Remnants Of Joy & Disaster

I’ve had the post on this in my mind for some time now, floating and bouncing around in my head but never making it to my fingertips and onto the screen.  I rarely talk about my family here (or much in the real world); it’s a source of deep pain for me and talking about it only makes it more real and upsetting, however I thought with what has transpired recently, I should get it out once and only once.  Grab a drink and bear with me, as it’s a long story and we’ll be here awhile.

I grew up with my mom and dad and older brothers that I know loved me, and I thought would do anything for me.  I was the only girl after 6 boys.  One of my brothers died of cancer before I was born….he was 10 when he died of a brain tumor.  My family had been through a lot together but seemed to be stronger for it.  My parents had always had a strong faith – belief and trust in God.  They said that that’s what got them through my brother’s death, and they raised all of us to have that same faith .  We prayed at dinner, and every night before bed as a child.  Church, Sunday school, devotions were always strongly encouraged to strengthen our relationship with God.  We usually went to a non-denominational church…but it was basically Baptist to me.  I always was more of the questioner, never sure what I believed.  I went to church with my family, but never really enjoyed it.  I did it because I was supposed to do.  It was the “right” thing.  Only, I had these feelings inside that didn’t mesh with my family. I just didn’t understand why we were “right” and everyone else was “wrong”.  There is a line in a Michael Franti song that says, “God is too big for just one religion”.  That describes what I thought well.  Weren’t these other families saying the same things about us? What if I had been born to one of those families instead? You mean God includes some people (Christians) and excludes others (of other religions)?? I was always conflicted…but they said it always came back to “faith”.  I could never win an argument, so I just kept it inside.

I went to a private Christian school, and then on to a Christian University where I met and fell in love with K.  My life completely changed.  This girl was funny, smart, outgoing and made me feel like the most important person in the world.  We really clicked…..I got her, and she got me.  We had so much fun together….doing just dumb stuff.  I never got sick of her.  I look back at those times and just smile.  It was so new and we were happy and care-free.  We spent every second together…as friends, and then more. I thought it would never end, until my parents found out about our relationship during the first semester, around Christmas, and took me out of school.  Life stopped.  Any life at all.  I remember feeling so empty and sad….like a piece of my heart had been ripped out.  At 17 years old, I was told I would never see K again.  After a semester away from school and much pressured Christian counseling, I assured them that I could go back and not start up the relationship again.  We hadn’t spoken for 8 months, and I was going back to school…..I couldn’t sleep for days before imagining what it would be like when I saw her.

My parents had made sure I wouldn’t be on the same hall as her…..but I was only one below.  After they left, she came by my room.  The feelings (that had never gone away) came rushing back with a new force.  I remember being young and scared and wanting her more than anything, but afraid of my family….knowing that things would spiral out of control if I resumed the relationship.  I tried to say no to her in the beginning, but the feelings we had for each other were more powerful than ever and I couldn’t keep being around her and pretending like I didn’t care for her.  I remember we talked in the stairwell and we were trying to keep distance from eachother, when she put her hand right above my knee, trying to pull me closer to her.  I didn’t pull away from her, and looked in her eyes….a look and a touch and we were right back where we left off.  From there, we spent lazy afternoons in bed together, nights out away from school….holding hands and enjoying every moment together.  I felt intoxicated.  I couldn’t imagine ever being apart from this girl again.  But, right, my family.  This left me in a tricky situation.  We tried. We kept the relationship hidden for about 2 months, until I was sick of ducking down in cars, watching the doors, and having sex in the showers.  It’s hard to have a lesbian relationship at a Christian university!

My parents found out about it (again) and came down and snatched me out of school (again) when K was away in NC at a hockey tournament for the weekend.  K tried calling me that Saturday, and got no response.  She assumed I was sleeping and just called back later that afternoon.  My roomate then informed her that my parents had taken me, kicking and screaming, out of school and back up to Canada.  They wouldn’t allow me to even call her and tell her I was leaving.  My dorm room was LITERALLY packed up in 15 minutes.  I remember I had cried all the way up north.  My tears never stopped running and my shirt was soaked.  Again, my heart was ripped out of my chest.  11 hours and I didn’t say a single word to my parents.  Once home, I practically collapsed in bed from exhaustion.  My parents took the phone out of my room and stayed in the room all night, scared I would try to hurt myself.

