WATCH: Christian Parents Memorialize Gay Son
Rob and Linda Robertson, evangelical Christians whose gay son died of a drug overdose, have contributed a moving video to the Not All Like That Christians Project.
The story of the Robertsons and their son Ryan became well-known after they posted a video on Facebook in January, titled “Just Because He Breathes: Learning to Truly Love Our Gay Son.” The Seattle couple had encouraged Ryan to try to become straight through prayer, but this strategy resulted in him abandoning his family and his faith.
During the period of estrangement, he became addicted to drugs, and his parents realized they had been sending him a wrong and hurtful message about being gay. When he reconnected with them, they welcomed him without reservation as he tried to get clean. For several months, he stayed off drugs, and he and his parents were able to rebuild their relationship, this time with his mother and father accepting him completely. But making what his mother calls the “classic mistake of the recovering addict,” Ryan started seeing friends who were still using drugs, and he decided to shoot heroin one more time, leading to the fatal overdose.
“What we had wished for, prayed for, hoped for — that we would not have a gay son — came true. But not at all in the way we had envisioned,” Linda Robertson says in the video for Not All Like That, a new Internet video campaign that gives LGBT-affirming Christians a platform to speak out.
She closes by telling LGBT Christians, “If you're wondering whether there is a place for you in the kingdom of God, we want you to know that the kingdom of God won't be complete without you.” Watch below, and find out more about Not All Like That here.