Love vs. Expectations

It hurts me when she can not acknowledge that she loves me to her family. I feel she’s not supposed to love me enough. “Today’s most common complaint from partnered lesbians. Doesn’t it really show a lack of love, engagement or emotion to go out to the family?

The most daunting part of being a lesbian for all of us is likely coming out to parents. The thought is so frightening for some, they won’t even consider doing it. For others, the need to come out is more powerful than fear, so without so much as a warning they hold their breath and drop the information. Unfortunately for some, it’s the violation that results in any ongoing relationship’s horrifying end.

Of course, it may be even more frightening for those females who know that their parents are homophobic or condemn lesbians because of religious convictions; but even those parents who have always professed recognition for lesbians and gays can respond in unexpected ways when their own daughter declares that she is a lesbian. And imagine the trouble for those who have relatives who either way have never expressed an opinion. It’d like to open a ticking box— is it a clock or a bomb?

I suspect that most of us who have been out for any length of moment have forgotten that fear or have either overcome the pain or rejection if confronted with the pain of family rejection.

A post I read in a forum recently included the question, “What would it take for her to confess that she loves me to her family?” It hurts me when she can not acknowledge that she loves me to her family. I feel she’s not supposed to love me enough.

In this woman’s situation, her lover is Japanese-American first-generation with a family that has very traditional thoughts and values. The fact that the woman was so scared of coming out to her family that she ended the relationship for nearly a year seems to be immaterial to her lover— all she can see is that she doesn’t have to love me enough.

This is not a fresh idea, nor is it spoken by a female for the first time ever. This is a recurrent lesbian theme. It’s not enough, somehow, if it’s not screamed to the globe.

Why do we offer the quiet love little or no significance? A love that is so profound and personal that it binds two people together seems so much more meaningful— more inspirational— than any banner or pronouncement ever could be. Yet in the eyes of the accusation— she must not love me enough.

Coming out is a political declaration, not a declaration of love. We don’t have to declare our relationships to be genuine. It’s not about embarrassment or shame— love doesn’t know shame. To love, we don’t have to declare our love.

The need to come out is not about love— it’s about legal problems that have nothing to do with love, but everything to do with our interactions that we expect. It’s not a bad thing to hold expectations from a loving relationship— because it’s not. Negotiable are expectations, whereas love is not. We must avoid the two being confused. We need to be evident about what a sensation is and what a need is in our own minds.

We’re feeling love. We need to fulfill our expectations. If we can’t have both, we’ll have to decide that’s more essential for ourselves.

Would you rather be loved, or are you waiting for…?

Until next time…