We all have complicated relationships with our parents. I believe, however, homosexual individuals often have greater difficulty identifying with their same sex parent. In a way, the same sex parent serves as a reminder of the same sex heterosexual individuals we can not fully identify with. Though I am not a psychologist by any manner, this has been my experience.
The three of us are working out our own familial issues; it is of course a lifetime pursuit. There is an advantage in polyamory in this work. In monogamous relationships I have had in the past, parenthood, its mistakes and triumphs, was adversarial. One set of parents became the right or wrong in any given situation. In our triad, our parents are part of our experience. Sharing stories allows us to see that with three or more sets of parents, a greater sense of overlap occurs.
As the youngest in the triad, Charles is now confronting many of the conceptualizations he grew up with. It is a rewarding experience being a part of his life at this time. Edward, Charles and I all have very different experiences growing up; however, both Edward and I are trying to reinforce for Charles the concept of re-evaluating how our own opinions are the product of our upbringing. Charles is oft experiencing clarity simply by retelling stories that looking back, were processed with child’s understanding of needs and wants.
One of the most difficult experiences I had was teasing the actual individuals out of the construct of parents I had created. We all decided early on as children what Mom and Dad are supposed to be. Most fall short of this. As adults, it is our responsibility to understand what it is like to be an adult, and to fairly evaluate our parents based on their life experience, not our desires for the fictional perfect parent. For some of us this means accepting that our parents were not as bad as we thought. Far worse, is when one must realize that their parent(s) were not as good as we thought, and that blame for any incident involves both parties.