Holiday Mom: Peg

peg

To hear Peg read her letter to you, click here! 

My Dear Holiday Child,

You can thank your agender sibling for this letter; I wouldn’t have found this website on my own. We read all the letters last year and I was struck by the number of you that needed a mom. I am overjoyed that they thought I’d be a good Holiday Mom. I understand that you feel like this holiday season will not seem to be as warm and loving as a Hallmark card. Let me let you in on a secret ~ Hallmark cards aren’t real and parents can be stupid and ignorant. We may come across like we have all the answers when, in reality, we may not even know the questions. But we can also be loving, caring and accepting. I am very happy that you have chosen to join our family.

Tensions can rise in any family this time of year. We all have high expectations that may fall flat or hurt us. Please just hold on, it does get better. When things get tough, please remind yourself that it will pass. Your grandmother always told me that “it’ll be alright” and I’d get angry with her “how do you know” and she say that she just knew. I have to admit, that she was right, it did get better.

Please forgive me – I don’t always use the correct pronoun. It doesn’t mean that you aren’t recognized for who you are. It just means that speech patterns can be difficult to change and I’m trying. Also, I’m a hugger. I try to be aware of when you’ve had enough but sometimes I can’t tell. I just love you so much that I can’t let go. If we’re going to be honest, I’m also a cryer.

If you can, please find a little piece in your heart to allow me to comfort you. I’ll bring you some hot chocolate or tea and maybe a few cookies. Do you like homemade chocolate chip ones? We could sit on your bed and not say anything. We could talk about the music you like or the book you just read ~ you are still reading a lot, right? It’s been so long and I’m curious to see how you’ve grown and changed. I so wish that we were sitting together as you read this letter. I would take you in my arms and hold you. I know that you don’t always like it, but I’ll hold you in a loving embrace until you pull away. You’re safe here. I’ll respect your boundaries.

Of all the holidays, Thanksgiving is my favorite. I love to cook many different kinds of vegetables, bake bread and get the house smelling of a huge turkey dinner. I used to love the way my mom set the table. I try to do it as well as her but she had that decorating, artistic flair that passed over me to my children and you. She’s been gone for two years now and I still miss her. If you see me get emotional while I’m cooking it’s because I’m missing my mom. Thank you for asking about her, and for the way you ask if there is anything you can do to help with dinner. You are so polite! It’s nice to have an extra set of hands in the kitchen. No, I don’t think that it’s odd how much you like mashed potatoes, and now you know how to make them without any lumps! Remember when we went apple picking this fall and I made some applesauce and put it in a mason jar? We’ll open one up and have it with dinner. I don’t know why I make so much food, but we’ll have leftovers for a few days. Turkey sandwiches with cranberry sauce and stuffing. Turkey and vegetable soup. Does it get any better than that? It’s time to dim the lights, light the candles and turn on Pandora for some classical music (I know, Spotify is better but I’m stuck on Pandora, what can I say?)

I love when we all finally sit down at the table and I ask everyone to tell me what they are thankful for this year. Your dad will mumble something extraordinary, your siblings will roll their eyes at me, yet say something heartwarming and meaningful. I am looking forward to hearing what you are thankful for this year. What am I thankful for? That’s easy, this year I’m thankful for you. You’ve come into my life and stolen my heart. It’s time to say grace.

We’ll all hold hands and recite the prayer that my family has said for generations. OK, well, your dad and I will say the prayer and the kids will just look blankly at me because they don’t believe in religion anymore and holding hands is just an excuse for squeezing each others hands too tightly, maybe you feel the same way? Well, it’s ok because we’re all in this together. UGH, I hate having milk bottles on the table but they always end up there. I prefer to drink sparkling cider in fancy champagne glasses but one glass is enough because it is too sweet. So it’s time to eat, and eat. I hope you brought your appetite. Yes, first course is always fruit salad, then a regular salad, then all the vegetables and turkey. After dinner we can just hang out for a bit. I’ll always ask if someone wants to play cribbage or some other table game. Don’t worry, no one ever wants too so don’t feel bad about saying no. Someday someone is going to surprise me and say yes. We’ll relax for awhile, call relatives and wish them a happy Thanksgiving. Maybe you’ll go upstairs and listen to music and digest this huge meal. Then it’s on to the pies. I didn’t know you’d never made one before and yours came out great! I love the design you made with the extra dough.

I am so thankful for you. I love you for being you ~ your creativity, the clothes you wear, the way you style your hair, and your opinions. You have amazing strength and insight. I am proud of you too. You are a wondrous person and deserve to be loved, respected, listened to, acknowledged and so much more. You are beautiful inside and out. This would be a better world if more people were like you. I just hope that someday soon you will appreciate you and much as I do.

Please be gentle with yourself. You are the only you that I have. What I hope for you this holiday season is that you know that you are loved and supported for who you are. I am thankful that you were born and came into my life. Please take some time to find a little peace during the holidays, however that may look to you. I will think of you and say a little prayer whenever I have a piece of apple pie!

With all my love,
Your Holiday Mom
Peg

207 comments

  1. Rose says:

    Dear Holiday Mom,
    You have no idea how many times I’ve listened to this letter and just cried. It’s exactly what I wish I could hear from my own mom. Especially the hugging. I miss so terribly much having a mom who loved to hug. Family things have been very complicated in my life. My mom took her life back when I was eight- I didn’t know her for long but from what I can remember, she loved me very much. Everyone tells me I look just like her and even our little mannerisms are the same. I lived with just my (mentally unstable and abusive) dad for a while, then moved with my two siblings into some family friends’ house for a bit (the five kids and their mom were a wonderful family to me, although would not have been accepting had I realized I was a lesbian back then). We moved back in with dad and then he was diagnosed with cancer when I was twelve. He tried to commit suicide when my siblings and I were in the bed with him. We were moved back to the family, then we came back and stayed with dad and some other family friends, and then dad passed the day after my thirteenth birthday. We stayed with the friends that had been taking care of dad for a while and then moved in with my cousins- the place I’m living today. It’s been very hard. Not only do I terribly miss my mom but the family I have now views me as the black sheep- my interests, the way I dress, even the way I speak is laughed at and criticized. They don’t like my friends. They hate my girlfriend (they don’t know that we’re dating or they would surely make me transfer schools). I don’t get much love at all here and the Christmas season makes me feel it more strongly than ever. This letter means so much to me because I know how you feel with missing your mom and I’m a hugger too. Send some hugs my way. Thank you so much for this letter.
    All my love,
    Rose (your holiday child)

    • Peg says:

      My Dear Rose,

      I am glad to hear that my letter touched you. You bring tears to my eyes when you talk about all the loss you’ve experienced. I am so very sorry about the loss of both your parents when you were so very young. Grief is such a hard thing; so much pain and loss can be debilitating and weaken you to your knees.

      You have such a strong history of suicide in your family ~ I hope that you have a safe person that you can talk to about this.

      I wish that I could give you a real, honest to goodness embrace. I would hold you, stroke your hair, wipe your eyes. I would gently rock you and whisper in your ears ~ Rose you are loved. Your Mom and Dad both loved you. I love you ~ it will be alright, it will be alright. I am so sorry Rose. I am hugging you and crying right along with you.

      I am sorry your cousins taunt you. Sometimes life is really hard, and sometimes pain can become unbearable. That is when I need you to be strong. I am glad that you have found your way to be truthful with yourself. Continue to always be true and believe in yourself. Wear the clothes that make you feel good. Love whomever you want. Be the amazing Rose that your Mom and Dad would be proud of. Continue to be the Rose that I love and am proud of.

      My beautiful girl, come back and get hugged whenever you want. I will be here for you, no matter what. I will be here until the end of the season ~ we still have a few more weeks.

      I Love You,
      Mom

  2. Wenxin says:

    Dear mom,
    Thank you for letting me come home (virtually but still). Thank you for adopting me as your holiday child. I wish we could hang out more.
    Love,
    Wenxin

    • Peg says:

      Wenxin,
      We can hang out whenever you want ~ just stop by and I’ll put the kettle on and we can talk (or not talk). I’ll be here all season and I will love you forever,
      Mom

  3. Robbie says:

    Dear Holiday Mom,
    Thank you for writing, I hope your family is having a really nice season so far. I’m sorry about your mom. I hope you have your own stand-in holiday mom of some kind.
    I’ve always been more dependent on chosen families and borrowed families, so this isn’t entirely new to me, but this is the first holiday without my foster family since I’d gotten placed with them. I’m 18 now and moved away to go to college and came out, and I started transitioning this year and my foster mom doesn’t want me coming home for Christmas. She thinks with how I look since I started hormones will confuse my siblings and I’ll be a bad influence.
    I never liked Thanksgiving to begin with, so I thought I wouldn’t mind so much, but it’s really lonely. I miss my little brother and I miss traditions and I miss having people to check in with.
    I don’t understand why this one thing is too much; why this is the place where my foster mom draws the line in loving me. She could accept me for me back when I was an angry suicidal kid that lied and ran away and broke things, she could love me at my worst. It took so long for me to believe that she wouldn’t send me back, that I was really a part of the family. We worked so hard to get here. But now I’m finally doing what makes me happy and I work and get straight A’s in school and I’m taking care of myself and don’t do drugs or lie to her, and just because I look different and have a different name that’s somehow too much to accept or forgive. Somehow out of all of my flaws and screw ups this is the one thing she can’t love and it’s the one thing I can’t change.
    Strangers still misgender me and people at school are rude. I wonder if all this is even worth it sometimes. But I know I can’t go back to how I was before, I can’t live like that anymore. I’d guess I’d rather have a pretend family and be a real person than be a pretend person with a real family. Maybe that will change some day. But I really enjoyed reading your letter and pretending I was playing cribbage or board games and had people to be around who could accept me. I read these letters over and over. I like yours because I actually like reading and mashed potatoes a lot so it made it easier to pretend it was real. I’m grateful for people like you that remind me the world is a bigger place than where I am now with a lot of good people in it. I just need to start finding more of them.
    Sorry my message ended up being so long. Happy holidays.
    Love,
    Robbie

    • Peg says:

      Robbie,
      I am glad that you took the time to write a long letter, it makes me feel more connected to you.

      I am sorry that your foster mom doesn’t accept you. Having worked on a mental health/substance abuse unit for many years I have come to learn that sometimes people think of themselves and their self worth in terms of their role in relation to another person. “I am a brother of _(an alcoholic)___ or I am the parent of _(a drug dealer)___ and so I am _(an enabler)___. and when _(patient)___ changes, my relationship changes and my role changes and I don’t know who I am __(the angry brother/parent)___. The classic example is the now sober alcoholic that gets kicked out of their home because the their family doesn’t know how to relate to someone sober and the newly sober person really needs support and doesn’t get any. Sound familiar? You are on the right path, it’s other people who are on the wrong trail.

      Also, kids are pretty perceptive and quite possibly knew about you before you fully figured it out and so not being home the with them for the holiday may actually more confusing than you coming home on hormones.

      I am VERY proud of you for not doing drugs any more AND how hard you are working at school. My agender child is in college and I know that being accepted is harder than you thought it would be; after all, it isn’t high school!

      Keep being you. I hope you continue to value your relationship with your foster mother ~ she was there when no one else was. I you need to write her a letter, let her know how you feel. Your words are powerful and I’m hoping that she can see and hear that she:
      “could love me at my worst. It took so long for me to believe that she wouldn’t send me back, that I was really a part of the family. We worked so hard to get here. But now I’m finally doing what makes me happy and I work and get straight A’s in school and I’m taking care of myself and don’t do drugs or lie to her, and just because I look different and have a different name that’s somehow too much to accept or forgive. Somehow out of all of my flaws and screw ups this is the one thing she can’t love and it’s the one thing I can’t change.”