Little did I know, but once K found out about what had happened at school, she drove from NC in VA to “sign out” (you have to do that at the university we attended), and then grabbed a friend and drove STRAIGHT up to Canada.  Yup.  All 11 hours of it.  I think she made it in 8.  I had no idea what she was doing.   So, after not too long, there was a knock on the door.  I could hear my dad speaking with someone…but had no idea who it was.  I was really out of it.  My mom then told me that my spiritual life director, Chrissy, (from school) was here to pray with me.  I remember thinking in my head…..’that’s weird…..because my SLD’s name isn’t Chrissy….”.  Then I realized…..K had a girl on her hockey team named Chrissy.  Oh shit.  Was she here??? My parents let her up….and she came into my room and I shut the door.  She told me that K was outside in the car.  Chrissy had told my parents that her uncle had died, and she was in Buffalo for his funeral, when she decided she should come see me (a little an hour from Buffalo) and pray me through this difficult time.  K knew that my parents would never have let her in the house….so they had come up with this story to get her in.  When my parents were busy doing something else, I left the house with Chrissy.  K was hiding under a blanket in the car.  I lost it.  We hugged and kissed and cried and drove off.  I called my parents a few minutes later from her cell phone and told them I was at lunch with Karli and that I would call them later.  I realized later that they thought I had said “Chrissy”, hence their response, “That’s fine….you could have just told us you were going with her….just have a nice lunch and we’ll see you later”.  We went to a local pizza place and talked.

My eyes were puffy from crying so much and I was still in pajamas.  K told me that she loved me and wanted me to come back with her, but it was my decision.  There was no decision to be made….of course I wanted to!  For some reason, I thought I could just go back to my house and tell my parents that this is what I had decided, they would let me take my things and go.  I was so wrong.  I walked in the house and told them I was going with K….and then they realized she was outside.  My dad ran outside and my sister-in-law blocked the door so I couldn’t go out.  I remember it as one giant blur…my family was screaming at me “what are you doing!? you’re not going with her!”.  Someone said something about tying me down to a chair, if needed, to keep me from going with her.  I had no idea, but my dad had gone up to K’s car and with the window rolled down, hit K in the face.  Chrissy and K sped away, fearing more physical harm.  2 of my brothers had kicked at her car, then followed them, making sure they were gone for good.  Once they were safely away, K and Chrissy called the police, who (after some time) came and escorted me out.  I then met up with K and Chrissy, still wearing my pajamas.  K’s lip was puffy and bleeding and they looked so shaken up.  I was back with her though.  That was it.

This was 7 years ago.  Over the years, my parents have tried and tried to get me to change my “lifestyle”.  K has naturally kept a distance from them, but they have not come around.  They believe I’m sinning and that ultimately I’m damning my soul….I can’t get my mind around that, but that’s how they think.  All of my brothers blame me for hurting my parents….like this was all my fault.  I’ve tried now countless times to talk to my mom about just “agreeing to disagree”….is it really worth it to lose a relationship with your daughter to be “right” or righteous?  They can’t talk to me about anything but religion and my lifestyle….so I have chosen to remove myself….to step back until they change…if they change.  K’s family is very supportive and they have really become my new family.  K is always so positive and encouraging and reminds me that they may “come around” some day.  My family is still like an open wound to me, and now with the pregnancy there is a whole new batch of emotions to deal with.  I haven’t been able to call up my mom and just talk.  I haven’t been able to vent about my cankles, bad wrists or trouble sleeping with a big belly.  I thought I would wait until after our son was born to tell her the news, when she emailed me last week to say she was coming to Virginia and wanted to meet up with me to visit.  I didn’t really know what to do.  I didn’t want to meet her and be pregnant without her being prepared for it.  So, I emailed her and said this:

“I am available ____ day and ____ day.  I have wanted to tell you the following happy news for some time, but didn’t think it would be met with a happy reaction. K and I have decided to start a family and I am pregnant.  We are very excited, as are our friends and family down here.  We want to surround the baby with love and positive energy.  If we meet, I can’t engage in the back-and-forth about my lifestyle.  I don’t want to be emotionally upset, as it wouldn’t be good for either me or the baby.  I wanted to give you this news, in case it effected your decision to come (or not come) to see me. “

I felt really good about the email and thought maybe her reaction wouldn’t be so bad.  I got back a very lengthy email response and have clipped just a few segments below:

“I went home at suppertime and asked Dad to sit down and talk to me.  It was so hard to tell him, as I knew his heart would break.  I was afraid he would have a heart attack or stroke.  He told me later that by my face he thought you might have died.  I told him that it would be FAR worse if that were true, because you would be in eternity facing God’s judgment.  Dad reacted as I did, with disbelief and profound sadness.  He said he feels like he has lost his daughter.”

