Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Living well is the best revenge

My son just found out that he has been admitted to a PhD program at Stanford University. This is kind of a big deal, or at least it is to me. Stanford is in the first tier of grad schools in my son's field of study. It's a particular victory for him because even though he was a top student at an Ivy League undergraduate program he was wait-listed last year and had to reapply this past fall. So, basically, I'm ecstatic. As parents you root for your kids and watch them have their ups and downs. It's very gratifying when something big goes right for them.

It's also a big deal for me personally. There were a lot of years where I struggled to get my kids raised under difficult circumstances. (I'll blog about this sometime.) During that period, I regret to say that some LDS acquaintances and members of my extended family were judgmental about my divorce and "lifestyle choices." Dire outcomes for my children were predicted.

Let's just say that their unkind predictions were slightly off the mark. If you judge by measures like educational outcomes, leadership or social adjustment, my kids are just incredible. IMHO. I'll line my kids up against any of the naysayers'.

The fact that I have been able to help my kids get as far as they have educationally and personally is something this divorced gay dad is very proud of.

* * *


Until I wrote this post I didn't realize how worked up I was about this topic. Ha ha. Now back to our regular programming.

(To celebrate his grad school admission, my son and I are going on a father/son trip to Europe next month. I'm going to show him some of the places where I was a missionary, way back when he was just a wannabe zygote. Life can be sweet.)

11 comments:

[kɹeɪ̯g̊] said...

EUROPE?!?!

I'm sooooo jealous. Where are you going? Can I come?

MoHoHawaii said...

Craig,

You should have to picked the right gay dad in the pre-existence if you wanted to get invited on this particular trip. :- )

We are going to Amsterdam, then into the Belgian countryside and then to Paris. We'll be there about eight days.

Cheers!
MHH

Peter said...

My uncle is a very well to do man who started Word Perfect, the first word processor. He was highly successful and everyone loved him until he came out of the closet, divorced his wife, and "became" gay. Then he was ostracized in his community and in my family. I remember a conversation I had with my mother in which we were talking about Bruce's choice to get divorced and she mentioned the horrible effects that it must have had on his children. When I pointed out that every single one of his children was, without fail, a returned missionary and married in the Temple, her remark was, "Well, that shows you how remarkable his wife was."

That attitude hurts me. Later I talked to my uncle, and he told me about attending Church with his children and wife even after he had come out of the closet. He did it not because he liked church, but because he wanted to send a consistent message to his children. I know that the success of his children has been influenced by his example and goodness.

MoHoHawaii said...

Hi Peter,

Prejudice hopes for failure. It is ugly and small minded... not a very admirable trait.

Conservative, orthodox thinking often manufactures prejudice.

I hope your uncle was able to build a good life for himself and his kids.

In my case, neither of my kids was raised in the Church (my ex-wife quit about the same time I did), so I haven't had to deal with that issue as much.

Juditude said...

A comment to Peter. I have met your uncle several times and he is a fine man. His community involvement and sense of self are admired by many in both the gay and straight community. He done good!!

Scot said...

I've met your uncle a number of times too Peter. Small world here in gay Utah :-).

And much congratulations to you and your son, MHH! I can only hope to know what that feels like some day.

MoHoHawaii said...

Juditude,

Thanks for your comment.

Scot,

As always, you da man!

Jake said...

Congrats on being a great father and dad! And congrats on your son's achievements. We young gay mormons have so few gay role models. It's nice to have you as one!

MoHoHawaii said...

Thanks for the kind words, Jake. They really mean something to me.

I have to say that I don't see myself as a gay Mormon role model. Resolving the many conflicts of being gay and Mormon wasn't easy for me, and I make no claim that the way I solved these problems is the way you younger folks should. I guess I'm saying that the path I took worked for me but it's not for everyone.

Now, Tim Gunn... there's a role model.

Dave said...

That's awesome about your son getting into to Stanford...I've wanted to go to Stanford since high school and haven't been able to accomplish that but there's still a chance for me for a fellowship program there in 2013! lol

MoHoHawaii said...

Thanks, Dave. Best of luck to you!