This post is dedicated to Ambrosia, iwonder, and Jason Lockhart, and you should go to their blogs and say hello to them--please leave a comment, otherwise your visit will show up on their counters and they won't know who you are, and it's very rude to visit someone and not introduce oneself. And just for Jason, because he asked, I have "supersized" this topic and will write about it in more than one post.
After talking with DJ, I received a late phone call (which isn't necessarily unusual at my house). I was talking in my bedroom, when DJ came in and started messing with things on Darrin's dresser. I said, "Hey, you're supposed to be sleeping--go to bed." He answered me: "Okay. But I thought you might like to know--that talk we just had? Well, Tabitha was still awake and she's upstairs crying."
I quickly said good-bye to my caller and went to Tabitha's room. Sure enough, she was in bed sniffling. I sat down next to her. She crawled into my lap and sobbed. I waited until she calmed down a bit, then asked her if she wanted to tell me what was bothering her. She nodded, but didn't say anything. I asked if she'd heard what DJ and I were talking about. She said, "A little bit," which in Tabitha language means she heard everything. I asked why it made her cry. She said, "Mom, I don't want people to find out about you and Sully and say mean things about you. I don't want them to hurt you. It's not fair."
I told her that everyone gets hurt, and that, no doubt, if lots of people found out about Sully and me, there would be those who were unkind. But I told her it would be okay, no matter what was said. I asked her if she had any questions. She said she didn't, but asked if I would just hold her and talk to her a little while. So I rocked my twelve-year-old daughter to sleep, while we talked about the upcoming school year, new friends, how she'd like to have her hair cut, whether or not she'd like to play on the volleyball team...
When she started to doze off, I tucked her in and kissed her.
Then next morning, assuming that Adam knew about Sully, Tabitha spilled the beans because she wanted to see what he thought about everything. Adam and Sully had made arrangements to go to a movie that afternoon, so I had Adam call and ask Sully to come 30 minutes early, at which time I let him know of the Stevens family confidence breach. To my relief, Sully laughed and said he was glad the whole family knew. He and I chatted for a few moments alone, then invited the kids to join us. The were allowed to ask any questions they had (they had very few) and Sully and I again let them know that this was not something they could share, but that Sully and I would like to choose who was told. They agreed.
It's been a week now. Adam has had another conversation with me, in which he tried to make his 13-year-old brain understand how gay mom has sex with straight dad:
Me: I can explain, but I don't think you'll understand.
Adam: Give it a try?
Me: Okay. But it might be awkward. Most kids don't like to think about their parents having sex.
Adam: Try anyway?
So I tried. I explained in the most basic of terms that because Darrin and I love each other and because we've worked together for many years, that we now are able to express physical love without being distracted by my orientation. I explained that even though I'm not necessarily attracted to him, he's attracted to me, and I love him deeply, so having that physical relationship is joyful because sex between two people who love each other is something wonderful. I really did try to explain...
Adam: I'm not going to get this, am I?
Me: I don't think so. I'm sorry.
Adam: Can we try again when I'm fifteen?
Me: Of course. In the meantime, don't worry too much about this, okay?
Anyway, today is pretty much life as usual, and that's a good thing.