Keeping Nephew's Secrets
Q:My nephew just confided in me and told me he's gay. He lives in a small town and is having a hard time adjusting to this, but did meet a guy who he likes and they are dating. My sister keeps bringing up to me that she thinks he's a dating a girl and he must be nervous to tell her (this girl is actually his best friend). I feel like saying something to my sister but don't want to break my nephew's confidence. It's just weird. How do I deal with this? --Kevin, 47
Dr. Anna: The fact that your nephew is able to trust and confide in you is a big deal. Oftentimes, kids feel alone and isolated—being able to talk to a trustworthy adult can be a huge relief. Unless you feel he is in some way in life-threatening danger, avoid breaking his trust. Talk to your nephew about why he's been reluctant to talk to his mom. Give him the support he needs to tell his family in his own way, but don't push him to do anything before he's ready. Listen to your sister and encourage her to be supportive to him and keep the lines of communication open. They will get there in their own time.
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Advice for Her
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Susan K. Perry, Ph.D.
Susan K. Perry, Ph.D., is a social psychologist, relationship expert, and bestselling and award-winning author. Her books include Loving in Flow: How the Happiest Couples Get and Stay That Way, and Kylie's Heel, a novel for adults.
Pamela G. Chollet, Ph.D.
Dr. Pamela Chollet has a Ph.D. in clinical psychology and Master degrees in educational psychology and fine arts. Her passion has been helping people face and get through those times when they feel trapped and unable to move forward.
Anna Charbonneau, Ph.D.
Anna Charbonneau, Ph.D., is a clinical psychologist, stress management expert, and author. If you're feeling overwhelmed, stressed out, or struggling to make changes in your life, Anna can help.