Many people are curious when it comes to same-sex parents. They have questions they want to ask, not because they want to belittle the lesbian parents, but because they are honestly curious. For the most part, people ask insightful and thoughtful questions. However, there are some questions that are incredibly rude (or, at the least, annoying) and should never be asked of any LGBTQ couple.
10 Questions You Should Never Ask Lesbian Parents
From outright rude questions like the first one to seemingly innocent ones like the last, these are the things that lesbian parents don’t need to hear, especially from those closest to them.
Who Is The Child’s Mom?
This is probably the most offensive question that you can ask lesbian parents. If you really need to know the answer (although it’s hard to imagine a situation where you’d actually need to know), try asking something like, “How did you two decide to create your family?”
The fact is that they are both women and they are both parents, so that makes them both moms. Plain and simple!
Which One of You Is The Biological Mom?
While this question may not seem as offensive as the above question, it is still off limits and rude. There are a few reasons why this is. The child may be adopted, or one mother may have contributed their egg while the other mother carried the baby.
The question basically implies that the mother who gave birth is superior to the other mother, which is simply not true. This is really a non-issue with most lesbian couples because both women see themselves as the mother- equally.
What Does Your Child Call You?
Does it really matter what the child calls each parent? It shouldn’t but many people are curious about this. However, a more polite way to ask would be, “Is it rude of me to ask you about how gender roles play out in your home? I’ve always wondered about it, and you’re the first person I feel comfortable enough to ask.”
For the most part, kids will call both parents “Mom,” which makes sense. I mean, what else are they supposed to call them- “Auntie?” “Rebecca?” “Hey You?” Of course not, so “Mom” is the best choice.
Which One Of You Is The Dad?
A more acceptable way to ask this would be, “Do you find yourself falling into traditional roles?” Although, a sensible person wouldn’t ask this question since they already know that a lesbian couple consists of two women, so obviously neither is the dad.
What Did You Write Under “Father” On Your Child’s Birth Certificate?
This is another question that should be filed under none-of-your-business, honestly. Also, if people were up-to-date on their LGBT news, they would know that on June 26, 2017, the United States Supreme Court ruled, in Pavan v. Smith, that states could not “treat married same-sex couples differently from married opposite-sex couples in issuing birth certificates.”
This means that instead of “Mother” and “Father” on the birth certificate, it says, “Parent 1” and “Parent 2.” Unfortunately, some states do use loopholes to discriminate against same-sex couples.
Do You Think Your Child Is Missing Out By Not Having A Dad?
This is probably something many lesbian parents have thought about but aren’t too overly concerned about. The fact is that this question implies that just because they are both women, they can’t give their child what they need. This is simply not the case as two women are perfectly capable of providing for their child without having a dad in their child’s life.
Are You Worried Your Child May Be Teased or Bullied Because You’re Lesbian?
This question does nothing but insinuate that same-sex couples should feel ashamed for having kids. The fact is that kids today are teased or bullied for a number of reasons, with having gay or lesbian parents being one of them, including their religious beliefs or their race, having a disability or being low-income.
Would you ask the same question to Jewish, African American, disabled or low-income parents? Most likely not, so why ask it of same-sex parents!
Aren’t You Concerned Your Child Will Grow Up To Be Gay or Lesbian?
This question implies that you think that there is something wrong with being gay or lesbian. Like all parents, lesbian parents worry about their child’s health and well-being, not their sexual orientation.
Isn’t It Confusing To Your Child That They Have Two Moms?
Why should it be confusing? Kids care about things like living in a safe and stable environment, that they are loved, that they have food on the table, etc. It doesn’t matter to them whether these needs are provided by a mom and a dad, two moms, two dads, just one mom or just one dad.
What’s It Like To Be A Lesbian Mom?
A polite way to ask this question would be, “Have you experienced any homophobia or ignorance as a two-mom family?” The truth is that lesbian moms only know how to be lesbian moms. They likely haven’t experienced parenting from any other perspective.
Some Worries Lesbian Parents Have
Understanding that lesbian parents have to deal with some of the following concerns, will help you censor your questions before asking them:
- Will my Baby Face Legal Discrimination?Every lesbian parent has concerns about their child’s social welfare. Most times, their children have to face discrimination at school or the playground.
It is also a concern that some states have restrictions on the rights of the LGBTQ community. LGBT couples can lawfully wed and have children in the same ways as regular families in both the United States and Canada.
Depending on the state or attitudes of the adoption center, unmarried LGBT parents may experience some inhibitions or secondary obstacles in adoption situations. A non-queer parent typically receives preference in court matters involving divorce or separation over a parent who identifies as LGBT.
Other nations might impose further restrictions on LGBT parents, none of which are just or fair yet nevertheless exist. So, the next time you want to ask any of the above questions, it is best to rethink it.
- Is My Child Missing Out?Most times, life chooses us, but we have to face worrisome thoughts when we start to have babies. A common concern of lesbian parents is if their children are missing anything straight parents give.
While LGBT parents often worry about this, research suggests that LGBT parents provide their children with the same opportunities as other parents. It is most crucial that a child grows up in a safe environment and that they grow up feeling loved and cared about.
Some studies show that lesbian parents may provide a particularly stable home environment for their child to grow up in. in contrast to some heterosexual parents who may have kids out of necessity or an unintentional pregnancy; lesbian couples often prefer to have children. They are more likely than the average to have secure and loving households because their parents chose and planned to raise a child.
Parents who are LGBT and those who are straight raise their kids the same way. Great parenting has little to do with their identification, age, gender, or religion. As long as they can groom great kids in a safe, stable, and loving home, they are great parents.
- What if My Child Has No FriendsA lesbian parent and their spouse can deal with discrimination more easily than they can watch their child go through it through no fault of their own. Their child has not done anything wrong, after all (nor have they or their spouse). Given that they are just like everyone else, why wouldn’t other parents want their kids to play with yours?
Why other kids might isolate lesbian parents’ children is a complex issue with neither simple explanations nor simple solutions. These parents may try to surround their child with other accepting families as they grow, such as close friends or LGBT/ally parents. They may feel more certain that everywhere they travel; they will encounter tolerant individuals if they have families who embrace them and want them around their own children.
Yet, a lesbian parent may feel insecure when you ask insensitive questions and this will rub off on their kid. So, a word of advice is that you be always gracious with your words around lesbian parents and friends.
The bottom line here is that lesbian moms really don’t see themselves as “lesbian moms,” they just see themselves as “moms.” Period.
It’s human nature to experience curiosity about other’s lives. If we weren’t curious, reality shows wouldn’t be a thing! However, there’s a fine line between curiosity and rudeness. Remember, no one owes you an answer to your questions or an explanation to things you don’t understand or can’t personally relate to. That goes for all parents, LGBTQ included.
Can you think of any questions you should never ask lesbian parents that we missed and that you’re comfortable sharing? Let us know below.
Deanna has a knack for finding unique vacation destinations. She regularly puts her research skills into action to find the most amazing LGBTQ-friendly honeymoon ideas.