With the world changing rapidly (as it always is) and LGBTQ families becoming more and more common, there’s still a need for sharing our stories and our advice. Talking about who we are, how we got here, and what we’re experiencing, is an important way to support each other. Parenting is hard enough, parenting as an LGBTQ person can be even tougher, especially in communities where we’re under attack or alone.
In April 2016 I participated in a piece in The Advocate where families like mine shared their thoughts and advice for other parents. I was particularly excited about this article because I was able to bring along and be joined by a more diverse set of voice than we normally see. Among them are colleagues in the LGBTQ movement, who are fighting for all of ur families while raising their own.
Below is my contribution. You can see the entire article here.
“Take a deep breath, then take some time to learn about all of your options. You don’t need to go down an internet rabbit hole, but do get some good books, like Eric Rosswood’s Journey to Same-Sex Parenthood.Speak to a few providers of different forms of family creation, and seek out parents who take different paths. But most of all, know that you can’t make a wrong decision. LGBTQ people do great as parents no matter how they come to be parents, and every path has its own challenges and gifts. While each of our stories is different, the more you know about different stories, the better you’ll be able to look ahead and embrace the unique journey that will be your family’s. When you do make a decision, choose professionals who bring lots of experience with LGBTQ parents. There are legal, cultural, and social hurdles that you’ll want experts to help you navigate, such as the fact that your names on a birth certificate, or your marriage, do not ensure parental rights.” — Gabriel Blau, LGBTQ rights advocate and former executive director of Family Equality Council