I had an interesting discussion with my grown-niece on Thanksgiving. She said that the principal of Gregory's school spoke with her about the physical affection Gregory and his best friend (a girl, lesbian, and transitioning) display at school.
Niece assured him that it wasn't an issue because he's gay, she's lesbian and transitioning, they are best friends, and all of that. She has said this before, but then has also said that she makes them keep his bedroom door open. So...hmmm.
This was my response to her: "Not to be all Debbie Downer, but I am Team Principal on this one. To me, it's not about what their orientation is, it's about what's appropriate in public. They don't need to be all up in each other's business at school. Because it's SCHOOL."
Gregory interjected to say that one of his friends were written up because he gave someone a piggyback ride. This argument felt like all the facts weren't being given. Remarkably, Niece also tried the "But others do it too" defense. Wait, wut? No.
I explained that when I was in school one hundred years ago, none of that was allowed. You could hold hands but making out or whatever wasn't allowed. Yes, of course it still happened, because teenagers but it was not acceptable behavior. I get it, times change but there are still boundaries.
Because prudish or not, there is a way to conduct yourself in public. I've seen with my own eyes the way they interact and it has given me pause. I think there's a little denial or naivete with my niece.
It is acknowledged that with different gender types and roles being widely accepted and sexual orientations no longer hidden, that a new set of norms are to be expected. That is very interesting to think about and to filter my bias through.
I still fall back on the "You don't have to be constantly TOUCHING nearly every surface of your skin" while in public.
Oh here, random example: When I was an administrator at the school, low-cut jeans and g-strings were everywhere. We constantly had to tell certain staff members to wear longer shirts to work; to the point of having extra shirts and/or sending one person home to change. Finally during a staff meeting this was a topic. I said "Like you don't want to know what kind of underwear I AM WEARING, we don't want to know yours."
The gasp, silence, then laughter was EVERYTHING. Point made.
So, I would say the same to them: You don't want to see me and Uncle Kevin all over each other, so why would you think anyone else wants to see you. It's not about orientation, it's about etiquette in public.