“The whole scenario of the past seven years is still unbelievable…and now has culminated in this.  It’s like something you’d see on Jerry Springer.  It’s one thing to do what you want, but now you have crossed a line, because you are bringing a little person into this perversion.”

“You said you wouldn’t want me to come down and talk about “choices” or “lifestyle”.  Do you think I could possibly remain silent? People who tolerate everything are people without convictions.  We know what you are doing is wrong even though you don’t (or won’t admit it).  We know you have totally lost your bearings.”

“It should have been one of the happiest days of my life, to hear that my dear daughter is having a baby, but instead it is one of the saddest.  You are NOT ‘starting a family’.  Contrary to the liberal media and pop culture, you and Karli and a baby are NOT a family.  A family is one man and one woman, committed to each other for life. I know you will love this baby dearly, and be a sweet and kind mother, but the most important elements will be missing from his life.  First, a father, and second, growing up knowing God loves him.”

I couldn’t help the emotion that came over me after reading it.  I thought I could be strong enough to hold everything I was feeling inside. It probably should have been anger I felt first, but instead was sadness.  The tears came, and I was unable to hold them back.  K was so sweet and just hugged me and let me cry and talk.   She was encouraging and loving as I knew she would be.  She kept telling me that we are starting our own family now, and that I have to focus on that.  She is my best friend and the love of my life and always will be.  I look at her and KNOW.  I know we were meant to find each other at that school, of all places. We have gone through more than any couple should, and are stronger and more in love than ever before.  Where there is great love, there are miracles…..and it is a miracle that we have gotten here. I am getting through this family stuff.  It is a process….but I haven’t been beaten down, and refuse to be.  And as I finish writing this, Wee One is dancing in my belly and I know without a shadow of a doubt the kind of Mamas we’ll be.  This little man is a product of that unbelievable love we share.  Our little family will get bigger in a few short weeks and life will be richer and fuller than ever before……And so, I close the post on family, but will have many more in the future about my new family…and the opening of a whole new chapter.  32w2d and feeling pretty good.

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57 thoughts on “Remnants Of Joy & Disaster

  1. Wow.

    When I learned of the exchange between you and your mom, I didn’t know any of that backstory.

    I’m so sorry that there’s been so much pain in your relationship with them, in your life. I hope some day she figures out what she’s missing. ♥

  2. oh honey. My heart just kept breaking and breaking the more I read. I had no idea you guys had been through so much. It is incredibly sad that your family can not accept and love you. You are wonderful and amazing and they are totally missing out. I wish I come over and give you & K big hugs. Know that your internet family will ALWAYS have your back and support you.
    xo

  3. Tiff, when I read the title I feared this is what the post would be about. We are both thinking about you, please let us know if we can do anything.

  4. You ARE a family and a beautiful one at that with a blessing on the way! Don’t let anyone try and tell you different!

    Hugs from down the road….

  5. Hi,

    I found your blog when I was doing a google search for funny quotes from The Office and a blog you wrote last year came up 🙂 Something inclined me to read your recent posts and your writing really moved me.

    I hope this doesn’t sound weird, a stranger leaving you a comment, but I must say… I really can relate to your story… in some ways. My heart breaks for you having to deal with the response you received from your mother. I am glad you realize that you DO have a family, with your “new” family… and you have chosen to step up for yourself and claim the life that you want. I really admire that and that is inspiration for me to read. I wish you and K, and your growing family, nothing but happiness in the future.

    Again, your “transparent” words have been inspiring. It is so refreshing to see such a positive outlook. 🙂

    Best Wishes,
    Amy

  6. Wow. You are an amazing person, and so strong, and have such a beautiful relationship and a beautiful family with K and the baby-to-be. I can’t believe you’ve been through this. I am so, so, so sorry that your family of origin is so awful to you. I can’t imagine the pain of receiving an email like that from my mother. I just want to hug you. You are so strong.

