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HomeFashionWe Are Family: The Struggles and Changes of LGBTQ+ Families

We Are Family: The Struggles and Changes of LGBTQ+ Families

When you’re cis and straight and visibly pregnant, the information people want to share with you is endless. There are necessary doctor updates and recommendations from the CDC and recommended folic acid supplements, but there is also an onslaught of well-intentioned advice from people who have been through it. As a friend recently put it to me after giving birth, “If I actually read everything people recommended to me while I was pregnant, I would have panic attacks every day.”

When you are gay and/or transgender and visibly pregnant, things may look a little different. Even in 2023, many LGBTQ+ families and single parents find themselves excluded from traditional narratives of pregnancy, birth and baby care and are less likely to find medical or practical advice specific to them and treatment From suspicion to hostility.

This is an especially stark reality as the number of LGBTQ+ couples raising families has increased in recent years. A census study found that of the estimated 1.1 million same-sex couples in the United States, 15% had at least one child in the The following is in their home. Depictions of LGBTQ+ families have increased in popular culture recently: Marisa Crane, Kristen Arnett and Jacqueline Woodson have recently published novels featuring gay parents. But there’s still not a ton of information for LGBTQ+ expectant parents, leaving many largely on their own when it comes to figuring out the fertility process. As noted in the 2020 study, LGBTQ+ expectant families often feel obligated to serve as “information hubs” for doctors, not the other way around.

A number of informational books have been published in recent years in an attempt to fill this void. Krys Malcolm Belc is the author of the memoir The Natural Mother of the Child on 2021 Published by a trans male, non-binary father with two of his four children. In his memoir, Belc writes around documents like his birth certificate or the adoption papers for children born to his wife — a reminder that while legal and medical information don’t tell the whole story, they matter. Belc said he has grown accustomed to a more “DIY” approach to gathering information on issues such as lactation support. He cites several useful books, including Essays And Baby Makes More: Known Donors, Queer Parents and Our Unexpected Families, but in general his research is more informal. (An unintended advantage of being pregnant with some of his children: He often felt excluded from the unsolicited advice people offered to his wife, who was a cisgender woman when she became pregnant.)

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