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Out of the Ordinary: essays on growing up with gay, lesbian and transgender parents

Eds: Noelle Howey and Ellen Samuels


Out of the Ordinary is a truly unique anthology, a groundbreaking collection of essays by the grown children of lesbian, gay, and transgender parents. Ranging from humorous to poignant, the essays touch on some of the most important and complicated issues facing them: dealing with a parent's sexuality while developing an identity of one's own; overcoming homophobia at school and at family or social gatherings; and defining the modern family. In a time when traditional family structure has undergone radical change, Out of the Ordinary is an important look at the meaning of love, family, and relationships, and will speak to anyone who has lived or is interested in non-traditional families










Invisible Families: For Parents Of Lesbian & Gay Children

Written by Terry Stewart. Heartflags. 2008.

Invisible Families is a book for parents of lesbian and gay children. It aims to help conservative families talk openly, heal rifts and achieve a loving understanding. Invisible Families has helped thousands of people since it was first published. It continues to be valued for its' insights and guidance. Counsellors, teachers, friends and anyone who is part of the family will find Invisible Families to be useful. It also contains an interesting introduction to issues relating to Maori and Polynesian people.

Families like Mine: children of gay parents tell it like it is

Ed: Abigail Garner


 Based on eight years of activism, combined with interviews with more than fifty sons and daughters, Families Like Mine debunks the anti-gay myth that these children grow up damaged and confused. At the same time, Garner's book refutes the popular pro-gay sentiment that these children turn out "just like everyone else." In addition to the typical stresses of growing up, the unique pressures these children face are not due to their parents' sexuality, but rather to homophobia and prejudice. Using a rich blend of journalism and memoir, Garner offers empathetic yet unapologetic opinions about the gifts and challenges of being raised in families that are often labeled "controversial."











Life Curves: sons talk about their gay fathers

Ed: Andrew R Gottlieb


This book looks at how sons react to learning that their fathers are gay, allowing us to see, over time, how this has changed their family relationships and their own lives. Simply and elegantly written, this psychoanalytically oriented qualitative research study is accessible to both the beginner and the more advanced researcher and practitioner. It draws from a wide range of literary, popular, and psychological sources and includes an interview guide, a reference section, and an index. Sons Talk About Their Gay Fathers: Life Curves is a storybook-an extended narrative moved along, but not overshadowed, by psychoanalytic theory. The Introduction briefly reviews more recent writings of the fathering experience as told by gay men themselves, setting the stage for "Father to Child" -- a look at the father as seen through the ever-shifting eyes of his son at different phases of the life cycle; "The Quest for the Real Father" -- an examination of sons' responses to their fathers' homosexuality as captured in film, fiction, nonfiction, television, and the psychological literature; "Methodology" -- the story of the research process, including sampling, the search for subjects, trustworthiness, the interview, bias, and data collection; "The Stories" -- an anthology of narratives the author constructed from the interview material, painting an intimate portrait of each individual son; "Findings" -- a categorical analysis; and "Discussion" -- a summary of all the preceding material cast in a developmental framework, highlighting implications for future research and clinical practice










We Are Family: Testimonies of Lesbian and Gay Parents

Turan Ali. Continuum International Publishing Group Ltd. 1996.

An engrossing look at the reality of being lesbian or gay and a parent, the ways and means of achieving parenthood, and the benefits and challenges of pink parenting in 90s Britain. Based on original interviews with a broad cross-section of lesbian and gay parents, and their children, this account is proof positive that queer parents are making no "pretence" at creating successful new patterns of family relationships. Among the issues examined are: the taboos and myths that traditionally surround same-sex parenthood; artificial insemination; surrogate mothers; adoption and fostering; custody battles; what to tell the children; what to tell your neighbours; what kids think of their queer parents.

Straight Parents, Gay Children: keeping families together

Robert Bernstein


 Straight Parents, Gay Children is Robert Bernstein's moving account of how he came to terms with his daughter's homosexuality and how the experience has enriched his life. Bernstein -- winner of the 1996 Award for Best Scholarship on the Subject of Intolerance, awarded by the Gustaves Myers Center for the Study of Human Rights in North America -- discusses the myths surrounding homosexuality, accepting the news, parents who speak out, public figures who have gay children, and more. Straight Parents, Gay Children is a survival guide for all parents who wish to help their gay children cope with the inevitable cruelty from which they cannot hide. This revised and updated edition includes an introduction by Robert MacNeil of MacNeil/Lehrer Productions and a foreword by Candace Gingrich, author of The Accidental Activist "Bob Bernstein has done a wonderful job. I wish his book could be required reading for the world."—Betty DeGeneres, spokesperson, Human Rights Campaign, National Coming Out Project "Bernstein's tone is personal, his advice is sound ... a valuable addition to the psychological self-help collections."—Charles Harmon, Booklist "A succinct, moving book about parents who have defied the social stigma of homosexuality to publicly support their gay children."—Washington Blade











Now That You Know: What Every Parent Should Know About Homosexuality

Betty Faird and Nancy Hayward. HBJ Publishers 1979

Key Elements
: Written by parents for parents, this book explores most of the major concerns that are raised by parents who discover that their children are gay or lesbian. Though some of the information is dated the core elements of the book are timeless for parents who find themselves dealing with this issue.

