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My 4th Grader’s Letter to the Boy Scouts of America

When is the “right” time to discuss sexuality, specifically homosexuality, with your child? Until today, I didn’t have an answer for that question. But today when I picked up Connor from school, he asked me if I knew about the Boy Scouts of America (BSA).


(deep breath)


I explained to him that I was very familiar with them. And I decided to explain to him why we never pursued membership for him with their organization.


“What does ‘gay’ mean?”


So I told him that it’s when a man wants to date or marry another man, or a woman wants to date or marry another woman. And I told him that there’s nothing wrong with that, it’s just the way they were born. Some of us are born to love someone from the opposite sex, but not everyone.


“It’s not terribly different from being born autistic, it’s just the way you are.” I told him.


And we talked about their rule that members must believe in God. He asked me, “Did their God tell them not to like gay people?” And, of course, I told him the truth.


While we worked on homework, he looked at me and said “I don’t like the rules those Boy Scouts have.” I asked if he wanted to write them a letter and, to my surprise, he said he did. Writing has always been hard for Connor, so I helped with spelling, punctuation, and paragraph spacing. I prompted him to tell them who he is and where he goes to school. But the rest of the words are his alone. And he felt very strongly about adding the sad faces.




There is simply no way to describe the kind of pride you feel as a parent when your child shows you that they care more about what’s right than what everyone else thinks. This parenting gig is HARD, no doubt about it. But days like this are what keep us going during the more challenging of times. I think this one will keep me going for a good, long while.



About Flannery

Kid, husband, dogs, my mother, full-time job, maximum stress, minimal relaxation...sooner or later I had to vent. AND we moved from California to Texas. I could start a whole other blog about that.

8 responses »

  1. Your son is lovely. Go Connor!

  2. Girl, you are raising that child right. Connor rocks.

    My son’s favorite uncle is gay, so when I explained last year that the Boy Scouts won’t let people like his uncle be included, he responded with “Well then, frick the Boy Scouts.”

  3. Way to go mom! These are the same reasons I don’t encourage my son to join the Boy Scouts, either.

  4. That is one incredible boy you have there. I am these moments of greatness make it so much easier to deal with the unmade bed 🙂

  5. Wow! What an awesome kid! I didn’t know that believing in God was required too. That’s just messed up. (That is, making belief in God a requirement is messed up, not believing in God .)

  6. Absolutely perfect Connor!

  7. What a great person you are raising. We won’t be doing Boy Scouts for either of our boys unless the rules change and they issue a sincere apology for all the boys and men turned away or made to feel less than human.

  8. Message to you: this one should be published!!!!! : )


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