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This mom could run a master class on how to react when your kid comes out as gay.

'I love you no matter what in the world. Don’t you know that?'

This mom could run a master class on how to react when your kid comes out as gay.

Sitting at his family's dining room table, terrified and jittery, Matthew Christian was about to tell his mom a big secret.

He was about to come out as gay.

GIF via Matthew Christian/YouTube; USA Today.


In a tear-jerking video Matthew posted online about six years ago — though the video has just recently gone viral — you can almost feel the pain and dread on the then 19-year-old's face through the screen.

Fortunately for Matthew, his mom, Robin, did a terrific job handling the news.

First off, Robin made it clear before her son even uttered a word that she has his back, no matter what.

"There’s nothing you could tell me that I would never stop loving you for, hon," she told him. "You know that."

GIF via Matthew Christian/YouTube; USA Today.

When he finally told her, she immediately reassured Matthew that he had nothing to apologize for.

"I'm sorry," Matthew sobbed into his mom's shoulder.  

“Don’t be sorry, silly!" Robin replied, hugging her son tightly.

GIF via Matthew Christian/YouTube; USA Today.

"Don’t be sorry, don’t be sorry," she reiterated. "I love you no matter what in the world. Don’t you know that?"

When Matthew told her he hadn't told his friends yet, she had the perfect piece of advice.

"Do your friends know?" she asked him.

He tearfully shook his head.

"If they’re your real friends, they won’t care," she said. "OK?"

GIF via Matthew Christian/YouTube; USA Today.

Even though the video is six years old, the timeless display of love between a vulnerable child and an adoring mom is still as relevant as ever.

"I have received messages from people all over the world telling me their stories and what my video has meant to them," Matthew, now a 25-year-old college graduate with plans to go to medical school, told Pink News. "So while the response has been a lot to take in, knowing that the video has reached so many people and achieved what I was hoping it would has made it all worth it."

GIF via Matthew Christian/YouTube; USA Today.

There are plenty of resources online for parents of LBGTQ kids who want to make sure they respond to their child's coming out in a positive and supportive way.

A good thing to keep in mind, Robin told USA Today, is that your child is "still your child." She noted, "It doesn't change who they are."

Watch the powerful video of Matthew's coming out below:

Researchers at Harvard University have studied the connection between spanking and kids' brain development for the first time, and their findings echo what studies have indicated for years: Spanking isn't good for children.

Comments on this article will no doubt be filled with people who a) say they were spanked and "turned out fine" or b) say that the reason kids are [fill in the blank with some societal ill] these days are because they aren't spanked. However, a growing body of research points to spanking creating more problems than it solves.

"We know that children whose families use corporal punishment are more likely to develop anxiety, depression, behavior problems, and other mental health problems, but many people don't think about spanking as a form of violence," said Katie A. McLaughlin, director of the Stress & Development Lab in the Department of Psychology, and the senior researcher on the study which was published Friday in the journal Child Development. "In this study, we wanted to examine whether there was an impact of spanking at a neurobiological level, in terms of how the brain is developing."

You can read the entire study here, but the gist is that kids' brain activity was measured using an MRI machine as they reacted to photos of actors displaying "fearful" and "neutral" faces. What researchers found was that kids who had been spanked had similar brain neural responses to fearful faces as kids who had been abused.

"There were no regions of the brain where activation to fearful relative to neutral faces differed between children who were abused and children who were spanked," the authors wrote in a statement.

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Images courtesy of John Scully, Walden University, Ingrid Scully
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Since March of 2020, over 29 million Americans have been diagnosed with COVID-19, according to the CDC. Over 540,000 have died in the United States as this unprecedented pandemic has swept the globe. And yet, by the end of 2020, it looked like science was winning: vaccines had been developed.

In celebration of the power of science we spoke to three people: an individual, a medical provider, and a vaccine scientist about how vaccines have impacted them throughout their lives. Here are their answers:

John Scully, 79, resident of Florida

Photo courtesy of John Scully

When John Scully was born, America was in the midst of an epidemic: tens of thousands of children in the United States were falling ill with paralytic poliomyelitis — otherwise known as polio, a disease that attacks the central nervous system and often leaves its victims partially or fully paralyzed.

"As kids, we were all afraid of getting polio," he says, "because if you got polio, you could end up in the dreaded iron lung and we were all terrified of those." Iron lungs were respirators that enclosed most of a person's body; people with severe cases often would end up in these respirators as they fought for their lives.

John remembers going to see matinee showings of cowboy movies on Saturdays and, before the movie, shorts would run. "Usually they showed the news," he says, "but I just remember seeing this one clip warning us about polio and it just showed all these kids in iron lungs." If kids survived the iron lung, they'd often come back to school on crutches, in leg braces, or in wheelchairs.

"We all tried to be really careful in the summer — or, as we called it back then, 'polio season,''" John says. This was because every year around Memorial Day, major outbreaks would begin to emerge and they'd spike sometime around August. People weren't really sure how the disease spread at the time, but many believed it traveled through the water. There was no cure — and every child was susceptible to getting sick with it.

"We couldn't swim in hot weather," he remembers, "and the municipal outdoor pool would close down in August."

Then, in 1954 clinical trials began for Dr. Jonas Salk's vaccine against polio and within a year, his vaccine was announced safe. "I got that vaccine at school," John says. Within two years, U.S. polio cases had dropped 85-95 percent — even before a second vaccine was developed by Dr. Albert Sabin in the 1960s. "I remember how much better things got after the vaccines came out. They changed everything," John says.

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