Special Guest: John Sovec

Where you can find John:
twitter – @JohnSovec
Insta – @JohnSovecTherapy


[Jon Dabach] 00:00
Today on the relationship Revival Show, I’m joined by therapist John sovec. John is a nationally recognized expert on creating affirmative support for the LGBTQ community. He’s the clinical consultant for the Life Group LA adjunct faculty at Phillips Graduate Institute and guest lecturer at Alliant University, Antioch, Cal State Fullerton and USC School of Social Work.

[Jon Dabach] 00:23
In December 2019. John was appointed by Governor Gavin Newsom to the California Board of Behavioral Sciences. He’s also the author of out a parent’s guide to supporting their LGBTQ kid through coming out and beyond, and has written multiple publications and providing LGBTQ support, speaks at conferences nationwide and provides training for community agencies, schools, nonprofits, and professional consultation on LGBTQ competencies.

[Jon Dabach] 00:49
In addition, he consults and trains on the corporate level regarding diversity and LGBTQ inclusion. His work has been featured on the Ricki Lake Show own Fox, the advocate Bravo, la talk radio, the Washington Post and columns for Huffington Post, medium and good therapy. He is also the host of our talk a monthly web series for out Care Health, you’re listening to the relationship revival podcast with John Dubach, also known as Mr. Spirituality.

[Jon Dabach] 01:16
That’s me, I’m your host, giving you insights and guidance from over 10 years in the field of this amazing journey we call romance on this show, I go over everything you need to know about how to get into a relationship, how to get the most out of a relationship, and sometimes even how to gracefully end a relationship without pulling your hair out and going crazy.

[Jon Dabach] 01:38
And occasionally, I’m even joined by new and old friends who are also relationship experts to bring you guidance and wisdom with new perspectives. Thanks for stopping by. We’re talking with John So back.

[Jon Dabach] 01:50
So excited to have you on, you know, part of part of my goal with this podcast, selfishly is to learn and kind of explore things and for whatever reason, my the population I work with happens to be, for the most part, I’d say like, well over 90% of the clients I’ve seen have been heteronormative in monogamous, you know, two person relationships. And when it’s gotten so specific for me that when someone comes in that that is it part of the LGBTQ i A plus community, or if they’re interested in, you know, exploring an open marriage, and I always kind of cop, you know, I said, Look, I’m happy to talk to anybody, I’m not discriminatory.

[Jon Dabach] 02:33
But if you want someone who like shares that journey, and can talk to it from a first person perspective, I’m really not your guy. And I’ll when I say that a lot of people ask for referrals, and they say maybe it is smart. And I think it might be appropriate.

[Jon Dabach] 02:47
But it’s gotten to the point where I’m like, you know, what, I should really spend some time learning what it’s like, I’m also a parent of four, and I and now coming in this part of my life, there are different things to consider, like, you know, kids coming out and things like that. And and you seem like such a great expert to talk to.

[Jon Dabach] 03:04
So I’m so excited to get your perspective on things. Before we start with specific questions. Tell me a little bit about your journey and how you decided to become a therapist.

[JJohn Sovec] 03:14
So it’s actually been a beautiful part of my life since I was a kid. I was one of those kids, like at a really young age that people would sit around with and just start telling me like their deepest, darkest feelings and experiences. In high school, I was that friend that you’d go to and be like, oh, this thing happened. And I need to talk to somebody. And so I’ve had this ability for quite a long time.

[JJohn Sovec] 03:39
It’s just been part of my life journey. It I on the way there I went through a lot of different experiences. I was an actor for quite a few years. I played teenagers up until my mid-30s. Oh, and that got really exhausting. And so I decided it’s time to step back from part. Parallel to all that work. I’ve been doing a lot of volunteering and emotional support during my years.

[JJohn Sovec] 04:04
And so when I reached this moment, it was like, the natural affinity for me is to go back to school, go to grad school, do the work and really learn the technique, the science behind all the stuff that’s going on in our hearts, our mind and to bring it into this therapeutic alliance. It’s been an incredible journey along the way.

