What would you do?
James E Lade (jlade@JUNO.COM)
Thu, 15 May 1997 18:00:05 EDT
It seems I am just a cornucopia of posts here:
I personally know both parties involved here, but don't know what I
should do, or if I should do anything at all. Here's the scenario:
An Assistant Scoutmaster of ours, an Eagle Scout, is the father of 4
children. One son, now about my age, one older daughter about 18, and two
twin younger daughters (don't know their age). His son was a friend of
mine while both of us were members of the Troop as youths, and now he has
gone onto college, while I have and returned to the Troop after a 3 year
My father is a committee member and was approached by the ASM and was
told the same story that I was. I heard it first hand from the son and
really didn't know how to react. Since I know the father and son, it put
me in an awkward position about what to do.
The ASM involved here and his son had a fun time in Scouting. Since the
ASM was an Eagle himself, he looked forward to his son achieving the same
rank. Having his son becoming an Eagle would probably be one of the
highest achievements of not only being a parent, but a Scouting parent.
The son approached me 3 years ago to tell me he was gay. I was a youth at
the time, so all of the talks I went through from summer camp in being a
counselor and how to actually counsel a person started coming back to me.
I really didn't know how to react. I was shocked to say the least, but
his initial impression did not change because of this. I didn't know what
the future held, so I left it open.
My father was talking with me one night and he mentioned that the ASM
approached him, not in the happiest of moods, and broke down and told him
that his son did not want to become an Eagle. He also told him that his
son was gay, and again, my father didn't know how to react.
Since then, his son left Scouting and has gone his own way. When my
father asks the ASM how the family is, everyone is mentioned except his
son. This still continues now, 3 years after the incident. When
conversation turns to his son, the ASM quickly changes the subject.
I would like to talk to the ASM about this because he is obviously having
a difficult time accepting his son. I don't know if the son still lives
at home (he's been in and out of college), but the ASM and his wife were
having a difficult time with this.
My question is that I don't know how to talk to the ASM about his son, or
if I even should. I would not like to bring up any bad memories in the
process. Also, I don't know if he has accepted his son (I haven't talked
to him in awhile), or if he has placed this into denial, to which this
talk would probably get nowhere.
It's a bit of an awkward situation since I know both parties involved and
see the ASM every week at our meetings. Maybe I should just let it go,
forget about it, and go on as if I never knew. (here comes the skeptic in
Replies and ideas are greatly appreciated.
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City