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Michael Jones, LMFT
Michael Jones, LMFT, Therapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 105
Experience:  Over 12 years experience as a therapist, both inpatient and outpatient. APA Board Certified.
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Our 27yr old gay son is very affectionate towards our 12yr

Resolved Question:

Our 27yr old gay son is very affectionate towards our 12yr old daughter. He just moved back into our home for awhile, after beibg on his own for 8 years. We have noticed that the two of them have slept in his room together 'after watching tv and falling asleep'. Is this ok? We don't want to be paranoid or send the wrong message in making it clear that we as their parents are not ok with this. What dialogue can we start with so as to not offend but protect everyone's interests.

Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  Michael Jones, LMFT replied 5 years ago.

Michael Jones, LMFT :

Hello, my name isXXXXX and I'm a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in California. I believe I can answer your question. May I first get some more information before formulating my answer?

Michael Jones, LMFT :

My main question is whether your son is resistant to changing this sort of behavior.

Michael Jones, LMFT :

Please post your response and I will check back online to post my answer. Thank you!


after discussing the 'sleeping in your own beds' with him...he was amendable...altho he didn't see anything wrong with it. we discussed the 'overly affectionate elements and his response was ...'if she is needing affection, then it is better to get from me, than from some other boyfriend' gut feeling as the affection seems to be 90-% initiated by him, is that it is he who is needing the cuddling. I don't want them feeling self conscious, altho the appropriateness of their behavior in our home and in public is in our opinion not good. I think having this discussion with him armed with some good reference material would be the best way to handle this? any ideas?


not sure when you will be online again...i will check computer periodically throughout the day thx

Michael Jones, LMFT :

Thank you for all the background, and for your patience in awaiting my reply.
This can easily become a complicated situation for your son and daughter. There may be the illusion of safety, given that he is gay, but the behavior can be sending mixed messages to your daughter. The fact is that boundaries must be established and adhered to by everyone in your house. I am also concerned if your son is seeking to get his needs for affection from his 12-year-old sister.
There is a very good family sexual safety plan distributed online for free by the Barker Foundation and you can download the pdf file here. While it is geared towards adoptive families, it can easily be adapted to fit your family's needs. I would strongly recommend that you hold a family meeting after reviewing the plan and making any adjustments to it. You need to explain that these are the rules of the house and deviations from it will not be accepted.

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