Growing up, I saw gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgendered and questioning people marginalized, shut out, and excluded. This bothered me a great deal. I knew they had done nothing wrong. I identify as a straight woman. When I married my husband (a straight man) in 2005, he had three daughters that I was about to raise. I asked him, “How would you feel if one of your daughters were a lesbian?” He replied, “That would be awesome!” I knew then that he was a good person.
While none of our teens has come out to us, we have raised them to believe that being gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgendered is absolutely okay. Hopefully soon, we will become a foster/adoptive family. It is our goal to provide a permanent, safe home and an accepting, caring family for a gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgendered teen. Some people think we are crazy for this, but we don’t care what they think. This is definitely a challenge in rural western Illinois. It is not exactly an accepting climate all of the time. But our family feels we are up for this challenge.
Today, Sept. 3rd. 2011, is our 29th anniversary as a committed couple for life. Today we are still not out to many people including our immediate families because of the hate that will be exhibited toward us.
After years of planning, studying and begging physicians to help us, we were blessed with beautiful twin daughters that were conceived by donor insemination in 1988. This was a time when the path to family making for lesbian couples was still being paved. One of us is a professional nurse and the other is a stay at home mother and teacher. Our daughters were home schooled and both received full academic scholarships to college. We parented our girls without any support from the gay community. We live in the middle of the Bible belt and were afraid of having our children taken from us if we publicly practiced a gay lifestyle.
Our daughters always knew they had two mothers and that we were a special family. They were always proud of us and would eagerly tell people they had two mothers when asked which one of us was the mother. When asked “where is your father”, both girls were quick to reply, “we don’t have one.” When they were 11 years old a friend asked them if they missed not having a father and their response was “how can you miss something you never had.” To us they were well adjusted. We had so many compliments on their behaviors and were told how wonderful and respectful our children were.
I’m 17 years old and I live with my two moms, smack dab in the center of the bible belt. My mom was in relationships with women for as long as I can remember. When I was 13, I went through a rough patch with my dad, partially due to my mom’s new partner. He talked to me like I was trash because she was more involved with my life, and he was jealous of how close we were.
My dad drove me to the brink of insanity, I was contemplating suicide and had to see a therapist. Throughout this whole process my M.O.M. was the most supportive. Her and my mom helped me fight away the bad thoughts and rebuild my self-confidence. It can be difficult with so much estrogen in the same house, but I wouldn’t have it any other way. I love my two moms and I know my life wouldn’t be the same without them.
All my life me and my mother have had a distant relationship. My grandmother raised me and I didn’t know if it was because my mom didn’t love me or because she loved her boyfriend at the time more. Through all the pain and trials we’ve both had to face in life we’ve been able to work on our relationship together.
About a year ago, my mom came out of the closet to me and told me she had a girlfriend, but little did she know I’ve known for a while. I love and accept my mom for who she is and I couldn’t be happier for her. Her girlfriend Amber is a loving and caring person and I love her as much as I love my own flesh and blood.
I’m in college now and for a while I lived on my own in Sunnyvale, CA and now that I’ve switched majors, I moved in with my mom, grandma, my mom’s girlfriend, and her two kids. The country is a lot different from the city life I’m used to living, but I’m making the adjustments.
This is a brief summation of the experience I’m having with my mom, her girlfriend and their way of life and luckily no one has said anything negative, at least not to my face. For now, we’re happy. We’ll just see how things go.
My name is Lee, born and raised in a small town in Southern Indiana. I was married at 18 because being adopted in to a very strict Pentecostal home, that is what was expected of me. I was so afraid of coming out to the family that I was adopted into, not to mention that my adopted parents were foster parents and well known in our small community. My adopted mother had let it be known to me on a number of occasions and for things far less sinful than this, that I could be placed back into the system if I did not abide by her rules and beliefs.
I met and married a girl from the Pentecostal church and had three beautiful children. Though being a gay man, I was like as many heterosexual males, I wanted to be a daddy more than anything on this planet. I had no idea how it would affect me once I actually became one. To start, I thought, as so many before me and unfortunately others will behind me, feel that the whole marriage and family thing would change me. As all who read this know that does not work. If it is not broke then it does not need to be fixed. I wish someone could have told me that over twenty years ago.
We had moved to Kentucky to be close to her side of the family, which I found later was one of the biggest mistakes I could have ever done. She was not a very nice woman. She knew before we married that I was gay, but was not at all deterred by it. She actually loved it in my opinion. She got a full-time mother, house wife, chief cook and bottle washer. Between stress of the marriage and being extremely unhappy, not to mention effects from child abuse, I began having mental and physical health problems. I took all that I could stand and stood up to her.
