How to Talk to Your Children About Gay Parents, By a Gay Parent

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About Jerry Mahoney

Jerry Mahoney is a stay-home gay dad, writer, sporadic tweeter and a frequent Bowser in Mario Kart. This piece probably appeared originally on his blog, Mommy Man. Jerry is also the author of Mommy Man: How I Went From Mild-Mannered Geek to Gay Superdad, which will be available in May from Taylor Trade Publishing.


  1. Mary Conway says:

    Great Great Great Great Great Great Article!!!!

  2. Joanna Schroeder says:

    I LOVE THIS!!! The doodles are the best.

  3. This is a really great article, and I appreciate the message.

    I had honestly never heard the phrase “everyone ends up with the right parents for them” before, but I think it’s brilliant, and could apply in many situations: helping children to understand adoption really comes to mind.

    Thank you for sharing this.

  4. wellokaythen says:

    Troll that I am, I kept waiting for the part where I get to say you’re totally off-base, but it never came. It all sounds perfectly reasonable and commonsensical and healthy to me. I was happily thwarted. Good stuff.

    Another bit of advice for #2: you are not obligated to tell your 4 year old right then and there about your own sexual experimentation in college…..

    One question you didn’t get to cover but that might come up: what if your kid says something about how so-and-so says that being gay is wrong or evil? How would you address the issue of homophobia?

  5. Alyssa Royse says:

    As one with a gay dad, who’s married to someone with a gay mom, and is raising two little girls with a lesbian couple (yes, really) I LOVE THIS. THANK YOU. Gay parents are just parents. And I happen to think that focusing on the awesomeness of parenting is a great way to drive home the point that love is love. Family is family. Love it.

  6. Randy Strauss says:

    Thanks for the reality check, Jerry.
    You wrote, “I just want to live my life with a sense of mutual respect for everyone else on this planet.” I hope I can raise my daughter to do the same.
    My daughter is only going on three years old. Questions about where babies come from are not so far off.
    My son attended daycare with a daughter of two physicians. Her parents had provided her with very explicit information regarding sex and procreation. So, when the subject came up, she explained what she was told in graphic detail to the entire class. That night, while sitting at the dinner table with my son, he announced that he knew where babies came from and I tried not to seem uncomfortable while listening to my four year old son relate a fairly accurate description of intercourse, conception, gestation, labor and childbirth.
    I have that conversation covered without resorting to the stork myth for my daughter. I think. I hope that the conversation about different families and two dads or two moms and who’s caring for whom is a bit farther off. If it’s not, at least I have your article as a starting point.

  7. I’m not a parent, but I loved this article! I did wonder though about telling kids that everyone gets the right parents for them. What about kids who are abused at home? To a growing brain it might seem like, Well, X deserves those things that happen to her/him because s/he has the ‘right’ parents. Or maybe I’m making too big a deal? Anyway, thanks again for a great piece of writing.


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