After Tyler Clementi’s Suicide, Parents Leave Church Over Teachings Opposing Homosexuality

RIDGEWOOD, N.J. — When Tyler Clementi told his parents he was a homosexual, two days before he left for Rutgers University in the fall of 2010, he said he had known since middle school.

“So he did have a side that he didn’t open up to us, obviously,” his mother, Jane Clementi, said, sitting in her kitchen nearly two years later. “That was one of the things that hurt me the most, that he was hiding something so much. Because I thought we had a pretty open relationship.”

In her surprise, she had peppered him with questions: “How do you know? Who are you going to talk to? Who are you going to tell?” Tyler told a friend that the conversation had not gone well. His father had been “very accepting,” he wrote in a text message. “Mom has basically completely rejected me.”

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