When I was little I found out that my mom and the lady that I thought was my aunt were actually together. When they told me I was okay with it and I wanted to tell people, but they told me not too. They thought that I would get made fun of and picked on if I told. I could tell they knew that gays weren’t treated equally. I kept it a secret for a while and eventually I started telling people and I was surprised to see that people didn’t care if I had 2 moms.
They were surprisingly okay with it. At that moment I realized that not everybody in the world discriminates against gay people. If we can find more people like that then we can make a big change for them and things can be very different. I can’t stand when people, especially churches, discriminate against gay people. The fact of the matter is god loves all his children, it doesn’t matter what your sexual orientation is. I give a damn and I encourage all people to do the same.
I am currently doing my University dissertation on children/young people whose mothers came out having previously identified as heterosexual. My mum came out and left my dad when I was 13. My family are all still really close, and my dad has been unconditionally supportive of my mum the whole time. My mum has been with her partner for ten years, and I am so proud of her. It has been a profoundly positive experience, I’m all for gay parenting, I have the most amazing family. I am so glad it happened.
Growing up in a small Texas town had all sorts of challenges, no matter who you were, but a close friend of mine faced a number of trials because he was gay. It wasn’t that he was harassed or threatened or even ostracized. In fact, he has always been regarded as one of the best people you could know (creative, smart, kind, honest, hard working, etc.). His trouble came when he expressed his desire to be a parent, and a Christian, and the personal, internal conflict with his being gay.
I couldn’t think of a more wonderful friend to be a dad, and supported him fully as he went through the foster parent application process. He struggled with some of the more personal questions about his life and kind of “packed away” his being gay in order to be an “upstanding Christian parent”.
This was heartbreaking, but I knew he was doing everything within his abilities to become the parent he was meant to be for the kids he truly desired to have in his life. He was approved for foster care, and soon became the adoptive single dad of a teen and a set of 7 year old twins.
He’s been a beautiful beaming dad ever since. I only wish that he could have accomplished this without having to sacrifice having a partner to share it all with.
With Father’s Day approaching thoughts of him are near and dear to my heart. He’s the best dad in the world and deserves all the love in the world.
I wish more people in Texas Gave A Damn.
note: I’ve worked with children in foster care for several years. The kids that are pulled from tragic situations, the older children, the children with disabilities, the “hard to place” kids don’t care if you’re straight, gay, have a third arm, can’t dance, if you’re bisexual, if you are rich or poor or are allergic to cats. What they care about is having a home with someone, or more people that genuinely care for them. Consider adoption and foster parenting, share the love.
I was a substitute teacher at our small community school my son attended and I was so glad when they asked me to help out there. I started teaching in Kindergarten and the teachers thought a lot of me. Soon I was teaching K-8th!
I enjoyed every single day that I was at the school. As soon as word got around that I was a lesbian, that’s when the teachers shunned me and I was not asked to teach anymore. I loved those kids and was deeply hurt by this. There was nothing that I could do! My son was treated badly and two girls would often do underhanded things to him that just broke my heart as a mother.
He didn’t seem to mind, but if he did he never said because he loved me very much. My son did not want his picture placed in his 8th grade annual. I never knew the reason. Was it because he hated that school? Did these kids hide his paper that he was suppose to have sent home telling about the pics being in the annual? I don’t know.
I can remember another time when he wanted me to spray orange spray paint on his hair for a week. I remember asking him why he wanted to do this and he said that he just wanted to. But looking back, I figured that they were beginning to make fun of him,s o maybe he thought he would give them a real reason to laugh. I don’t know.
I stayed in this small community, held my head high and time moved on. My son has turned out to be a fine young man and I am very proud of him! He will be leaving for the Army soon and fighting for our country. We’ve been thru a lot. My divorce when my son was eight,was also terrible.
My ex told all of our neighbors about me being gay. He also was told me that we couldn’t stay in our home becaue he would burn it down. So we left to move in with my mom. I had to sneak back in to get our things.
Today, I am still out and will never hide who I am. I love my son, family, God and my country! I will continue being who I am and YES I Give a Damn for sure!!!
Hello, my name is Ariel, I am just about 19 and I live in a small town in Texas. I am Christian, and heterosexual and have gay friends, and it hurts me when I see the gay community under fire for the way they are.
To see them turned away from careers, unable to get married, not being able to adopt because they’re living in the world. I can relate to this pain in more ways than people can imagine, because along with being heterosexual, and Christian, I am also African American one of the few on my campus.
I go through days where I am looked at hatefully, and told hateful remarks. So I understand what hate based on uncontrollable circumstances feels like. That’s why I can’t hate anybody based on their sexual orientation, race or religion. That is why I give a damn.
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According to The Houston Chronicle: "A Houston judge entered an order on June 24 which prohibits a father from leaving his children ...Author:
Approximately 500,000 children in the U.S. are in foster care. And more than 120,000 children languish in the public child welfare system—all while responsible, nurturing adults are prevented from adopting them.