  7. One more thought. I just read a book last week about a Baptist family that finally came around, though it was painful, about their gay daughter. And she was a lesbian mom, like you!! I don’t know if you would be interested. I almost want to send it to your parents! (Actually, I’m so angry at them, I don’t want to send anything to them. And I don’t know them. But you know what I mean!!) Anyway, here is the link. If you want to send me an email, I’d be happy to mail my copy of the book to you. I enjoyed it.

    This is the book:
    http://www.amazon.com/Waiting-Call-Preachers-Daughter-Lesbian/dp/0472032380/ref=pd_bbs_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1224798875&sr=8-1

  8. Wow. I am so very sorry for all of this that you have had to go through, 7 years of back and forth is so hard, and so long. And I”m sure that with being pregnant and the little one coming, it makes it all worse. Don’t ever let anyone tell you that you are not in a family or starting one, for a family is people who love each other, no matter the gender, race, etc. You ladies are fabulous together and are going to be great moms. Sending you lots of positive energy and a big hug. Your strength amazes me.

  9. This story had me in tears. I can relate in a lot of ways. The reality (for me too) is that your family is the one you have created, not the one you were born into, and it is real and beautiful and right. Personally, I take some comfort in knowing that the love I give our future children will be unconditional, and that they will never know what this kind of stuff feels like. Thinking of you guys.

  10. First of all, your love story, though heartbreaking on so many levels, is gorgeous. That K came for you and fought for you (and that you fought back for her) is inspiring and beautiful. And you are right, your family is built on that very solid foundation of strength and love.

    My partner had a similar experience with her parents and my family has become hers as well. But I know she still grieves and I’m not sure she’ll ever stop. Someone once told her that there are two kinds of family. There is the family that you were born into and the Family (capital F) that you choose to surround you and nurture you. Looks like your capital F family is pretty effing awesome and the wee one is very lucky to be born into such love. Peace to you both.

  11. I was saddened and angered by your mother’s response. As everyone has already said, you are starting a family, contrary to what your mother feels. That little man will be totally surrounded with love. I wish I could just reach through the computer and give you a big hug.

  12. Thanks so much for sharing. I’m terribly sorry that your birth family is unable to love you and Karli the way you deserve. How enormously painful.
    You have made absolutely the best (and only) decision for yourself which is to not interact with them and focus on building your new family here. But, I can’t imagine how hard that must be to do.

  13. First, that is one beautious belly!!!

    Second, our stories are very similar. (even down to the christian college!)

    The families of our pasts are very hard to let go of. I’m grateful for both of us that we found wonderful families to welcome us and adopt us as their own.

    My family has finally opened their eyes in the last two years (11 years after Jenn and I got together) so don’t lose faith in yours, there may come a time when they do come around…I hope so, if that is what you want too.

  14. I’m sitting here with tears running down my face. Your story of two amazing women showing such strength in face of such ignorance, hate and adversity is inspirational.

    Your son is very lucky to be born into your family. He will be loved and respected and valued for who he is. As you should be too, and I’m so sorry that you don’t have that.

    As hard as it is and as hurtful as your family of origin can be, don’t let them get in the way of the happiness that all three of you so richly deserve.

  15. I am sending hugs to the three of you across the internet and the miles. “Family” is what you make of it. Rarely is a true family related by blood. You have made sound decisions and should not have any regrets. And what a great love story!

  16. I am so glad that you and K have each other and the strength to have gotten through this…and to continue to do so. It is as much angering as it is saddening. I pity your family, and the fact that as yet, they cannot see past their own ignorance and blind hatred to find the joy that is all around them. I don’t know if they’ll ever get to the other side, but you have to do what is right for you and your family, which is what you have amazingly done for the past 7 years. I am truly, deeply sorry you have to deal with this and hope the love that you feel from K and from all of us is enough to help combat it.

  17. Tiff, that was one of the greatest love stories I have ever heard.

    My heart broke when I read your mothers words. You, Karli and wee one are a family. I am so proud and grateful that you shared this. Its a tragic story that has a happy ending despite the negative views of your family.

    xoxoxo

  18. Tiff,
    I have always known you were strong, but now I know just how strong. You and K were clearly meant for one another, and you already make such a lovely family. With the addition of your wee one, your family is going to be truly beautiful and strong and fulfilling and full of love.