[JJohn Sovec] 04:26
I’ve been seeing clients having my business for probably close to 16 years now. And every single day my clients bring in beautiful new things that continuously helped me to grow as a person and grow as a therapist. I

[Jon Dabach] 04:43
Love it. I love all of it. What is the typical age? Is there a typical age where people kind of come out and is that an appropriate phrase to use? I mean, I’m coming into the world without knowing I don’t want to offend anybody so is coming out a phrase that is still appropriate to use and then what is like a typical age that you see? And is it changing these days?

[JJohn Sovec] 05:04
Well, coming out is an absolutely lovely phrase to use. Another thing we’re using the community is coming in. So instead of me having to come out, I’m out allowing you to come in.

[Jon Dabach] 05:16
So it’s an invitation into your life. I

[JJohn Sovec] 05:18
Love that. Yeah. So it’s a nuance that’s starting to develop currently in the community. And I think it’s really powerful movement. You know, you ask age, it’s really fascinating. We have really young kids who identify themselves as being LGBTQIA.

[JJohn Sovec] 05:36
And, you know, in elementary school and junior high and high school, we have other people that I’ve worked with who are coming out in their 40s and 50s, the time to come out is a no feels most appropriate and authentic for you. Because until I’m ready to speak that openly, I am an openly queer therapist, that’s how I travelled through the world, until I’m ready to make that statement about myself or to invite you into that world, then that’s, that’s the moment we look for. That’s the moment where the growth happens.

[JJohn Sovec] 06:08
That’s where the change happens. So it can happen at any age. But the thing that I think is really powerful is that we do have kids asking these questions about sexual orientation and gender identity at a much younger age. So rather than maybe what you and I grew up with, it seems like it’s all black and white binary thinking. They’re asking these really in depth questions about themselves, and finding a beautiful path into sexual orientation and gender identity.

[Jon Dabach] 06:37
Absolutely. I know that you have a specialty working with teen and adolescent, that that population, is that right?

[JJohn Sovec] 06:46
It is their their sweet spot. I love talking with teenagers.

[Jon Dabach] 06:49
Okay, so what is what the process is like? And when do they come to see you? So is it when they’re questioning typically? Is it when they’re kind of thinking of coming out? Is it after? What is it? What does it look like when people come to work with you? And is it? Is it exclusively about their sexuality? Or is it are you seeing, you know, teens with that for anxiety and other issues as well.

[JJohn Sovec] 07:14
So yeah, I see teams for a wide variety of challenges that they’re going through. But especially when working with LGBTQ adolescents, a lot of times what will happen as a kid will come out, and then the family will look for some support.

[JJohn Sovec] 07:28
And that’s how they’ll connect with me. And unfortunately, one of those ways that a lot of LGBTQ teens are coming out right now is through attempting suicide. And what will happen is in that process of I can’t live with this anymore. They’ll attempt suicide, and maybe in the hospital, they’ll finally say the reason this happened is because I wanted to come out. So it’s an unfortunate way that it does happen a lot.

[JJohn Sovec] 07:54
The other thing that I appreciate, though, is that I also have teens that will find me as a therapist, and then they’ll tell their parents, they want to see me. And usually what that is the kids done, the researcher finds out that I work with queer kids. And so they tell their parents, yeah, I’m feeling something and I want to see a therapist, and then they’ll come into me. So whatever parents is, yeah, my kid found he’s like, I have suspicion for this.

[Jon Dabach] 08:18
And so some of that will be how do I break it to my parents or that kind of stuff? Got you. That’s,

[JJohn Sovec] 08:24
that’s the thing that’s really important for parents to understand is that often, by the time your kid may come out to you, they have been thinking and processing this for a while, whether it’s in therapy with a with someone like me, whether it’s just a process with their friends, or siblings or internal thought, your kid has been thinking about this identity for quite a while. So by the time they come to you, it’s it’s a new moment expression for you.

[JJohn Sovec] 08:52
And oftentimes, parents will likely react in a fearful way. And that’s because it’s a shock to the parents system. But you need to understand these kids aren’t just Willy nilly, like making up an identity or an orientation. There is thought behind it. There’s a process been going on for a while.

