Happy Holidays: Mom Hollie

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Dear Adopted Holiday Child,

The holidays can be daunting.  And if you’re out in the world struggling with your sexual identity without support from family, the holidays can be disheartening as well. But guess what, you have a whole troop of mothers out here wishing you a blessed holiday season and a fantastic new year.

The main reason I agreed to be a part of this awesome endeavor is because my son came out to me when he was sixteen. I was supportive on the outside. I volunteered during gay pride week in our community. I donated to the LGBT in our community. I provided a safe place for my son and his friends to share what they were going through and offered as much advice as I could, mainly in the area of safety. But on the inside, it took me a minute to embrace the fabulousness of this lifestyle . . . Love

You see, my father was gay, and in the south in the 1960’s it was even harder to be true to yourself. Instead, he got married and had four kids. He lived a lie, while living that lie he was unhappy, was not very nice to his wife and kids, and eventually left and we never saw him again. That was 30 years ago. 2012 is a lot different than the 1960s.

During this holiday season I want you to know that you are in a way better place. Everyone may not understand what you’re going through. Your parents may not have fully embraced your unique fabulousness yet, but you have a support group and most importantly, you have lots of adoptive mothers routing for your success, love, and bliss.

Wow, it’s hard to believe that four years ago my son, who just turned 20, told me, with fear in his eyes, that he is gay. He said, Mom, I have something to tell you. I’m gay.” I smiled, gave him a hug, kissed him on his soft beautiful cheek and replied with excitement, “Who do you want for me to meet? Is he cute?”

As my Holiday Child, imagine it is me, your Adopted Holiday Mom you proclaim your true awesome self to, and feel the excitement from my response to your proclamation: “Wow! Who is the lucky person that is blessed with the love of my holiday child?”

Don’t allow this time of year to bring you sadness because of your family’s inability to accept your sexual orientation. Don’t be sad because you might be spending this time of year without your true love as you gather with family and friends. Forgive them. Forgive yourself for being mad, or upset about the situation. They only know what they have been taught and may need a little time to accept the true you. It took me a little time. But you know what? It took my son a little time too. We are all in this journey together. Some of us have shorter legs.

This is the time of year for forgiveness, and what is the purpose of life if not to love and the holidays to forgive.

I will think of you each day during this holiday season, and wish for you love, happiness, and the knowledge that someone sincerely cares about you and how you feel. There is no one in the world exactly like you, you are fabulous just the way you are, and you are loved.

Most importantly, you are not alone.

All my love,

Mom Hollie



  1. Paula says:

    Thanks very much, it means a lot to know that someone out there cares about me (all of us) and love me for who I am. I’m not officially out with my parents, but I think they’ll understand. I’m afraid to tell them , I’m 15. I’m living a lie, and it hurts. So thanks to you, because I can be the trully me with you. Thanks mom, you’ll be my holiday mom

    • Jackie says:

      You are so very loved. I’ll be holding a special place for you in my heart and around the tree this year. Who you really are is very welcome here. You can relax into being you…and trust you’ll be met with open arms. Xoxo

  2. Rich says:


    Reading through all these holiday wishes from all you wonderful moms (and dad!) is really making me emotional. Partly because I know now that there are so many of you out there, accepting and loving, even of those that are not your own flesh and blood, and that gives me hope. But also partly because I can’t yet share everything I want with my family. I’ve told my parents about my boyfriend, as well as an aunt and a cousin, but the rest of my family is still unaware for the typical reasons: not knowing how they’d react, not wanting to add pressure to an already stressful time of year, etc.

    I only just came out to my parents a couple months ago, and my aunt and cousin a couple weeks ago. It’s helpful to hear that even some of those parents that have accepted their children as LGBTQ needed time to get there. It makes me worry less about when that will happen and believe more that it will happen, even if it does take a while. It also makes me worry less about telling the rest of my family – though I’m still not ready for that step just yet, I think it will make it a bit easier. It also helps that you moms have a sense of humor – shorter legs! Good one 🙂

    Thank you for sharing your message, I will remember your words this holiday season as I go through it, trying not to be sad without my loving boyfriend, and to remember that my family isn’t doing anything wrong, it’s that they don’t know or haven’t come to understand and accept my situation just yet. But that will change soon, and I’m sure that everything will be better once it happens.