    My heart breaks for you that your family of origin has been so closed-minded, that they reacted with violence and continue to be disrespectful of your love and your family. You are such a special soul, and you deserve so much more love and respect than that. I’m glad you have been able to embrace family of yrou choosing, and I know you know that this internet family is here for you. We’ve got your back, babe, and we can’t wait to celebrate the birth of your child with you.

    Giant hugs to you. You’re amazing. xoxo

  19. Wow… that message from your mom made me so sad. I think that’s such a horrible thing to hear from your own mother. Know that she is wrong– I was also raised religiously by very devout Catholics, but I was also raised to believe that God made us in his image, and you were made the way God wanted you to be. You, your wife and baby boy are a family.

  20. Wow. Thank you for sharing such a deeply personal story. I think many of us can relate…we have been told we are damned and going to hell by my mother-in-law and many of our family members do not know we are trying to start a family, let alone having trouble and going through fertility hell. Always be proud of your family and know that you create your own destiny!

  21. Dear Tiff,
    You don’t know me but my partner (wife) visits your blog on a regular basis. We (she) is trying to conceive and she draws a great deal of stregth from your blog and the other stories of couples trying to start a family. Like you, I was raised with God and like you, my family see’s evil everywhere but inside their own hearts as they beat people down with their words of fear and control. I am literally crying as I type this because my heart breaks for your pain and my pain, and all gay children of God born to parents who can’t wrap their minds around love that doesn’t know limits. Did you know that your name means “manifestation or appearence of God”? I know this because your name is also my name. And you missy are living up to your name. Stay full of love.

    Tiff (of jenandtiff.blogspot.com)

  22. o Tiff, I didn’t realize all you’d been through. Just know that I am sending you and K and the Wee One such blessings on the family that you are becoming together…

  23. you seem so very together and confident and lovely for a pair of girls that have been draggd through such awfulness.

    all i can think is how awful if must be to be in your parents skin. how awful it must be to wake up and live with that perspective, to have such hate and horribleness and to push it onto their only daughter.

    You are an amazing family, your everyday life proves how wrong your parents are.
    how sad for them to miss out on being involved in your lovely lives.

    i hope your life is filled with support and love and people who may not be biological family but family of choice.

    much love from our family to yours.

  24. chiming in from a christian family too, with the constant messages of how i am living in sin. my mom seems to be coming around more, largely due to the baby, but its all looks so fake to me. like she’s only doing it so that she can have a grandchild in her life.

    while your mom’s message to you was completely ugly, i’m not amazed that she would write such a thing. to me it’s sad that someone can not/will not see pass their religion to unconditionally love their children.

    you are starting your family and the wonderful thing about that is that you can teach your child acceptance and allow them to be completely who they are and love them unconditionally for it.

    i’m thankful that you have found support in k’s family and i hope that more people are sent you way to fill your life with love and happiness as the wee one makes his entrance and beyond.

    as always – thank you for sharing. peace and blessings.

  25. tiff, your words just broke my heart over and over. you are an amazingly positive person and you have so much to offer to your son. i just don’t understand how religion can do this to families.

    i can’t really find the words to convey how sad i am for you, and your parents.

    xoxo,
    E

  26. Wow. How truly sad for you, but also your bio family to miss the opportunity to have you & K and your wee one in their lives. As a blog-reading stranger (a “bleader” according to Julie Powell) I know how much you have enriched *my* life.
    You & K ill make a wonderful family of your own– what a romantic love story!

  27. It can’t have been easy for you to have written that. I can understand why you don’t wish to talk about it, but I’m glad you braved it because your story is inspirational. You and Karli fought so hard to form your family of choice and I know your little one will be truly loved. To have done otherwise would have been a sad story indeed. Much love, courage and respect to you both.
    vee

  28. This doesn’t just break my heart, it rips it out my chest. What is sad is that the child will not know the love of his grandparents…. what is sadder is that the grandparents will not know the love of their grandson.

    I am shocked, utterly shocked, that a parent (a mother!) could say such hurtful and biased and mean-spirited things to their child in the name of religion.

