of social work, or volunteering in organisations!

The local council has a library? Also, which movie(s) will be showed for movie night, if you don’t mind me asking?

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17 hours ago, Storm_leopardcat said:

Yep, I’ve heard that most/many Asian cultures, especially ones in families, have a lot in common. They are generally same. The same brown/Asian aunty who asks you personal/insensitive questions, lol.

Well, that sounds like an interesting job! Reminds me of social work, or volunteering in organisations!

The local council has a library? Also, which movie(s) will be showed for movie night, if you don’t mind me asking?

lol yep we all have that aunty!

Yes some of my colleagues have a background in social work and I used to work for a charity organisation, so it's basically the same thing but for a city council. 

We were really limited by what we could show because it's hard to get the screening rights to movies. We're just showing an independent film called Akron. 

btw feel free to dm me if you want!

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