SAN FRANCISCO, Dec. 9, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- LGBT kids around the world saw a powerful model of parental acceptance on Sunday night when Magic and Cookie Johnson shared their love for their openly gay son on the Oprah's Next Chapter Program on the OWN television network. Sadly, Safe Harbor Coach to the LGBT Community Susan Berland reports this is not the reality for thousands of kids around the world.
"Not a day goes by when I don't hear from a dejected teenage boy or girl who is struggling with love denied by parents because he or she is not the kid they hoped he would be, and I am on a mission to change that," Berland says. Today, Berland coaches parents and their LGBT kids with the goal to build a bridge to acceptance and understanding. Given the high expectations that bubble up among families – especially during the holidays – the timing is right to share tips to lay the foundation.
- Start by acknowledging and accepting where you are. If you don't start there, you won't be able to move beyond it.
- Be courageous and open in discussing uncomfortable topics with one another.
- Show compassion and caring in your communications so you will be heard and understood. Communicating out of anger, frustration and disappointment stops the message you are trying to deliver from being heard.
- Be patient with yourself and one another. It takes time to adjust one's expectations and there is no one way and no one right way. Everyone has their own path.
- Trust yourself, your feelings, and who you are. When the foundation of love is still there, you can trust that you will be able to build a bridge back to understanding and acceptance.
Community groups, anti-bullying organizations, and families around the world can download Berland's ACCEPT Manifesto for free to post on bulletin boards, refrigerators, and share in holiday stockings in perfect timing to shift perspectives.
Call or email to book Susan Berland to contribute to radio or television programs or book her to lead a workshop for your organization: 415-987-3194 or firstname.lastname@example.org. For additional information, go to www.SusanHopeBerland.com
About Safe Harbor Coach Susan Berland
Susan Berland is fiercely committed to guiding young people and their parents back to a loving, accepting relationship when the parents are struggling to accept their child as gay, bisexual or transgender. Susan guides parents and their kids to communicate effectively, trust one another and accept one another where and as they are. As the proud mother of a gay son and champion for people who are different, it's Susan's privilege and pleasure to be the safe harbor for family members who want acceptance without judgment and to find a path to a loving, understanding, accepting family environment with her coaching and support.
Susan's mission and commitment is to provide the support and tools to bring your family back together. What lights Susan up about this work is knowing that she is providing a safe, loving place, non-judgmental way to support LGBT kids and their parents in the most important journey of their lives.
Read more news from Susan Berland.
SOURCE Susan Berland