Savage Love Podcast
Got a question for Dan Savage?
Call the Savage Love Podcast at 206-201-2720
or email Dan at email@example.com.
Savage Love Archives
Thrills and Spills
Centenary College of Louisiana
More from Dan Savage
Organic Chemistry Is Hard!
SL Letter of the Day: Go Somewhere
SL Letter of the Day: Open Up
Colbert to Succeed Letterman
Fox News Blows Lid Off Spring Break Blow
Books by Dan Savage
- American Savage
- It Gets Better: Coming Out, Overcoming Bullying, and Creating a Life Worth Living
- The Commitment: Love, Sex, Marriage, and My Family
- Things I've Learned from Women Who've Dumped Me
- Skipping Towards Gomorrah
- The Kid: What Happened After My Boyfriend and I Decided to Go Get Pregnant
Want a Second Opinion?
Contact Dan Savage
January 9, 2003
I am a single parent with a wonderful 15-year-old son. My son's father, my ex, is a gay man. We've accepted this and we love him dearly, but there are issues affecting my son that my ex is ignoring. My ex has also been diagnosed with HIV. This was heartbreaking news for all of us. Now my ex has announced that he is undergoing hormonal treatments to become a woman. He kept his therapy and the entire process a secret until two weeks ago. My son is deeply disturbed by this, and I don't know how to help him. Basically, he is angry.
I'm not saying that my ex should put his life on hold for us, but he has blatantly disregarded how his choices affect our son. Our son was told about his dad's sexuality when he was younger. But as he got older, he began to fully understand the hatred, bigotry, and ignorance in our society when it comes to having a gay loved one. Unfortunately, his father has flaunted his sexuality in inappropriate settings (school), and other children have noticed. I've explained to my ex that I'm not asking him to give up who he is, but to be more aware of how his behavior affects our son's life.
Dan, what can I do? My ex has hit us with one thing after another. My son is truly upset at the prospect of having two moms. I don't know how to make my ex see that it's not just about him.
Heartsore And Saddened
On the one hand, HAS, I want to tell your son that it's not his father's fault that some people are hateful and ignorant. Your ex shouldn't have to hide his sexuality at your son's school any more than my boyfriend and I hide our sexuality at our son's school. (We also don't flaunt our sexuality--i.e., we don't make out at parent-teacher conferences, and we don't wear those hi-fucking-larious "Pitcher" and "Catcher" T-shirts when we have his friends over for a playdate.) It simply isn't fair for your son to hold the existence of anti-gay bigots against his father, and I sincerely hope my son won't hold their existence against me.
On the other hand...
Divorced parents, gay dad, the HIV bombshell... and now, so suddenly, a woman. That's an awful lot for a high-school-age kid, especially a boy, to deal with. The tranny activists are going to jump down my throat for this, but... it seems to me that your ex could've put off the sex change until after his son was out of high school. One of the things parents are supposed to do is make sacrifices, big and small, for the sake of their children. And while I think people have a right to do pretty much as they please (and parents are people), I also believe that children have a right to some stability and constancy from the adults in their lives. Perhaps I'm a transphobic bigot, but I honestly think waiting a measly 36 months to cut your dick is a sacrifice any father should be willing to make for his 15-year-old son. Call me old-fashioned.
Unfortunately, your ex wasn't willing to make that sacrifice (selfish tranny!), or it never occurred to him to make that sacrifice (stupid tranny!). So what do you tell your son? Tell him his father can do what he likes--suck dick and flaunt it, get his dick cut off and flaunt that. If dear ol' Dad chooses to live as a woman, well, there's not a lot you or your son can do about it. But guess what? Your son is old enough to do what he likes, and if he chooses to live without speaking to or seeing his father, well, there's not a whole lot his father can do about that. If your son can't deal with having his dad/mom/whatever around right now, support him and tell his dad/mom/whatever to leave the two of you alone for the time being.
Don't get me wrong, HAS: I hope that in the long run your son eventually accepts his dad/mom/whatever and forgives his dad/ mom/whatever for being imperfect. When your son is an adult, he'll hopefully be able to forgive his dad/mom/whatever for his selfish decision to run off and have a sex-change operation when his only son, like all teenagers, was struggling with his own identity and didn't need to struggle with his father's identity.
From the tedious "Gor" fanatics in Yahoo! chatrooms to the cynics in charge of ALT.com, the web has been useless in helping me further my goal of finding a nice, non-fucked-up yuppie dominatrix. It would be easier for me to find a sadistic male master, I think, if I were gay. I am jealous of gay culture on this score, but bellyaching serves no purpose. Will I ever find an abusive female partner? Or are statistics working against me?
Sadly Undominated Bottom
Since sexually dominant women are rare, SUB, finding one can be difficult. So why not make one? Meet a nice, non-fucked-up yuppie woman, and once you've determined that you like her, let her know about your kinks. Don't be creepy about it; most sophisticated women, yuppie or otherwise, are aware that there are kinky men out there. So there's no need to make a tearful confession. Instead, initiate an upbeat, alcohol-fueled conversation about her turn-ons, your turn-ons, her wildest experiences, your wildest experiences, her ultimate fantasies, your ultimate fantasies, etc. You might have to repeat this process with two or three women before you meet one who is either willing or aching to abuse you. Good luck.
Every once in a while you print a letter from a desperate reader who needs help pulling off a hard-to-realize fantasy. I hope you'll help a nice, normal gay couple out. My boyfriend of five years wants to be ordered around and, um, fucked completely senseless by a hot, muscular, older, prematurely gray daddy type. (I'm not the daddy type myself, sadly.) My boyfriend is 29, with a beautiful face, a hot body, and the world's greatest butt--and he wants this daddy-type guy to be straight and/or married. I told you this was a tall order.
We've seen lots of letters in your column from "mostly" straight married guys who want some gay action on the side. If there's one out there reading this, we'd love to hear from him. We've been monogamous up to this point, we're HIV negative, and we're looking for total discretion. (We don't want our friends to know about this any more than our ideal straight guy, if he's out there, wants his wife to know about it.) If a good-looking, mostly straight, in-great-shape, gray-haired Savage Love fan out there wants the occasional boy on the side, he should drop us a note! For our sign-off, could you print our e-mail address? Thanks, Dan!
PS: You're probably wondering what's in this for me. My boyfriend will love me for making this happen, and I would really get off on watching.
Actually, firstname.lastname@example.org, I'm wondering what's in this for me. I guess it gets my good deed for the calendar year 2003 out of the way, but that's about it. You're welcome.