[Jon Dabach] 09:10
Yeah. So what’s your advice to parents? On? You know, I guess let we’ll take it one step at a time. What’s your advice to parents, when your son or daughter finally has the courage to, to come out? What is a good reaction? What is a good thing to do? And in order to be supportive?

[JJohn Sovec] 09:30
You know, if you go online, a lot of kids these days are filming. They’re coming out stories. And in the most beautiful moments of these, what’ll happen is the parent will simply hug them and close and tell them that they love them. And I use this advice for every single parent.

[JJohn Sovec] 09:48
You may have a lot of feelings in that moment. But the one thing you continue to affirm a connection with your kid going forward over the course of their lifetime, is that that moment when they come out to you to simply hug them close, and say, I love you.

[JJohn Sovec] 10:05
Because that’s what every kid’s biggest fear about coming out is that somehow their parents, even the most affirming parents, the most educated parents they feel will support them in their process of coming out. There’s this anxiety, this fear that they will be rejected. And that’s the place where we need to step in. And that hug and that reminder that their love is the most beautiful foundation piece any parent can take in that moment.

[Jon Dabach] 10:30
I think that’s great advice. And I think it goes, I think that’s great advice for so many instances in parenting. I mean, anytime a kid tells you about anything in their life, that they might have some embarrassment or shame about or fear. I mean, reaffirming that connection of love first, before having any further discussion is a great way to set the table.

[Jon Dabach] 10:52
I mean, you know, because I’m sure parents have questions, you know, when their son or daughter comes out, they’re going to have tons of questions, and they don’t know which ones are appropriate to ask. But setting that table with love, I think that’s the best advice you can give to any parent kind of on anything. I think it’s great. That’s fantastic. What are so let’s

[JJohn Sovec] 11:10
Just say, though, when those questions come up, is actually hold back a little bit. Okay? Because oftentimes, those initial questions might be questions based on anxiety or panic, you might want to do is create that support, create that loving, affirming space, and then maybe go away for a little bit, figure out what your feelings are, a parent has, maybe do a little research, I have some questions. What does this actually mean?

[JJohn Sovec] 11:34
What am I looking at, and then come back. And the one thing that I tell parents to do is if let’s say, a kid comes out to you says I’m bisexual. Okay? When you start this process of wanting to connect with them, rather than saying, Oh, so this means this. Instead, ask them.

[JJohn Sovec] 11:53
So what does being bisexual look like in your world? How does it look like in your day to day living, ask your kids how it looks for them. Not an assumption you have, even if you’ve done a lot of research, but find out from them how it plays out in their day to day living. And that way you’re going to personalize the experience with your kid and learn in the process as well.

[Jon Dabach] 12:16
Yeah, also great advice. What do you see in your own practice as the questions that that parents typically have? And is there a way we can kind of calm any parents down? You know, if they’re listening with some kind of nervousness or anything like that?

[JJohn Sovec] 12:35
Well, a lot of times, especially when we have questions of sexual orientation, a person coming out, there’s this initial parent fear, you’re a parent or for you, this is going to hit you one day. Yeah, is Oh, my god, does this mean my kid is thinking about or having sex? Sure.


[JJohn Sovec] 12:51
And I want to step parents back to understand that if I come out to you as gay, it’s not just about who I’m attracted to, or who I’m sleeping with. It’s actually about a whole internal process of how I walk through the world. So I encourage parents not to jump to that. Who are you having sex with? The other big question that comes up a lot, and especially with trans and non-binary kids, this is a really challenging process for most parents.

[JJohn Sovec] 13:18
And I encourage them to not try and drill or interrogate their kid or not assume that it’s a phase. Because let’s look at it. Yeah, teenagers go through a lot of phases. It’s part of their developmental process.

[JJohn Sovec] 13:34
But if I’m going to choose a phase to go through, do you as a parent believe I’m going to choose one that’s going to cause me to ostracize that’s going to be painful, that could put me in harm’s way could meet make me vulnerable for both physical and verbal bullying. That’s not a choice we make as a phase. This is actually a development of who their authentic self is. And so I think it’s really important for parents to be aware of that.

