Tuesday, May 11, 2010

The Case for Gay Parents

There are various arguments against gay people becoming parents. I’m going to ignore the utterly ignorant and hateful ones such as all gays being paedophiles (my counter argument is that they’re not). Instead I’ll focus on the two main arguments that are often used by people who would otherwise classify themselves as gay friendly. These are:

1. A child needs a mother and a father (they might add "just like nature/God intended" to be extra obnoxious and righteous).

2. Children to gay parents are going to be bullied at school.

I’ll start with the second argument since it’s the easiest to destroy. Yeah, a child to gay parents might be bullied at school. So what? Since when is the blame with anyone else other than the bully? One of my teachers as a kid had Tourette Syndrome. She didn’t curse (only a very small minority does that), but she would often make sudden weird noises and her face would twitch. She had two boys. Should she have not had those children in case some kids at school would bully them because their mom is “weird”? And what about ugly people? Maybe ethnic minorities shouldn’t have kids so their kids won’t face racism-based bullying?

So yeah, children to gay parents, among other groups, are more likely to get bullied and what a shame that is, isn't it? But it’s not a reason to prevent gay people from becoming parents.

So on to the first reason I mentioned: children need both a mother and a father. The answer to this argument needs to be broken into three parts:

1. First of all, children to gay parents aren’t being stolen from straight couples. Children to gay parents are either conceived or adopted. Adopted kids face life without parents or bouncing from foster home to foster home. So getting one loving parent, let alone two, is a major improvement to their family life. Babies who are conceived by gay parents (either by surrogacy or the turkey baster)  are children who wouldn’t exist otherwise. I’m yet to meet children to gay parents who wished they had straight parents instead the parents they did have (not saying they don't exist), but I’m sure it’ll be even harder to find children to gay parents who wish they were never born!

2. Secondly, the statement is sexist as it assumes that all mothers are the same because they have a vagina and all fathers are the same because they have a penis. I love my parents because they loved me and did so much for me, I love them for the people they are. The fact that they are a male and a female is irrelevant. Sure, a unique motherly aspect is being breastfed, but many mothers don’t breastfeed, so are they less motherly for that? Nowadays it’s more acceptable to have stay at home dads while mom goes out to earn money. Not all mothers are cuddly and loving and not all fathers are into sports (*cough*). And to be honest, some mothers and fathers are vicious and cruel human beings who should never even have children to begin with. Add to that the fact that many children end up seeing their parents divorce and have their little perfect world shatter. So I think it’s far more important that a child has committed parents in a loving relationship rather than focus on what’s dangling or hidden between their legs.

3. Straight couples often have children for the wrong reasons. How many children were born because of unsafe sex? How many children in the third world were born because the population isn’t educated enough about safe sex (thanks, Pope)? How many couples get married and have children just because their family expects them to? How many people end up with way more children than they can support financially or emotionally?

Gay parents never get pregnant by mistake. It’s always a long, tedious and expensive process that results in very wanted babies who are much more likely to get the most important thing a child needs: love.

There are so many children in the world in genuine danger facing abuse, hunger and the constant threat of death. If you are really worried about the well being of children, there are many real issues that require urgent action.

I hope that by being an openly gay father I will help spread the message to other gay people that just because you are gay doesn’t mean that you can’t have a family with a spouse, children and a dog (or better yet, two). The idea that families must have a mother and a father is an old fashioned concept that doesn’t stand against rational thinking and had far more damage done to it by high straight divorce rates than by gay families.



Tim and Louie said...

Very well put, Mickey! Thank you for writing about this topic.

Also, I think that many people don't realize that gay men are not the same as straight men. Meaning that gay men can act "motherly" towards their children, with love, empathy and emotions like a mother.

They falsely believe that ALL men are cold, unfeeling, uncaring dolts. Gay or straight.

So, in their minds. It's not a gay or straight issue, it's a male vs female issue. That only "women" are capable of raising children.

- Louie
Phoenix, AZ

Mark said...

Well, you don't have to convince me. Of course, I agree with you 100%. I think, slowly, the population is "getting" this. Everything takes time.

Side note: I watched Lost last night. At least they explained Jacob and his brother's story. Now I need the rest to be explained. I can't rely on my imagination. Plus, I'm totally hot for Jacob but that's another story. m.

Mickey said...

I think some straight dads can act "motherly" too, it's just that gays find it easier to connect with their feminine side.

We all know some men can be soft and loving while some women can be cold and vicious. Anyone arguing differently is a sexist.

As for Lost, I might have to post about the latest development over the weekend. The show keeps losing me as I just don't like the answers so far. Way to silly and annoying without actually providing any answers that don't bring on more questions. Blah. Hopefully the ending will still wow me.


EdathomeDad said...

We define our own family. Seems like there is a minefield of idiots in the world. Great post I look forward to coming back. Many thanks for checking out mine. Best wishes.

Michael's surrogacy Journey said...

Can I say I love you? I am a very open gay male on a major Police Department. I will be a open gay dad, I dont care what others think or feel. Everyday at work I go into homes of abusive, horrable parents that are all stright. homes filled with bugs, dirty, rude and just huge mess. All I got to say is they are just scared that we will do it better then them. Will I be a over protective dad The the fuck yeah I will. No one will bully my kid, no teacher will discriminate my kid because of me. If there is anyhting I know its the law and I would use it to my fullest extent. We as being gay Amreicans, are discriminated agenist everyday of our lives but ill be damm if someone does it to my child. thanks for your beautiful blog