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My brother the bigot ( TRIGGER WARNING)


Natnewgirl

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Hello all, my name is Nat. A few months ago my egg cracked and I told my girlfriend I wanted to transition, I have been blessed that she is fully supportive.  I have not come out to anyone else as off yet. The one person I have not been looking forward to coming out to is my brother. 

 

A little bit about my brother, is that he is 10 years older than, as a child he was more of a parent then our parents.  My brother is very conservative, but somewhere in my mind I was telling myself "my brother will probably cut me off but eventually love me as I am". A recent phone conversation with my brother reminded me of just how hateful he is.

 

My brother always calls at the worst possible time, it will always be when I am just getting home from work, just got in the shower etc. If I don't answer I will get a text message reading " you don't have to answer your phone but at least let me know your ok"

 

When my brother called me on Thursday as I was fumbling with my door keys, trying to hurry inside because the dog needed to be walked. I answered only because I wanted a quiet weekend. If I talk to him once during the week it saves me from listening to him for 2+hours over the weekend.

 

As always he immediately asked what I was doing, I said,"Trying to get the dog on the leash so can walk him" his response " I THOUGHT YOU SAID YOU HAD A FENCE AROUND YOUR YARD!"

I recently moved into a new house and have told him on four separate phone calls that I have no fence, further more I have told him numerous times that our dog is a runner and a fence jumper. So even if we had a fence, I would still walk him. That just proves the point that my brother does not listen and does not call for me.

 

Once I got him off that topic, he immediately started telling me about how his now job gave him and extra day off this month. " YOU WON'T BELIEVE IT! IT'S SO STUPID THEY ARE GIVING ME A DAY OFF FOR JUNETENTH ". Now at this point I am expecting to have to listen to a racist tirade. Then he says what makes me see just how stupid he is. " GIVING ME A DAY OFF FOR THOSE GAYS! THEY HAVE THE WHOLE MONTH WHO GAVE THEM A DAY." I was completely silent because I am trying to wrap my head around how someone I am related to could not know that Junetenth is a celebration of  freed slaves under The  Emancipation Proclamation.

 

I remained mostly silent for the rest of the phone call as he told me that the new Buzz Lightyear movie has a same sex love scene, I reminded him that they said the same about Finding Dory and it was just two women holding hands. Then he went off on a tangent about how Disney is ruining the world with thier LGBTQ support.

 

All that was bad within it self but then he told me that members of the LGBTQ had been coming to his daughters school, and they where not teaching them to be "gay" but teaching them about " THOSE TRANSGENDERS" he then said " I CAN TOLERATE THE GAYS ,THESE TRANSGENDERS ARE SOMETHING ELSE ALL TOGETHER AND THEY DON'T HAVE A PLACE HERE.

 

At that moment I contemplated telling him right then and there that I am one of those "transgenders" The only reason I didn't is because I want to be able to see my niece for as long as possible. I made as excuse to get off the phone.

 

That whole call has made me realize that when I do comeout I will have no family at all. He is the only family I talk to. It has made me feel sad and down and I don't even know what to do, what I need. I don't even think I need advice or guidance on this I just needed to vent and get it of my chest.

I told my girlfriend what he said and she said "your brother is just a bigot" "how the two of you came from the same womb is a mystery "

Thank you to anyone who reads this all the way through. 

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I'm sorry you have to put up with this sort of stuff from a family member. Your girlfriend is right--he is a bigot, sadly. What you're going through is all too common. When I came out, the only family member who accepted me fully was my oldest daughter. My youngest doesn't communicate with me any more, and my two brothers, who are self professed progressives, won't speak to me but will loudly proclaim to their friends that they have a trans sibling; using my transition as some sort of proof that they're cool and hip because of my status. I've heard it said, and I don't recall from where, that we get two families in this life--the ones we are born with and the ones we choose. Stick with your girlfriend. She sounds like a keeper.

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My Girlfriend and I are both very fond of the two families saying.  We are planning to eventually move out of the south and are looking forward to choosing our family. She has unfortunately had falling out with her family as well. 

I think I would rather my brother just pretend I didn't exist then use me to make himself look cool.

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Yeah, having family like that can really stink. 

 

I've basically been disowned by my parents and mocked by my older siblings for years.  Being outed as lesbian (at that time..bi now) was no joy.  And since my appearance is androgynous, my husbands mother sometimes refers to me as "it." 😕

 

Mostly, just have as little to do with toxic people as possible. Easy to say, tougher to accomplish. 