      Robbie, you are a beautiful person, full of love and hope and potential, please don’t let anyone take that away from you. I Love You!

      Mom Peg

  4. Caitlin says:

    Hey mom. listening to your voice and reading this letter, I cried. growing up with a family whom didn’t accept me was tough. but since I found you, I feel like a real family. thank you so much for these words and a story of encouragement. I love you so much mom.

    • Peg says:

      Caitlin,
      I am so very glad that you have found me! Come back home for a hug whenever you want.
      I Love You Caitlin,
      Mom

  5. Mica says:

    Hi holiday mum,

    As an Australian, I don’t celebrate Thanksgiving, but having a meal with you sounds lovely.

    Maybe you could teach me your favourite table games, or I could bring my own?

    Mica

    • Chey says:

      Mica, we would love to have you over for games! Isn’t Mom Peg awesome. We love having friends over for any kind of hanging out. Games and food are always welcome. What IS your favorite table game? I’d love to learn about games from “down under,”
      Happy holidays, dear.
      Mama Chey

    • Peg says:

      Mica,
      I Love having an international family!
      What is your favorite holiday meal? We could cook it up.
      I’d like to learn your favorite game or we could play one of mine.
      I Love You,
      Mom

  6. Devon says:

    Dear Holiday Mom,

    After a stressful and lonely thanksgiving, forced back into dresses and hurtful pronouns under the reason that my expression of who I am would “ruin the holidays for everyone”, I am so glad to have found your letter. I can feel all the warmth and love I needed from your beautiful voice. I am also a cryer, for I cried through this letter, and I just want you to know how endlessly thankful I am for your kindness and your support.

    With love,
    Your holiday child,
    Devon.

    • Elana says:

      Dear Devon

      I will admit I am also a crier, and my eyes are misty as I reply to you. Nothing you are could ever ruin things. Not the way you dress, your pronouns, nothing. It’s the closed mindedness of others that ruins things. Your snappy suit and carefully gelled hair as you strike a pose next to your brother can harm no one, but it does make Grandmum smile and comment that she still has one of Uncle Gordon’s old hats from the 40’s that might just go with that suit. She digs it out and calls it an early Christmas present, but you know you’ll still get a pair of hand knitted socks.

      Your ears don’t quite stick out the way his did, and I show you a picture of when I visited him as a kid and you can see even in that shot how much his ears stuck out. I tell you, yes one more time because you were too young to remember him, about his record collection and how kind he was. And we’ll talk about all the aunts and uncles on that side of the family, how amazing it was the Grayston’s and McDonald’s became so accepting so early. I’ll tell you about Nana, she dies when you were 5, but Great-Nana Grayston who played gay-matchmaker for for friends grandchildren after my dad, your uncle Zephyr, came out in 1986. I’ll tell you about Dad coming out to his cousin for the first time accidentally, and how no one was bothered and he was so relieved. Isn’t it nice to know the way he paved the way for us?

      Grandmum will finally suggest that while we’re in town we should go get you some proper dress shoes. You should really have black one like Grandfather’s if you’re going to wear a suit that color, and she’ll take you to his favorite place to get trouser socks too. A little later you see the bag of your old dresses in the corner, and you’re a little startled until you realize they’re for Cousin Susan’s daughter whose just had another growth spurt and I Iook at you and comment how Grandmum never let’s anything go to waste.

      After home made pumpkin pie (you help me whip the whipping cream, no sugar or salt) and pots and pots of tea we all part ways. It was good to see you Cuz, you’re coming to Boxing Day, right? If you’re not there we can’t get a picture with Aunt Mel and her grandbaby.

      Love you!

      Your, holiday cousin,

      Elana

        • Peg says:

          Devon,
          It’s kids like you that break my heart. I so wish that your parents could look at you with the love that they did when you were born. I wish that they could see that is is them who are ruining the holidays ~ this is the time we set apart to be thankful for what we have. Devon you are a treasure and will continue to have support here all season. I Love and Support you Devon!
          Mom

  7. Ryan says:

    Dear Ms. Peg,

    Thank you so much for this letter! Holidays around now aren’t as great as yours sound. I wish I was over at yours.
    I’m going through a time right now because my parents are separating… I don’t exactly care, I knew it was going to happen, but I am worried about my four younger siblings.
    It also doesn’t help that because tensions are high, my dad seems to take it out on me. There’s this person I like (they’re agender, but biologically female) that I like. They’ve been over my house once and they just help me through a lot of stuff. They’re really sweet and always make time to listen to whatever problems I may have despite them being busy.
    My dad insists on calling them by their biological gender and aaking me over and over if I want them to be my “girlfriend”. But he always does crap like this because he insist that I can at least be bisexual, but not a lesbian. Which I’m not. I am at the moment, polysexual because I am attracted to different genders, but not all. I am usually extremely unattracted to males. My dad plays the “you don’t know unless you’ve already had sex” card.
    He insists that I am going to fall in love with a guy someday.
    Who knows? Maybe it’s true. But I would appreciate if he would leave that decision up to me and be happy that I fell in love with somebody who loves me despite whatever gender they are.
    Also the whole “don’t look like a dyke” thing. I am so tired of them insulting other people for how they wish to dress or their gender identity.
    I am currently genderfluid, though I most of the time feel female. And it’s hard to get acceptance when “there are only two genders”.
    But this is really beside the point. I loved your letter. It made me think of so many wonderful things. I love my mom, but I wish that she was a bit more like you so that we cpuld actually just sit and talk to each other.
    I wish that me and Grave (agender datefriend) could have been over your house. It sounded like a lot of fun and we could have been who we are without fear.
    Thank you, Ms. Peg.

    -Ryan

    • Elana says:

      Dear Ryan,

      I’m sorry things are so rough at home. There’s nothing wrong with rejecting the boxes society puts on us. It’s extra hard when we’re the oldest shielding our your siblings from the worst of things.

      You are absolutely free to figure yourself out. You don’t have to commit to any specific identity and none of it is set in stone. You are perfect exactly the way you are, and you don’t owe anyone an explanation of yourself. You are loved! These is a huge community out here who love you exactly the way you are, no caveats. Hopefully your parents come around, but we are here either way!

      Your holiday cousin,

      Elana

    • Peg says:

      My Dear Ryan,
      First of all, I ham happy that you have Grave in your life.
      I am sorry that your dad is ignorant to the fluidity of gender identification and NO, you don’t have to have sex to know who you are attracted to.
      I wish you were at my home too. You and Grave are welcome anytime, no matter what you are wearing or how you have your hair.
      Thank you for watching out for you littles. They are impressionable and the tension with your parents must also be hard for them; plus you are teaching them tolerance and acceptance.
      I Love you Ryan and hope that this season gets smoother for you.
      Ms. Peg aka Mom

  8. Aodhan says:

    Mom,

    I’m hoping you’re still reading these comments. I’m not a youth but this time of the year all the emotions from my childhood return. I may be more than a decade from 16 but I feel 16. Especially after the day I had yesterday. I’ve wanted nothing more than a mom who will hold me and just talk to me and stop trying to shove me in a dress or give me makeup. Did I mention my age? Yes, I know I did but I was given makeup and hair tips yesterday so I can be prettier. I know you won’t do that.

    I want to play board games with you. How about Yahtzee? I’m amazing at that game, prepare to lose! I want to eat your dinner and your cookies. But I’m a total chocolate chip cookie purist, no nuts. Lol.

    I just wanted you to know that your words mean so much to another adult who really should be old enough to have moved on past all of this but hasn’t

    Can we hang out and break in the season and watch “A Christmas Story”? That kid and his bb gun just crack me up.

    -Aodhan

    • Peg says:

      Aodhan,
      As a mom that doesn’t wear makeup I would never pressure you to wear it. You are beautiful just as you are.
      You are young enough to be my daughter and my letter is also written for you.
      I’d love to play Yahtzee with you and watch a Christmas Story. I NEVER put nuts in my chocolate chip cookies, that’s why they’re called Chocolate Chip cookies!
      Aodhan you should never feel like you are too old to need love and respect. I am glad that my letter touched you and I will continue to check the responses under my letter all season but it is getting harder to find the new responses.
      I Love You and will continue to pray for you,
      Mom

  9. Tammie says:

    I just want to say, kuddo’s and thank you… What an amazingly loving this to be doing. This is much needed and much appreciated.

  10. Jae says:

    Thank you, mom. Thank you so much, these letters mean so much to me. I am a genderfluid individual, who cannot even get a haircut past my shoulders. Today inparticular has been rough. I finally found out why I can’t get a haircut, and I’m sad to say ‘I knew it’. They don’t want ‘their darling baby girl’ to look like a boy. But the ironic thing is that they’re ‘doing this for me’. They don’t want me to ‘have to listen to people’s remarks about my short hair’. I tried to tell them that I was being reasonable, because I could have been asking for a shaved mohawk instead of a (feminine, no less) pixie cut, and they went on to say that I couldn’t have the mohawk either. Then they told me to ‘shut the h— up because that’s the way it is, and that if I cut my hair, I will be kicked out on my —‘. Needless to say, I’m at someone else’s house right now reading these wonderful letters and being reminded that there are good parents out there in this world, who would love their children no matter what. Thank you so much, mom. You don’t know how much I needed to be told that I have somewhere to call home, and people to call family.

    • Cristina says:

      I really hope you are able to cut your hair how you want it one day. My hair has always been an expression of myself and my parents let me do whatever to it. I am lucky. So please remember your parents rules are not forever and the day will come where you can live free.

    • Peg says:

      Jae,
      I Love You and your long hair and I’ll Love You when you finally get to cut it the way you want. I am so sorry that you can’t have it the way you want it now. Hair is an expression of who you are but it also grows back!
      I’m happy to call you family and love you no matter what! Here is a special hug just for you Jae xooooox
      I Love You,
      Mom

  11. Castiel says:

    I just want to thank you for taking the time to do something like this for so many people out there like me who need it. There’s so much I want to say in return, but there’s enough comments to wade through already, and it’s not as important as simply saying I greatly appreciate this. Have a wonderful holiday season.

    Respectfully, Castiel

    • Peg says:

      Castiel,
      You are very welcome! I’ll listen no matter how many comments there are already.
      I Love You,
      Mom

  12. Zachariah says:

    Dear Holiday Mum,
    Thank you for writing this, I really needed this and it made me cry a lot. Thank you so much! I wish the world was full of people like you.
    Your loving holiday son Zach

    • Peg says:

      Zach,
      And I wish the world was full of people like you!
      The responses that I’ve read also make me tear up ~ I am so sorry that all parent don’t support their kids. Come back any time.
      I Love You,
      Mom

  13. Hakim Lewis says:

    Thank you! Thank you so very much! While listening to your letter I, for the first time, was filled with the love, affection and acceptance that I have craved from my mom. You made me so happy that it nearly brought me to tears. Just imagining the scenario as you spoke it, how incredibly nice you treat me, teaching me to cook, talking to me about my interests, appreciating me and affirming my love for mash potatoes, gifting me with the Thanksgiving dinner that i want so badly! Even tolerating my atheism. It all made not just my day but my year so much brighter. I can’t say thank you enough for making this. I only wish i could download it and listen to it every day I fell in love with your words and hope that one I can find a family that loves me like you do. And tell my agender sibling that I said Thank you. Thank you my holiday mom!

