Afew months ago my family was sitting around the dinner table when my brother and sister- in-law announced that they will be having a baby. When they told us the news, we all had tears in our eyes and we shared hugs and asked stand- ard questions, such as what they will name the baby and when my sister-in-law is due.
… this issue of OutWords confirmed that parenthood comes in many different forms and ultimately, being a parent goes far beyond giving birth.
Thinking about how cute it will be to read to the baby, play with it (we don’t know the sex yet) and babysit, got me thinking about my future kids and specifically, how I would have them. I’ll admit it’s discouraging that my partner and I can’t just make a baby together— there will always be a third person who’s providing us with a key ingredient that’s wasted on bed sheets without a thought of the complications some people go through to access sperm. How that per- son will play into our lives, I don’t know yet, and it likely won’t be easy to figure that out.
We’re surrounded by stories and im- ages of straight, cisgender moms who easily get pregnant with their perfect, straight, cisgender male partners and have healthy, happy babies with no complications, such as finding a sur- rogate, finding sperm, figuring out who has rights to the child and what the kid should call each person involved in the birth. In reality, there are few people, even cis straight couples, who can identify with that. Many people become parents in different ways—whether it’s through adoption, insemination, step- parenting, a surrogate or another way.
Working on this issue of OutWords confirmed that parenthood comes in so many different forms and ultimately, be- ing a parent goes far beyond giving birth.
We had the pleasure of talking to peo- ple in our community who have, or are, navigating the complications, rewards and downsides of parenthood; for people in Winnipeg, like Sandra Sanchez, that accurately describes her experience. In this issue, she tells us about the compli- cations of finding a sperm donor in the United States, the rewards of hearing her son say “I love you” and the frustrations of her son puking in the middle of Costco.
Some GLBT* people unexpectedly become parents when they enter a relationship with someone who has a kid, which is what Kacey Fields did, only to confirm that she really doesn’t want kids.
Make sure you read our cover story about the struggles some local trans people have gone through to give birth. Charlie Primeau and Trevor highlight that pregnancy is hyper-feminized and shouldn’t be—just because someone is pregnant doesn’t mean they’re suddenly a woman when they don’t identify as that.
A while after I found out I’m going to be an aunty, I started to worry about what my brother and sister-in-law would teach their kid about the GLBT* commu- nity. How will they tell the kid that my partner isn’t my sister or friend? When’s
the right time for my family to teach them about GLBT* people?
Luckily they won’t be the only couple considering these questions. Many straight, cis parents are making their kids allies. Later in this issue, you can hear what some of those couples are teaching their kids so they grow up sup- porting the GLBT* community.
The stories in this issue are just a small insight into GLBT* parents in our community. We admit this issue doesn’t tackle every aspect of queer parenting and we’re lacking gay men with kids, a gap we’ll fill in later issues.
If you have any stories about par- enting that you would like to share, we would love to hear them. Contact us on Facebook, Twitter or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
We hope you enjoy this issue.