[Jon Dabach] 13:59
Yeah. Absolutely. What are some of the challenges that are specific and unique to adolescent, to adolescent, the adolescent population when they’re coming out? And I thought, you know, it’s so interesting that you say, this is a way that informs the way you walk through the world, and me being a kind of a cisgender, not kind of I am a cisgender, heterosexual male. I don’t know what that is.

[Jon Dabach] 14:27
So I’d love to kind of understand what that perspective is and how that changes the lens with which you see the world through. And then we’ll get back to the adolescent because I think I don’t I don’t want to ask you a compounded question here where it’s going to confuse myself.

[Jon Dabach] 14:40
Let’s start with this perspective. Because it’s so fascinating. You know, what is what is the difference? Well, how does it change the way you see the world?

[JJohn Sovec] 14:48
Well, it’s interesting because in your question, you actually identified what some of that difference is. Okay, so as a cisgender, straight male, you grew up in an environment this is completely affirming of you Over identity and how you fit into the world. You know, you’re in high school, there’s a dance, what do you do you see a girl you want to ask out, you ask that girl out. And it’s just like, oh, they said, they said, Yes.

[JJohn Sovec] 15:11
They said, No, there’s rejection, there’s acceptance, all of that. It’s just part of a normal process that we see as the social construct of how these pieces work. But as a gay man, when I’m an adolescent, and a gay kid, I find some guy really attractive.


[JJohn Sovec] 15:27
What I have to think about is like, well, first of all, would they be gay or bisexual? How do I find that out? I asked my friend to see if they can find some information. Then if maybe I want to ask for snot, what if they are affirming of it, and that puts me at risk. So I’m walking through this high school with this high school experience, a place where we’re developing so much of who we are in the course of our lifetime, in a very vigilant state.

[JJohn Sovec] 15:55
And it means that I have to examine each moment that I’m walking through in my day. So something that for you, maybe I’m going to, I’m going to dress and go to high school and this cool shirt that I like, I may have to think I really liked this shirt, but what if it, someone’s going to call me out for it. So there’s all these deeper levels of self-examination that have to take place in any LGBTQIA kids experience, as not only as they’re coming out, but even before they’re coming out as how they’re being viewed in their world.

[JJohn Sovec] 16:26
So that’s a real, strong, different experience that I have had from you. Yeah, and what I always like to point out, and I think it’s really vital, is for most LGBTQ kids, their minority status is not represented in the family unit, in the parents. You know, if I’m a kid from a community of color, I look up and I only see my parents, one of them being part of that community.

[JJohn Sovec] 16:54
But as a queer kid, I’m going to look at my parents and probably see cisgender heterosexual parents, and it’s not represented in that parent unit. And so that’s another place where there’s this feeling of difference that I have to then examine inside and see where I find my places of growth and development.

[Jon Dabach] 17:16
You know, when you phrase it like this, and kind of walk through that, it occurs to me that that it’s incredibly lonely. For some, how do they how do you deal with that in your, with your clients, I mean, if you can’t go to family, if it’s a secret you kind of have, and you’re at a point where you’re not even telling friends, that’s an incredibly lonely place to be.

[JJohn Sovec] 17:41
It is. And that’s why we see a lot of LGBTQ kids have much higher levels of depression and anxiety, we see a huge uptick in the amount of substance use disorders and LGBTQ kids. We also see, as mentioned earlier, incredibly high suicide rates. You know, the national average for adolescents for suicide sits anywhere between nine to 14%. When we look at LGBTQ kids, we’re looking at anywhere from 25 to 30%.

[JJohn Sovec] 18:10
If they’re Tran’s kids, we go up to 40%. If they’re Tran’s kids of color, we’re rising up to 50% and higher of kids who are attempting suicide. So a Tran’s kid of color, it’s as high as a coin flip on whether they’re going to have some suicidal ideation and attempts. Wow, that’s a, that’s a scary statistic.

[JJohn Sovec] 18:35
And that really addresses this piece of walking through your world, very lonely and awkward, not having those connections. But the other side of that coin that is so important to know, especially in school systems, especially in parents, especially in communities, is that we also know that having one adult ally, someone who is supportive of their kids queer experience, can take all those numbers and take them just dropped the bottom out of them.