    • Peg says:

      Hakim,
      You are welcome my sweet. I wish that I was with you to teach you al of those things. You are a wonder to me and I’d love to get to know you better.
      I am new to tumblr and have uploaded the (spoken) letter to my page, watermelonwatermelonwatermelon. Right now, I believe that is all that is there (unless I accidentally posted something else). Feel free to listen whenever you want.
      I am so happy that you have joined my family, your sibling smiled and is happy to be becoming famous.
      I Love You,
      Mom

  14. Haze/John says:

    Hey Holiday Mom,

    I’m thankful for you too. Please continue doing this it means a lot. I hope I have courage to come out to my family at Christmas and I hope they will respect my they/them pronouns.

    • Peg says:

      Dear Haze/John,
      I hope that you have the courage also but do yourself a favor ~ start planning and doing some ground work now ~ talk about the LGBT+ community, maybe talk about some friends you have and how their parents support them. You’re more likely to get a negative response if you blindside them.
      Good luck and know that I am here for you!
      I Love You,
      Mom

  15. Chrissy says:

    Dear Holiday Mom,

    Thank you for your letter! It made me feel really good, and even cry a little. I consider myself as a asexual lesbian, and mot of those on my moms side of the family don’t really approve of either of that. They think I can’t be happy unless I marry and give birth to kids someday instead of adopting like I plan on doing someday. Anyways, I’ve never been close to my mom as I’ve tried to be. She was never around, and I saw her only three times from the time I was five until I was 16. I did live with her for a year, but there was a lot of battling over my sexual orientation.

    I don’t know why it matter so much, but it did. I’ve ceased any and all contact with her due to some serious issues I have with her and the way she behaves, and it surprisingly hurt a lot. I’m very close to my dad, but I’ve always lacked a mom in my life, and thats somethings thats made me sad since I was very little. I always wanted those mother/daughter moments. Shopping trips (for books of course!!), advise on make-up or whenever I got my period for the first time. You know, stuff that feels awkward talking to your dad about. But I never got that and it’s always left a hole that I tried to ignore.

    It hurts being rejected over and over for who you are as a human being, but I’ve never let anyone think I was okay with them telling me I was lesser for being who I was, though the battling does get old quickly, and can very much wear a person out and sometimes I wonder if it’s even worth still fighting since it’s just the same argument over and over. Your letter helped soothe an ache I didn’t realize I had until I read it. Thank you so much. Your letter has really made my day! I feel very loved right now.
    <3

    • Peg says:

      Dear Chrissy,
      I am glad to hear that my letter helped. I think that we all inherently want our families to accept us and feel hurt when they don’t. It’s good that you have a relationship with you dad and now you have me. come back any time you need a hug. I Love You,
      Mom

  16. Brett says:

    Dear Peg,
    Thank you so much for writing this. I came out as ftm transgender three years ago and this is the third holiday season without my family. It really doesn’t get any easier but I’m so grateful for people like you. I hope you had a great Thanksgiving, you’re amazing!
    Thanks,
    Brett

    • Peg says:

      Brett,
      I am so sorry to hear that it hasn’t gotten better yet ~ but it will. I promise. You are living authentically as you and that, my sweet, is a difficult transition. I am proud of of and hope that you are able to surround yourself with people who care about who you are rather than how you were born. come back any time for a hug.
      I Love You,
      Mom

  17. Chloe says:

    I just want to say thank you so much for this letter. I honestly am not really sure what I am, but it’s certainly not straight, which is hard when you live with people who you know won’t support you if you came out. This kind of positive attitude toward the LGBT+ community really helps me feel better about myself and have hope that some day I can surround myself with people who accept me for who I am, whether that ends up being cis, genderfluid, non-binary, gay, bi, pan, or whatever else. Again, thank you so much for putting so much time and love into this, and I wish you and everyone else here a good day.

    • Sara says:

      Hey Chloe,

      So my family, already large, tends to collect people. I have a whole host of ‘cousins’ who I adore and who have found their way to us through various channels. Many of them no longer really speak to their birth families because of the attitudes you’re describing. I tell you this to give you hope that we exist. We are waiting for you. And when you find us (and you will find us), we’ll greet you with a hug and a cup of tea. Until then, keep smiling.

      Love,
      Your Cousin Sara

    • Julie says:

      You absolutely can surround yourself with those people, and you have already started! May you be blessed on your journey to find yourself. Whatever or whoever you are, you deserve love, and you have it here. <3

    • Peg says:

      Chloe,
      You are welcome ~ I am glad that you found us! There are counselors who can help you figure some of this stuff out, and some of them are affiliated with mediators ~ to help your family understand and accept you. Meanwhile, come back any time for some hugs and kisses!
      I Love You,
      Mom

  18. Yiska says:

    Thank you for writing this letter. This is my first Thanksgiving coming out as ftm transgender. Thank you for putting in there that you are safe and your boundaries are respected. This is the first year really coming out as me after 26 years that I have truly felt that I was safe and my boundaries are respected.

    • Peg says:

      Yiska,
      Not only do I hope your boundaries are respected and that you are safe ~ I hope that you feel loved and appreciated for who you are.
      I Love You,
      Mom

  19. Jessica says:

    Peg, I almost came out to my family this year, but I still didn’t. I know their views o. The lgbtqa+ community all too well to ever feel like they’re actually okay with who i am. But your letter made me feel so accepted and happy and for the first time in weeks I’m actually glad for this holiday. Thank you. And I’ll never be able to look at an apple pie again without thinking about you.
    Your holiday child,
    Jessica

    • Peg says:

      Jessica,
      I’m sorry that you don’t feel comfortable coming out to your family ~ maybe try one at a time? maybe try a little education first.
      You are accepted her and good, I’m glad to hear that you’ll think of me when you eat pie, so you you will always have some comfort food. I Love You,
      Mom

  20. Arryona says:

    Dear Holiday Mom,
    I just want to say thank you,im listening to this letter on SoundCloud..feels like youre actually with me! Thank you so much for letting me smile during the holidays,you just made my holiday and probably my year. I started to cry once you said “If you can, please find a little piece in your heart to allow me to comfort you”. My mom and I arent close like mother and daughter should be,Im glad I found this site so I can listen to lovable Holiday moms just like you!
    Thank you,my holiday mom!
    <3
    ~Arryona

    • Peg says:

      Arryona,
      I really wish that I was there to comfort you. You are a beautiful person and I wish that you and your mom were closer. Comeback whenever you need some comforting.
      I Love You,
      Mom

  21. Kailee Reuter says:

    I’m 18 and I have accepted that I’m bisexual I feel ready to tell my parents but my mom just become vice president for our Christian homeschool group and she became the worship leader at their church…. She keeps reminding us that now we have to watch what we do more now because other people are looking up to us… I just don’t want them feel like I have failed them…

    • Peg says:

      Kailee,
      You may want to get some counseling before you talk with you parents ~ some religions are very open to LGBT+ and some are not. My concern here is that you won’t get the support that you need. So having someone that you know is supportive could be helpful.
      Kailee ~ you have NOT failed them, don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.
      Let me know how it goes! I Love You,
      Mom

    • Jennifer Kerrin says:

      Dear Kailee,
      Know that you haven’t failed anyone by being yourself. I hope you have the warmest holiday season, and I’m sending you lots of love.

  22. Ashia says:

    Thank you so much for this. I have been going through so much, and dealing with so much hate in my family, that reading this made me start crying. So thank you for making me feel loved again.

  23. Juju says:

    Hello~
    I found this site from Instagram and got curious about it. All I can say is, thank you. It’s amazing to have so much support, love, and a little place like this to call home. It truly helps to hear your kind and accepting words because sometimes we don’t get to hear the kind stuff and we’ll always feel the rejection. Despite this, your words are like a shining ray of hope. So, if anything, thank you very much and have a happy Thanksgiving.

  24. Hope laskow says:

    Dear holiday mom,
    I just want to say thank you because today was rough. My mom found out i have a girlfriend and flipped out on me because of it. I love nicole (my girlfriend) soooooo much and i dont want my mom to get in the way. She said shes ok with people liking the same gender and loving who they want but yells at me for loving someone of the same gender. I dont know what to do but you have helped to calm me down a little bit.
    Thank you.
    Your daughter,
    Hope Laskow

    • Peg says:

      Hope,
      I know that it doesn’t make any sense to you but give her some time. You’ve known that you are attracted to girls for some time now. Your mom just found out may just need a little time to adjust. I’m glad that you found Nicole and hope that she can support you while you and your mom figure things out.
      You have a 39 more letters of support coming your way…but stop by again any time you want.
      I Love You,
      Mom

  25. Cas says:

    Dear Mom…

    What can I say but thanks? This meant a lot. I went up to bed at 7 because I couldn’t take another second with my family downstairs anymore. My mum had made a joke to my biologically male brother about “You’re so bright I call you my son.” Well… I said to her “So if I was brighter I’d be a your son?” She shut me down real quick saying that I was her daughter and could never be her son. I’ve been hurt by this comment all day and couldn’t take fighting with her anyone. So I came upstairs and decided to visit here. And I saw your letter… just… thank you.
    Love
    Cas James Dawson

    • Peg says:

      Dear Cas James,
      So the good thing is you left a toxic situation, decided to look for support and found it!

      I’m sorry for the way your mom treated you ~ the moms here will love you and accept you!

      There are 39 more letters coming. I hope that outweighs the nasty stuff your mom says.

      Stop in for some love anytime Cas James!
      I Love You,
      Mom

    • Jennifer Kerrin says:

      Dear Cas,
      That sounded very tough to hear, I sympathize with you! You’re not alone with how you feel because I’ve just read what happened to you. Here’s a hug and all my best.

      • Cas says:

        Thank you so much for the love mum. And for both of you for caring enough to take the time out of your probably busy day to reply to me. Never felt all that important before. My partner broke up with me the day before Thanksgiving. That made everything a lot worse but I had forgotten she had done that. Let my mind forget about it. Lately it just feels like everything is working against me… that I’m just some kid who doesn’t deserve to be around. Like I’m not even actually a part of my family or that I’m not worth anyone’s time… funny. My ex said that in her text. “You’re unnatractive and not worth anyone’s time…” I believe that’s how she put it. My grades are slowly dropping… all I do is work during my free time… it’d getting harder.. and I often don’t feel like it’s that easy to keep up with prettending with my family anymore.. at least with these letters… I can pretend for a little whilethat I matter nd I’m.not a total dissapoinment!
        Love
        Cas James

        • Angelic says:

          Cas James, I’m so sorry to hear of your breakup. There’s nothing someone else says that wounds us so deep as the things we believe about ourselves. 🙁
          Do whatever you need to do to get by with your family, but know that there are many people who not only accept you as you are, but we celebrate who you are! I’m so glad you found us & hope you keep faith that there are others. Many amazing people have felt isolated & unwelcome & out of place with their families, sadly, but there is so much hope for your future! I love you so very much!
          Love, Mama Angelic

        • Peg says:

          Cas James,
          I am so sorry that I didn’t respond sooner. Your response broke my heart.
          First of all your “partner” wasn’t worthy of you. Who breaks up in a text? Very immature people, and why do they have to be so hurtful?
          Cas James ~ go to the student center at school and talk with someone ~ maybe a counselor to clear your head and also someone that can help you with your studies ~ help you find a tutor or a study group.
          You are NOT a disappointment. You are not unattractive ~ you are beautiful. You are worth MY TIME and all the other holiday moms time..
          We all love you and want you to love yourself and do well in school.
          All My Love,
          Mom Peg

  26. Edin says:

    Hi Holiday Mom,
    My name is Edin pronounced like the Garden of Eden. I’m a lesbian. I’ve been out for about 10 years and yet I still feel like the black sheep of my family. I am the only girl of 5 and my birth mom likes to joke that she has 5 sons. Kinda hurts. I do have a beautiful 6 year old daughter named Valeria (Vah-lair-ee-ah) and I have a very loving girlfriend. My birth mother doesn’t approve and she hardly ever helps me at all, she’s always telling me I need a good man, that it’s my birth father’s fault that I’m this way and not all men are like him.

