Geraint Lloyd-Taylor offers a practical guide for mums and dads who are mildly muddled or bigly bigoted.
Around the world, a huge number of people are lying awake at night wondering how to explain to their children why two people of the same sex who love one another should be allowed to marry.
“Why doesn’t anyone think of the children?” they cry. “How on earth will parents like me explain all this to our kids and why should we have to anyway, and why should our precious cherubs even have to deal with all this at their tender young age?”
Well, don’t worry. It’s an extremely confusing subject but this handy guide will help you navigate these radical changes.
The dreaded question
The day will soon come (if it hasn’t already) when your child turns to you and hits you with it.
The dreaded question: “Mummy/Daddy, how come those two women (or two men) are getting married?”
What to do
You may be experiencing one or more brief but alarming physical symptoms.
First, your heart may sink and/or thump quite heavily. Your palms and forehead may become sweaty and/or you may notice your breathing becoming unusually shallow.
In extreme cases, you may even experience some mild dizziness or nausea — but don’t worry, these are common side effects of a non life-threatening but often chronic and life-limiting condition known as ‘prejudice’ and these physical symptoms will quickly pass.
We promise that you WILL get through this, just follow these steps:
C P R
Begin by remembering the simple acronym: “C.P.R.” It’s only three letters so after a couple of hours you should have it down.
‘C’ stands for COMPOSURE.
Take a moment, and COMPOSE yourself.
Take a slow deep breath. Then another. Remember, the world hasn’t ended. That sound is your heart pounding – not the thumping hooves of the four horsemen of the apocalypse.
You’re doing great.
‘P’ stands for POSITIVE.
Once you’ve composed yourself, and taken some deep breaths, aim to summon a positive inflection in your voice, ideally tinged with casual indifference (American readers may refer to this as ‘breeziness’). Think of positive memories from your childhood or some recent all-inclusive holiday you enjoyed. Try not to be sick if you heave. You may find it beneficial to blow into a paper bag. Your child should not be able to sense your panic.
Now. We’re at ‘R’ already. You’re doing well.
Let’s focus in for this last part.
‘R’ simply stands for RECITE.
It means that you should recite the following sentence to your inquisitive child in answer to their question about why two people of the same sex might be allowed to marry.
“Because they are two grown-ups who are very much in love with each other so they’ve decided to make a life-long commitment by getting married.”
You have successfully navigated this seemingly insurmountable issue without harming either yourself or your child.
Now, if you continue to be a good parent (as I’m sure you are) your child will grow up to be a well-adjusted, happy, wonderful, open-minded, respectful human being.
Okay so this guide is a bit light on the content side of things but so are our other guides, such as “Why Women Can Play Sports”, “Why Your Muslim Neighbour Is Extremely Unlikely To Be A Terrorist” and “Why Things Don’t Just Roll Off The Earth When It’s A Massive Ball.”
A final thought
Now that you have read this guide, you are equipped to deal with this seemingly thorny issue of explaining ‘same-sex marriage’ (often simply referred to as ‘marriage’), whenever it arises.
This guide is brought to you in association with common sense, dignity and mutual respect.