Homosexuality is still taboo within the families in Macedonia

Homosexuality is still taboo within the families in Macedonia

Author: Marija Tasev

Published in the Macedonian daily newspaper Dnevnik


It’s often the case for the children who are gay to lose the support from their families, to be molested, to be punished and to run away from home.


– Nearly year ago I’ve told my mother that I’m gay. I simply could not hide it anymore and to lie to my family and they were always full of love to me and I always had their attention. I got up early and with tears in my eyes I said to my mother: Mum, I’m a homosexual. Both of us cried, and I noticed that my mother had known it all of the time. She was shocked, but she said that she will figure out a way how to tell my father. She tried to calm me down, but I was still crying and I didn’t know how to chase away that feeling of guilt. After a while, we told my father, he was very angry and he moved away from home, but came back after a few days and we had a talk. He said that he loves me, but that he can’t accept that I’m “queer” and that he doesn’t want to hear about it in the future. Today, I can say that I live normally. But every time my mother calls me on the telephone to ask where I am and I would say that I’m at my friend’s place, she would comment: It would have been better if you are at your girlfriend’s place. That very hurtful to me – says one young student from Skopje.


It’s often the case for the children who are gay to lose the support from their families, to be molested, to be punished and to run away from home. The parents often want to cure their children, so they send them to psychologists and psychiatrists. Because of that, the children are forced to blame themselves and to continue to live in a permanent fear.


Recently, a girl who told their parents she was a lesbian was chased away from home. She was left on the streets and now she is forced to stay at a friend’s house – said representatives from the Helsinki committee for human rights which help LGBT people along with another organization which works in the field of LGBT rights.


Uranija Pirovska, the president of Helsinki committee for human rights said that they were informed in time about these case:


– If the girl decides to sue the parents, we can offer her both legal help and support. That depends only on her. In this moment, she lives at her friends house, but, of course, that is not a permanent solution. She is a student and now she doesn’t have the financial support from her parents, so she can’t continue to study. The girl was also a victim of domestic violence. Sadly, in our country there are still prejudices concerning the LGBT community, but we, as Helsinki committee for human rights, won’t tolerate discrimination – says Pirovska.


Psychologists and psychiatrists in Macedonia are not very keen to talk about the relationships within the family in the case when the parents are faced with the fact that their child has a different sexual orientation. They say that for the average macedonian family homosexuality is still taboo. A known local psychiatrist doesn’t want to comment publicly about the gay population any more, because when he recently expressed his homophobic attitudes towards the individuals with different sexual orientation, some organizations demanded that his diploma should be renounced.


In Serbia – a parents support group


In the neighboring countries, besides the the vast information and advices for the gay population, the population speaks more openly about differences and sexual orientation and the state within the family.


The psychologist Ivana Chvorovich from Sebia is engaged on a local internet portal where she talks and advises the parents how to behave if their child admits that he or she is attracted by persons from the same sex. She is leading a group for self-help for the LGBT persons and advises the parents who are told by their child that he or she is gay to respect it’s honesty.


She stresses out that the parents should not allow the shame and the prejudice to make the child to be a part of the negative statistic which shows the number of depressive LGBT persons who tried to commit suicide or who don’t have a place to live.