    I’m sorry…I keep rambling…let me summarize…my life has been hell even before coming out…between abuse…neglect…and more…today is just a very rough day for me…but your letter and your sweet voice has made it much better. Thank you for your support and acceptance and love. I hope your Thanksgiving was amazing…and I would love to play a game with you after some yummy pumpkin pie. Well…your granddaughter is paging me, I must go. Thank you again Holiday Mom.

    Much love,
    Your daughter,
    Edin

    • Peg says:

      Edin,
      It sounds like you need to educate your mom about what it is to be a lesbian. Does she know her comments hurt you?
      I love my granddaughter’s name and hope she is as beautiful as you. I am sorry that you birth mom doesn’t help you but… maybe space from her is what you and Valeria need to live healthy lives?
      I Love You,
      Mom

      • Edin says:

        Thanks mom. I’ve tried educating my birth mom with everything I’ve gone through. She just tells me to suck it up and let go, proceeding with religious stuff. Space is what I’ve been doing to have a healthy lifestyle for Valeria and me, but it’s been a difficult journey and it hurts to know she never really cared and never will. Thank you for your support and kindness. And thank you for hearing me because besides my amazing girlfriend, no one else has ever listened. Your heart and soul are genuine…we need more people in the world like you. Proud to call you my Holiday Mom.

        With love always,
        God Bless
        Edin

        • Peg says:

          Edin,
          Thank you, I’m proud to be your Holiday Mom. You are lucky to have your girlfriend AND Valeria is lucky to have you. I suspect that you are an amazing mom to her and are sensitive to her needs.
          Maybe you could explore how to move forward with you relationship with your mom with a counselor? Maybe a little family tree trimming would be in your/Valeria’s best interest?
          I will say a prayer to the God that I believes loves everyone including you.
          Loving You,
          Mom

  27. Obi says:

    I found this website a few days ago second-hand, and when I came for the sake of curiosity and read the letters from last year, I felt nothing. It was all very shrug-worthy. This is because my survival up to this point has necessitated a total lack of emotional reactions to anything, whether it be the abuse I’ve been subjected to, or the people who try to reach out to me to offer help. I exist at rock bottom; being lifted up would just mean I would be setting myself up to fall again. So I just turned everything off, shoved all of my feelings into boxes, and kept my mouth shut. I got so good at it, I can’t even stop it anymore. It’s totally reflexive, at this point. And yesterday, it worked. I felt nothing.

    But that was yesterday.

    Today, I just finished receiving a speech from my sperm donor about how much I “owe” him, how much of a disappointment I am as a daughter, how worthless I am as a human being, how I’m going to hell — but how I can properly respect my debts and change my fate if I just repent and become what he wants me to be. I just finished sending a “Happy thanksgiving” text to my sort-of-kind-of-unofficial-boyfriend who I won’t get to see because his family is almost as religious as mine and have their own plans and expectations for his life. I just finished telling several family members I can’t come to the gathering because I’m at “work”, when really I just don’t want to meet the prerequisite of pretending to be something I’m not for the sake of being accepted. I just finished giving the same story to my in-laws, because as much as they still claim to care about me after my divorce, I know there’s this perceived obligation to side with the child born to them and my “unusual” status makes for an easy excuse.

    I just finished my usual holiday rituals of trying to limit how much crap is thrown my way. And then I read this. And something broke. I don’t know exactly what I’m feeling right now, I don’t know what’t the right thing to say. All I’ve got is, “Thank you.” You have no idea how much it meant to me to read this. It hurt, because it reminded me what I don’t have , but in letting that hurt through (or rather, not being able to stop it for once) I was also able to let through a lot of other stuff. More positive. I don’t know what to call most of it, but… Yeah, positive. I know this wasn’t written for me specifically, but I like the idea that there’s a chance it could have been. It feels good.

    So, thank you. Thank you, so much. From the bottom of whatever is left of my heart.

    • April says:

      Dear Kiddo,

      I’m a young mum. My little dude (or dudette if he later decides he wants to be) hasn’t been exposed yet to the horrors of the world like you have. I do, however, work with a lot of youth probably your age that are going through what you’ve listed and feel similarly as you do. It will never stop breaking my heart to hear it. It will never stop breaking my heart to read it or see it. I can’t say that it’s going to get better for you, but the world is slowly taking baby steps into reprogramming in being more acceptable of LGBT. There are only two means of advice I can give you to make it more possible for you to find happiness in the future. One, don’t invest emotionally in the family that you know will never change and that have no interest in knowing who you are. It’s a hard rule, but until you’re old (like me) and more seasoned, it’s going to do nothing but hurt you. Do, however, have patience and temperance for the family that might want to know you, but aren’t that great about knowing how to do that yet. It’s a difficult situation, but you might have to be the teacher here. You have to educate them on what’s acceptable, what isn’t, and communicate your journey. Are they going to say offensive things? Maybe. But they might not always mean it. Secondly, if hope seems bleak for you.. just remember that sometimes our real family aren’t the ones we are born to. I hate saying that, because I passionately believe in loving your child no matter who they are, but the truth is there are a lot of parents out there that really don’t deserve the kids they were blessed with. There /are/ support groups for people like you. There are circles of people that will make you feel welcomed and wanted and safe. You just have to step out of your comfort zone and put yourself out there enough to find them. Be patient, baby. You will never get your youth back. Ever. You don’t want to look back on it and say that people ruined it for you. You want to look back on it and say.. well, there were people who tried to ruin it for me, but I /won/ and I /lived/ and I will remember it forever. Live your life for you. Develop your talents. Grow as a person. Push yourself. Evolve. Find a reason to laugh, despite the reasons that make you want to cry. And always remember that even if someone makes you feel weak or unwanted, you are /strong/. People are usually cruel to things that they don’t understand and further, things they don’t understand make them afraid. You have the power here, whether you know it or not. Don’t give up. Have hope. /Fight/. Fight for your right to be happy, honey. This is /your/ life. You only get one. Paint your name on it. Make it yours. Whatever it is that you love doing, do it… do it all the time. Do it until you’re exhausted. Make a difference. Even in your darkest hours when you feel like the only person in the world and that no one really cares, know that some new momma is sitting here and will lend and ear or give you advice any time that you want it. Just remember, you got this.

    • Peg says:

      Obi,

      Thank you for not giving up and coming to the site. This response IS for you Obi. That feeling you felt is acceptance. YOU deserve it and I don’t want it to be foreign to you anymore. Not after today.

      Because of the divorce reference, I’m thinking that you’re an adult. As an adult, you don’t have to put up with all the crap if you don’t want to.

      Now that you know you have feelings/heart you need to nurture them. Think about people that accept you and support you for the amazing person that you are and surround yourself with them. You may need a counselor/therapist help tease apart who is healthy and who is toxic in your life ~ you may have to trim the family tree a little.
      Obi, take these feelings and run with them! You are loved and supported. Let me know how it works out for you!
      Love,
      Mom

      • Obi says:

        I’m at that point where the law says I’m an adult,but I don’t feel like it. I’m 24, but I’m about as capable of taking care of myself as a seven year old. No one ever taught me how. My roommates had to teach me how to use a microwave last month, and let’s not even get started on my inability to fill out paperwork. My parents (and then my husband, who I married at 18 to get away from my parents) controlled my life so completely that I didn’t need to know my own phone number. So yeah… I’m a child in a grown up body.

        The problem with trying to “trim” the family tree is I can’t do that without burning the whole thing down. There are relatives I like. I don’t think they’ll understand, but they at least care. There are ones who /know/ our family is messed up, having received the worst of worst of it themselves, but who have been trained their whole lives that promoting the image of the perfect happy family is more important than doing anything to actually /be/ a happy family. I have cousins and siblings who have committed suicide or tried to, cousins who admitted their parents were toxic and got chased out of town, aunts who will admit behind closed doors that their brothers abused them but who all together wouldn’t have the courage to actually testify against them. Even the sibling who attempted suicide pretends it never happened and now proudly lives the way she’s expected to and pushes the same agenda as our parents.

        If I admit I have problems with any member of my family, everyone else will try to excuse it away before changing the subject. If I continue pushing it, I will get completely excommunicated. I don’t want to be cut off from my six year old cousins, whose parents either won’t tell them why I stopped talking to them or will actively say it’s because I’m a bad influence. I don’t want to sacrifice my relationship with the people I like for the sake of getting away from some of the toxic people in the same group.

        Heck, for all I know, some of those kid-cousins might be like me, and I’d be the only person they can talk to about it without fearing judgement. Their parents may contradict everything I say to them once I’ve left the room, but at least they can remember what I’ve said and think about it. Even if it’s not about queerness, but just some random topic that gets censored because their parents don’t want to admit it exists. If they need an an open ear, I want to be that person that they can come to, no matter what. And I can’t do that if I cut absolutely everyone off. I want to give them what I never had.

        • Peg says:

          Obi,
          Have you ever flown on a plane? Do you know how they say that if the oxygen thing comes down to put it on yourself first, then help others?
          It sounds to me like you need a little bit of that oxygen ~ it’s great that you want to be there for your cousins but you need to get yourself together first.
          I’m sorry that you haven’t been taught the life skills that you need, but you are making great strides. It sound like your roommates are helpful and supportive ~ that’s a great start. And you divorced someone that was controlling you, that must have been very difficult.
          Try and find a support group or social agency where you can find someone to connect with, where you can be supported. You are right, chances are the little ones will go through some of the same stuff and it will be great to be able to help them, but they don’t need the help yet, you do.
          I’m pulling for you ~ I’m looking forward to hearing from you again.
          You’ve got a bright future, we just need to figure out how to get you there.
          Still Loving YOU,
          MOm

  28. Mai says:

    Dear Holiday Mom,

    You are so kind, going out of your way and giving up your time to write your letter, thank you.
    I’m from Australia so thanksgiving isn’t a big thing here. But this letter made me thankful for this holiday, and for you. Thank you once again. I am working up the courage to try to get my own family to accept me like you do <3

    • Peg says:

      Mai,
      I hope that your family does accept you the way you deserve. You may want to talk with a counselor to help figure out the best way to get the support you need.
      I think you can be thankful no matter what continent you live on! Best of luck!
      I Love You,
      Mom

  29. Jackson says:

    Hey peg…I just got on this site. I didn’t think I would ever need a holiday mom. My parents try and I thought that’s all I could ask for. Bit as you know today was Thanksgiving. I am not out to my grandparents and cousins and such. So I told myself it was going to be hard. But I just have to do it for my parents. So everyone there is calling me by the wrong name and password pronouns. I can’t say anything cause I don’t want to ruin it all. Ner the end I just couldn’t take it anymore and I had to leave. I was talking g to my cousin who supports me. And I don’t think I can go through another holiday like this one. And she showed me this site. I feel so loved and ecepted I cryed. I just want to thank k you for making this broken boy pick up the pieces and continue.

    • Peg says:

      Jackson my sweet boy,
      Thank your cousin for me. I really do appreciate what she has done.