    The insanity stops with you and K. Your child will know true unconditional love and to be nurtured by two intelligent, strong, caring women is the greatest gift you can give him.

    If it were me, no matter how much I felt apart from my family (in so many ways), I know these words would still hurt. I might even take some of them to heart. I hope you don’t. I hope you know that they come from ignorance and that it has absolutely nothing to do with you or K.

    Your parents should be ashamed of themselves. If my Catholic, Republican, traditional Filipino in-laws can be supportive and embracing of their daughter’s relationship and decision to start a family… then let them be an example to those out there like your parents who continue to live in the ignorance of the middle ages.

  29. Tiff – thank you so much for sharing your story. I think so often, I forget how far we (the LGBTQ community) still have to go to gain acceptance.
    I hate that you, such a beautiful and loving person, have had to bear the weight of this pain and be made to feel less than. You and Karli and the WeeOne are a beautiful family and your little boy is so, so lucky to have the two of you as moms.

    My heart is with you.

  30. Wow! I had to close the door to my office because I was so moved by your journey. I am so impressed with the dignity with which you have conducted yourself. You little man I so lucky to have you and K as mothers. You two know the meaning of unconditional love and will pass that along to him. Love equals family!

    All my best,
    Jackie

  31. WOW! i don’t have anything more to add that hasn’t already been said but i wanted to let you know i was reading and in awe of your strength. it’s sad that your parents have chosen to close you out rather than open their mind. i can’t wrap my head around how anyone could choose something as abstract as faith over the reality of their child.

    i’m so excited for you and karli and can’t wait to see pictures of the 3 of you together in a few weeks!

  32. T–
    I’ve been reading your blog for a while, but am usually not one to comment (on any that I read), but I had to say something here. My parents and upbringing were very similar to yours (and in the deep south), and my parents’ views are similar as well it seems. Through my experiences with family, often times the hatred that they project towards you is a manifestation of their own shortcomings and guilt (for whatever reason). It took me a long time to come to that conclusion and to realize that I only take on that part of them if I accept it. Although we are influenced by our experiences, who and what you are is a product of your own making. And from my point of view, it seems you and K have built a strong relationship that this little one will be nourished in and benefit from. Some of the greatest instances of self discovery and of what we want to become are in the form of what we refuse to be. Best, A.

  33. Tiff, thanks so much for sharing your story- it was beautifully written, and heartfelt.

    In regards to Sock Monkeys, all I need from you is your full name and address in an email to me at LynnChristen@aol.com

    By the way, you mentioned button eyes- do you really want buttons (possible choking hazard) or felt eyes? I prefer felt myself for the young age, but whatever you want is doable!

  34. Oh, Tiff, I had no idea what you’d both been through… thank you for sharing. No one should ever have to go through that. You and K are amazing women and your son is so lucky to have 2 lovely mamas, and despite what your mother says you ARE a family (you know that anyway) and a bloody strong and brilliant one at that. Sending much love and hugs. xxxx

  35. Thank you for sharing that with us. While I know people like your parents exist in the world, it still infuriates me to hear stuff like this. While I only know you through our baby blogs, I am SO PROUD of you for making the decision with your life that you did. I know it didn’t come easy and that it still has its difficult repercussions like the most recent parental exchange. Your son will grow up in a family that is accepting and understanding of his needs and beliefs. He is lucky to have two such wonderful parents and you will make a WONDERFUL family (not that you doubt that). I want you to remember that there are people out there who support your family and your relationship- particularly people who may not have the same lifestyle but are able to see the beauty, the love and the fabulousness of your happy family and have no problem with it. You are totally bringing more love into this world. 🙂

    hugs! liz

  36. Tiff…It’s so crazy for me to read that story written out. I mean…It’s not like I don’t know it. I was there for most of it. I know I met you your first semester at Liberty…but it’s sort of a vague memory. My first real memory of it all is when Karli came and made me promise to pretend I didn’t know you when your parents dropped you off. At that moment I knew, but of course I pretended it was a completely normal request. And then you arrived….from your dad’s random Canada quiz on the day you came back to LU, to the late night talks in the hallway, to the Saturday your parents knocked on my door and took you away and all I could do was hug you…it was such a crazy few months. Karli called me before she even got back to campus. I confirmed her fears and I knew she was going to go for you. Meanwhile, crazy RD Dana was telling me that I had to tell them as soon as Karli got back from NC. (Of course I told her I wouldn’t that it wasn’t my responsibility…that might have been when she started to dislike me!) It was such a weird time trying to be a friend and RA at the same time. I remember how you guys waited so long to tell me…like I didn’t already know! I’m not sure how Karli and I’s friendship survived it or how I ever bacame friends with you, considering the circumstances. But I’m so glad that you were on my hall that year and I’m so glad we’ve stayed friends. So much has changed and I can’t believe it’s been 6 years since then. I’ve seen your relationship grow and change. I know you guys have a pure love for each other and a healthy relationship. And I know you will love your son.

