Do These Pants Make Me Look Gay?

Ever tried explaining homosexuality to a four-year-old who doesn't particularly listen?

Yeah. It's fun.

Colin and Cameron are on a serious Super Mario Bros. kick ever since we gave Colin the Wii game for his birthday last month. And because it's Colin's custom to look up eeeeeeverythiing on YouTube, they've been watching a lot of video tutorials about how to beat the levels and such.

Normally these tutorials are wordless, or just boring and explain-y, showing someone playing endless levels of Mario Bros. But sometimes you'll hear the players talking to each other. And apparently I didn't notice the one where someone in the background said "Gay Luigi."

But Cameron did! Yaaaay!

So when I heard him calling his brother "Gay Luigi" the other day, I sat him down.

"Cameron?" I said gently. "Do you know what 'gay' means?"

He shook his head, so I explained it to him in the easiest-to-understand terms possible. And then reiterated that being gay is not a bad or abnormal thing, that we all have our preferences, and that it's just a matter of what people like.

Fast-forward to a couple days later, when I heard him calling Colin gay again.

"Cameron," I admonished. "Do you remember what I told you 'gay' means?"

He nodded.

"Okay. Well. Calling someone gay is like calling someone fat. There's nothing wrong with being fat, but you don't call someone that. Same with gay. All right?"

"Yes, Mommy," Cameron said, rather impatiently.

Concerned that my wise teachings of tolerance and manners hadn't quite set in, I decided to quiz him. "And what does 'gay' mean, again?"

He paused for a second. Then: "It means fat!" he said brightly.


I'll have to try explaining it again when he learns to listen a little better.

... If that ever happens.

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  1. My neighbors are gay (gaybors). When my daughter was born, they announced they would be her fairly godfathers. So far, they are working diligently on teaching her about the finer things in life while being great role models for committed relationships. Good for you! Also am so impressed with looking stuff up on you tube. Perhaps I should learn from the youngins?!

  2. Your flag picture looks just like a belt my son owns. He has proclaimed that he is gay on several occasions, but has just gone through 2 girlfriends. It's truly bizarre. But he is just 13 and maybe doesn't know what the hell his brain is doing.

    I have a 4 year old daughter, so I can only imagine what THAT convo is gonna look like!

  3. I love how you explain it to him! Especially the metaphor between the word fat and gay. Very clever!

  4. I don't know how to explain GAY to adults, much less children, kuddos to you for even trying!


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