      Your parents have put your in a terrible spot and I’d have hoped they would have given you a little more support.

      Keep in mind, the people at the table didn’t know that they were using the wrong pronouns, and like me, may slip up now and then when they do know. It sounds like you have been clear with yourself that you are a boy but they have never thought about it ~ you’ll have to give them a chance to catch up! Talk with your mom and dad, let them know that you need more from them.

      I hope that with all the love and support that you get from the 39 other holiday moms that you are able to glue some of those pieces back together.
      come back again for a hug whenever you need it.

      I Love You Jackson,
      Mom

  30. Christina says:

    peg (may i call you peg? or would you prefer ‘mom’? i want to make you feel comfortable, since youve done so much for me) thank you so much for this!! im a fifteen year old polyromantic lesbian and i just celebrated thanksgiving with some extended family a few hours ago. it was not as bad as i had anticipated, but this is probably only because lgbtq+ issues never came up, as im in the closet. the food was good, even though im certain it wasnt nearly as good as what you made! im sorry i couldnt be with you. i wanted to, more than anything!! and i just want to say that im so sorry about grandmother. i can’t say that i knew her very well, but im sure she was just wonderful (after all, she was able to raise someone as wonderful as you are!!)
    anyways, this is very long and you may not even see it, but i appreciate you so so much. it’s so very rare to see someone with a passion for religion as well as a kind and open heart towards lgbtq+ individuals. i wish there were more people out there like you!! please take care of yourself. i love you

    • Peg says:

      Christina,
      My kids call me Mom, their friends call me Peg ~ I don’t care what I’m called, as long as they/you call me 🙂
      I’m glad that you had a good dinner (yes ours was wonderful) and I’m sorry that you can’t talk openly about LGBT+ issues. You may consider beginning to drop some educational comments in now and then that aren’t too specific to maybe get them thinking. Keep in mind, it has been a major topic for you (how long have you known?) and it could be a completely foreign topic for your family.
      I will think of you this holiday season Christina and sincerely hope that it is a good one for you. Feel free to come back home for a hug now and then.
      I Love You,
      Mom

      • Christina says:

        thank you so much for the advice!! although im almost certain that the issue with my family is blatant bigotry, NOT ignorance (hence, why im signed up to receive these letters!!) and ive known since i was 12

        • Peg says:

          Christina,
          I’m glad that you signed up for these letters and I am sending you a hug xox
          Bigots can be educated, but it doesn’t mean that they will be.
          I’m loving you for the person that you are and am proud of the person that you are becoming. Stay true to yourself and you can’t go wrong!
          Loving you,
          Mom

  31. Anberlin/Vincey says:

    Dear Holiday Mom Peg,

    Your kind words have me in tears again. Not the tears of pain that I have cried for the majority of my life, mind you, but tears that tell me that what I’m feeling must be what it feels like to be whole. Hearing you read such a heartfelt letter to me, some bigender/pansexual twenty-something that you have never actually met, gives me a new hope for humanity. My group of friends are comprised of other LGBT+ people who believe that most people are our enemies. We’ve all been hurt, and we all have scars that may probably never heal completely, but now I have something that I can share with them that can help them feel the warm emotions I am feeling now.
    I spent Thanksgiving with my fiance, your future son-in-law. It was just the two of us, unless you count the people who live downstairs. We had more of a Thanksgiving lunch than a dinner, and we ended up doing a McDonald’s run this evening because of this. I don’t have much appetite today, but I do plan on having a slice of the lemon pie in the fridge. When I do, I will picture myself having it with you, even if in spirit. I will tell you that I am most thankful for the people in my life that do love me for who I am, not the person they were hoping I’d be, especially my fiance, whom I have actually named my male side after in his honor (I use a nickname so that it doesn’t get confusing), and I am thankful for you, my honorary mom, for all that you are, not only for me, but for everyone here on this site. I am also thankful that I didn’t actually succeed in killing myself in any of the attempts I’ve made in the past. I’m thankful that I am learning to live as myself, and that I don’t scare off or sicken everyone that I encounter.

    Now that we have enjoyed our dessert, I will happily do what I can to help you clear the dishes. I am weak due to chronic illness, but if you bear with me, I will do what I can to lighten your load. When we are done, I’d love to play a board game with you. I really like the game Life. Monopoly is fun, too, but no one ever wants to play it with me after what I have been known to do. I can’t help it if I have the mind of an evil mogul who paid attention in economics class. Your call, though. I don’t mind what we do. I’m just happy that I get to spend the holiday with you.

    I’m 25 years old, but you are the closest thing to a mother that I have ever had. I suggest you have your apple pie warm with a caramel drizzle and cinnamon sprinkle, perhaps a la mode. That’s my favorite way to have it.

    I am not very religious, but I pray in my own way to the powers that be, the forces in our universe that rule us all, be with you this holiday season.

    All my love,
    Your child,
    Anberlin/Vincent Jr.

    • Peg says:

      Anberlin/Vincent Jr.,
      I really enjoyed that pie, but let me tell you ~ after the meal I had, the apple and pumpkin pie I am stuffed! I don’t usually eat that much but it was so good!
      I hope that you do share your experience with your LGBT+ friends. There are moms out there that will love love you for who you are ~ I am not the only one. You will receive 39 letters from other moms. There were also moms that you won’t hear from (only 40 were accepted).
      I have a couple of thoughts:
      I’m glad that my future son-in-law loves you for who you are, that is very important.
      I am glad that you didn’t succeed in killing yourself. I think you see that things do get better but you should probably keep a crisis number around just in case. I always worry when I hear about depression. Also, you could never scare off or sicken me ~ because I Love You.
      If you are weak from illness you don’t have to help clear the table ~ you can be in charge of setting up the board…
      I am also notorious at monopoly. I like to make the side deals (I’ll sell you *** for $0 but you can’t charge me if I land on any of that color).

      I’ve never had caramel drizzle on my apple pie but it sound great and I am going to try it.

      I am more than happy to be your holiday mom and I will be here all season. You are welcome to come back and chat or get a hug whenever you want. I hope that you have a wonderful holiday season and remember that I Love You,
      Mom

  32. Cade R says:

    You know, listening to your letter, I think that’s the first time I’ve ever gotten the warm and fuzzies from my mom speaking to me.

  33. Catherine says:

    Dear Holiday Mom,
    Oh gosh what to say. I’ll first start out by saying I’m also agender and to see it being recognized made me tear up a bit. I’m pansexual and I have a girlfriend (who’s lovely by the way, I think you’d love her). I’m sat in my living room crying because my birth mother is working tonight, my girlfriend lives miles away, and holidays don’t feel like holidays anymore. Your letter made me feel a warm sense of belonging that I haven’t felt in a while. Thank you so much for accepting me into your life.
    Love,
    Cat

    • Peg says:

      Dear Cat,
      Of course I’d like her ~ because you do!
      I am glad that you joined our family today and hope that you feel you can join us any time.
      I Love You,
      Mom

  34. vivien says:

    Dear Holiday Mom, thank you so much for this message. Because I’m trans, it can be very hard to interact happily with the rest of my family, even if I’m not out to them. My family can be very judgmental and I often don’t really have anyone to turn to, and my parents are getting divorced pretty soon. Even though there are several things I like about Thanksgiving (such as getting the opportunity to cook), it still is really rough having to interact with the rest of my family. Thank you so much for this message and I hope we can have a great holidays to you all.
    Love, Vivien

    • Peg says:

      Vivien,
      You are welcome!
      Thanks for helping with the cooking this year! Sounds like there is more than enough tension in your home. I am glad that you found us.
      Come back any time for a hug! I Love You!
      Mom

  35. Logan says:

    This year, I am so thankful for you, Holiday Mom!
    I’m a pansexual nonbinary person with zero support from my birth family. This letter had me sobbing – I could feel so much love. I haven’t felt that love in so long. Thank you for showing it to me again.

    I needed this more than I realized. Thank you. Thank you, thank you, thank you. You are very much appreciated, especially on this day when it can be difficult to find things to be thankful for.

    Always Grateful,
    Logan <3

    • Peg says:

      Logan,
      You are welcome!
      I am glad that you liked my letter ~ you have a lot more coming your way from other holiday moms! I’ll still be here if you need a hug.
      I Love You,
      Mom

  36. Gabby says:

    Hi Peg. Thank you so much for writing this. I’m a transgender girl and pansexual and I am currently in my room on Thanksgiving day, crying because of how much this letter means to me. I am constantly being mishandled by my family and I often feel that I have no one who really loves me. Again, I’m really grateful for your letter. Happy Thanksgiving.

      • Peg says:

        My dear, sweet Gabby,
        I am so sorry that you are so unhappy. Yes, you are loved ~ you are adored! I hope that your family comes around to see what an amazing gift you are to them.
        Your Holiday Mom,
        Peg

  37. Jack says:

    This made me cry, but nice, happy tears. I’m a pansexual FTM boy, who’s out to my family, but they aren’t very accepting and they never use the right name or pronouns for me. Thank you so much for writing this and being my holiday mom, it has really made today a bit more bearable. Tensions are always high in my house around holidays and there’s lots of yelling, but this letter has helped with all of that. This thanksgiving, I’m thankful for you, Peg. I’m gonna stop writing now cause I’m rambling, but again, thank you.

    • Peg says:

      Jack,

      If I could, I’d reach right through the screen and give you a hug. Jack, you are very special to me. Try to find a way to step back from the tension and let it be their issue, not yours. You don’t have to yell back ~ try responding quietly. It may help, but it may not.
      I Love You and will be thinking about you this holiday season.
      Your Holiday Mom,
      Peg

  38. Matthew Allen says:

    Hi Peg!
    I want to thank you for writing this. It brought tears to my eyes. I’m only open to my dad and stepmom so far, being a pansexual FTM. The rest of my family is very homophobic and make rude comments about transgender people often. I’m waiting for dinner to be done currently, and wish I could be sitting at the table as a man and not woman, like my family sees me.

    It’s tough not being out yet, fighting these fears and stress. But reading your letter helped so much. I smiled and felt loved while reading it. Thank you. So, so, so much. You’ve helped make this Thanksgiving much better than I thought it would be.
    -Matthew Allen

    • Peg says:

      My Dear Matthew Allen,
      First of all, I love your name. I’m sorry that yesterday was so stressful for you.
      I would have hoped that your dad would have been a little more supportive.
      You are loved Matthew Allen and I would love to have you come back for a hug anytime you want. I Love You,
      Mom

  39. Holly says:

    Hello Holiday Mom,
    Thank you so much for this! I’m a bisexual female and I am not out to my family yet, because I know they would not support me and probably kick me out. I cried reading this because it’s so lovely knowing someone cares…you made me feel right at home. I’ve been feeling a bit down lately and this cheered me up.
    Love from your holiday daughter, Holly x

  40. Lorcan says:

    Hey mum!
    I’m so glad you kicked off the holiday season this year, and while listening to your letter, I could feel how loved I am. I usually feel sad and bitter when I hear about families who work as a unit, but with this project I always just feel blessed to experience it.
    We don’t do thanksgiving in England, though I attended one hosted by a family friend from Kansas years ago. This brought back good memories for me, and added new ones.
    I am thankful for you, as you are for me, and strongly appreciate that you may slip with pronouns by accident, but you’re still trying. I wish my bio mum had been so sincere in her efforts!
    Thank you again for inviting me into your holiday, and for being so loving. I found some peace during the time you spoke.
    Much love, Lorcan.
    ps, I would have taken you up on a boardgame, and taken part in the prayer, just to make you a happy as you made me.