    I know how hard it’s always been for you with your family. I am praying that one day they will love you for who you are and learn to show that. I pray that one day they will be able understand that they can believe and love simultaneously. I know that your precious baby boy will know God’s love, because he’ll see your example. And I know that you will be a wonderful mother. I am so proud of you.

  37. That just broke my heart with each sentence. Thank you for sharing. I understand the strength it takes to walk away from your family, the only family you’ve had. You and K are meant for each other, no doubt about that. Your son WILL be surrounded by love, if not the love of your parents and siblings, the love of the new family you have created in VA.
    My thoughts, and the thoughts of my partner, are with you both.

  38. Hi,

    First off, please let me delurk. I am a 28 year-old lesbian from the midwest that has been reading your blog for a while now. My blog is at gregariousgooch.blogspot.com.

    Anyhow, this post is so amazing that I was compelled to post.

    Thanks for sharing.
    G

  39. Tiff, thanks for sharing that painful story. As I read your post, I was filled with sadness, then superlative anger. My mom has said some similar things to me in the past, and I know how hard it hurts. It hurts that she can’t see what a beautiful family you have, and it hurts that you cant share your pregnancy stories with her. It’s hard when a parent refuses to be a ‘witness to your life.’

    One thing was clear – you and Karli were meant to be together. It is a powerful love story! It really was. Despite all the cruel things your mom said, there was a very beautiful story about you and Karli. You ARE starting a family, a beautiful family filled with love. Your mom will never experience what it’s like to raise a family with unconditional love. The child you’re having will make the world a better place.

    I’m stunned at what your mom said – the deliberately cruel words she used, and the god damn condescending way those rightwing bigots talk. They are all ugly people with ugly words. Im glad that you will be able to rise above it – and fill your home with real love. So proud of you girls.

    I’ll leave you with this. After my mom told me I ruined her life, she’d never be happy again, etc… my therapist asked me, “Gee, should it REALLY RUIN your mom’s life just because you’re gay?” “Well, no.” And I had my answer. These people are choosing to create drama and ruin their lives over such a stupid, silly thing. Talk about “choice!” That is the one choice being made in this whole situation. 🙂

    Lots of love and even MORE love to you!

  40. Thank you for having the courage to sharing this amazing, heart wrenching story. I’m glad that you know you are meant to be with Karli and that your little boy was meant to be created and loved by the two of you. You are a family and an example to those who follow. ((Hugs)) Joy

  41. Oh. Your story is heartbreaking. I’m literally feeling pain for you as I read it. I’m sorry your birth family is the way they are, and can’t/won’t change, but happy for you that your new family is nearly complete.

  42. Hi there, its Jen (fatfeet) from FF. I sometimes read blogs and have just started to write on mine again.

    I had to leave a comment to say I admire your courage and despite being treated differently by my family they do accept who I am and my family I have.

    You must know and many comments reflect it here that you are K are a family and your son is so lucky to be born to two very strong women with such strong love for each other. Your conviction for your relationship and strength will mean that your son will grow with and from that strength. He is very lucky and you are both lucky to have such a wonderful family.

    I look forward to seeing your son in December.

    Love to you all

    Jen x

  43. i am reading you blog for a while b/c i am also ttc and i really admire your writing. i am not sure if my comment is welcome , if not i apologize for disturbing.
    there is so much love for your wife and the baby boy in every word, this brings my to tears sometimes. you are a very strong woman!
    love like this is rare and a gift. and family is a matter of the heart. all the best for the three of you!

