Jen is the contributing editor for Child of a GLBT Parent. She writes about her family at Kids of Queers.
I am the daughter of a gay man. My parents remained married after my dad came out for a variety of reasons. I found out my dad was gay when I was 13. It was 1979 and I didn't know anyone who was gay. Actually I knew a lot of people who were gay I just didn't know they were gay. My mother told me in anger about my father. I was always daddy's little girl and she was mad at me one day, funny I can't remember why, but she blurted it out and things were never the same.
I didn't know any other kids who had a gay parent and it wasn't something I was proud of. My mother was handicapped and that brought more pity than I wanted. I just wanted to be a regular kid, I wanted to fade into the woodwork, I wanted to be invisible. I felt as if my mother's handicap and my father being gay somehow defined me. Not surprising I would feel this way since I wasn't old enough yet to define myself. My brother, who had known for a couple of years before me and didn't tell me for my own good (his words), only talked about it in vague references once while we were young. Thirty years later it seems to be all we talk about.
My father has passed away now. We did talk about his other life many times. I was lucky enough to meet a lot of his friends. These friends were dear to him and helped him in his hours of need.
And there were many. I have been blessed to remain a part of their lives after his passing.
As an adult I have met many people who were raised by a gay parent. It doesn't seem so unique anymore. Most of the people my age with a gay parent still have ambivalence about the whole thing. It is my hope to meet more people who have been raised by gay parents and to tell my story so others know we turned out ok.