    • Peg says:

      Lorcan,
      I am glad I was chosen to kick off the holiday season too! It was a wonderful surprise!
      I am amazed at how much love I am receiving from this ~ it seems that what “they” say is true ~ the more you give, the more you get.
      I’m glad you found some peace with my letter and you have some experience with Thanksgiving ~ it really is an international one for me this year.
      Maybe you mum with begin to use the right pronouns ~ that would be something to be thankful for!
      As for the game ~ I really didn’t have time this year ~ there were so many responses to read and respond to!
      I truly wish you a wonderful holiday season.
      Much Love,
      Your American Mum

  41. Julia says:

    Dear Holiday Mom,
    Thank you so much! I am biromantic asexual, and am not out to anyone in my family. They aren’t supportive of LGBTQ+ people at all, not even really with issues like homelessness or getting fired for being LGBTQ+. So I don’t know if I can ever tell them about who I really am.

    Your letter made me wish I could really be there to spend Thanksgiving with you. I’m going to see some extended family, as I’m at college away from home. It’s hard to be around people who care so little about people like me. Knowing that I have a Holiday Mom like you makes today a little bit easier.

    Thank you again,
    Julia

    • Peg says:

      Julia,
      In my heart you are spending Thanksgiving with me!
      Hopefully you can find some people at school who appreciate and care about you.
      I’ll be here and you can come back whenever you want.

      Your Holiday Mom,
      Peg

  42. Luna says:

    Hello! Thank you for this letter. I wish I really could be your child. When I listened to you reading this, I cried a lot. I’m still don’t used to listening to such nice and warming words! English is not my native language so please forgive me for any mistakes that I probably made. One more time I want to thank you. I really appreciate your letter. In my country we don’t have Thanksgiving, but I still must live with people that don’t understand me and my life choices. I’m afraid of the future. I’m afraid of telling my parents about my sexuality. I don’t want them to be angry with me just because I like girls. I think that in time my mother will come to understand my sexuality, but I fear that my father won’t. He’s a difficult man. We don’t speak to each other anymore, even if we live in the same house. I admit that I’m a little bit scared of him. But, anyway, thank you for your letter. It made my day very special.
    Luna

    • Peg says:

      Luna,
      I am sorry to hear of the difficulties with your family.
      I’m sorry to hear that you’re a little afraid to be yourself with your family. Try educating your family about different lifestyles and answer their questions before you come out to them ~ it may help.
      Your English is wonderful and you can come back any time you want!
      Your Holiday Mom,
      Peg

  43. Elliot says:

    I just wanted to say thank you for your letter. I’m 19 and stuck dependent on my family due to money and disabilities. The holidays tend to range from tense to miserable, as my family all know I’m gay.
    Your letter was lovely, and made me feel right at home.
    Thank you for writing

    • Peg says:

      Elliott,
      Thank you for writing back. I’m sorry that things are so these at home. I’m glad that you felt at home and know that you can come by for a virtual hug anytime.
      I Love You,
      Mom

  44. Cam says:

    I don’t expect a lot of kindness during this time of year, especially when all the family comes together. This made my week with them just a bit better.

    Thank you so very much for reminding me that loving parents can exist.

    • Peg says:

      Cam,
      You can expect kindness from me Cam! I’m sorry that you’ll have such a tense week. You can come back for a hug anytime!
      I Love You,
      Mom

  45. emily says:

    hi Peg,
    thank you so much for your kind words. we don’t celebrate thanksgiving in the Netherlands but the way you described it made me feel at home, like I could just picture it.
    this will be the first holidays I’ll spend with my family since I’ve come out, and though I don’t think it will be much trouble, I am still nervous. but just knowing that there are moms out there like you, who care, makes me feel better. thank you so much for being here <3

    • Peg says:

      Emily,
      I am glad that you enjoyed our American Thanksgiving. I hope that your parents surround you with love this holiday season.
      I Love You,
      Mom

  46. Seth Goldstein says:

    Dear Holiday Mom,
    Thank you for your letter. It brought me joy to read that someone wants and cares about me. Thank you from my heart. I wish you a happy thanksgiving.
    ~ Seth Kairen Goldstein. Your transgender male holiday child.

    • Peg says:

      Seth,
      Of course I want and care about you! You are a wonderful young man and I wish the very best for you!
      I Love You,
      Mom

  47. Rob Scott says:

    I want to thank you all for this site.

    My own mother ridiculed gay people or those she perceived to be gay during my developmental years in high school. I have no contact with her today over this issue.

    I had to suffer in silence during my developmental years in high school afraid she would find out I was gay. I went on to attempt suicide in college. Thank God I failed.

    My advice to others with similar struggles is to turn your pain into power by being of service. For example, I was a crisis intervention and suicide prevention counselor for LGBT youth.

    I also worked on behalf of the Human Rights Campaign fighting for the equality act to prohibit discrimination in housing, education and employment for LGBT people by giving them full Federal protection. The equality act is currently before Congress.

    But that pain of feeling unloved by my own mother for being gay is a great burden to carry around and is very difficult to heal.

    Service work and developing a relationship with a God of my understanding (unconditional love) was my only way to heal.

    I urge caution because so many LGBT people had their own religion used against them for being gay and some didn’t make it combined with family rejection. They lost their support systems. This is why there is such a spike in substance abuse and youth homelessness which is up to 40% .

    Thank you for this site as my prayer is that those coming behind me who are LGBT have a better life and are loved by their families and know that God loves them unconditionally.

    One phone call from my own mom saying she loved me unconditionally would have saved me so much heartache and self destructive behavior. But she didn’t do it. So I have to save myself by learning to love myself. The only way I know how to do that is to fully understand that God loves me unconditionally and find the strength to forgive my mother for she knows not what she has done.

    Truth, Wisdom, Love and Sincerity, to ALL Mankind.

    Rob Scott
    Chicago, IL

    • Jeanne says:

      Dear Rob, wow. I am so impressed by you turning your pain into power and using that power to help others. That is an incredibly difficult and amazing thing to do.

      I am a mom and a pastor and I am so sorry that you were hurt by your own mom and that so many have been hurt by the church. I believe God loves you unconditionally just the way God made you. You are precious and loved by God and by me.

      I hope that you are able to treat yourself well during the holidays – be as kind and patient and generous as you are with others. You deserve the very best this holiday season and always. Sending you lots of affirmation and love. Praying for comfort, peace, and joy.

      • Rob Scott says:

        Thank you from the deepest part of me!
        Jeanne,
        Thank you.

        I found your response very healing and moved me to the core!

        Truth, Wisdom, Love and Sincerity, to ALL Mankind.

        Rob Scott
        Chicago, IL

    • Peg says:

      Rob,
      If I could have called you, I would have. I am so sorry that you were so depressed. I glad that you weren’t successful with your suicide attempt.
      You have some wonderful insight about service and religion. You are right, there are religions that support LGBT+ youth and adults. It will take a lot of healing for some people to be able to trust God again.
      Keep doing the great work that you’re doing.
      I Love You,
      Mom

  48. Roj says:

    Dear Holiday Mom,

    Your letter meant a lot to me. I cried reading it and listening to it. I’ve never heard some of those words. No one’s ever told me they were glad that I was born and thankful for me. I needed to hear that.

    I grew up with a mom who was mentally ill. I took care of her through 9 years of depression and I took care of myself as a kid. I really wish I had had someone in my life who sat with me and asked about things I like. I don’t remember sitting and talking about myself with any family member. I also wish I had someone who would teach me things, how to make pie, how to fix my bike or my car, how to look for a new apartment. I’ve taught myself everything, and it’s lonely.

    My mom rejected me when I came out as transgender. In a way, that was just as well, I could finally stop feeling responsible for her. But I still wish someone had been warm and respectful during my childhood. I wish I wasn’t so independent and self-sufficient now. I really don’t know how to allow others into my life.
    Thank you for your letter. It helps me today and it’s lovely to imagine that I could be loved and safe.

    Happy Thanksgiving,
    Roj

    • Sara Lunsford says:

      Roj-I admire you so much for all you’ve accomplished. I’d be proud if either of my children were like you.

    • Mom Carin says:

      My darling Roj,
      I just spent my lunch hour reading all the beautiful letters to Peg.

      Goodness I wish I could bring you all home and chat over dinner and tea. The distances makes that difficult so understand this.

      I see you, and hear you for the beautiful person you are. I love you and will love you always. Trusting isn’t easy, it someday you will find the soul you can trust.

      Till then, know I love you.
      Mom Carin

    • Peg says:

      Roj,
      I wish that I were with you, asking about you, teaching you things. It breaks my heart to read letters like yours.
      Yes, being independent and self sufficient are important but so is being able to love and be loved by someone else.
      There is a post above this one from Scott ~ he talks a lot about service and religion. Maybe if you took some of his advice and became active in the service of other LGBT+ you would learn how to let others into your life.
      Roj, I will be here throughout the holiday season and will give you a virtual hug whenever you want.
      I Love You,
      Mom

  49. Riley says:

    Dear Holiday Mom,
    Thank you so much for making me feel loved. My family isn’t the mist supportive when it comes to my sexuality, gender identity, religous beliefs, and even the music I listen too. It feels great to know that someone cares about me and excepts me for who I am. Thank you so much for making me smile! <3

  50. Kai says:

    Dear holiday mom,

    Thank you for being so kind. In a not always so nice world it’s hard to describe how comforting it is that there are still kind, loving people out there like you. I really needed to hear all that and even though I don’t cry very much, I will admit, I did cry a bit this time. You’re message honestly meant a lot to me and I wish you to have the happiest of holidays.

    With so much love,
    Kai
    (P.S. I’d defiently play table games with you after dinner c: )

    • Peg says:

      Kai,
      We all need a good cry now and then. I’m glad that I was able to give you the love that you needed today.
      My church offered a Thanksgiving dinner to whoever wanted to drop in, and I have to admit, I found someone to play a game with but I’d love to sit and play one with you. Stop back any time.
      I Love You,
      Mom

  51. Rashaad says:

    Holiday mom,
    Thanks for taking the time to write/record this for all of us. I was brought to tears. It was very heartwarming and super comforting. This is my first Thanksgiving completely alone. I’m thankful for people like you in the world. It really gives us hope

    • Peg says:

      Rashaad,
      It was certainly my please to send you this message of love and hope. It is my hope that someday we don’t need to have sites like this and we can all just openly love and support each other. And Rashaad, you’re not completely alone, you have me.
      I Love You,
      Mom

  52. Justice says:

    Dear Holiday Mom,

    Thank you. This really spoke to me and described me and brought me to tears. Happy tears of being loved and accepted.

  53. Mark says:

    Holiday Mom,

    This was such a beautiful, heartfelt letter. Thank you so much. It helps so much to know that you are there thinking of me and all of the others during this time of year. I’m in the position where I have a family but they genuinely do not understand who I am as a person and are not supportive in any way like they should be. Coming to terms with this is hard and it’s even harder to have to interact with them on a day like today when all I want is someone supportive and loving like you. But as I embark on this Thanksgiving, I can smile knowing that even though my parents may not be accepting and understanding and there for me, you are. I can’t thank you enough for that. You’ve made my day a lot brighter and I’ll be carrying that with me the whole holiday season.

    With all my love,
    Mark

    • Peg says:

      Mark,
      I am honored to know that you will carry my love with you this holiday season.
      Feel free to stop back and get some more love whenever you need it.
      I Love You,
      Mom

  54. Ricky says:

    Howdy there,

    I just want to say thank you for this. I am reading/listening to this letter after having yet another fight with my real mother over trivial stuff that always seems to lead to who I am. As a pansexual it’s a bit hard because most everyone doesn’t believe people like you exist. You sound a lot like my pastor back home. I miss going to that little old church, being away at college hasn’t been too easy.

