Being the parent of an LGBT+ child can be difficult at first. Mama Dragons is a support group for parents in need of advice and understanding.
Five years ago, the son of Carla Picasso-Brown came out and told his mother that he was gay. At first, Carla was shocked and didn’t know what to do. She looked for support and understanding at her church, with friends, and with her family. However, she didn’t find any. And how does a parent deal with the news that their children are LGBT+? Carla decided to join a group on Facebook that, literally, saved her, her son, and her family: Mama Dragons.
Mama Dragons is a support network where parents can find advice without judgment. It helps mothers and fathers realize that they are not alone, and that there are many other families going through a similar journey. The group started in 2012 with Mormon mothers, and the name comes from a blog post by Meg Abhau who called herself a “Mama Dragon,” after her 13-year-old son came out of the closet. “I could literally breathe fire if someone hurt my son. Dragons have talons, scales, claws, fangs, and they can fly. I will use all of these resources if someone were to hurt Jon,” said Abhau.
What started as a private Facebook group grew into a “council” that currently has more than 2000 members that provide an educational and loving place where mothers can celebrate and support their children and their families, regardless of the religion they profess. “We want to create a world where our children don’t have to hide anymore,” says Carla, who is a Board Member of the Spanish Mama Dragons group.
The task is not that easy. These children often have to face bullying and being judged by others, so what Carla suggests to parents who are facing this situation is to show their children their love, no matter what. “It takes a lot of courage for your son or daughter to come out, so in that moment what they need is your unconditional love and understanding. Don’t reject them. It is better to start a conversation saying ‘I love you’,” Carla explains.
One of the things that worries children and teens before coming out is that their families will reject them. "It is important that all families know how to react and how to support these guys, so they face the world with courage, knowing that their families love and support them. There is nothing you can't do knowing you are not alone," says Carla.