[ I’m sure they’ve seen the video below before, but it’s dedicated to Bunso and Logan! And it’s the not main reason for this blog, but if after reading this if at least one parent can broaden his / her perspective on gays and gayness, particularly in connection with their kids, then this post would’ve been worth the typing. Mabuhay po! ]
I hope Precious Reader doesn’t think that I’m making such a big deal about this. After all, I’ve met Panganay’s girlfriend quite a few times over dinner without too much fanfare (although she is the first Kiwi in our family), and Ganda’s boyfriend, a Pinoy-as-bagoong twentysomething, has been in our flat several times since he was introduced to us.
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But it’s no trifle when it’s your baby introducing his special someone, the baby that Bunso happens to be. As far as I know it’s his first relationship, the first in his 19 years, he seems very fond of his special someone, and he absolutely insisted that we meet him before he returned to Australia for the holidays.
I would be less than candid if I didn’t tell you there was a bit of apprehension on the way, as you may have gathered from the pronouns and if you’ve heard me go on about Bunso before, that he has made no qualms about being gay in his sexuality and relationships and it has only made goodwife Mahal and me, and of course his mom and stepdad, prouder than we already are as his parents. Given his courage and forthrightness, we can do no less.
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The dinner date last Saturday almost didn’t happen, what with Mahal filling in for a sick colleague on a weekend shift and me hoping to catch some zzz’s after a week of mixed shifts. But in the end we loved Bunso too much to disappoint him, and of course we were more than a bit curious to see Bunso’s beau. Besides at least Panganay or Ganda (or maybe both of them) would be tagging along, just as curious to see how we would react to the match.
Chinese goes well with anything and so Chinese it was, complete with noodles, dumplings and fried rice, staples you need to get the juices flowing. And we needed the juices flowing just to be able to keep up with Logan (not his real name, but it’s close), who was just as eager as we were to make a good first impression. He ticked all the right boxes for our Bunso. He was (is) handsome, intelligent, well-spoken, charming, and as polite as any young man could be. He just happened to be as gay as our son, which obviously suited Bunso just fine.
We wanted to make him feel comfortable with us, even though it was the first time that we were witnessing Bunso truly in love, but on the other hand we didn’t want to appear as trying too hard to be agreeable, as we also wanted to get to know him as he was and not just because we were Bunso’s folks.
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Turned out Panganay (who was there obviously) balanced it out, what with his willingness to ask honest questions in the midst of a politically correct family dinner. Were Logan and Bunso alright with the fact that bigots and homophobes were lurking just around the corner to give them a hard time? How did Logan deal with the mentality that compared with Kiwi society, Australians are considered more racially intolerant? (Logan is Australian.) All credit to him, he dealt with such questions with grace and good humor. You can’t please everybody. And I can’t apologize for my people. But I can get out of my stereotype as positively as I can.
You don’t need to be gay to appreciate his words.
Before we knew it, it was time to go, but it did make me cringe a little bit (mentally) to see my son and his boyfriend kiss and cuddle, hold hands and complete each other’s sentences, and gaze at each other with goo-goo eyes. Panganay rolled his eyes more than a few times, but I knew what he was thinking, which was exactly what I was thinking : if he can make Bunso happy, then I’m good.
And that, my friends, was that.