A.P.E.X. - Ask. Ponder. Educate. [X].

Mama Dragons

February 14, 2019
The Whiting Room

Reflection | Podcast | VideoPhotos




Mama Dragons: A Mission of Love
Support, Educate, and Empower Mothers of LGBTQIA Children

Mama Dragons started as a Facebook message thread driven by the need of a group of Latter Day Saint women from Utah to understand how support their LGBTQIA children. The Mama Dragons group exists to inspire and empower mothers with LGBTQIA children. They provide an educational and loving space for mothers, so they can celebrate their child and support their family’s unique journey.

Resources and Groups:
https://mamadragons.org
https://www.prideofsouthernutah.org
https://www.equalityutah.org
https://www.hrc.org/local-issues/utah
https://www.suu.edu/allies/
https://tbirdconnection.campuslabs.com/engage/organization/qsa

Books:


Reflection

 

To celebrate love on Valentine's Day, the A.P.E.X. Events series invited two representatives from Mama Dragons, an organization whose mission is "to support, educate, and empower mothers of LGBTQ children," to talk with students and faculty about the organization and their individual stories.

This event was truly heartwarming, as the mothers opened up and shared their honest feelings at the time, which showed that while coming out is difficult for the person doing it, it can also be painful for the parents. This is especially true when LGBTQ identities seem to be at odds with religious views.

One of the mothers, Rachel, said that her daughter came out as transgender when she was 12. Rachel had trouble coming to terms with what this would mean for her daughter and her family, but to some extent, she was glad to now understand why her daughter was depressed for the past few years. Even though it would be a difficult road for her, this allowed Rachel to help her daughter work through the struggles that arose from hiding her identity for years.

According to Rachel, one of the difficult parts of the process was explaining to her other children what being transgender means. One of the resources that helped her was a book called "Red: A Crayon Story," in which a blue crayon is put in a red label. Rachel noted that this wasn't too difficult a concept for her children to understand; one of her sons felt bad that his sister was hurting and that they unknowingly hurt her by using the wrong label.

The other mother, Lisa, knew for years that her son was gay; when he was in elementary school, she heard a voice that told her her son was gay, so she had time to research it and figure out how it fit into her religious views. Eventually, her son came out at the age of 23. What she expressed to her son—the same thing Rachel expressed to her daughter—was a message of unconditional love.

Both Rachel and Lisa are prominent members of the southern Utah Mama Dragons community, which as a whole, has around 2,000 members. They explained that this support network is necessary because many mothers struggle with the realization that their children are LGBTQ. They mentioned that although it may sound dramatic, some mothers stop functioning for weeks after finding out, because to them, this is a matter with eternal consequences.

Following their talk, the mothers answered questions. During this time, they explained that with trans individuals, it's better to ask questions than assume you know all the answers. They also stressed the power of language, and that when religious people struggle to accept others, they need to go to the core of their beliefs and be Christlike.

Any mothers interested in Mama Dragons can get more information by going to their website. In addition, a network for fathers, Dragon Dads, has information on the Mama Dragons website.

by Billy Clouse



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