  44. wow! that was one hell of a thing to read. i can comiserate. my mum also believes it’s a bad thing for us to be parenting (our son is 14 months old) but she has come around a little since he was born, largely due to the fact that he looks just like me. i really hope your family realises what they are missing out on but if not the Family you have made with K is what really counts. You WILL be a family, don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. big hugs to you both (and the wee one).

    g

  45. Thank you for sharing that with us, I know it can’t have been easy but I hope you feel better for getting it off your chest. I know you know that you, K and you son aren’t any less of a family so I have no doubt of how much it hurts to be told otherwise by those that should be the most understanding. I’m sure it was incredibly hard to read the email, but you made the right call letting them know in advance and avoiding the ‘live’ performance! I hope that one day they can change their mindset and accept you, but I’m glad for you that you have at least got one of your birth families embracing you both.
    K and I have in the past talked about couples we know that inspire others with their love for each other, people that you can look at and without a doubt you know deep in your soul that they are right for each other. You guys definitely fit that category and I’m so excited for you that your living your dream of building a family together – that’s what counts.

  46. What a nightmare. That is so hard and awful. I’m proud of you for being true to yourself and for creating this new beautiful family of yours that will love you unconditionally, as family should.

    Much love to you.

  47. I am so sorry. Wow. I do know for sure that you girls are meant to be together. That was quite the love story. But, I am so sorry that you have had to endure this from your family. I do know for a fact though that you and K have a beautiful love for one another and with your doggies and your son on the way that will be one beautiful family for sure!

  48. and i thought we had been through a lot…thank you for sharing, and good on you both for the strength and love you have that is unbreakable. You ARE starting a family, of course you are, and that baby will be lucky to have some of the best mums in the whole world. You are doing an amazing job from where you have both come from, you should feel SO proud of your new, growing family. xx

  49. I somehow missed this when you posted it. I am so sorry that you have had to navigate all of this — starting when you were just a teenager and continuing until now when you are just on the brink of having your first baby.

    I will never understand how people who profess to love God be so hateful.

    Thinking of you.

  50. I am late on commenting, and I agree with every comment ahead of mine. I think you are incrediably strong, and courageous. You baby is so lucky to have you as a role model and it is clear that you and K have, and will continue to create a really strong family for him. I am really sorry your mother was so hard and close minded about your baby and your family. I hope things change on her end – And if that does not happen I am so happy you are so grounded and whole dispite your family’s best efforts. xoxo L.

  51. Ditto what babypants just stated. I’m truly sorry this is happening to you. There is a Buddhist teaching that I immediately thought of in relation to your situation –

    Hatred will never cease by hatred,
    Only love will erase hatred,
    This is the eternal law.

    I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately. There is so much hatred being spewed around (especially in concern to the election and anti-gay marriage ballots). When it really comes down to it, though, love wins. You have so much love between you and K. Your family is being built on that foundation and your son will be one lucky guy to have you two as his parents.

  52. Wow. This broke my heart. My person and I are wanting to come out but both work as teachers in a Catholic school and are just waiting until we can resign at the end of this year. We hope to “god” our families are supportive but really have no idea. This post scared me a bit from coming out but also gave me hope that when I have found the love of my life (which I have) and when we start a family (which we want to soon), those are the most important people I need to think about.

  53. hi!
    i just stumbled across your blog today and read this post about your family. i want to reiterate what everyone here says and what you do know – you ARE a family!! it’s terribly sad (and selfish) for your parents to react as if you are causing them all this angst. especially during your first pregnancy! the excitement and joy i read in your other posts is so clear and you and K will certainly be great moms! it’s your family’s loss at this point. i do hope it works out in the best way possible for all of you. it looks like you have a wonderful support system! thanks for sharing your personal story.

  54. Wow. What a story. I just sort of stumbled upon your blog recently. I am moved by your story and I am so sorry that you have had to go through the things you have gone through – you and K both. Thank you for sharing. Much love from our family to yours.

  55. That is an incredible story. I didn’t get the reception that I wanted when I told my family that my partner and I were starting a family either. Some of my family have come around, and others might never come around, so I know what it feels like to create your own family. Although it felt like my heart was ripping out again to not be loved unconditionally (especially with the hormones of pregnancy), I know that I will raise my son to better than that.

  56. Wow… what a story. I don’t even know what to say. I love how strong you guys are and how in love you are even after all of these years, truly inspiring! 🙂

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