YouTube star Riyadh K., a longtime friend of HRC who helped us share the celebrations in Ireland when marriage equality was passed there, posted a video on his YouTube channel this week that featured his parents talking about their reactions when Riyadh came out to them.
His mom found out on her own, and was the one who initiated the conversation with Riyadh.
“Do you have something to say to me? You know, you can say anything to me, I love you,” she said. “It doesn’t matter what. I don’t want you to be holding things in. You can tell me anything.”
Riyadh remembers that his mother was understanding as they spoke about it until 4 a.m.
His father didn’t have quite the same reaction when Riyadh came out to him 9 months later. In the video, Riyadh’s dad talks about the shame he feels now about what happened a few hours after Riyadh told him.
“If you think about it really, it’s just stupid thinking, to be honest. It’s so stupid. What I’m thinking for ever every father, every mother. They love their kid. They have to stand by them, because the only one who is going to stand by you is your kid,” Riyadh’s dad said.
"I actually got up that night when you all when to sleep, I think about three or four o'clock in the morning, sitting on the deck, and I was looking for a tablet to commit suicide. It was so stupid,” he said.
Though the first night was rough, the experience brought the whole family together and now they’re closer than ever.
“You are the best dad in the [expletive] world,” Riyadh said. “We talk about everything. Like, we actually talk about too much. It’s a little bit over the top.”
“I feel blessed that we’ve had this experience,” Riyadh’s mom said.
Riyadh said he shared this story to help others who might be struggling when a family member or friend comes out to them.
“I hope this helped in some way. If you’ve got someone that’s going through a difficult time coming out, send this to them, hopefully it will help them too.”
Watch here (warning: mature language is used throughout the video):