SDA Kinship News

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ADVICE COLUMN

Question:
I badly want a lover, but despite repeated attempts, I can't seem to make a special relationship work for long. Why do LGBT relationships appear to often meet with early death?

Answer:
Many LGBT relationships do last, often for a lifetime. Those couples who endure often maintain a low profile, even in relation to the gay community. Because we seldom see or hear from them, we mistakenly assume they do not exist.

Of course, many of our relationships end more quickly. But I would remind you that the heterosexual record is not especially to be envied. One in three marriages terminates in divorce. Many heterosexual couples break engagements and "steady" arrangements. My point is simply that we should not be more critical of gay relationships than a factual comparison with heterosexuals warrants.

Gay couples separate for the same reasons that heterosexual couples break up. Perhaps the choice of a partner was inappropriate in the first place. One or both people may have been too immature or insecure to maintain the level of mutual responsibility and commitment that a relationship requires.

Possibly the participants had impossible expectations of each other or did not know how to communicate their deeper needs and feelings.

When we consider the additional stresses on the gay person, it is understandable that our couples may encounter difficulties.

They may need to be secretive about their love in order to protect their jobs or their involvement with their relatives. They get little support for their relationship from their families, their church, or from society. In addition, a lifetime of oppression for being gay causes some to experience low self-esteem and poor self-image. All these stresses may erode interactions between partners.

A good relationship between two men or two women is possible, but it takes dedication and hard work. Even so, guarantees that relationships will last cannot be found, for people are changeable with the passing of time, often in unpredictable ways.

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Next publication’s Q&A column will continue to look at relationship problems. We welcome written responses from couples willing to share with us their successes and/or advice. Email info@sdakinship.org

COLOMBIA
Church Relations

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