Resources for Families and Allies
Welcome, parents, families, and allies to our Family and Allies section. Here allies and parents may find resources to educate themselves, friends, and families on LGBTQ information regarding their student or friends.
Safe Person/Ally/Safe Space
A big strength and support for the LGBTQ community are allies. Allies support the LGBTQ community by being accepting, nonjudgmental and by providing and creating safe and fun spaces for the LGBTQ community to be in. Here are some great tips to consider for when your student or friend comes out to you:
- Be a good listener and be patient. A person who is coming out may have a hard time talking about it. Don’t force them to disclose their information. Let them tell you at their own pace.
- Commit yourself as an ally. Let them know you are accepting.
- Keep their confidence by respecting their privacy.
- Acknowledge the risk they took by coming out to you.Compliment their courage. Don’t minimize the importance of what they did by saying “it doesn’t matter to me”.
- Instead say, Thank you for trusting me.” Or, “it doesn’t change how I feel about you,” or say “it will change things in a positive way.
- Don’t over-react. Don’t expect them to take care of your feelings—keep focus on them.
- If you’re comfortable with it, offer a hug or some show of support.
- Ask, “is there anything I can do for you?”
- Don’t ask, “are you attracted to me for me? What made you do this? Is is a phase? Are’nt you worried about AIDS? Were you molested?
Here are a few great qualities of what it takes to be an Ally:
- Allies work to develop an understanding of the needs of LGBTI folks and to align with and respond to their needs.
- Allies know it is in their self-interest to be allies.
- Allies are committed to the personal growth (in spite of the probable discomfort) required.
- Allies take pride in responding to heterosexism and transphobia
- Allies expect support from other allies.
- Allies are able to acknowledge/ articulate how patters of fear have operated in our lives.
- Allies expect to make some mistakes but don’t use them as an excuse for non-action.
- Allies know that in the most empowered ally relationships, the folks in the non-oppressed role initiate the change toward personal, institutional, and societal justice and equality.
- Allies promote a sense of community with LGBTI folks, and teach others about the importance of outreach.
- Allies have a good sense of humor.
Adapted from LGBT @ UCLA
Ally Tips in Español: Tips para cuando alguien sale del closet
- Sea buen oyente y sea paciente. Una persona que esta saliendo puedo tener dificultad hablando de ello.
- No esfuerces a que lo divulgue. Deja que ellos/as lo digan a su propio paso.
- Haga promesa como aliado. Déjeles saber que usted aceptada.
- Guarda su confiaza, respeta su privacidad.
- Reconozca el riesgo que estan tomando al “salir” a usted. No redusca al mínimo la importancia de lo que han echo diciendo, “a mi no me importa.” En lugar diga “gracias por cofiar en mi” ó “ no cambiara como yo me siento por ti” ó diga que podria cambiar cosas positivamente.
- No sobreraccione. No esperas que ella/el tome cargo de tus emociones-mantega el foco en ella/el.
- Si se seintes cómodo con dar un abrazo, ofrecelo o demuestra algún tipo de apoyo.
- Pregunte si hay algo en que usted pueda ayudar.
- No pregunte: ¿sientes algo por mí?, ¿qué te hizo hacer esto?, ¿es una etapa?, ¿no estas preocupado del SIDA?, ¿fuiste violada/o?
Here are just a few resources of some LGBT advocates in the San Francisco Bay Area and around the States. These cites have a more in depth look about family and ally resources, workshops and education courses.
Located in San Francisco California, the Family Acceptance Project helps build acceptance of LGBTQ teens in ethnic families.
Located in Santa Cruz, California, the Diversity Center is dedicated to building a diverse community, promoting health and well-being, and advancing social justice for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex, and questioning individuals and their allies in Santa Cruz County.
"PFLAG promotes the health and well-being of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender persons, their families and friends through: support, to cope with an adverse society; education, to enlighten an ill-informed public; and advocacy, to end discrimination and to secure equal civil rights. Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays provides opportunity for dialogue about sexual orientation and gender identity, and acts to create a society that is healthy and respectful of human diversity."
The Gay Straight Alliance Network is a national youth leadership organization that reaches out predominantly through branches in high schools to spread tolerance and general information about the queer community to local communities internationally.
Gender Spectrum provides education, training and support to help create a gender sensitive and inclusive environment for all children and teens.
A few terms to know about conveniently in one online pamphlet
In this section you will be able to find several family oriented LGBT videos in how to be accepting and how to create safe spaces in your homes. You will also be given recommended film titles to watch on your own or with company.
*Netflix has recently updated their genres in movies to include gay and lesbian themes.*
Has your child come out to you? -Family Acceptance Project piece of one family's story of their child coming out.
In October 2011 Basic Rights Oregon launched three incredibly powerful videos as part of their Our Families campaign. These videos highlight the experiences, trials, and triumphs of African American, Latino/Latina, and Asian and Pacific Islander LGBT people in our communities.