Irish Mom Gets Advice on ‘How Do I Tell My Sons Their Father is Bi?’

imageAdvice columnist Dr. John Sharry, a social worker and founder of the Parents Plus charity and writer for the Irish Times offered advice to a women on how to tell her two children that their dad is bisexual. The advice seemed pretty good.

I’m a mum of two boys, and I separated from their dad about a year ago. The reason for the split was that he was a cross-dresser and bisexual, something he didn’t tell me about before we married.

He is quite public in his lifestyle choices and I am concerned that the children will be teased about this in school, and so on. I’m not sure if I should tell them, or say nothing. What do you recommend?

Here are excerpts of his response:

A. Generally, important family issues are always best explained to children by their parents.

* If their father’s sexuality is public and known by many people then I would say it is best that your children are told by you and their father.

* Exactly when to tell your children, how best to tell them and how to share the “telling” with their father are more open questions.

* I think it best if he tells them first in a child-centred way that they can understand.

* There is no evidence that telling a child about their parents’ sexual orientation will confuse their own orientation; instead, I would suggest it is more likely to help them feel more secure in whatever their own orientation turns out to be.

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Mike Szymanski
Mike Szymanski has written about bisexual issues since 1989 and has one of the longest-running regular bisexual columns as the National Bisexuality Examiner. He came out as bisexual in a cover story of Genre magazine, which resulted in more than 50 television appearances, including Ricki Lake, Phil Donahue Show and 20/20. Szymanski won the Lambda Literary Award in 2007 for co-authoring an informative humor book “The Bisexual’s Guide to the Universe: Quips, Tips and Lists for Those Who Go Both Ways.” Write him at [email protected]