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Q:

What are some strategies for talking to my children about my queer identity and family structure?

Hello everyone,

I am a parent and I have recently come out as queer. I am in a same-sex relationship and we have decided to start a family. However, I am not sure how to talk to my children (ages 6 and 8) about my queer identity and our family structure. I want them to understand that there are different types of families and that our family is just as loving and normal as any other.

Does anyone have any strategies or tips for how to approach this conversation with my children? I want to make sure that they feel comfortable and open to asking any questions they may have. Thank you in advance for your help!

All Replies

dawn81

Hi there,

As a parent who has been in a similar situation, I understand how daunting it can be to talk to your children about your queer identity and family structure. One strategy that worked for me was to keep the conversation simple and age-appropriate. I started by explaining that some people love and date people of the opposite gender, while others love and date people of the same gender. I emphasized that everyone should be respected and treated kindly regardless of who they love.

Additionally, I made sure to reassure my children that our love and family bond will never change, regardless of our sexual or gender identity. I shared that our family may look different from others, but the love we have for each other is just as strong and real.

I found that giving my children the space to ask questions and process their emotions was essential. I let them know that they could always come to me or my partner to talk about anything that was on their minds.

Overall, my advice is to approach the conversation with love and patience, and to be honest about who you are and what your family looks like. It may take some time for your children to fully understand and accept your identity, but with open communication and a willingness to listen, you can build a foundation of acceptance and love for your family.

andrew.daugherty

Hello everyone,

Sharing your queer identity with your children can seem daunting, but it is important to create a safe and comfortable environment when doing so. I found that framing the conversation around love was helpful. I spoke to my child about how love can take many forms, and that while some people love those who are similar to them, others love those who are different from them.

I also emphasized the importance of respect and kindness towards all individuals, regardless of their gender identity or sexual orientation. This helped my child understand that everyone deserves to be treated with dignity and compassion.

Another point that helped me approach this conversation was finding age-appropriate resources, like books or shows that highlight LGBTQ+ families. I found that these resources helped normalize our family structure and made my child feel more comfortable discussing the topic.

In addition, I made sure to educate myself on LGBTQ+ issues to ensure that I could answer any questions my child might have accurately. It's important to be open to learning and actively listening to your child's thoughts and feelings.

Overall, my advice is to approach the conversation with transparency, love, and patience. Everyone's situation is unique, but creating an environment where your child feels heard and understood is essential.

hubert36

Hello,

I can relate to your situation as I have also had to discuss my queer identity and family structure with my children. While it can be a challenging conversation to have, it is important to approach it with openness and honesty.

One technique that worked for me was to break the conversation down into smaller discussions over time, rather than having one big conversation. I started by introducing the concept of different family structures, and then slowly began to discuss my own family's structure in more detail. This allowed my children time to process the information and ask questions as we went along.

Another thing that helped me was to normalize our family structure by highlighting other families with similar structures in our community. I shared stories of other families with same-sex parents or blended families. This helped my children understand that our family structure is not unusual.

I also made sure to acknowledge any concerns or questions that my children had. It is important to listen to your children and validate their feelings. I found that keeping the conversation open and ongoing helped my children feel more comfortable asking questions.

Lastly, I made sure to emphasize that our family is founded on love, and that love is what makes us a family. I explained that our family is just as important and valuable as any other family, regardless of their structure.

Overall, my advice is to create a safe space for your children to ask questions and process their emotions while ensuring honesty and openness. Remember to validate their feelings, emphasize love, and take the time to build understanding over time.

lesley.lebsack

Hey there,

Sharing your queer identity with your children can certainly be a challenging experience, but it's an important one nonetheless. As someone who's been through this, I'm sharing my personal tips with you.

When discussing queer identity and family structure with my child, I kept things simple and easy to understand by using age-appropriate language. I started by asking what they thought a family was, and then explained that families could look different for different people. I then went on to discuss how some families had two moms or two dads, or even non-binary parents, emphasizing that what mattered most was the love shared between them.

In my experience, creating an open and honest environment by allowing my child to ask questions and share their feelings was crucial. I encouraged them to express their thoughts without worrying about judgement, and I made sure to provide honest and accurate answers in return.

Another thing that worked for me was to use relatable examples. For instance, I explained that just as my child had friends who might come from different family backgrounds, there were different family arrangements in the world.

Finally, I realized that showing rather than telling worked best. I made sure my child saw the people in my life who were part of my queer and/or chosen family. Doing so helped them realize that living their truth and being true to one's self mattered most.

I hope you find these points helpful in your efforts to talk to your children about your queer identity and family structure. Wishing you all the best!

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