[JJohn Sovec] 19:02
Wow, one affirming parent, one affirming community member, one affirming teacher or staff member at school, can take those numbers and dropped them dramatically.

[Jon Dabach] 19:14
I think that’s it. And you know what, it’s, it sounds amazing. But when you look at what was really going on, it’s that loneliness is a binary state. Right? So if you have that one person to get rid of that loneliness, the issue gets squished down to something that’s actually manageable, because now you’re not alone in the world. And everybody deserves connection.

[Jon Dabach] 19:36
I always tell my own clients that, you know, I remind them I read this in Sue Johnson seminal work on EFT therapy that loneliness or being alone in the world is more detrimental to your health than smoking. It’s in really has a serious effect on your mental and physical health. And if you’re living with an identity that makes you feel shame or guilt or if Fear. I mean, that’s it’s, it’s paralyzing. I mean, absolutely.

[JJohn Sovec] 20:05
And sometimes it’s just the idea of feeling other. Because we are a society that is very good at othering people, unfortunately, then there’s others there’s not like, and that that opens up that space of loneliness. The thing that’s fascinating too, though, is oftentimes, like, if a kid comes out, friends around them tend to be the most supportive part of the team. Because they’re like, oh, that’s cool. That’s neat.

[JJohn Sovec] 20:33
That’s interesting. What do you agree with me? And how do you want to? It’s often the adults in our world who have the most trouble grasping on to this newly revealed identity? Do you think that’s

[Jon Dabach] 20:45
a generational phenomenon? Because I don’t, I don’t know if that was the case. 40 years ago. I mean, I think the adults were just as you know, Jetsons, just as much challenge, but I, you know, you see movies, and you read these stories, and I have friends in their 60s Now who came out and they were, they were afraid of what their friends would think. Do you think that there have been enough leaps and bounds so that in certain parts of the country, it’s a little safer for kids to come out to their friends now?

[JJohn Sovec] 21:17
And favor saying the certain parts of the country? Because that is that is correct observation? Yeah, it is. The thing that’s really beautiful about kids these days is they are asking these questions or questions about sexual orientation and gender identity. They’re not just accepting this binary.

[JJohn Sovec] 21:33
And for older generations, parents generations, often that’s what they were raised with. So I think it’s really exciting to look forward and see, well, what are these generations of kids going to go forward? You know, kids who had a trans best friend, you know, kids who, you know, had a best friend who was a lesbian, then they’re going to grow up and the kids they’re going to raise?

[JJohn Sovec] 21:57
How affirming are those gifts going to be? And I think we’re on the brink of this really beautiful and powerful change in the way we interact with and support and understand the LGBTQ community.

[Jon Dabach] 22:11
And do you think it’s important for let’s say, you, you’re, you’re a teen, and you’re, and you’ve come out, and maybe you’re not in a part of the country, that’s as accepting, when you can’t find that affirming adult in your own family structure? Are there places to reach out to get the support? Are there communities that can kind of step in and be that support system for that team?

[JJohn Sovec] 22:40
So there are a couple of different ways to approach this, I travel the country and do a lot of training with different school systems.

[JJohn Sovec] 22:46
And in some schools, what we do is we do create a space where we identify who are the safe adults who are the safe classrooms in the school system. And what that’ll mean is like, so I can go to the art teachers room, and just have lunch there. If I’m not feeling safe on campus, no questions asked just a safe place to go. And they call campuses can create those safe spaces. I do a lot of training with school nurse associations.

[JJohn Sovec] 23:11
And oftentimes, we encourage the school nurses office to also be one of those safe places to go to, once again, just come in, lay down reset, doesn’t have to be questions or processing but creating those safe alliances, if that’s not able to be created in your school system.

[JJohn Sovec] 23:29
There are organizations such as PFLAG, which is Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays, which is an international organization, which creates systems of support throughout communities. And one of the, I guess you could call a great Fallout to the pandemic is they have a lot of online resources now, for both parents and kids, and other faiths kids can turn to is the Trevor Project.

