Hatched by Two Chicks
Dear Future Child of Two Mothers,
First off, welcome to this world, and welcome to your rainbow family. As the child of lesbian mothers, your life will be challenging at times, but extraordinarily normal for the most part.
If you are half as lucky as I have been, then you will be surrounded by love, support, and kindness for your entire life. You will have two mothers who love you unconditionally and who will support you through everything. In addition, you will have an entire community of LGBTQ + people looking out for you. You will have to find names for your two moms, since our language doesn’t have two words for mother. I chose “Mommy” and “Moma” but your family will pick its own words. If your family chose to use artificial insemination, you may know the exact date of your conception, which is pretty neat.
Throughout your childhood you will be expected to explain your family structure from a very young age. You will become an ambassador for the queer community long before you understand the importance of your job. As you grow older, you will have to answer some curious, and some intrusive questions about your conception, your parents’ relationship, and your family life. Most questions are innocent, but some are going to be hard to answer. Please remember to only answer the questions that you feel comfortable answering. Although you may feel obliged to educate people on the queer community, you are not alone in this and are not solely responsible. My favorite question to answer was always “Do you miss not having a dad?”. I found this question rather funny, as I do not know how to miss something I’ve never had. My answer to find that question was and continues to be “Do you miss having two moms?”.
You will have many occasions where having lesbian moms will make you laugh. Your moms may buy a milk bag dispenser and label it “homo”, even though you drink 1%, just because they think it’s funny. Your parents will put events on the calendar like “lesbian movie night” and will read the “Gay City News” newspaper. You may feel inclined to buy a shirt that says “Hatched By Two Chicks” to wear to Pride, and you will have been to more Pride Parades than any other kid in your class. When you’re little, your mom may do a presentation in your grade 2 class about the queer community, and she may give out rainbow cupcakes. I promise you, kids love rainbow cupcakes. When you’re asked as a part of a class project to write down all the holidays that your family celebrates, you may put down Pride because even at the age of 7, you will know how important it is to celebrate your family’s uniqueness. You may be upset by the fact that your best friend gets to be a flower girl (and you don’t) in her mothers’ wedding when they became the first lesbian couple to be married in your province/ state, but you will be rejoiced by the fact that your mothers can be legally married. You may even get a good chuckle when your Spanish teacher tells you to use a dictionary to look up the word “madres” (“mothers”) because she doesn’t know you actually meant two mothers. If you ever go to queer camp like I did, you will have such fun telling people about it, and then waiting for them to figure out why you attended. They will ask in a hushed voice “Are you a lesbian?”, and when you say no, they will sit there, puzzled until you explain. You may have neighbours who refuse to speak to your family because they do not approve of your parents’ relationship, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t have some fun and wave to them to watch as they half wave before realizing who they’re waving to, and awkwardly lower their hand. You may actually scream with excitement when you see the commercial for “The Kids Are Alright”, because it may be the first time you see a family like yours represented on the big screen.
Our society is not built to easily accommodate families like ours. You will have to learn how to maneuver Mothers’ and Fathers’ day. My family just changed Fathers’ Day into “Moma’s Day”, because each of my mothers wanted, and deserved their own day. And then there’s permission forms. Unless things change, you will have to scratch out “father” and replace it with “mother” more times than you can count. You will have to learn to come out about your identity as the child of queer parents, sometimes called “queerspawn”, when you are too young to understand that your family is unusual in any way. When people use the words “gay”, “fag” or “dyke” in a derogatory sense, it will hurt and may even make you feel unsafe.
But regardless of the minor inconveniences that having a rainbow family can bring, I assure you that you would never change your family for the world. Although double the menopause means that you are outnumbered and the house will be air-conditioned all year long to accommodate double the heat flashes, having two moms is pretty great. If your friends are anything like mine, they may call your mothers “the mamas” and you may even believe that they like your moms more than you. But that’s ok, because having friends that accept your family for what it is, are priceless. If you’re as fortunate as I have been, your mothers will be your biggest supporters and inspirations. So future child of two mothers, you are not alone in your identity as queerspawn, nor are you alone in the struggles and joys that accompany the identity.