By Erin Sherbert
By Howard Cole
By Erin Sherbert
By Erin Sherbert
By Leif Haven
By Erin Sherbert
By Chris Roberts
By Kate Conger
Debbie once again turns perky. "When I walked into the Castro, my daughter said she was going to take me to the best taco place around. And I wasn't going to go, but I prayed my way through the Castro," she says. "And I mean it was like, 'What an experience.'"
She pauses and then adds, with mild confusion, "I had a girlfriend tell me that I was in the closet!"
"The kids, what do you tell them?!" I ask.
"Carl, would you like to share?" Carol asks compassionately.
"I do indeed," I reply solemnly, slowly ticking off the concerns that trouble the Gaymore household. "Nowadays there are so many outside forces. The TV and the movies make it seem like it's acceptable to be gay. Can you believe that?"
As group members nod in agreement, I gesture to my fake wife. "Like, we once went to a church that made it seem acceptable to be homosexual. Isn't that something?! Sure, we're all God's children, but what are they going to say next -- that necrophilia is OK?!
"What do you tell the kids?!" I spew with mock anger. Then I repeat it slowly, for dramatic effect:
"What ... do ... you ... tell ... the ... kids?!"
My troubles foster sympathy.
"Our children are exposed to things that we were never exposed to. We were being bad kids if we drove out of a drive-in movie theater with the speaker still connected to the car," Debbie cackles.
"We're seeing the gay warning signs! We're seeing the warning signs," I say, hitting the back of a chair. "He doesn't like sports."
"He just ends up playing with the Barbies," adds an almost tearful Isabella Gaymore.
"And he gets picked on by other kids," I state.
"They call him sissy-boy," adds Isabella.
"Yeah, sissy-boy or just plain sissy. They call him ...," I declare and then list other examples; the members of the group nod with each new entry. "... homo, felcher, fister, tea-bagger, truck driver on the Hershey highway ...."
I elaborate on the evil outside forces descending on our fake son.
"Like, there's that show Will & Grace.We caught him watching that," I spout. "We can only watch him a good 12 hours a day and can't watch him 24 hours day. If there was something we could do ahead of time ... something to prevent it!"
"We're especially, really worried since we're living in San Francisco now," my fake wife says, explaining that the Gaymores just moved one month ago from a small town in Minnesota, located, ironically, not far from the large crying woman's hometown.
"So you're in gay culture shock!" Carol clarifies.
"I even saw two men holding hands," Isabella states with horror. "And our son sees that!"
"What do you tell the kids?!" I remark with a sad, disturbed expression.
"How do you explain that?" the crying woman agrees and then continues to cry. "I'm sitting here thinking we are both originally from the same place. God brought us both here for a purpose. I wish I would have seen the signs you've seen."
Carol, who has no counseling degrees of any type, decides it's time to begin discussing the proper ways of dealing with the warning signs of gayness, such as a fascination with long hair, earrings, or scarves.
"In child development there are positive steps you can take," says Debbie, who also is not certified as a counselor. "There are positive ways to make him feel that playing with Barbie dolls is not acceptable."
"What about when he tries on my dresses and makeup?" asks my fake wife. "Should I tell my little Tabby-Wabby that it's not cute?"
"Seems he's bringing that home from those outside influences," Debbie retorts. "There are ways to tell them, 'It's not acceptable to wear Mom's clothes and Mom's makeup, but come in here I'll show you how to put on aftershave!' Their little spirits are just so susceptible."
"What about if it's being taught in our schools? Should we change schools?" I cry, slamming down my fist.
"I was just about to say, 'Oh, get him into a private Christian school, if there's any way possible,'" Carol counsels.
"It's funny, they even have a school especially for gay people in New York City," my fake wife notes with faux disgust, throwing fuel on the fire. "Can you believe it? It's specifically for gay teens. It's a public high school."
"The kids! The kids!" I say. "What do you tell them?!"
"God has given them protection. And sometimes when I say pray about it, I don't mean to sound as stupid as that sounds," Debbie says, trying not to sound stupid. "I believe you can pray about it, but God gave me the ability to take action. I always say, 'He feeds the birds, but he doesn't always bring the food to the nest.' We got a big responsibility in that."
"He feeds the birds, but he doesn't always bring the food to the nest," I repeat.
Carol, who has no medical qualifications whatsoever, explains the science behind homosexuality.
"People are not born gay. The so-called gay gene has not been proven," she says. "People call them sissy-boy or queer or fag, and they begin to believe that."