[JJohn Sovec] 23:54
They’re really known for their National LGBTQ kid’s suicide hotline. But they also have lots of other programs that are available for kids to connect from communities where they may not have the resources. One great thing they have is called the Trevor forum. And what it is, it’s an online community for LGBTQIA plus kids, that’s a vetted forum. So you actually have to apply to it to get in.

[JJohn Sovec] 24:17
So they’re able to, you know, kind of monitor, you know, who was part of the community. And there are kids all over the world who are communicating and supporting each other on this forum, and it’s really great, because when I had a kid first go out and a couple of years ago, they actually created a really great friend who didn’t live here in California. And just before college, that summary for college, they actually got together and met in person for the first time. Oh, that’s such a cool experience.

[Jon Dabach] 24:43
Yeah, that’s really nice. It’s like the new pen pal, but in in the context of a supportive group. That’s really cool. You know, do you work with the old older populations as well?

[JJohn Sovec] 24:56
My youngest client right now is just turned 14 As of Saturday, actually, and my oldest client is 74. Okay,

[Jon Dabach] 25:05
So it runs the gamut there. That’s great. What? So I’ve had a couple clients where I’ve seen them after someone who’s been in a heterosexual marriage has come out after, you know, 10 years, and sometimes seven years of marriage. What’s that process? Like? And how, you know, because that obviously affects the family in a very different way. Have you had experiences like that as a therapist?

[JJohn Sovec] 25:33
Absolutely. And it is one of the more challenging experiences for any person to go through. Yeah, because not only are they having to come out, but that coming out process that they know is going to alter the fabric of the family system. And it’s a really challenging moment that has to have a lot of support behind it. You know, the work that we do together is finding language, finding ways to do it a supportive manner to find timelines. But it is a very, very delicate process, if we want to try and make it as healthy as we can for the entire family.

[Jon Dabach] 26:09
Yeah. Yeah. So there’s no easy, you know, straight answer, I kind of treated the same way. It’s like, look, it’s it’s a delicate process. And I think you’re right, creating that supportive environment is always the biggest priority.

[Jon Dabach] 26:22
And the biggest challenge, you have a new book out, is it called I think I have it here with my notes out a parent’s guide to supporting their LGBTQIA plus kid through coming out and beyond that beautiful title.

[JJohn Sovec] 26:36
That is the full title. And it’s a mouthful. And what I’ve learned over time is you have to take a breath in the middle of it are you.

[Jon Dabach] 26:45
So it seems like a pretty self-explanatory process, share some thoughts, share it, and share with us some insights in the book that people can look forward to reading?

[JJohn Sovec] 26:57
Well, one of the chapters I think is so important for parents to read, because I have a chapter that talks about parents going through a grieving process when their kid comes out to them. Now, as we said earlier, your kid has processes, they’ve thought about it. But then when they come out to you, or you and your partner, there’s going to be this moment where you’re going to be going through your own internal process.

[JJohn Sovec] 27:21
For most parents, when they have kids, you might know this moment, the kids born, you take them in your arms, you look into your other eyes, and you project forward this entire lifetime experience for them. You know, through high school, and the valedictorian, be the captain of the football team, and then go to college, and then buy the house next door to you and get married and have a dog and two kids, and you’ll be the best grandparents ever.

[JJohn Sovec] 27:43
You project for this entire lifetime for your child. And when your kid comes out, that dream shatters. And that’s the thing that we’re allowing parents to grieve. We talk about this in the book, you’re not grieving that your kid came out, you’re grieving that the dream you had projected for them has changed.

[JJohn Sovec] 28:05
The thing that’s beautiful in the book, as we talk about the idea that you can now build new dreams with your kid in their affirmed identity and their affirmed sexual orientation.

[Jon Dabach] 28:17
I like that I you know, I almost became an orthodox rabbi 1215 years ago is on that path. And I use a lot of the lessons I learned there. And one of the things that I found so powerful in the tradition of Judaism is sitting Shiva, which is, I always tell people, it’s soaking in the grief, right? So if someone dies, there’s a Jewish tradition that for seven days, in the extreme orthodox worlds, you don’t even sit in a chair that’s higher than a few inches off the ground, you don’t pay the cover up the mirrors.

