The Korean chapter of PFLAG opened a booth at the Korea Queer Culture Festival in Seoul last weekend and gave out free hugs to any attendees who felt they could use a mother’s embrace.
“It was supposed to be a brief event. We were surprised that so many showed up for a hug,” said Ji-in, a mother whose son came out as gay three years ago.
“Many wept in my arms. I am glad that I did that.”
Ji-In added that she was in shock when she realized how many people wanted a hug from her. When her son came out she realized there was nothing she could do to change him, so she accepted him. “I love my son for who he is.”
“They are already going through so much because of prejudice and discrimination due to their sexual identity. If I decide to reject him, who would support him? We need to unite to build a society where my son will have a better life,” Ji-in told The Korea Times.
The Korea Queer Culture Festival was incredible and I'm so happy I was able to go and join the parade pic.twitter.com/xKnFWxmqcx
— Raven Warner (@ravenwarner) June 11, 2016
“Some of the people who came for hugs cried – maybe they felt like it was their own mother,” said Bbomi, another member of PFLAG Korea.
“I found myself thinking how wonderful it would be if they could openly tell their parents [that they are LGBT] and be acknowledged and supported.”
Mothers gave out hugs for three hours during the festival.