Over the weekend I went on a road trip with my friend, Tessa. She’s a loyal friend and I love her, but there are times when it’s really hard to not to out myself and I don’t exactly know how that would change our friendship. Oh, she’d still love me and I’d still love her, but it would be awkward…and tense…and strained. I’d never be able to say all I was thinking, which wouldn’t be different, but she would probably tiptoe around me, or worse yet, not tiptoe around me. She might start preaching every chance she got which would just ruin our friendship. I’d hate for that to happen when we are friends for so many more reasons than a common belief in a sky daddy.
Our conversations always sort of evolve. We start on one topic and we’re off to the races talking about everything under the sun. This conversation was no different. Her daughter has a friend who recently told her he was thinking about committing suicide. She called his mother and he was hospitalized.
Me: “How’s KarieAnne’s friend? Is he still in the hospital?”
Tessa: “KarieAnne called me all out of sorts. She said, “Mama, I don’t know what to do.” The boy calls her for everything and he wants her to be responsible for his life. I told her it was time for her to cut him loose. She can’t be responsible for him. He thinks he’s gay and he told her that he’d die before he tells his parents. His dad is the football coach at Big City High School and he just can’t tell him.”
Me: “Wow. I really feel for him. Gosh, I had no idea he was gay. I can’t imagine what kind of turmoil he is in to try to deny who he is like that to make his parents happy. More to the point, to not make his parents unhappy.”
Tessa: “It’s a product of our thought life. You know how some people get caught up in drugs or gambling or porn. Whatever we look at and dwell on is going to consume us.”
Me: “Do you seriously think that every person who is gay has gotten caught up in looking at something they shouldn’t? You don’t think some people have an affection toward the same sex having never been exposed to anything of the sort…having never been exposed to homosexuality in any way?”
Tessa: “I think it’s really more spiritual than physical. I know God made us for each other and he wouldn’t make us in a way that he would despise and call an abomination. It’s like with me and Doug. I think about ways to kill him about twenty times a day, but I don’t actually do it. It’s just a thought. I have to control my thoughts.”
Me: “Yeah, it’s exactly like that.” 😯
About that time Doug came back to the car from fetching her large sweet tea and the conversation mercifully changed. I can’t decide if she really believes that God doesn’t make people that way or if her thinking is a product of our homophobic culture. Does she think KarieAnne should cut him loose because he’s gay or because she seems to be taking too much responsibility for him? I agree she needs to set some healthy boundaries because another person’s depression can be overwhelming. She can’t fix it for him, but she can listen when he needs a friend.