The book is broken down into nine different chapters:

1. Now That You Know - What are the reactions and concerns to the first discovery or disclosure from the child to the parent, the initial thoughts that run through a parent's mind.

2. The Children's Story - What could be going on for the gay or lesbian child up until now, the stress related to the process of discovery, the effects of self discovery on the individuals self image and what gays and lesbians face in society, the child's point of view on their status as gay or lesbian individuals whether the parent was told by the child or discovered through other means

3. The Parent's Story - What could be going on for the parent, the effects that having a gay or lesbian child has on a parent and the parent-child relationship, reactions from other family members, and the changes to family dynamics and relationship now that the child's sexual orientation has been shared. The hopes, fears, and emotions that are shared by some parents of gay and lesbian parents.

4. What Is Gay? - Defining gay, lesbian, bisexuality, and gender through examples of different male and female individual's lifestyles. The seven categories of physical sexual arousal are covered.

5. Making Their Way in the World - The discrimination that gays and lesbians face in today's society through given examples from the individual cases that are thoroughly explored. What gay and lesbians have to face on a daily basis in the work place and the differences that people encounter in different professions. Some legal legislation is mentioned.

6. Gay Couples - The experiences of some gay and lesbian couples. Interviews are provided to give the reader a well rounded idea of the relationships that gays and lesbians have and the difficult that they face as couples; this includes 'open relationships'. The role that the partner has for the gay or lesbian child in the relationship and the role of the partner in the family. Gay and lesbian parenting is covered.

7. Gays and Religion - Christianity and Judaism and what they say about homosexuality are listed. Biblical text is broken down into what it means to the argument for and against homosexuality. The experiences of individuals within the content of those two religious beliefs are shared with the reader.

8. Parents and Children Together - The working together that is required by parents and children to have a happy relationships once sexual orientation becomes an issue, the desire of both parents and children to understand more about one another, and the tools available to make communication and better relationships possible.

9. Parents of Gay: A Group That Works - The experiences of individuals who have attended this group.

If you wish to purchase any of the books listed on the left, please consider doing so through our Amazon Associates store. Book purchases made through our store give us a percentage of profits and help continue to support this website.

Web Resources

Families Together LondonFamilies Together London is a London-based support group for the parents, families and friends of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people. Many parents, families and friends find it difficult to deal with finding out a child, family member or friend is LGBT, and they are not sure how to support them. We may not have all the answers, but, between us, we have all been through these experiences. As parents we realise that our children need our support so they can lead healthy, fulfilled lives.

Proud 2 b Parents - Proud 2 b Parents is a LGBT parents group based in Greater Manchester. This group is for all LGBT parents regardless of their route to parenthood .We run monthly sessions and events throughout the year. The group is continuously growing, and we have many families attending the group. We are looking at developing our service over the next few months, so please get in contact and see what we are up to. Please contact matt on m.taylor-roberts@manchester.gov.uk or phone 01612260162.

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Resources about LGBT Parents/Children

Beyond Barries: LGBT Parent Myths

PACE Health: Understanding the Specificities of LGBT Parenting and their Implications for Support Services

New Family Social

Experiences of Children with Lesbian and Gay Parents

APA Resources on Lesbian and Gay Parenting

Stonewall: Opportunities and barriers to becoming and being lesbian or gay parents

LGBT-Parent Families

LGBT Parent Carer and Teacher Resources

Facts for Families: Children with LGBT Parents (US)

Resource List on Support of LGBT Parenting (US)

Families like Mine - Australian Website for LGBQ and Gender Diverse young people and their families

Resources for LGBT Parents

We are Family

Pink Parenting

Proud Parenting (US)

Pink Parents

Gay Families Parenting Links

Gay Dads UK

Gay Mums UK

LGF on Same Sex Parenting

NHS Choices on LGBT Parents

Natalie Gambles Associates: Parenting Solicitors

Out for Our Children

Gay Parent Mag (US)

Invisible Parents (EU)

NELFA (Network of European LGBT Families Associations)

Circle of Moms: Top 25 LGBT Parent Blogs

LGBT Parenting and the Inevitable Questions

Parenting LGBT and Questioning Kids

Gay and Lesbian Parenting Book List

LGBTQ Parenting Connection Resources

Gay and Lesbian Step Parenting

Stonewall: Families and Parenting

Black LGBT Parenting (US)

Latino LGBT Parenting (US)

LGBT Parent Carers of Disabled Children

NPR: Exposing the Hilarity of Gay Parenting

Rainbow Nannies

Parenting Groups

Rainbow Families (Brighton & Hove)

Birmingham Parents Support Group

New Road Parents (South Birmingham)

Bristol Parenting Hub

Club Mellow (London, Walthamstow)

Fertility Friends Forum

Stonewall: What's In My Area? (Category: Parenting)

Gay Parents Meetup Groups

Resources for Fertility/Adoption/Donors

Pride Angel

Gay Family Web

Birmingham City Council Adoption and Fostering Services


Surrogacy UK (LGBT friendly)

Circle Surrogacy

Fertility Friends Forum

Men Having Babies

LGBT Co-Parenting

Resource for soon-to-be Parents

L Group Families

Rainbow Families

LGBT Parenting and the Inevitable Questions

LGBT Parents Crib Sheet (US)

LGBT Co-Parenting 


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