New Website Offers Support For Adult Children of Homosexuals

A woman who grew up with a same-sex-attracted father has launched an effort to help similar people deal with the pain they experience.

Excerpted from New Website Offers Support For Adult Children of Homosexuals, by Gail Besse, published Oct 8-14, 2006, in National Catholic Register:

She had every daughter’s natural need for affirmation, dawn.gif
but that was something her homosexual father just couldn’t give his little girl.

Now in her 40s, Dawn Stefanowicz knows there are others like her — others who as children ached with silent hunger for that missing connection. To help them, she has set up the first website that specifically addresses the impact of homosexual parenting from the adult child’s perspective.

“It pierces the inside of you when you know the truth. Men who struggle with their own masculinity cannot affirm femininity,” she said. “Six-year-olds cannot tell you how they’re being impacted. We can’t comprehend what we went through until we’re adults.

“People aren’t comfortable sharing this, but keeping it hidden hurts children,” she said. “The secular media is not carrying the message that this impacts children long-term.”

Now an accountant and home schooling mother of two, Stefanowicz and her husband of 22 years live in Ontario.

Her website, http://www.dawnstefanowicz.com, went online in early September. It outlines her childhood story, which includes being exposed to nude beaches, “gay cruising” sites and sexually transmitted diseases. The website lists scientific studies and news articles, secular and religious support groups, and confidential contact information.

Her Christian faith and counseling helped Stefanowicz come to terms with her past and with the biological father whom she loved but lost to AIDS.

In the past three years, she has testified in the United States and Canada on behalf of marriage protection laws, and she appeared Sept. 21 on EWTN’s “Life on the Rock.” Her autobiography, Out from Under: Getting Clear of the Wreckage of a Sexually Disordered Home, will be out in 2007.

She went public because children’s voices were one dimension missing from the same-sex “marriage” debate. Adults who as children had first-hand experience of the “gay” lifestyle could speak for them…

A host of parental problems can challenge children raised by those who act out same-sex attraction, according to Dale O’Leary, a writer and researcher for the Catholic Medical Association and author of ­ The Gender Agenda: Redefining Equality. For example, boys reared by two “mothers” face hostility toward their masculinity within the lesbian community.

“Same-sex attraction is the tip of the iceberg,” O’Leary said. “Many such people were victims of sexual child abuse themselves and have multiple problems. Many have suicidal impulses, anger management issues, drug and alcohol abuse, a high level of partner change, serious depression and mental illness. The scary thing is, when children are raised by dysfunctional parents, they often think the problems are their fault,” she said.

Even adult children hesitate to discuss their pain for fear of hurting their parents, Stefanowicz said. Some become promiscuous, when they are really seeking love. Others become perfectionists, seeking a sense of identity through their profession.

She hopes her website will be a vehicle for mutual support and healing, and a resource to uphold marriage as the union of a man and a woman for the sake of all children.

Continue reading in National Catholic Register…

This article was posted on Saturday, October 7th, 2006 at 1:04 pm and is filed under "Civil Unions" & "Gay Marriage", Catholic, Custody, Homosexual Parenting, Mental Health, Physical Health, Suicide. You can follow any updates to this article through the RSS 2.0 feed.

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