Teen Asks: Should I Tell My Parents My Little Brother Is Gay Against His Will?

Reddit user BigBroski took to the online forum to express his concern for his younger brother who hasn’t come out to their parents.

The 15-year-old wants to tell his parents that his 14-year-old brother is gay just days after his little bro came out to him.

BigBroski writes:

So real quick a background story; I’m a 15 year old straight dude who has a little brother who is 14. We are very close and surprisingly RARELY argue. Anyways, onto the story;

So about three months ago I was on my computer when I saw my brother walking down the hallway in my peripheral vision. So, I naturally turned my head and as the light shined on his face from a window I could tell he’d been crying. His eyes were red and squinted, and his nose was shriveled a bit. So, I casually yet nicely ask him, “Hey ______, what’s wrong?” He choked up a bit but said, “Nothing….” He just stood there. To be honest he looked a bit scared. So I ran over to my bed, sat down, and motioned for him to come and sit next to me. He hesitated but eventually sat down. I put my arm on his shoulder in the classic older-brother way and asked him what’s up, and that I could tell something was affecting him. He stumbled for a bit and sort of stalled (which I didn’t mind since I knew my brother would get to the reason at some point) and I just listened, and eventually he said “I’m gay and I’ve been to scared to tell anyone.” After he said this I told him I loved him and that him being gay meant nothing to me. He was little my little brother and we would still have fun (playing games and such). After talking a bit more he asked me if I accepted him, I said “I more than accept you.” And that was that. He left, and he seemed happier and I was relieved he was able to tell me at all. Mind you our parents were out doing shopping while this was happening. Before they came back, I asked him if he was planning to tell them. He said “Do you think I should?” I said, “Of course. Knowing them they’d react the same way I did.” He smiled and then said, “Okay”.

Fast forward three months and he’s had three boyfriends (which isn’t surprising since he’s a good-looking guy) but hasn’t told my parents anything. Not even hinted. Now I know it’s not my business to aid in his coming out to them and not to rush things or interfere at all but I feel like he’s still scared. I can sense it. Which is strange since I constantly reassure him there’s nothing to worry about. What do you think I should do? I know that him telling them will make him feel even more happy and relieved. But I don’t want to do anything that will hurt him. Thanks.

After receiving hundreds of responses from the reddit community, BigBroski provided this update:

Now I understand that this is such a short amount of time but reading all the comments on my original post and the opportunities that arose made me jump at the chances. Now also, I know I don’t write like a 15 year-old (I’ve gotten a lot of PM’s about it).

Anyways on to the update. A few of the comments said I should casually bring up stuff about gay rights and stuff like that to my parents with my brother around, so that he could gauge how they’d react to him coming out. So I did just that. While we were eating at the dinner table, I casually started a family conversation (as I usually do) and I brought up a story I’d read online about gay rights and stuff like that. After I’d finished, I saw my brother’s eyes quickly shift to my parents, as if he was eager to hear their response. They’re response couldn’t have gone better for my brother. They basically talked about how it’s stupid that gays still aren’t accepted in the world and that it’s disappointing that they are still struggling and stuff. After that, to not raise suspicion among my parents, I just continued onto some other news stories I’d read. I was hoping that they’re positive response would help him pull through this.

So after dinner and dishes all four of us were in our separate areas. I was in my room on my computer, my little brother was in his room, and my parents were watching TV out in the family room. So, I took another piece of advice the comments gave me and I walked into his room and started a casual conversation with him (which wasn’t out of the ordinary since we have them all the time after dinner.) Eventually, when the conversation was in the right area, I asked him, “By the way, when were you planning to tell Mom and Dad that you’re gay?” I said in this in the friendliest way possible. And he just said, “Honestly, I don’t know.” I then asked him, “What’s holding you back?” And he said, “I don’t know… I guess it’s just different with parents.” I of course didn’t understand this completely, as I don’t need to come out, but I could somewhat see parents being a more intimidating subject to come out to. I asked him, “Are you unsure and afraid of the outcome?” He said, “Yeah I guess. I mean, I know they’re not homophobic and all, but I’m just not sure, y’know?” That was that. I’d gotten all I needed. I didn’t want to push the subject and make him uncomfortable and force him to keep talking about it. I just finished by saying, “Well, if you need any help just know I’m there for you, alright.” He rolled his eyes and giggled saying, “Alright.” Then we continued off the conversation and that was the night. So my question has been answered. After reading the comments of my original post and hearing my little brother’s response I now am aware of much more than I was before. I’m not going to keep thinking about when he’s going to do it. After everything I’ve learned I understand it’s not a simple process. I will just continue to love him as if nothing was different and if he comes out tomorrow, so be it. If he comes out when he’s 20, so be it. As long as he knows I’m there, I’m fine. Thank you to everyone who commented on my original post and the advice I’ve been given. I probably won’t post anymore unless something else happened but I just wanted to make this update so that everyone knew what happened. Thanks all. 🙂

h/t: Instinct