    • Jackie says:

      Rich, Thank YOU for this note! Oh my gosh, so much love and healing you’ve just sent out into the world! I love that Hollie’s story eased some of the isolation and worry of coming out or simply just being who you are. Yes, the ‘closet’ around being LGBTQ is being opened. All those ugly, old judgments are being cleaned out. For some this takes time. I’m so encouraged that you have family who know your truth, and whatever their reaction, it sounds as though they are still there for you, with you in their own way. Your story speaks of love, even if it’s in a way a little less clear. You inspire me and I think you’re amazing. Xoxo

  3. Antonio Neto says:

    Mom Hollie!
    Thank you so very much for your words! I got teared eyes! I am healing step by step, but it is hard when you don’t have a supportive family… But as Amir, I found love, with my 2 years partner! We try to make each others life as brighter as possible! And your son is very lucky to have you as a loving mother! Please keep loving him and through him let The world know and feel your love! I can tell you I already am feeling it!

    Beijos, your holiday Brazilian son

    Antonio Neto

    • Hollie says:

      Hi Ananio,

      Tears of joy I hope. Take care of yourself and your partner. We all deserve to be loved!


  4. Mariano G says:


    Coming from a black mother this means so much to me and I am sure many others out there. In our community we seem to embrace religious vitriolic bigotry more than we accept our LGBTIQ children. We often times refuse to discuss sex and sexuality in our community while our children continue to die of HIV and other diseases. I celebrate you for having a black mom who is brave enough to stand for your child and let him know he is loved and supported. Thank you Hollie, SHINE!


    • Hollie says:


      You are so right about our African American culture. Sex/sexuality is a topic as a group, choose to ignore even though it is an important topic. That’s another reason why I wanted to be a part of this important project.

      Have a wonderful holiday!


  5. Jill says:

    Mom Hollie, you are an amazing person. It shouldn’t be amazing that your first reaction to your son’s announcement was to be excited to meet his partner, but it is. My parents’ reaction was to ask that I keep my gayness secret, to live and die not ever telling anyone. As if.

    I haven’t been asked to Christmas dinner for years. I’ve never met my nieces or nephews. I have a wonderful partner that I’d marry, but neither of us has any family to celebrate with, so there’s no point doing it just to have an expensive party.

    I hope that someday I can be like you, Mom Hollie. I’d like to help kids just be who they are, and to support them in that. Because you’re right that there’s a lot of fabulousness out there. It’d be nice to help more people see the good in it.

    • Hollie says:

      Hi Jill,

      Congratulations on your marriage. I am happy you have love in your life. That is what’s important.

      You and your wife will be in my thoughts over the holidays.


    • Jackie says:

      Well Jill….you’ll be with so many of us for Christmas dinner this year. Although miles and our physical lives may separate us, virtual reality of hearts uniting is a powerful phenomena. One day your desire to marry will be met with much celebration. While we can’t replace the heartache of estrangement from your own family, we can offer you a true spirit of love and celebration for who you are this holiday season. Already perfect…just as you are. Xoxo

  6. Hollie says:

    Dear Amir,
    I am so sorry that you went through such a struggle, but I am also so glad that you found someone who truly loves you. I know it may be difficult, but you have to find a way to forgive yourself and your family. It’s liberating, believe me! It took me a long time to forgive my father. I’ve learned the road to forgiveness is understanding. I eventually understood his struggle.

    My father is no longer with us. He died of complications from AIDS 17 years ago. We spoke before he past and I still did not forgive him on his death bed. My point…It’s not easy to forgive and it seems especially hard to forgive yourself. I forgave him and myself before my son hit puberty. I believed I had too. As mothers we wear many hats. One of those hats is a teacher/role model hat with pink, purple and white flowers. I knew I needed to teach my children compassion, empathy, and love. In order to wear that hat with pride I have to live it.

