My brother came out as gay.. what do we do

edited August 19 in Personal Issues
During my brother's sophomore year he came out as gay to my parents. They were really shocked and sad. My brother used to go to church a lot, but he stopped going because kids at church would make fun of him for having a 'gay' voice. My dad got into an argument with him and said he has to marry a girl. My dad thinks its a choice, my mom knows he still has these feelings towards boys, however she has no idea what to do. 
People at my local church ask me if hes gay and I have no idea what to say, so I reply with "I don't know".  My brother being gay is something I think about everyday and its caused me to have depression. What do you think we should do? As a copt you can just imagine how tough this is.

Comments

  • You should not be depressed about your brother. Pray for him, and be supportive of him as a human being. We are all sinners.

    The best way to work with your brother is to show compassion. There is no need to be so upset that it interfers with the value your own well-being.

    Of course, it is natural to be angry at first, but in time you will come to find that he is still a part of your family.

    He will not be able to be a part of our church, but that does not mean he should not be a part of the family. He is going through a complex time in his life. I am sure he is aware of the repercussions of
    his choice, and shaming him is not going to make anything better or convince him change his feelings.

    If he says he is gay, then you should just admit that he is still your brother, and as our Fathers have taught us -- and most importantly our Savior Jesus Christ -- to be compassionate to those who feel alienated; To those who do not expect that understanding response, it is the first step towards Christ. Jesus sat and spoke with those who He was not, "supposed" to associate Himself with and He still did it out of the most basic human trait: decency.

    Be there for him, pray for him. Perhaps in time, your compassion, love and support of him will bring him back to Christ.
  • Wise advice from Italiancoptic.

    My prayers for your brother.
  • What are your brothers thoughts concerning church, family and life outside his family?
  • there is a world of difference between having gay feelings and acting on them. if i feel attracted to my neighbour, whether that person is male or female, it is not sinful. sin starts when i start to plan what i would like to do to my neighbour!

    so first i want to echo the words of 2 of our priests who have taught about this and say that a person who resists gay temptation is just as holy as a person who resists opposite sex temptation.

    of course we don't have gay marriage in orthodox church, but also there are people who don't get married because they become monks, or they are busy with their job, which they do to the glory of God, or they have emotional issues which make relationships difficult for them. none of these people are sinning, and all of them, including the person with gay feelings, need our love and support and not our criticism and gossip.

    now if your brother is in a physical relationship already, this is sin, and the best you can do is to love him, keep in touch with him and encourage him to discuss this with a priest at confession. be ready for him to return to the church.

    don't EVER make that more difficult for him.

    certainly you don't need to answer questions about his sexuality. if under pressure, ask the person who he or she has sexual desires or sinful thoughts for. that should make that person embarrassed enough to shut up, as we should only talk about these things in confession or with a spouse (even in confession you should not go in to detail about your sins, just label it sin and don't glorify the sin by describing your evil thoughts in detail).
    if someone does not know your brother well enough to have that information directly from him, that means the person is not close enough to be trusted with that information.

    about marrying a woman, whoa, I feel sorry for her! would you like your sister in a fake marriage where she can never have children? what an awful thought! so don't let that happen to someone else's sister.
    finally may God guide you and give you great grace and patience. may He also lead your brother on the right path of not acting on these feelings.
    speak to your confession father if you need guidance and support and take care of your own spiritual life.

    you can only bring your brother closer to God if you are already there yourself.
  • My prayers for your family in this very differcult time, with the feelings of loss and the actions of some of the church members judging your brother. Those in the church are to be like humble servants in Christ and for Christ. That is to say Christ came and served humanity and showed us to do likewise. Not to put ourselves above others but to serve them. Those whom who have judged and gossiped have put themselves above, but on their part it maybe out of fear. So for the sake of reconcilation they also need forgiveness and not to be judged.Our emotions are very important. God's love conquers fear and your brother salvation is at stake. Your brother can still be pure in heart just like the rest of us need to purify our hearts and needs to be in church despite the gossip. It's hard but he needs to focas and igore them the best he can.
    Sorry Mabsoota, I have every respect to the two priests but it's lust we're fighting and there is the lust that is the action but there also is the lust which means strong feelings. It says the world and it's lustfull desires will pass away, those who perform the will of God abide forever.
    The only thing I'm not liking about gay is self promotion. Because it becomes a statement of lifestyle. Even so, never give up on your brother like I have never given up on my big sister who became a drug accict when young and wanted to kill herself. I walked in on her and she shouted at me to leave. I wouldn't and told I'm staying, told her I love her and cried. She broke. I knew she couldn't do it otherwise she wouldn't of cared if I stayed. Your brothers love for His family means everything.
    My advice is stay as close as you can to your brother, love with forgiveness as much as possibe and I pray your father loves him also, he is still his son.
  • My sincerest apologies to the two priests. Yes we can still be holy if we resist gay temptation as well as sexual temptation.

    The environment in church is most important. God had given us a sanctuary. A place where we can pray, feel safe and be of one accord to be unified.
    Judgement on who we are is left for God for the day of judgement.
    There is a difference between guilt and shame. Guilt is when we do something wrong and feel bad about it and say I did a bad thing. Shame is about who we are and when we have done something wrong someone else says we have done something wrong we feel we are bad.
    If we are to live our lifes in Gods way we are to heal sin, not to shame and treat others in shame as though there is no mercy for them. That is the real shame and I say shame because the environment can breed a culture unless it is stopped and then it becomes just guilt if there is repentance.
    The day after I made my post I read an article about a boy of only nine who had been bullied who came out as been gay. He died and his mother was so grieved.
    This is what say she said " He didn't deserve this. He wanted to make everybody happy even when he wasn't. I want him back so bad. He was beautiful. I lost my greatest gift.
    God loves us and it's not just the love we know the human love but it comes from His divinity. Divine love and one we partake and afford great responsibilities by His wisdom. I myself confess to have lost the very quiet thoughtful person I once was and have become reactionary. But at least I know of my former self into which God can return me. As for others there needs to be the quietness in their live's as well that God gives us the decernment we need to make the right choices.
    Saint Arsenius said "I've talked a lot and regreted talking, but for the silence I never did.

  • Pray for him, that he realizes that this is an abomination to God. That God opens his eyes.
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