‘Tis is the season to reconnect with our roots. There is a big difference between “family of origin” and “family of choice.” Personally, I feel fortunate that my parents and siblings accept my alternative lifestyle. Yet most families of origin are not as informed or tolerant of diversity as mine, after all, it took almost 20 years (and tons of mistakes) to get here.  
      So, as a gift to my poly, kinky, tantric, queer or friends who are considered the black sheep in the family, I made a quick list of my 5 best practices that have helped me survive the season. 

5) Timing is essential. I came out slowly and only when I was ready.  Some family members took many years to understand and accept my lifestyle, whereas other family members may never be ready.  I continue to educate, inform and update my family members, one step at a time. 4) I reassure my family of choice that even if they are not legitimized by my family of origin, that I value and love them deeply! Further, I openly process feelings of hurt or loss with lovers when our families are not ready to accept our lifestyle. 

3) It helps to discuss larger social issues such as Privilege and diversity whether it be ethnic, monogamous, heterosexual, socioeconomic or otherwise. 

2) I make a special effort to celebrate or spend time with my chosen community to counterbalance any time where I haven’t felt free to be myself. 

1) Regardless of anyone’s reactions, I stay true to who I am. 

Did you know Holly berries are poisonous? It’s true. Ingesting over 20 tempting tiny fruit may be fatal. And Mistletoe is a toxic parasite. So if you really want to survive the holidays, be sure to wash your hands! Consider this a witchy warning during the Christmas craze.
In conclusion, since most my lovers are atheists, Jews, pagans, and Sufis, we can get pretty creative with our own cross-cultural celebrations. This year we’re keeping it simple by taking Devin (age 10) out to see the new Star Wars. Then we’ll take him on our annual trip to Big Bear to close out the year. I look forward to staying in touch and hopefully co-creating together in 2018. Big blessings to you and all your kindred spirits! 
Wake up and Dream,
KamalaDevi McClure
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