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Our Youth

Sexual Orientation

Gay, Lesbian & Transgender Youth Sexual Orientation is more than just sexual behavior. Orienta- tion includes emotional, romantic and affectional attraction. On- going research shows that sexual orientation is not caused by anything you or your parents have done and cannot be changed by anything you or your parents do. Telling (coming out) takes great courage.

What to consider as a parent:

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Your child is not a different person because you know about their sexual orientation Your child needs to know that you love them and that your love and support of them as an individual is strong and available in diffi- cult times Work out ways to deal with some of the problems, like who and how to tell Make contact with other parents of gay and lesbians for support and guidance Consider counseling as a support for both of you, not to change your child Acknowledge the courage your child has shown in talking to you and the fears they must be feeling. They need you more than ever now. If you can’t acknowledge your child’s sexual orientation, you may lose them

Resources

Gay, Lesbian, and Straight Education Network (GLSEN) www.glsen.org/cgi-bin/iowa/all/home/index.html

Parents, Families & Friends of Lesbians & Gays (PFLAG) http://community.pflag.org/Page.aspx?pid=194&srcid=-2

AIDS Community Resources

(315) 282-0005 ext 12

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