I participate in a middle school mentoring program in my neighborhood. Basically, middle school students are matched with adults , and you spend an hour a week playing game and doing life skill-building activities (goal setting, talking about college, etc) with the mentees.
Anyway, today, the kid that I mentor was talking about a friend of his who is bisexual. He was saying really close minded things about homosexuality (gay people are wrong, going to hell, etc.) and about his friend. Background: I am a 25 year old bisexual white female and my mentee is a 13 year old black male. I should also add that I was specifically paired with this guy because the program coordinator thinks (and I think as well) that he might be gay or bi or whatever, and that I would be a nonjudgmental influence through that possible transition/coming out phase.
So, my question is: how do I, a privileged white bi woman, talk about homosexuality and the importance of tolerance to a possibly gay, possibly not, black male kid, who is, as he says "from the hood". I really don't want to offend him; I get the feeling he's from a religious family. At a loss here; any advice is welcome.
How would you approach this subject without offending the mentee? Let us know in the comments below.
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