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“Mom and Dad…I’m gay…” That long pause is the information sinking and spreading like a disease. My parents sit, absorbing what they just heard, not comprehending how hard that was for me to utter. The fact of the matter is, first reactions are always the same: “We will always love you,” “We don’t care,” “it’s okay.” But then come the subtle hints that they’re not as “okay” as they said.

Apparently the word “gay” comes with strict definitions. The obvious stereotype: a feminine and flamboyant male. But in reality, it can relate to any male?–flamboyant or not. “Gay” can mean masculine or feminine. The most powerful definition of the word is that it means happy. As for me, I try not to live with labels because being gay is only one part of me.

“I don’t want you telling anyone yet,” was the hardest thing to hear, especially from my parents. Secrets slowly decay trust. People need to understand I am the same person, before and after I tell them about my sexuality. Lies were my parent’s way of hiding me from cruelty. Each insult or stab at our life makes us–LGTBQ youth–a more confident and progressive people.

“Are you positive?” “How can you be sure? You’re 16.” These are just some of the questions my parents bombarded me with. I know who I am. But parents sometimes don’t want information like this to spread, in fear of repercussions. Were they worried they might lose a friend? Or be disliked by a family member? Were they putting their feelings before my well-being? Sure, sometimes people judge me but anonymous hate is the most profound. The trick is to remember I am special. I am unique. And no amount of words or bullying can ever take that away. My parents would find this out later on.

Stereotypes, secrecy, lies and hate have been my mountains to climb. But I came out on top. I have overcome adversity. I have fought through the pain. And I have found myself. I encourage others to be open-minded. I am accepting and diverse and I believe everyone is equal.

“Mom and Dad…I’m gay.” That long pause would be the information uprising and growing like a balloon. My parents sit, thinking of how to express their support for their son. Over time, seeing my changes and struggles, my parents realized it doesn’t matter. Gay or straight, I’m their son. The fact of the matter is this: they will always love me.

1. Using information from Case #1, Case #2, or Case #3 from Dr. Stanford’s video presentation, discuss the underlying neurobiological

1. Using information from Case #1, Case #2, or Case #3 from Dr. Stanford’s video presentation, discuss the underlying neurobiological mechanisms and any biopsychosocial factors contributing to obesity in the case you choose. (MO 9.6) 2. Discuss any one (1) of the following: a. According to the American Medical Association, like addiction, obesity is classified as a disease. How are underlying neurobiological mechanisms similar in addiction and obesity? (MO 9.3) OR c. As social workers, we are particularly concerned with health disparities. Obesity is disproportionately higher in minorities, to include associated health conditions and early mortality. Take another look at the CDC website (Links to an external site.). Why do you think this is true? What would a culturally-informed intervention model look like? (MO 9.6) 3. Respond to the posts of at least two peers who responded to different prompts than you did. WILL POST ONCE YOU REPLY.

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