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These holidays are usually celebrated during the preschool years and kindergarten. Children express their love for and appreciation of their parents with a variety of artistic projects that they labor over for days:
You've just gotten pregnant and your long dormant spirituality has begun to
awaken. Or you have a high-energy three-year-old and you're starting to think a little
values infusion couldn’t hurt. It’s time to shop for a church, you decide, but you're gay so you naturally have a healthy dose of cynisicm, skepticism, and other "isms" when it comes to organized religion. What if you land in a Christian cabal of gay haters and they want to exorcise you? What if they decide to brainwash you back to grace, turn you against your partner, find you a suitable opposite sex mate, and help you discover the joys of Adam and Eve in the garden?
One field trip to a church can tell you everything you need to know about the clergy and congregation's attitudes toward people who are different. So go on a "mission," observe carefully, and then take the simple screener below to find out if you've found a spiritual home for your gay family.
Most families feel obliged to make occasional trips to grandparents who live far away, and in this time of economic uncertainty, vacationing at their home is certainly the frugal alternative to Europe or the Caribbean. And some grandparents really do want you to come. They may even cough up plane tickets to sweeten the pot and go out of their way to deliver a rip-roaring good time for their grandchildren.
But other grandparents only say they want you. They never really expected you to accept an invitation. And the minute you, your partner, and children pull up to the house, their ambivalence kicks in. They’re thinking,Oh, God, how are we going to get through a whole week? Can we just give them the keys and we’ll go to Europe? and you’re thinking, If they lived in California, they would have voted for Prop 8. They are the enemy. Why are we here?”
In Part I, we answered a few burning questions straight parents have about gay ones. But if straight parents could sit down with a live set of gay parents, their questions could go on for hours. What else would they ask? What would you say? Let’s listen in for a while.
You’re a straight parent, and all of a sudden everywhere you turn, you’re hearing about gay parents. They’re on the talk shows. They’re in your magazines. They’re even at your school. You have so many burning questions. Let’s try to answer a few…
At some point during most children's elementary years (usually it’s the third grade), they study the many peoples who poured into "this great country of ours" via ports like Ellis and Angel Island to escape poverty, famine, and that “p” word gay people know so much about—persecution.
Once their letters of reference are secured and their home study paperwork is complete, straight and gay would-be adoptive parents face one of the most stressful events of their adoption home study—the dreaded visit or series of visits by a social worker to their home. This is a high-stakes event. This social worker has the power to advance your dreams or stop them dead. Don’t be placated by anyone who tells you, “Relax. Just be yourself.” When has that ever worked for anyone? Here are some suggestions.