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Forums / Sexuality and gender identity / My 11yo son thinks gay.

Topic: My 11yo son thinks gay.

16 posts, 0 answered
  1. Jane1980
    Jane1980 avatar
    5 posts
    2 August 2020

    Hi everyone, I’m hoping for a little advice please. My 11 year old son told me today that he thinks he might be gay and he’s been feeling like it for the last 4 months or so.

    I guess my question is would he know at 11 years old? Is he curious and confused?

    We’ve had a really good talk with him this afternoon, and he knows he has our support no matter what, I just don’t really know what to do from here to support him.

    Thank you.

    2 people found this helpful
  2. Birdy77
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    Birdy77 avatar
    2299 posts
    2 August 2020 in reply to Jane1980
    Hi Jane

    So glad you came here, its a supportive place.

    We can only give our own experiences, but i know that my brother knew he was gay around 8 yrs old.

    It might sound strange to some, like, when do we really know about sexuality?

    But it can be more than sexuality, more an identity? If that makes sense.

    I felt like i was maybe lesbian, at least definitely attracted to girls definitely from around 11 years old.

    It's so amazingly awesome that you have told your son that you support him, this is the most incredible springboard in life you can give him!!

    You're doing great

    Love ❤❤❤❤❤

    birdy xo
    1 person found this helpful
  3. SH-2600
    SH-2600 avatar
    106 posts
    2 August 2020 in reply to Jane1980

    Hi Jane1980,

    I saw your post and I am hoping that I might be able to provide some help. It sounds like you have a great relationship with your son. My now 18 year old son came out to us when he was about the same age as your son. My son says he always knew he was gay, although he didn’t always have a word for it. He says he always just understood that the depictions of heterosexual families and relationships that were everywhere were just not him, that he was different from that. So I think it is likely your son does know he is gay at 11.

    I am not sure there is anything you need to do apart from helping him understand that he is normal, which you are already doing. Allow him to talk and be open with you, which again you already seem to be doing.

    My view is that is all you have to do! And keep the lines of communication open. If at some point other issues come up, such as anxiety around telling others when he is ready, or if he is experiencing bullying or harassment then you may need additional support.

    Take care and enjoy the great relationship you have with your lovely boy.

    SH

    3 people found this helpful
  4. Jane1980
    Jane1980 avatar
    5 posts
    3 August 2020 in reply to SH-2600

    Thank you SH-2600

    Your reply is very helpful. Life is so hard, I’m just so worried this is going to add more pressure for my little man.

    I hope he always feels he can come to us and will always be so loved.

    Thank you again.

    1 person found this helpful
  5. Jane1980
    Jane1980 avatar
    5 posts
    3 August 2020 in reply to Birdy77
    Thank you For your reply Birdy77, it does make sense and is very helpful.
    1 person found this helpful
  6. SH-2600
    SH-2600 avatar
    106 posts
    3 August 2020 in reply to Jane1980

    Hi Jane1980

    I am glad to help. Life is definitely hard, and I certainly had those same thoughts for my son. The world is not quite there yet in terms of love and acceptance of everyone, regardless of sexuality. But the best we can do for our kids, no matter who they are, is give them love and a place to talk openly and safely and be themselves. I think the fact that your son felt he could tell you speaks volumes and sets him up to be comfortable and secure in who he is. My heart breaks for the kids out there who still feel they have to hide who they are. My son says the world will finally be right when no one has to “come out” and explain who they are, they just are. Until then as parents we make sure at least with us, they feel like they can just be them.

    Take care.

    SH

    3 people found this helpful
  7. missep123
    Community Champion
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    missep123 avatar
    845 posts
    3 August 2020 in reply to Jane1980

    Hi Jane1980!

    I wanted to comment on your thread and say that I think it's absolutely amazing how you are supporting your son. Your son will feel the warmth and support from you which will help him so much.

    That's super awesome of you. I felt happy when I read that :)

    3 people found this helpful
  8. Only I know
    Only I know avatar
    214 posts
    4 August 2020 in reply to Jane1980

    hey there Jane1980,

    you've received some great responses here! Like the others I applaud your relationship with your son. It is wonderful that you demonstrate your love and support in such a way that he is comfortable talking to you about such a deeply personal thing.

    I knew I was different at 7 years old, I didn't know I was "gay" or such, just that I was different. I remember being in grade 2 of primary school and in the school yard playing with the other boys and girls and pretending to get married; at the time all I could think was "but I want to marry him, not her". It was about 10 that I realised I was gay, but even then didn't quite understand it - and because of the time it was (1980's) - I kept it hidden until recently.

    I wish times had been different, and that I had felt my parents would have been so loving and supportive, perhaps I could have led the life I should have. You are already doing everything you can for your son. Just continue to be there for him, listen and be patient. He might be gay, or he might not be, or he may be something different altogether. He is who he is, and you'll continue to love him as you currently do!

    take care

    Daz

    2 people found this helpful
  9. Jane1980
    Jane1980 avatar
    5 posts
    5 August 2020 in reply to Only I know

    Thank you so much for reaching out Daz, it really helps hearing your story.

    We had a really good talk with our son last night to try and get more of an idea of how he’s feeling. We asked him questions regarding his feelings towards himself, his body, other boys and girls etc to see if we could come up with something outside of His friend, (that he has feelings for) to determine his thoughts of being gay. He didn’t come up with anything else apart from having feelings for him.

