A dad set a spectacular example of how to be a supportive parent last year when he handled his daughter coming out to him in the most dadlike manner.
Editor's note: This article was originally published on June 17, 2021. It has since been updated.
Coming out to one's friends and family is a daunting prospect for many even today despite our society making significant progress in acknowledging and rectifying its homophobic attitude. This is particularly true for LGBTQ+ youth with intolerant, anti-gay parents as they face the threat of often violent and humiliating persecution from their family and even expulsion from home. Hopefully, with some more time and awareness, such fears will completely become a thing of the past as more and more parents normalize loving and accepting their children without any ifs, ands, or buts.
One such father set a spectacular example of how to be a supportive parent last year when he handled his daughter coming out to him in the most dadlike manner. He did have one condition though: Don't date a jerk. The anonymous dad's wholesome conversation with his daughter went viral after he posted screenshots of their chat on Imgur. The conversation began with him texting his daughter to enquire whether she had joined the Girl Scouts Of America. Seemingly perplexed by his out-of-the-blue query, she texted back to ask what he'd heard from her mother. Here's how that played out:
Quickly realizing her dad had associated her with the wrong GSA, the daughter cleared up the confusion once and for all by coming out to him. While she may have braced herself for an emotional response from her father, his reply made it clear that he cared more about getting cookies than whom she chose to love. He also reminded her of an important rule. "Gay or straight, the same rules apply to whomever you bring home," he texted her. "You're not allowed to date a jerk." With that, he got right back to the important matter: cookies.
Speaking to Bored Panda, the dad — who chose to remain anonymous — explained that his concern was making sure that "she"d understand that in the big scheme of things, whom she chooses to love is of such little importance to us that it"s a lower priority than coconut cookies." When asked if he knew his daughter was gay before she came out to him, he said: "I normally answer that there were clues. You know... coconut water, almond joy... I didn't know for certain, but I cared so little about it that I didn't ponder it too much."
He also admitted that he knew about the Gender-Sexuality Alliance before he spoke to his daughter. "I was well aware of what GSA was before I started this conversation. I was also aware that regardless of how close she and I are, that she had some trepidation in telling me," he said. The wholesome conversation between the father-daughter paired touched many hearts online with Imgur user iancarry commenting: "this is A+++ parenting... with awesome dad jokes." Some also shared their similarly heartwarming stories of coming out to their parents. "My dad was kinda the same. He looked at me, gave me a hug, and went on with his day. Never had a problem with it," wrote IDontFeedTrollsIJustDwellinCAPS.
"Society has for so long indoctrinated us as to what is and what is not acceptable, that it's a struggle for some parents," the dad said, adding that his job as a parent is to "raise her to be a good person in a safe environment. It isn't my job to choose whom she likes or whether or not she likes coconuts. I think that's why the analogy struck with so many people. An argument about coconuts was as inane as an argument about whom someone chooses to spend the rest of their lives with."