    I know you understand how it is to have rough holidays and I am glad to know you’ll be praying for me and the others who read/listened to this letter.

    Thank you so much for the kind words and accepting me and the others into your heart.

    Happy Thanksgiving,

    -Ricky

    • Peg says:

      Ricky,
      I’m glad that I remind you of your pastor. Going off to college can be great or not so great, depending on the support you are able to cultivate. Check out some of the churches on or near your school ~ they may surprise you.
      I’m sorry to hear that you fight with your mom.
      I hope that she comes to accept you soon.
      Come back for a hug anytime!
      I Love You,
      Mom

  55. Kayden says:

    Thank you so much for this, mom. Thanksgiving is usually a very hard holiday for me because I have to spend it with my extremely homophobic and transphobic family. As a genderfluid lesbian, most of the comments they make are somewhat offensive. This letter made it a little easier to deal with.
    With love,
    Kayden

    • Peg says:

      Kayden,
      I am so sorry that your family are disrespectful to you. I hope that you know that you deserve so much more.
      I Love You,
      Mom

  56. Oliver says:

    Dear holiday mom,

    Thank you so much for taking the time for kids like myself, kids who have unsupportive families, or who don’t have a safe place to come out to.

    It means so much to us to have someone who cares about us, and to have a mother figure who is supportive of everything we need them to be. It really does mean the world to me.

    This is my first year being connected to the Holiday Mom’s, and I’m already looking forward to what else it could bring. <3

    Much love,
    Oliver Cade

    • Peg says:

      My Dear Oliver,
      My heart breaks for those of you who don’t get the love and support that they need. I am happy to be here for you and I think you will be overwhelmed by the amount of love that you will receive from all the Holiday Moms.
      Remember, I Love You,
      Mom

  57. bambi says:

    Dear holiday mom,
    This letter reallt helped eased my nerves…last year my cousin greg gave me guy clothes because he knows I’m transgender. My grandma saw this and said if she ever found out I liked girls that she would drown me.. it’s hard trying to cover your true self for safety even in my own home. .im glad I have you now, a mom who understands.. and it’s okay about those mixed up pronouns I know you try your best..happy thanksgiving mom.
    Sincerely,
    Bambi

    • Peg says:

      Bambi,
      You are very luck to have your cousin understand you ~ and most likely your grandmother. No one should ever live under the threat form another. I am sorry that you have to cover your true self. I will be here to give you love whenever you need it. Happy Thanksgiving Bambi ~ I Love You,
      Mom
      I Love You,
      Mom

  58. Hale says:

    Dear Holiday Mom,

    I really needed this.

    I am 16, and of course can’t leave until I’m 18, so I’m stuck in a judgmental household until then. This whole year has been a mess.

    I’ve come out to my mother and grandmother as agenderflux (mostly agender but sometimes feel female) but lately I’ve been questioning it. They purposely misgender me and refuse to use my pronouns. Which hurts so badly.

    But you, you try your best and thank you so much. Your kid appreciates the fact you try even if you mess up.

    I feel you should know what your holiday 16 year old looks like. I have short hair, I died it orange and red. Kind of reminds me of the fire on a match. I have snake bites (lip piercings), a tongue piercing, and one ear piercing. I have a tattoo of my favorite band’s logo on my wrist, as that band has helped me through everything. It’s like my protection from the hurt. I’m short. 5’3, and I know i’m overweight but oh well. I should still be able to give good hugs.

    My aunt and uncle have come over for Thanksgiving. They judge anything and everything. Yet they somehow like my hair. It’s so confusing.

    By the end of their stay, they’ll know about my gender identity and they’ll hate me. I’m not looking forward to it, except that I won’t be hiding it from them and that I won’t have to see them when I’m able to leave.

    I’m glad to know that I have some support. Thank you, mom.

    Love your also agender adopted child,

    Hale

    • Peg says:

      Hale,
      Your hair does sound amazing. I hope things went better last night than you expected.
      I’d have sat next to you and held your hand while you told your aunt and uncle. Hopefully they love you as much after you tell them as they did before.
      I’m still here and loving you,
      Mom

  59. Kat says:

    Hello,
    I am so happy to have another person in the house with a weird gender and it’s OK about the pronouns thier quite weird. Also pumpkin pies are the best and I love cooking with you its so much fun. Thank you for being a mom.
    Sincerely,
    Kat a demigirl

  60. Megan says:

    Dear Holiday Mom,

    I am Anna’s fiancée. This year will be very different; as my fiancée has explained, this will be my first year without my family of origin. It’s been a journey- with all the ups and downs that comes with it. A part of me is still grieving for the loss of those connections. However, as Anna has mentioned, her family has made a concerted effort to include me, and it really has helped me get back on my feet emotionally.

    Church has helped me, and I know it doesn’t help everyone. I have community with the choir, and my sect of Christianity is very accepting of gay and lesbian people. I’m very lucky for that.

    I love to cook, and this holiday will always be near and dear to my heart. I love how recipes feel like family secrets- and I love the continuity that the holiday celebrates, and how inclusive it all feels.

    Although I’m not with my family of origin, I’m still with family, and I thought that would be impossible after I left. For my holiday siblings who don’t get to spend their holidays with a family this year- I will pray fervently for you, and that you are safe. Family is something you can build on your own, and their abandoning of you does not indicate anything wrong with you- it is entirely their pathology at work. I hope that you will find a group of people around you who love you just as much as the people here love you.

    With love to my holiday siblings and to my holiday mom,
    Megan.

    • Peg says:

      Megan,
      I am delighted to hear of your relationship with Anna. I am glad that Anna shared my letter with you. It seems like the family you have now is much healthier than your family of origin.
      It is great to see that you have found peace with your religion, it can be a major source of either comfort or pain.
      Please give each other a hug for me.
      I Love You,
      Mom

  61. Sarah says:

    Dear Holiday Mom,
    This past month, my parents tried to kidnap me when they found out I had been seeing another woman so they could place me through more conversion therapy. I’ve tried coming out as bi-sexual so many times and places and have been ignored for so long. But this wasn’t the kind of attention I wanted.

    This Thanksgiving, they tried to make me go over to my Aunt’s house – who I didn’t want to see for the reason alone that they’d tried forcing over without permission; I just don’t feel comfortable or safe. I feel violated. I just got off the phone with my Aunt – who refused for twenty minutes to respect my decision as an adult to have a Thanksgiving to myself and tried to insist she’d forcibly remove me from my home if she had to. After being called a disappointment to my family, this is what I needed to hear.
    I never wanted to spend Thanksgiving alone, but it made me feel happy to hear about mine with you and your lovely family. I love the freedom you give your kids, my “siblings”. It makes me happy and warms my heart. Your letter helped to calm my anxiety attack that the thought of being kidnapped again inspired – or being forced to do something I didn’t want to do. It makes me feel that in a world where I spend the wonderful Thanksgiving you’ve described with you or a family like yours that that me is happy, and loved, and well-fed – of course!
    My heart is warm, and my eyes are wet. But the tears are as cathartic and healthy as the small flame in my chest.
    Your words mean more than you know and reach even the most helpless of situations, and you are the one that possesses a good heart for doing this.
    My Thanksgiving will be quiet, but I’ll spend it with my girlfriend on the phone and a little bit more piece of mind. Thank you for your words.

    Most Sincerely,
    Sarah

    • Peg says:

      Sarah,
      While I am glad that you are strong enough to stand up to your parents and spend Thanksgiving alone, I am worried about you! You should not have to worry about being kidnapped. Please research a crisis phone number where someone can come and get you if you feel like you are in danger.
      I hope that you are able to find a safer place to be this. Please let me know that you are safe.
      I Love You,
      Mom

  62. Jania says:

    Dear holiday mom,

    Thank you for always being here for me when I feel alone on the holidays. It’s hard to be thankful today but reading this made me extreamly thankful for having a holiday mom thank you so much!

    ~Jania

    • Peg says:

      Jania,
      I will be here for you throughout the holidays. Feel free to come back whenever you need some love.
      I Love You,
      Peg

  63. Mirjam says:

    Dear Holiday Mom,
    Thank you for the letter. It makes one feel loved, even though by someone from so far away.
    I am depressed and can at times curse myself and how I am. Still, when I read this a small voice says something like: ‘See? You are not completely worthless.”
    Have a nice day and/or night.

    • Peg says:

      Mirjam,
      You ARE loved, and you are perfect just the way you are.
      I hope that you are able to talk with someone about your feelings of depression and worthlessness. I am worried about you. Please keep a crisis number you can call if you need it. I’ll be here throughout the holidays if you want to come back for a hug.
      I Love You,
      Mom

  64. Cassidy says:

    Dear Holiday Mom,
    Thank you so much for your letter. I’ve never read something so genuinely loving and it’s so good to have you here to make me and so so so many others feel loved. It’s definitely hard to feel loved around Thanksgiving, which is supposed to be about family, when your family either doesn’t know who you are or doesn’t care. I’m so thankful for you and that you bothered to spend the time writing this letter; while I’m not really good with words I still just want to say thank you. This is my first time on this site (I just found it this year) and I’ll certainly be staying here for your support. I wish I had a mom with me all year like you. Thank you thank you thank you.
    Your holiday child,
    Cassidy (xe/xir/xirs)

    • Peg says:

      My Dear Sweet Cassidy,

      Thank you so much for your kind words. I do love and care about you and the others that have read me letter. I feel privileged to know you and I
      I am happy to be the family you need during the holidays.
      Come back for a hug whenever you need one.
      I Love You,
      Mom

  65. Lyman says:

    Dear Holiday Mum,
    I was so excited to see that I had gotten an email from this website today. I was so happy to read the letter and when I was done I couldn’t help but just hug the iPad I’m reading and writing on. No mum, whether biological, step, or adoptive has been this nice and comforting to me yet, or since my real mum died a few years ago. Now my dad, his new girlfriend, and his new perfect, not-trans-and-stupid daughter are going to a thanksgiving party and I’m just gonna be hanging out over here with movies, music, and games. Instead of turkey and mashed potatoes I have popcorn and pretzels like in Charlie Brown. I really needed this letter today. Thank you so much.
    Your holiday son,
    Lyman
    P.S. Say hi to my holiday sibling and thank them for me!