[Jon Dabach] 28:49
And there’s this process of, okay, you have grief, let’s attack it head on. And let’s sit in that grief. And the way it’s informed me with certain clients, which is completely in line with what you’re talking about is oftentimes during life transitions, people have to let that identity they have of themselves even die. And that and that’s part of what makes the transition hard is because you don’t deal with the grief of that thought or that concept dying. It’s not real, it only exists inside of your mind.

[Jon Dabach] 29:17
But it feels real because you’ve lived with it for so many years. And I think this way you have this idea or this thought the stream that again, isn’t real, right?

[Jon Dabach] 29:26
But every parent has it have that like you said the valedictorian in the house next door, which is most kids nightmare, you know, but it’s, it’s still this vision that you have that you have to let die and sit in that grief and really handle it in a way where you can want to move on right so that the kind of the concept and in the sitting Shiva tradition is after seven days of not bathing and sitting on like low chairs and stuff.

[Jon Dabach] 29:48
You’re so tired of grieving you have to move forward with your life. So sometimes I tell people we don’t we can’t afford seven days but what if you gave yourself an afternoon in the car or if you went to the hotel even for a day to just Sit in your misery, get it all out in one shot and then move forward, you’re going to get so tired of grieving that eventually you’ll want to take the next step.

[Jon Dabach] 30:08
But I do think that it’s wholly appropriate in whatever way is healthy, to allow that grief. And to make sure you understand that it’s this idea that wasn’t real to begin with, but that you have to let it go. And that’s its hard, right there is some grieving that needs to happen.

[Jon Dabach] 30:25
And if you allow yourself a space to do that, you’re going to find it’s a much healthier way forward. And I think it’s fantastic that you’ve put it in this context for a parent because they, you know, some parents in their guilt of not maybe reacting the right way at first might not give them spelt selves, that space to grieve. But if they do, they can kind of reenter that relationship with a newfound purpose. And I think that’s so great. That’s so

[JJohn Sovec] 30:52
The other thing that happens on the other side of grieving is we are also cleaned out. We come as a more pure vessel to the next experiences and steps of our lives. And another thing that I point out in the book that I think parents need to understand is coming out is a lifelong process.

[JJohn Sovec] 31:13
It’s not a one and done experience. You know, even me coming on here and identifying as an openly queer therapist, that’s me coming out to your listenership, right, this is me speaking on a national stage saying, I am queer. This is happening in multiple stages during our lives as part of the LGBTQ community. So coming out is a lifetime process. And the other thing for parents to really understand it’s also a family process.

[JJohn Sovec] 31:42
Because everyone in the family is influenced by that pebble that was dropped in the middle of the family pond when your kid came out. And you’re going to be making decisions. And you need to be able to coalesce as a family to make those decisions in the healthiest way possible.

[Jon Dabach] 32:00
John, thank you so much for joining us and sharing with my audience. If you want to reach out to John, if you or your family member or friends need some support. I can’t think of another person to recommend who seems to be more of an authority on the subject, some brilliant, brilliant insights here.

[Jon Dabach] 32:18
You can go to John So veck.com jhnsovc.com or gay teen therapy.com as well. He’s also available to follow on Instagram at John sobic therapy or on Twitter at John. So Beck, thank you so much for your time and your wisdom and your generosity and your courage to come out and talk so openly about a subject that is oftentimes avoided and swept under the rug.

[JJohn Sovec] 32:44
Thank you so much.

[Jon Dabach] 32:46
If you’re interested in learning how to get the absolute most out of your romantic relationships then you’re in luck because I have put together a free workshop or masterclass if you will about three secrets that people in happy relationships have discovered. You can view the workshop and mister spirituality.com/three secrets again, it’s completely free. Just go there and watch it. It’ll help you on your journey give you some wisdom. Some things to think about. The website again is mrspirituality.com/three secrets. That’s mrspirituality.com/the Number three, the word secrets. It’s all yours. Enjoy.


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