    We explained to him that sometimes you can have a best friend who you really connect with on a higher level, and a soulmate doesn’t have to be your girlfriend or boyfriend, and that that in it self can be very confusing, but also doesn’t always have to be the answer.

    We asked him about his friend asking him out and if that’s something that he wants, and he started crying and said he said yes to him because he was too scared he would lose him if he said no 😢 I feel he’s having feelings but not necessarily ready to act on them.

    I sat with him this morning and asked how he felt after our talk and he said he’s still really confused and wanted to talk with his friend. I told him to not put any pressure on either of them, I’m really proud of how mature he’s being

    I’ve called into the community health centre this morning to grab any material I can for him to read. I‘ll sit down and go through the resources here too and find anything I can to help him understand his thoughts.

    thank you so much again.

    3 people found this helpful
  10. missep123
    Community Champion
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    missep123 avatar
    845 posts
    6 August 2020 in reply to Jane1980

    Hi Jane1980,

    I just wanted to say keep up the amazing work. I feel like your son can really grow with your support. As we grow and we learn about ourselves people can really help as us otherwise we can be harsh or negative to ourselves.

    Please keep us updated! I think this is a great learning experience for a lot of parents out there as well!

    :)

    3 people found this helpful
  11. ecomama
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    4567 posts
    6 August 2020 in reply to Jane1980

    Dear Jane1980

    You're doing a great job being there for your son, it's a wonderful compliment to your relationship with your son that he could come to you to talk about how he's feeling.

    There's help out there for your son and for you and your husband too. It can be a scary time if parents are not prepared for this topic with their kids, maybe worried they'll say the wrong thing etc. It's okay. The kids helpline is available if your son wants to talk to someone outside the family. He may not be ready for this but it's good to tell him this is available for him now and at any time in the future.

    I Pray the world wakes up to itself and I love the idea of the time when no has to "come out" yes, most definitely.

    IME love and acceptance in all cases is the greatest gift we can give to our children.

    Best wishes, you're doing a great job.
    EM

    2 people found this helpful
  12. geoff
    Life Member
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    geoff avatar
    15314 posts
    7 August 2020 in reply to Jane1980

    Hello Jane, and welcome.

    There have been so many good comments and don't want to intrude but it's a good topic.

    For him to tell you at his age that he might be gay means the communication between you is open and that's good and secondly, the way he feels is not any indication or any fault of yours, simply because, if a parent tells their child to love doing something they despise, then it's only going to make them hate it even more.

    At 11 and just because he has a friend/s he really likes is no different to how I felt at that stage, they were mates, we went to the same class, played the same sport and travelled part of the way home plus I went to an all boys school, but was married for 25 years.

    You are doing everything you feel is right, and just because he has a male friend doesn't mean he's gay, he's associated this word after hearing or actually seeing it himself, he's too young to realise what the term means.

    A great deal can happen before he's 21 and much to learn.

    Take care.

    Geoff.

    1 person found this helpful
  13. Bowie_Fandom_64
    Bowie_Fandom_64 avatar
    18 posts
    10 August 2020 in reply to Jane1980

    It can be difficult to tell at such a young age, but i would say that considering he is so young and has told you about it, he probably is. A lot of people sometimes discredit discovering you gender or sexuality at a young age, but really, when you know you know.

    I personally think if he were confused or questioning, he would come out as bi first. But if he honestly has no interest in girls at the age most boys become interested in girls, i think he knows

    But really, everyone is different, and his personal journey will be different from everyone else's. The best thing to do is just support him no matter what, and to just be there for him, no matter what he will turn out great, i'm sure :) <3

    3 people found this helpful
  14. Bowie_Fandom_64
    Bowie_Fandom_64 avatar
    18 posts
    10 August 2020 in reply to geoff

    I think you have some valid points, but a lot of people know there gender and sexuality at very young ages. For example, i knew i was Pansexual at 12. Everyone's journey is different, and i don't think we should dicredit people for their age. He could just be questioning, but he might actually be gay.

    As long, as he is supported through this journey. <3

    2 people found this helpful
  15. Scottr1
    Scottr1 avatar
    2 posts
    1 August 2021 in reply to Jane1980

    Hi Jane,

    Just wanted to say thank you for posting and congratulations on the great relationship you have with your boy.

    The fact he is coming to you and having open communications means a great deal and he trusts you.

    In terms of him knowing if he is gay at such a young age, well. . . I can really only comment on myself being a gay 40 year old guy. At age 11 while I don’t feel I experienced sexual attraction towards the same sex, it was probably a couple of years early for that, I do remember having an infatuation with my guy friends and knew I had feelings for my male friends that were not there for the girls. I would say that was my sexuality starting to develop.

    In terms of your son, I would just follow his lead, and of course set limits as you would with any straight kids, like monitoring his internet usage, knowing who is friends are, sleep overs with doors open.

    again, great work Jane.

    1 person found this helpful
  16. Mattstar
    Mattstar avatar
    5 posts
    10 August 2021

    When I told my Mum she didn't speak to me for 3 years. She's fine with it now but I felt even more like there was something wrong with me. It can be quite damaging.

    If he (or any child) said hey Mum, I think I'm straight, how would you react? Think about that for a little while and you will know exactly how to deal with this.

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