    • Peg says:

      Lyman,
      Thank you for responded to my letter. I am sorry to hear about you Mum. I am happy to give you the love you need, and you are NOT stupid.
      I don’t know why you didn’t go to the party but sometimes being alone with a good movie and snacks is much better than being with people who don’t respect you.
      Your holiday sibling smiled at your comment, glad to have a brother and says hello.
      I Love You,
      Mom

  66. Jamie says:

    Dear Holiday Mom,
    I’m from the UK, so saying mom feels a bit weird to me still, and we don’t have thanksgiving. However you make me feel loved and part of your family from all the way across the world.
    Thank you so much x

    • Peg says:

      Jamie,
      I’m OK with Mum! Thanks for joining us for our holiday. I hope that you have things to be thankful for too.
      I Love You,
      Mum

  67. Rebekah says:

    Dear holiday mom,
    Thank you so much for making these letters. I am 14 and bisexual. It is not a huge deal except that the only people in my family to accept anyone like me is my dad and my sisters. I have not come out to my birth mom yet, and I don’t plan to. I know she will not accept me due to her religion and I know she will tell the rest of her side of the family and they will not accept me. This is really difficult and I was scared about going through the holidays because of the homophobic comments about anything and everything. But a few days ago I found this site and I was soo happy that I could find a mom that is willing to accept me… I just read this letter and it almost made me cry. Thank you
    -your holiday child,
    Rebekah

    • Peg says:

      My Sweet Rebekah,
      I am sorry about the situation with your mom, it is totally her loss.
      It sounds like you have a healthy relationship with your sisters and dad and that is good. I’m glad that you have someone you can talk with and who understands you.
      I am also glad that you found this site and hope it brings you peace all season.
      Feel free to come back for a hug from this mom who accepts you for the beautiful person that you are!
      I Love You,
      Mom

  68. Sean says:

    Thank you Holiday Mom. The way your letter was written makes it believable that you’re old enough to be my mom. (My birth mom had me real young though!) My birthday is very close to thanksgiving too, and I’m turning 38. I’ve never been close to my mom or had a partner in my life either. I’m an only child too, so I don’t have anyone to call or hear from over the holidays. I’m always alone. It feels like you could be my mom so I thank you. It’s nice to hear from someone and feel a little like I have family out there.
    Love,
    Your adopted son Sean

    • Peg says:

      Hello Sean and Happy Birthday!
      Yes, I am old enough to be your mom BUT I also had a child when I was 40 ~ so I still have a high schooler!
      I hate to hear that you’re always alone. Maybe you could check out a LGBT support or outreach organization in your area?
      I will be here all season and would love to give you whatever love I can. You are not alone anymore Sean.
      I Love You and encourage you to come back and visit anytime.
      Mom

    • Angelic says:

      Happy birthday Sean! I’m only a year & a half older than you, so I’ll call myself Big Sis. Love you tons, bro!
      Love, Angelic

  69. Christopher says:

    Dear Holiday Mom,

    Thank you very much for the wonderful things you’ve written to me, to all of us who are hurting in some way over our family’s. It means the world when I have no where else to receive such kind words and such understanding. Although it is sad that it must come from a stranger over the person who raised me, I’m very grateful that stranger was you.
    Every year around this time I will become extremely depressed, often suicidal..but I think this year I can be okay. I can do my best to be anyway.
    I wish you a wonderful Thanksgiving, a warmer heart still, and happiness throughout your holidays. I wouldn’t trade you for the world.

    Love, Your Holiday Son,
    Christopher

    • Peg says:

      Christopher,
      Thank you for your sweet response. If I could take your hurt away, I would.
      I hope that you will be ok this year but I get concerned when my kids start talking about being depressed/suicidal. I’m glad to hear that you’ll do your best but please also make sure you keep a crisis number available just in case.
      I wish for happiness for you too and hope that you’ll come back for a hug if you need one.
      I Love You,
      Mom

      • Christopher says:

        Dearest Holiday Mom,
        I have a loving partner who helps keep me and my head, as I do for her. So I know I’ll be safe, and I’m out of my parents abusive household, so I already am doing much better than I was a little over a year ago. In fact, comparatively, I’m doing gloriously. I love your hugs, I love your words. They’re beautiful. And though we had nowhere to go yesterday, reading this have me warmth to hold through the night.

        Love, Your Holiday Son,
        Christopher

        • Christopher says:

          P. S.
          It’s been a very long time since I’ve seen the words “I love you” and “Mom” in the same scentence..so thank you again.

          • Peg says:

            Christopher,
            Knowing that you have someone looking out for you and vice versa is comforting ~ I wouldn’t want to hear of you hurting yourself.
            And Christopher, it is true, I do love you.
            Mom

  70. Namo says:

    Thank you so much for that letter. It’s been such a long time since I heard or read something like this. I can’t tell you how alone and lost I felt lately.
    Already when you said you hug me and just hold me (and all these other beautiful people who are reading your letter), I started crying . I didn’t realize how much I missed it to just get hold..
    Even though I am living in germany and never celebrated thanks giving, I felt like a little bit of peace came all the way to me.
    Hope, you enjoy(-ed? What time is it now at your place?) your dinner and the pie
    Xx

    • Peg says:

      Namo,
      Here is another hug for you oxo.
      I’m sorry you don’t get held enough, I want to make you feel loved.
      I have a German exchange student and he had his first Thanksgiving today. So Germans CAN celebrate Thanksgiving!
      Whenever you feel lost or lonely, feel free to come back for a visit.
      I Love You,
      Mom

  71. Daniel says:

    Dear Mom,

    Please think of me when all the rest of our family is having dinner. I have to work on Thanksgiving. I don’t like it, but I was scheduled to, so I have to. My birth family is gonna have early dinner for me, but it won’t be the same because I have to miss dinner with you.
    Warm Wishes and Happy Thanksgiving from your little Daniel.

    • Peg says:

      My little Daniel,
      UGH, sorry you had to work today but, wow, you get two dinners out of it ~ and early one with your birth family and a later one with me! Bet you’re really full now!!!
      Happy Thanksgiving! I Love You,
      Mom

  72. kayla says:

    This just made my day… sadly i cant celebrate thanksgiving this year but this just made me smile despite everything going on right now

    • Peg says:

      Kayla
      I am sorry you have so much going on right now. Like I said in my letter, it will get better.
      Be strong and know that I Love You,
      Mom

  73. Anna says:

    Dear Holiday Mom,

    I appreciate this letter so much. I will pass it along to my (absolutely gorgeous and amazing) fiancee, who will be celebrating this holiday season with my parents, because hers disowned her this summer for being open and authentic about the fact that she’s a lesbian and intends to spend the rest of her life with me, and she now lives with my father. My family–both sides– has gone above and beyond to include her and make her feel like part of our family, but I know that part of her still aches to be a part of her family of origin, and as much as I wish I could fix that, I can’t. Would you say a prayer for her, please?
    Love, your holiday child,
    Anna (she/her)

    • Peg says:

      Anna,
      You were sweet to pass my letter along to Megan. She sounds great and you both sound like you are in a very healthy relationship. You are lucky to have found each other.
      I Love You,
      Mom

  74. Elioy says:

    Dear holiday mom,

    Thank you for standing by me during a hard time. This is my first year reading Your Holiday Mom, and today is my first Thanksgiving without my family. I really needed to wake up to something like this.

    I’m actually not out to my family yet, but I’m not ready to talk to them yet, nor go home for the holiday. There’s so much of my life I’ve hid from them the past several years and I don’t know that I could get through another holiday dinner in an emotionally healthy manner. I’m glad that I know I can share those kinds of things with you. I can only hope that one day my parents will be as loving and accepting as you.

    Thank you for your kind words. Have a wonderful holiday.

    Your holiday child,
    Eliot

    • Peg says:

      Eliott,
      I’m glad you were able to wake up to my letter ~ and you will get 39 more! I’m sorry that you had your first Thanksgiving without your family and I hope everything we OK.
      I hope that you have some other support ~ someone in real life to talk with. I’ll be here all season if you want to come back, I’ll listen.
      I Love You,
      Mom

  75. Jackie says:

    Thank you for writing this. I’ve been worried the past month because neither side of the family seems to care much about me save a couple, and now I’ll have to be there with parents that still want me to be with a guy despite me telling them that it’s possible that won’t happen. Your letter reminded me that I’m not alone and there are mothers like you that love their children and want them to be happy no matter what comes their way. Thank you so much, and I hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

    • Peg says:

      Jackie,
      I do want you to be happy and now you have an extended family that cares about you. You’re not alone and there are 39 more letters coming your way! I Love You,
      Mom

  76. Kayleigh says:

    Thank you so much, I haven’t actually felt this loved on thanksgiving for a long time and I think this will give me the strength to get through a day that I normally dread.

  77. Marco says:

    I just started this and I, I’m not sure what to say really. A part of me found it corny, but it made me laugh, like it lifted a weight off my shoulders. I’m actually really happy I signed up for this, your letter made my holiday. I’m giving you a big hug here in Texas, thanks holiday mom!

    • Peg says:

      Marco,
      My first letter was very different (maybe a little preachy), then I read about how they wanted us to write about what it would be like for you to spend time with us. I can see how the letter could seen as corny but… it really is what you would have experienced if you were home today.
      I’m happy to accept that Texas sized hug!
      Love You,
      Mom

  78. Roselia says:

    I’m crying, and it’s been so long since I’ve cried. Or felt. I really, REALLY needed something like this, someone like you, in my life. Especially around the holidays, when I feel most alone. Thank you.

    • Peg says:

      Roselia Oh Roselia ~ my heart goes out to you this holiday season. I really am here for you ~ and will be here all season long. Sorry you feel so alone, come back and get a hug any time.
      I Love You,
      Mom

  79. Emily says:

    Dear Holiday Mom,

    This holiday season will be a lot easier knowing that I have a mom who is so thankful for me the way I am. I can’t begin express how I felt reading this, but it did make me cry in “a good way”. There will be comments said this Thanksgiving, but its’s not as hard to keep my secret now, knowing that I have someone who accepts me unconditionally. Thank you.

    Forever grateful,
    Emily

    • Peg says:

      Emily,
      You are perfect the way you are ~ don’t let any of those comments get you down! Anytime you need a hug, just come on over!
      I Love You,
      Mom

  80. Abigail says:

    It’s so great to have these around when I’m down, and I didn’t think these started until December, so this is a pleasant surprise. Thanks mom!

    • Peg says:

      Abigail,
      Surprise! More love than you could ask for!
      I hope you have a wonderful holiday season!
      I Love You,
      Mom

    • Peg says:

      Finn,
      There are so many moms out there who will love you if given the chance. You have 39 more letters coming your way!
      I Love You,
      Mom

  81. Lou says:

    We don’t celebrate thanksgiving but I read this letter anyway. It’s all so very beautiful and kind and heart warming. It made me wish that my family would make holiday events special by cooking meals and decorating and all that but it never happens, not even when it’s Christmas.
    “You are the only you that I have.” – This made me cry so very much at the end. I do not even know what to say.
    This is a beautiful letter, thank you.

    • Peg says:

      Lou,
      I am thankful that you signed up for these letters. I wish that I could have you over for a holiday meal. Last year one of my kids asked if they could bring a friend home for Christmas dinner because she’d never had a Christmas dinner. Maybe you could go to a friend’s home for a dinner too?
      I am glad that you like my letter, I wrote it for you. come back for a hug anytime.
      I Love You,
      Mom

    • Peg says:

      Calil,
      A “good kind” of cry can be a great way to start the day. I hope that you feel loved and treasured. Let me give you a hug!
      xoxo
      Your Holiday Mom

  82. Abby says:

    Thank you Holiday Mom. Thanksgiving is almost always the hardest holiday for me because it’s hard to find things to be thankful for. This letter definitely made it a little easier. ❤️

    • Peg says:

      Good Morning Abby!

      Sometimes you can be thankful for the little things ~ I am thankful that you have found this website and that my words make the holiday a little easier.
      I hope that the day (and the holidays) go smoothly for you. If it helps, please know that I’ll be having that pie at 6:00 tonight and will be thinking about YOU.
      With all my love,
      Your Holiday Mom, Peg

  83. Bella says:

    Dear holiday Mum,
    Just wanted to say thank you all the way from Australia.
    We dont have thanksgiving over here, but this still touched me on a day i needed it the most.
    Thank you <3

    • Peg says:

      Bella,
      I have family down under! How wonderful! I am glad that I was able to help today. You can swing by anytime for some love and kindness.
      Your Holiday Mom,
      Peg

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