PYHO: Them "Gay" Books

Say it Rah-shay By Oct 27, 2011 9 Comments

I recently attended a conference and heard three wonderful women speak and share information about books for the LGBTQ patron. LGBTQ stands for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Questioning. As a library chick I am pretty open to any book on the shelf; read what you want as long as you are reading*.  However if The Bee were to come home with a copy of Heather Has Two Mommies, after I fussed at her for getting a picture book I wouldn’t necessarily be upset that she was reading it but I WOULD want to have a conversation with her about different families. It’s not that I don’t want MY child to read about the LGBTQ world, I just think that there are appropriate times and ways for her to be exposed to alternative lifestyles. Same sex couples hanging out. Cool. Same sex couples making out…not my thing. (You will note that I think male/female couples making out need to get a room as well).

I think my discomfort comes from not truly understanding or being comfortable with the LGBTQ world. I feel resentment that because I express a discomfort I may be labeled biased. I worry that because I dare think like this AND that I have the audacity to voice my opinions, someone somewhere will be all pissy and upset and accuse me of things that are not true. I hate when people attempt to sway my feelings by suggesting that as a Black woman I should worry about civil rights for all. I get it but I do feel that I should be able to examine my own feelings and understand why I feel the way that I feel. I respect everyone and want to learn so I went there and talked to a “gay” friend.

AM and I had a conversation about this topic this week and I shared my feelings. I truly don’t understand what I am feeling and asked him how he felt about people like me. While he is not the gay moral majority, he is a good friend and I asked him how I should deal with these reactions. He was funny as we chatted and he validated my feelings. He reassured me that it was OK to feel this way especially since I was taking the time to explore these feelings that I have.

I also checked out some of the books on the list. The gay lifestyle is always presented as some exotic unique thing or a shameful hidden thought. I just finished the wonderful book Will Grayson, Will Grayson by John Green and while it is a work of fiction, the characters helped me to identify the jumbled feelings that I had. It’s not for me to handle, deal with or whatever. I just have to respect, love, the friends of mine as they live the lives that they choose and treat them with the respect they deserve.

I won’t lie and say I had a major event that caused me to be so clear minded and correct but bit by bit I see that my friends are my friends and who they love, what they do just make them phenomenal folk.

Loving ALL people,

This post is a part of Shell Things Pour Your Heart Out Wednesdays
The rules:
Here are the Rules:

Write a post from the heart.

Something that has been weighing on you.

Something you feel passionately about.

Something you’ve been wanting to talk about.

A cause, a memory, a belief, a world view.



I am mom, daughter, sister, yarn lover, word lover, crazy cat lady and library chick. Find me with book or with hook and a hot cuppa.


  1. I think you’re brave for being honest about where you stand. Really, no one is helped in any way if people aren’t honest about the process. And everyone is entitled to feel the way they feel regardless of what society dictates.

  2. Shell says:

    I think you are just being honest about how you feel. Nothing wrong with that!

  3. Cathy says:

    For the longest time, gay was as natural and normal a choice to me as my own straight choice was.

    After my child was born, I had a phase where I still believed that gays should have equal rights like straight couples but I also felt society’s conditioning a lot keener than I’ve ever did.

    I think it’s a normal process, since the birth of a child makes us rethink everything anyway.

  4. Alicia says:

    I think that making a choice about something without really making an effort to understand all sides and then spouting your beliefs is the worst thing.

    If you tried (and I can see you did) to understand the situation by speaking to someone gay and reading up on it, you should be able to have an educated opinion, which you now do.

    I myself have no problem with gays. I’ve had many friends that were gay. If one of my children were to come to me and say they were gay and want to introduce me to their partner the only thing that would concern me is whether that person made my baby happy!

    Interesting post. I liked it so much I decided to become your newest follower 😀

  5. Lavender Luz says:

    Loving all people.

    Love that last line!

    Kudos to you for examining your own beliefs and being open to evolving in them. And kudos to your friend for giving you the space to do so.

    Congrats on the BlogHer post!

  6. Keiko says:

    Rachee, what an amazingly honest, candid post. I especially loved this line: “I hate when people attempt to sway my feelings by suggesting that as a Black woman I should worry about civil rights for all.”

    Kudos for putting this out there.

  7. ciara says:

    for me, if my kids came home with an LGBTQ book, i wouldn’t have too much of a problem with it. my girls are lucky enough to have a family that has all races, religions, orientations, etc. it makes my girls incredibly accepting of people (unless of course you’re a bit of a you-know-what). i think too much PDA from any type of couple is not cool, but it would not bother me in the slightest to see same sex couple kissing, holding hands, etc.

    i think the fact that you are honest and have tried to get an educated opinion on it is respectable.

    i think that’s where the fear lies with most people, they seem to fear what they don’t understand. i’ve had gay friends, one of my best friends from high school told me she was a lesbian just a few years ago, my girls have a cousin on their dad’s side who is also lesbian. my girls and i love our friends and family, no matter the orientation, for who they are as people. the only time we can’t appreciate someone is when they are not a nice person. that goes for anyone.

  8. vika says:

    I love the honesty in your post, and admire your courage in posting it.

    I do also wish you’d see “gay” as something other than a “lifestyle.” It’s not a shirt or some trendy wine, it’s a thing that *is*. It’s an identity, a sense of self. Viewing it as a lifestyle is bad for your own understanding; perpetuating the image of it as a lifestyle is harmful to everyone involved.

  9. Liz @ Six Year Itch says:

    I like Vika’s comment. LGBTQ is not a lifestyle, and I wholeheartedly thank you for writing such a thought provoking post.

    As a white/hetero female, the only thing I can offer is my alliance and support to the LGBTQ community. I do see this struggle as one for civil rights. My daughter, from a young age, has been taught that families come in all different forms: sizes, colors, mom and dad, dad and dad, adoption, grandparents only, etc. My brother-in-law is gay and we are very open that we love uncle r. and uncle b. and that they are boyfriends. However, they live in Florida, so it’s still — at eight — a very abstract concept.

    Sadly, the community that we live in is completely close minded and in no way diversified. So concepts of various family make ups(i,e., not two parent, white folks) have to be talked about and imagined and are rather abstract.

Your turn! Tell it to Rah-shay!