First off I want to thank you so much for reading this, and so many others letters and helping them, serious or not.
I have always been fascinated by Anthros, but before, during my Spring Break of this year, I'd had the same misinformation about Furries as many did. The reason this died was because we went to MegaCon in Orlando as a small thing on an FBLA [Future Business Leaders of America] competition trip, and I met a couple of furries, and soon I learned that not all of them were into pornographic material and many just like anthropomorphic creatures, just like me.
But fast forward to now, and I've learned so much about the fandom and I'm saving up to make a Partial suit of my Kangaroo fursona, and I realize I have to tell my parents about this or else how can I explain why I suddenly need upholstery foam and faux fur? I told a few of my more con-going friends, but they seen very misinformed about furries, which sucks as I want to try and go to MegaPlex next year when I’ll be 13, meaning I don't have to have one of my parents with me.
My question is: how do I go about this? My family is very island-based, so stuff like this doesn't happen often. Plus, my dad has seen thatTosh.0 episode with Furries (and the Brony episode too, but as a still young-ish girl I don't have to worry to much). Thank you for reading this novel. I tend to go on a lot.
Avian Zoroark (age 12)
* * *
Welcome to the fandom and I do hope you enjoy your furriness with the community. Yes, it is most definitely possible to have a wonderful time in the fandom that is family-friendly. And, as you’ve discovered, the furry fandom is unique from other con-type groups, such as those who go to Comic-con or Star Trek conventions, so it isn’t surprising that your friends who go to cons, but not furcons, are confused about what it’s really like.
Before I continue, I want to be sure you understand something (and that I do, too!) because it sounds like you wish to go to Megaplex by yourself at the age of 13. If that’s what you believe, then you’re mistaken. As the Megaplex site clearly states:
Anyone between 13 and 17 years of age, excluding anyone between 16 and 17 with ID, will require a parent or legal guardian (“parent”) present at registration on site. Parents must have a valid ID, and will be responsible for anyone in their care. (You must have your own parent or legal guardian with you to receive your badge.)
So, you will need one or more parents to go with you. But that is actually okay! This is your chance to show them what furry is about—and that you want them to know you like it and that it is great fun—by asking them to take you to Megaplex. Most mundanes who actually attend a furcon realize it is totally harmless. I don’t know how much you know about furcons, but, in a number of ways, they are like other cons. There is a dealer’s den, and guest speakers, and there is usually a fursuit parade. Now, at the dealer’s den and artists’ alley, furcons will always clearly indicate adult material and will not allow minors to look at that stuff. To quote from the Megaplex site again:
In accordance with state law, we must require that no adult material be displayed openly; for example, for art/print artists we request, where applicable, that two separate binders ("general", "mature") be kept. Additionally, any "naughty" parts of must be covered in some fashion (Post-It notes work well for this). This satisfies State and Local requirements about underage viewing and is discreet for purchasers.
Just as your parents wouldn’t allow you to see an X-rated film, so you can show them that they have the same control here. Parents feel more comfortable if they feel they can supervise their children and have some say over the situation. Once you have taken care of that, then go to the next level and get that partial suit (by the way, good idea on your part to get a partial, since you are still growing!)
Remember, just because they are a bit isolated from the world (I assume that is your meaning when you say they are “very island-based”) doesn’t mean they will be fearful of furries. They should understand there is a big BIG difference between television and the real world. Show them the real world of the fandom and you should be okay.
A note on comments: Comments on letters to Papabear are welcome, especially those that offer extra helpful advice and add something to the conversation that is of use to the letter writer and those reading this column. Also welcome are constructive criticisms and opposing views. What is NOT welcome are hateful, hurtful comments, flaming, and trolling. Such comments will be deleted from this site. Thank you.