“Home for the Holidays”

This post comes to us from Nina Selvaggio, Director of Policy
and Programs here at Family Equality Council. Due to technical
difficulties (oh, technical difficulties) Nina can’t log in and
post for herself today, so I’m posting on her behalf.

So, on Friday my girlfriend (aka fiancée) and I head to Minnesota,
her home state, and then five days later to Illinois, my home state
to see family for the holidays.

I would love to be one of the people who are excited at the
prospective of going home and looking forward to seeing family and
getting some quality time in during this ‘magical’ time of the
year. Unfortunately, I am not one of those people and as our
departure grows closer, I am more and more stressed out.

Six or so months ago, we thought going to both our home states
before the holidays would be a good idea. In between thinking up
that plan and actually leaving, we got engaged and the family
climate has changed dramatically or become more apparent. My
girlfriend’s family says they “don’t want to feel forced to
feel anything specific” regarding our engagement, us being gay,
or our pending wedding. Her step-brother hasn’t even acknowledged
we are getting married yet.

So on Saturday, we will be attending their family’s Christmas
party and have to interact with all of them. I will need to behave
and be totally appropriate/polite, while pretty much pretending
that nothing terrible has happened over the last two months. I love
my girlfriend and she is struggling with all of the disappointment
and stress of it all too. I just hope I can get throw those five
days without upsetting the situation any more than it needs to be.
I also hope we are not upset any more than we have been

Who knows, maybe we will be surprised by their behavior and they
won’t be awkward or “feel forced” into liking me or accepting
us…and gosh, I never want my kids to feel like this way about
coming “home.”