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Hi everyone. It’s Heidi, back with some more great advice. Thank you for all the messages
and l will try to feature as many of your questions as possible.

This month is back to school, and I have selected problems that many people come across in an educational environment. 

Dear Heidi. 

Love the column. My problem is I am at my second year of Uni and Trans. This term I intend
to return as Brendan, my true male self. I have seen a doctor and I am making plans to start
transitioning. Being the quintessential butch dyke, this won’t come as shock to my uni mates.
But Mum and Dad say if I do that is the final straw and that will be me cut off. They fund my
education and lifestyle. Heidi, I am miserable as Kim but as Brendan I feel amazing and who I
want to be. What can I do to change my parents’ minds? 
Brendan, Manchester.

Hello Brendan,

Great to hear from you and I wish you all the best with your transition. Sadly, you are not
alone; it’s not just parents, but friends and those around you accepting you becoming your
authentic self. Still parents struggle with their kids being gay, or making choices that they
have not dictated or hoped for.
However, many parents change their minds once they see you are happy. Your parents love
you I am sure, and it can be difficult for them. Please do not overreact and have a little
empathy that they are finding it difficult. Try once things have calmed down to reapproach
them. Tell them how unhappy you are and how long you have felt like this. Next look at
family counselling if your parents agree to attend. Seek some advice from the support group
More importantly, if your parents do cut you off, you may need to look at other ways to
stand on your own and fund your education. You do not want to be told that who you are is
wrong by anyone, let alone the ones that love you; it will take a strain on your mental

Heartstopper – has queer themes on Netflix.

Dear Heidi, 

I do not know if you have been watching” Heartstopper”? Well my latter school years were
just like that. I was Charlie and my Nick was the captain of the football team and from the
moment we met we did more than kiss. Honestly my last year at school was a dream and my
Nick (Alex) was a hero and so good looking.
We are going to the same Uni, and it has a LGBTIQQ group we both joined. Alex almost right
away slept with two guys from it. Let’s not start with our nights out in Brighton. He says he
still loves me but needs to explore and that I should do the same.
One guy said that I would never have stood a chance of getting Alex if it had not been a
school fling as he is out of my league. That really upset me but he said it was just a reality
check. I am so in love with Alex, what can I do Heidi?
Howard, Brighton 

Darling Howard,

Don’t we all just love “Heartstopper”? Now, deep breath Howard. Heidi is going to give you
a reality check: “Heartstopper” is a wonderful show, however it does not necessary reflect
real life. Not just gay relationships but straight ones do not last the test of time once you
It sounds like you are a romantic. Alex wants to spread his wings and, like many young
people, experiment and sleep around. You are getting hurt my love, chasing after Alex.
There are others around that want romance so maybe to look for someone who will treat
you the way you deserve.
As for Alex being out of your league, some of the loneliest people Heidi has met are models
or drop dead gorgeous. They just want love and someone to see them for more than looks.
How dare someone tell you he is out of your league! The universe will find someone for you,
but it may be Alex is not good enough for you.
Try and enjoy your time at Uni.
Love Heidi.

Recreational drugs at uni can be a slippery slope.

Dear Heidi, 

Hope all is ok with you. I went to art college last year and almost right away made a group
of new friends. They are all super talented and love to party. Before college I never drank but
almost overnight the pier pressure meant I was waking with a hangover too often.
Then the drugs crept in, just at weekends at first. Last term I was doing coke almost every
other day with one of the new friends who is loaded. My question is I do not want go back
this term and do the same thing: I found myself looking for coke this summer and I am sure I
have a problem. But I do not want to lose my friends so what can I do?
Melinda -Epping. 

Melinda, drugs do not make a real friend. You are on such a slippery slope if you are not
already there, they will be destroying your life and education. All this in order to find
acceptance amongst a group of people you really only have just met?
Trust Heidi, there is a very good chance you won’t even know these peers in a few years.
You mention they have money, so they are supplying the drugs. What a mess you’re going
to be in if they walk away: they are still wealthy whilst you are left with an addiction issue.
Please get help now, even transfer from this school. Maybe look at going to an A.A or N.A
meeting in your area or talk to someone you trust. Please, only you can save yourself so
make some wise choices for a happy future.

Love Heidi.

Hello Heidi
How are you? Can you help me please? My mum came out as gay this summer. I love her
very much and she even has a friend now who I like. But I am terrified my friends will find out
when I get back to class, I am 15 and worried that they might think I am gay too. 
Mum is all about being out and proud. But for me, I am not ready. 
Summer, Birmingham.

Darling Summer,
I hear you, it is so hard to get your head around. Please first tell your mum how you feel and
be honest. She is your mum, and she loves you. Maybe ask to go for some counselling
together. Coming out is new to mum by the sound of it, so please be proud of her.
Of course, that loaded area of school and what they think is very hard for you. You only get
one mum or two for some. When you leave school it’s likely you won’t even see a large
percentage of your school friends. Often, if again you are honest and up front you will be
surprised at the reaction of people. I am not guaranteeing this, but be proud of who you are
and your life.
You can always get advice from places like Rainbow or talk to a teacher you trust about your
fears and about people finding out your mum is gay.
In my thoughts, Heidi.

About the author

Heidi Gammon

Heidi Gammon is a qualified integrative counsellor incorporating CBT, Person Centered and Psychodynamic theories and has excellent knowledge in issues such as: adoption, LBGTQI+, bereavement, relationship issues, trauma, anxiety, infertility, stress and more.

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