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Yeah I am learning to remove toxic people from my life. I have actually considered never telling my brother and just kind of disappearing. I will be changing my name anyway,and moving out of the southeast. If my dad was in his right mind and my mom where still alive I am very sure I would be disowned.

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  • Forum Moderator
47 minutes ago, Natnewgirl said:

Yeah I am learning to remove toxic people from my life. I have actually considered never telling my brother and just kind of disappearing.

Hi @Natnewgirl, I am so sorry to hear about your brother and his lack of empathy and understanding of anything but himself. These individuals can’t easily see outside of their tiny world and it makes it very difficult to see into someone else’s.

 

I have had similar issues to yours with friends and family during my journey and it’s difficult to shut the door completely on those relationships especially if you’re a “hopeful” person and like to think the best outcome is always possible. Sadly, it sounds like you brother may not come around to acceptance or even tolerance in your lifetime or his.

 

That’s a hard decision you’ll be making of whether coming out to him would be worth your time at this point. It’s hard to shut someone out of your life if you haven’t told them why you are doing so. On the other hand, the resulting reaction to your disclosure looks very predictable for what you’ve shared here.

 

I wish you the best possible outcome regardless of your decision to come out to him.

 

Warmest Regards,

Susan R🌷

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Hi Susan,  my biggest concern in coming out to him is that he will disregard it all together and insist on calling me by my dead name and pro nouns. My biggest concern with not telling him at all and just disappearing is that he might try to find me. Another part of me wonders if I could just keep talking to him on the phone and never see him again. Honestly he doesn't put forth effort to come and visit, he uses his allergy to cats as an excuse, but he never visited before I had cats. I honestly don't even feel that my brother being in my life matters. Him being there is exactly the same as him not being there.

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@Natnewgirl One thing I've learned from my GF is to simply insist on life being on my terms.  I'm not aggressive like she is (she'll literally start a fight in the grocery store), but I have no problem with making myself scarce in an area where I'm not wanted.  Get quiet and just slink away into the background. 

 

If your brother uses cats as an excuse, I'd have a cat on every surface of the house, and change any social media profile to a photo with like 8 of them in my lap, on my shoulders, etc...  You could keep talking to him for a bit, and do the slow fade unless he changes his tune. 

 

I rarely see my brothers.  They live elsewhere, rarely speak to me and never write.  I'm useful as the butt of a joke, and that's about it.  I did the slow fade years ago, with no regrets. 

 

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  • Forum Moderator
13 hours ago, Natnewgirl said:

Hi Susan,  my biggest concern in coming out to him is that he will disregard it all together and insist on calling me by my dead name and pro nouns.

This is a response you’d expect from someone who cares for no one but themselves. I’d be very leery of disclosure too. If your brother has no real interest in your current life other than making the token weekly phone call with nothing positive to say or share than what positive change might take place once you share your news? As @awkward-yet-sweet stated, “Insist on living life on [your] terms” not his. This is good advice especially since you don’t necessarily need his assistance in any way directly or indirectly. On the other hand, if you decide to share your news and he disregards your needs as a transgender person all together, this would at least give you good reason to write him off. We all have to take steps to protect ourselves even if the threat is from within our family.

 

My Best,

Susan R🌷

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1 hour ago, Cyndee said:

 It's really sad that here in the 21st century North America people would fall into such mindsets and display such ignorance. One might ask, from where does a person form such views ? Was it the internet ? was it his friends ? was it the TV ? was it his schooling ? was it his church ? was it the place he grew up in ? and the older the person is, the more re enforced these viewpoints can become, can we ever evolve ?

 

What's really sad is that compared to many places, the United States is actually pretty enlightened. For example, in Qatar, it's illegal to be either gay or trans. The punishment there can be execution. The same hold true for much of what used to called the Third World (not sure if that term is applicable anymore.) It's also illegal in Iran, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Indonesia and many more. 

More progress needs to be made, certainly. I believe that the reasons for the prejudice and intolerance are multifold. @Cyndeeif your question was multiple choice, I would have to check the box labelled "all of the above." I also believe that in the United States, a lot of the hate is due to pandering to their base by politicians to gain votes. Unfortunately, the LGBTQ+ community has become a political football, as is the case with so many minority groups.

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Welcome @Natnewgirl

I'm sorry to hear this about your brother.  It doesn't sound good.

Sadly, from what you wrote, I wouldn't expect much acceptance from him.

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