    Amir, thank you for taking the time to respond to my letter and I am so glad it touched you in a positive way. Enjoy your holidays with your love and you will be in my thoughts.

    Holiday Mom Hollie

    • Amir says:

      You are slowly giving me hope, each and every one of you who shines your light upon our souls. We who have struggled with ourselves for so long. It is I who should be thank you.


  7. Anna says:

    Thank you for this encouragement. It has taken me a long time to try to come to forgiveness with my family. Although today I’ve mostly forgiven, I haven’t forgotten how they treated me and I will never trust them to care for their child again. For me, that is self-preservation, but it is still sad. I’m sad that all of the love and the wonderful life they gave me as a child vanished as soon as they realized I was gay. I know I would never do that to my son or daughter. That’s why I signed up to receive letters from parents whom I can trust and who would love me the same before and after I came out to them. Your words really warm up the holiday season for me and I can’t thank you enough.

    By the way, the girl that has my love is named Chelsey. 🙂 We have been friends for many many many years and we’ve been together for 2 years. I am so happy and, this Christmas, I will be spending with her!

    • Hollie says:

      I am so glad my letter touched you in a positive way. You are blessed with Chelsey’s love this holiday and I will be thinking about you both. Give Chelsey a big hug for me.


    • Jackie says:

      Anna…I could feel you ‘light up’ when you told us about Chelsey! Your love and joy shines bright…and for that I’m so pleased. Xoxo

  8. Amir says:

    I have to thank you. I’ve been struggling very much with the idea of forgiveness – but not for my family. Coming out to them could be life-threatening, so I haven’t ever told them and I don’t ever plan to.

    It’s myself I don’t know if I can forgive.

    I grew up in a culture that tells me I’m a monster for being a homosexual. I’ve been everything – a drunk, a playboy, a partyer. For a long time I was a very, very angry person. I took that out on other people, but it wasn’t them that I hated, it was myself. I was living an incredible lie, pretending to be something I wasn’t.

    My partner saved me.

    My wonderful, kind, partner saw through the man that I was to the man I should have been. He saved me from myself.

    But even now it’s still hard to forgive myself. There’s a part of me that still hates what I am, because it’s hard to escape that kind of cultural bias.

    I understand the anger your father felt, and I hope … I hope that he’s found his happiness and was able to reconnect with his children years later. And if he hasn’t I hope that you’ve forgiven him, because no one else knows better than I do what it’s like to live a lie.

    Your Holiday Son,


    • Antonio Neto says:

      Amir, I read your letter, and I felt like you recently. As you I was very engaged into catholic rituals, and even got a girlfriend. I started living a lie as well. But then, I saw that it was not right for me, and finally decided to accept who I was, and who I am. I can tell you my dear friend, healing is a process that takes time, and sometimes it needs some reflection. Believe me, sometimes either you want to disapear, but now your beloved partner saved you! For me, this is, until today, the most great and beautiful love demonstration at all! Anyway, let me tell you that you are getting there! Stay true to yourself and to your partner! I have a 2 year partner as well, and I can tell you, it is so good to be loved, to know that you have someone you can trust. Hope you do have it in your partner. Stay true! Stay confident! You are on the right track!
      Your Brazilian friend
      Antonio Neto

      • Jackie says:

        Lovely. Antonio…such a source of love and support, your words to Amir. This site was created for us moms to offer love, for you to come here and feel loved and safe. To witness the caring spirit shared by ALL who gather here is an unexpected gift for me, too. I applaud each of you for your openness here, for sharing your stories on behalf of yourselves, and whether you realize it or not–on behalf of so many others. I wholly believe that as we heal ourselves we heal the world. There is much love and healing moving out into the world–seen and unseen–because of each one of you. Love to each…xo

    • Antonio Neto says:

      Amir, happy new year dear friend!!
      How are you doing?
      Lots of love to you and your partner! Hope you two are doing very well!
      Beijos from Brazil

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