A Note for New Gay Dads

boyI get a kick out of today’s new gay dads. They’re all full of look what we did, with pictures and blogs and flashing about the awards they received for being Father of the Year. It’s adorable really.

But I sometimes wonder if they understand that gay men have been raising children for a long, long time; long before it became legal, or condone, or even accepted.  But they’re new parents so that’s to be expected. After they change a few hundred diapers the luster wears off. We old-timers know that. Then there’s daycare and schools and shitty teachers, and drug use and sex and heartbreaks and maybe the cops bringing the kid home one night. Been there. Done all that – all of it while Anita Bryant’s words were still echoing in minds across the land about what loathsome perverts us homos were. [Read more…]

Playing Superhero by LGBT Author Hans Hirschi

Hans Martin HirschiAs a young boy, my brother and I would play super heroes. I’d be the Flash, he’d be Batman. We’d save the world with our combined imaginations. That imagination also helped me write stories from a very young age. I had all but forgotten about it until I recently discovered some old writing from my preteen and teen years.

I also kept diaries. I lost those, however, to a “gay purging” fire after my first coming out at the age of seventeen, a few months before I headed west, to America, as an exchange student. There, encouraged by my English teacher, I took up writing again, a journal filled with teen angst and stories about saving the world, centaurs and other mythical creatures.

In 1991, inspired by hopeless love (he was straight), I wrote poetry and published my first book “Moments.” After that, it would take me nine years before I’d write again, and by that time I had gone nonfiction, publishing a book on e-learning in Swedish and in 2010, a management book, “Common Sense” in English. Oddly, majoring in literature had turned me away from reading and writing fiction, and traveling the globe on business for many years, didn’t help either. [Read more…]

To Mom (A letter from a gay son)

The following is from Gay Family Values. It was a letter attached to the video you will see below. It was so touching that I thought I would re-share it here with you, because sometimes we forget just how hard it is, even for today’s LGBTQ youth, to come out to their parents. 

To Mom,
Mom I have been trying to talk to you for a while now but I just can’t bring the words to say it. So, I am writing you this letter instead. I just want you to know that it isn’t because I don’t feel like I can’t talk to you it’s just that I can’t bring myself to say the words.

So for a while now I have been struggling with myself internally. I have hated myself for a really long time and as scary as it sounds I thought of suicide as the only escape. I then thought of you, my family, my friends, and all of the other things that I would miss out on. What you have to understand is that this was and still is really hard for me. I’ve tried for the longest time to change but I just can’t . I would give anything to be different but this just is not going to change about me. By this point you can probably tell that what I am going to tell you is that I am gay. And I am sure you always knew. [Read more…]

A Talk For Parents of LGBT Children

Here’s a video from a close friend specifically for parents of LGBT children coming out.  Probably the most important point to convey before I step off this stage and let David talk to you is the fact that children simply want to be loved, but his video goes beyond that and is well worth watching.

 

Note: I’ve also added a few resource link below for parents seeking more information, and you can also click over to LGBT Youth Orgs for more.

 

GLBT National Help Resource Center (for finding LGBT resources near you)

Ten Things I’ve Learned About Gay People in Ten Years | A Christian Perspective

Gay youth, family rejection, and health problems

The Link Between LGBT Youth, Bullying, and Suicide

18 Anti-Gay Groups and Their Propaganda

Stepping Up to Bullying

There’s been a lot of discussion about bullying in the recent weeks since Jamey Rodemeyers death. Once again, it is in the international spotlight after a tragedy that should have never happened.  As offline and online communities (of all ages) step up to the plate and tackle the issue I am especially heartened to see the youth of the world move to make changes within their own environment.

As a parent, I knew that I could not police my sons’ actions all the time, nor be there to protect them every single minute of their lives, and so it falls to those whom we seek to protect to take action with the full knowledge that we support them in their endeavors to aid those people less able to help themselves. Teaching them respect for all  is a great part of that, but teaching them by example is an even greater part.

So there is also a point where we, as adults, must step forward beyond our own homes and say NO, this is not how you treat people.

I saw a shining example of that this morning and wanted to share it with you.  Ali you have my utmost respect.

Sometimes a few words is all it takes to change a life.

lgbt youth

 

gay teens

bullying

On Being A Gay Dad

gay parenting, ebook, lgbtAs I explore twitter and other mediums I get some interesting comments and questions about being a gay parent. The irony is that I was doing it long before it got headlines and rallies for rights, or before it was “cool”. My children are grown, in college and have solid careers ahead. (And, because the question is often unspoken but asked,  they are both straight).

I honestly don’t understand the “cool” which has notably come from gay teens that I’ve spoken to. I guess the assumption there is that things would be different in their own households if they had a gay parent. As if somehow having gay parent meant that they wouldn’t get grounded or get their backside whupped for extreme stupidity, or get nagged about getting chores and homework done. I DO understand the rejection from a straight parent though, all too well, so I can empathize even as I chuckle at being ‘cool’ suddenly at this stage of my life.

But for me, I was simply a father, a single dad. There was nothing extraordinary about our life. Times were different and I shielded them from the bigotry and hatred that they would receive through no fault of their own. I made no qualms about it then and don’t now, simply because I was one of those parents likely to stomp the shit out of you if I perceived you as a threat to my children. Still am, I guess.

One of my fondest memories was watching The Birdcage with them. We all laughed at the extremes, and of course, I and my witty commentary  made sure as we watched it that they understood:  “See, it could be worse.”

All I got back was, “Oh dad.”

Maybe I was a bit cool? Dunno.