Queer Families in Children's Literature - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 22 Old 11-29-2013, 05:22 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Do you have any favorite books that depict queer families? I am interested in what books you know of--from board books to young adult novels. We have two picture books and one board book. I think we have a couple of young adult novels too, but I'm not sure what they are (they were my wife's) and I think they are for young teenagers. "In Our Mothers' House" is a wonderful picture book about a family with two moms (Marmee and Meema) and three kids (adopted). It's a really sweet book. My daughter loved it when she was about 8 years old, and still does.


And there is "And Tango Makes Three" which is a REALLY sweet true story about a penguin with two dads.

 

The board book we have is "Mommy, Mama, and Me," which is fun, because we are Mommy and Mama at our house. :)


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#2 of 22 Old 11-30-2013, 05:17 AM
 
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I am giving your post a gentle bump so it can be seen!


 
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#3 of 22 Old 12-03-2013, 10:26 PM
 
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Great thread, @CocoBird! We should add these to the Queer Parenting Resources list! @pokeyAC or @starling&diesel, is that something you could do?

 

Today I got two presents for Z's first Solstice (our preferred winter holiday):

 

What Makes A Baby by Cory Silverberg

 

and

 

The Family Book by Todd Parr

 

I also love And Tango Makes Three! I used to have a copy, but lost it to an ex, LOL.

 

You're inspiring me to start a wish list to share with friends & family: These folks will no doubt be bombarding my kid with books as gifts, and how great would it be if they gave him all the queer-family-friendly ones that I feel is so important for him to have?!

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#4 of 22 Old 12-04-2013, 07:35 AM
 
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We've got two of those three (on our mothers' house is on the list for purchase eventually). We also have A Tale of Two Mommies by Vanita Oelschlager, which is very sweet. I've noticed that a number of queer parent books are pretty poorly done--I don't know if they're self-published, or just that there's such slim pickings out there that publishers will take anything, but we were very disappointed with Emma and Meesha My Boy (which basically tells kids 'no' to everything they can think of) and The Different Dragon (which just seems like a forced storyline, especially the 2-mom part).

I would also say that if anyone out there is looking for a lesbian-friendly christmas story to read (sorry, dads, I don't know of a good one for you) you can find versions of The Night Before Christmas where the narrator looks gender-neutral and can be interpreted as a second mom. We have the version illustrated by Christopher Wormell, but if you flip through others you'll find some that don't feature beards or mustaches. We wanted a book to read as a holiday tradition, and it was nice to find that this one could fit the bill!

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#5 of 22 Old 12-04-2013, 10:39 AM
 
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Thanks for reminding me @granite. I will have to update that when I get home tonight.



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#6 of 22 Old 12-04-2013, 01:42 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Awesome! Thanks so much for sharing you guys. smile.gif I'm excited about finding more queer friendly children's books!

With DW partners.gif, DD1peace.gif(15), & DD2guitar.gif(11) since '09. Naturally birthed DD3 ecbaby2.gif6/21/13. We familybed1.gif, I bftoddler.gif and I'm a total treehugger.gif.  Family of five females! grouphug.gifrainbow1284.gifLOVE makes a family.             M/C candle.gif 2/10 ~Ahti Pan, forever in my heart.
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#7 of 22 Old 12-05-2013, 02:21 PM
 
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My new audio story website has queer families!
Linky-poo in my signature.
We LOVE "What Makes a Baby"...
I could go on and on about YA books, but will have to come back to do that.
Need to go switch the laundry to the dryer.

dust.gifFour-eyed tattooed fairy godmother queer, mama to my lucky star (5) and little bird (2.5). Resident storyteller at www.thestoryforest.com. Enchanting audiostories for curious kids. Come play in the forest!
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#8 of 22 Old 12-05-2013, 02:35 PM
 
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I'll have to add your website! As soon as I am on a computer with a decent web browser. greensad.gif



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#9 of 22 Old 12-14-2013, 06:52 PM
 
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Tulip the Birthday Wish Fairy and Backwards Day are both pretty good representations of trans kids.

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#10 of 22 Old 12-15-2013, 05:56 PM
 
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Anyone have suggestions on books for young kids with trans parents?

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#11 of 22 Old 12-15-2013, 06:44 PM
 
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Hi KnittingTigers! I have the same question.  :)


Me (38), single parent by choice and transgender, TTC #1 via IVF.  

tried unsuccessfully via BD in '01 and unsuccessfully via ICI in '11. Endometriosis, ovarian cysts, anovulation, oh my... left fallopian tube removed in '12. now on to IVF.  my IVF journey is at pride-of-lions.blogspot.com

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#12 of 22 Old 12-15-2013, 07:20 PM
 
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I think there are a couple with binary trans parents.... I haven't personally read any of the and what I remember of them, they rubbed me the wrong way. http://www.therainbowtimesmass.com/2013/03/21/transgender-parent-friendly-picture-books-for-young-children/ That has a list. Maybe some will work for your family.

I don't mean this flippantly- but the best option is to draw your own, which is something I'd like to do in the future.


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#13 of 22 Old 12-15-2013, 07:33 PM
 
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Yeah, I tell lots of stories with trans characters, and have thought about writing one, but, um, I've got three kids and a crazy job. Someday...

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#14 of 22 Old 12-15-2013, 08:08 PM
 
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Hi knittingtigers ... I'll edit some picture books as I go, changing pronouns or dispensing of them entirely. I gauge the feasibility of doing so by the pictures, and wing it, somewhat.
I wonder what you'd like to see in terms of
trans folk? Part of the storyline? Or as part of
the tapestry?
Trans folk who 'pass?' Or when people
confuse genders? I think the world needs
one for kids whose parents get read
incorrectly, no matter where they are on the
spectrum.
E often goes to battle for DP, with regards to people misreading her or calling her out on her choice of bathrooms.
I could easily do some audio stories on the theme.
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#15 of 22 Old 12-15-2013, 08:26 PM
 
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I think we need some of all of the above. Stories where a character happens to be trans (these can be a little difficult in little kids' books unless the character is genderqueer, it's not always easy to make a character explicitly trans without making it a focus of a short book), kids who find out the parent they always knew as mommy is a trans woman, kids who are facing transition, kids who have a parent who passes, kids who has a parent that is closeted, kids who have a parent that isn't transitioning, kids with genderqueer parents, etc. I don't think the same book needs to cover everything, but maybe a series of books.

 

Because fairy tales are making a comeback and are a pretty big deal in kids' lives- I'd really like to "queer" fairy tales. Same-sex couples, princesses rescuing princes, characters with unspecified genders, genderqueer characters, etc.


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#16 of 22 Old 12-15-2013, 10:33 PM
 
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oooh - SillySapling - I really like the idea of queering fairy tales!  I feel like that could be really interesting - and new takes on fairy tales are always fun. :)


Me (38), single parent by choice and transgender, TTC #1 via IVF.  

tried unsuccessfully via BD in '01 and unsuccessfully via ICI in '11. Endometriosis, ovarian cysts, anovulation, oh my... left fallopian tube removed in '12. now on to IVF.  my IVF journey is at pride-of-lions.blogspot.com

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#17 of 22 Old 12-16-2013, 07:16 AM
 
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Thanks. :) I considered doing it for my senior project, but with the politics at this school I really couldn't be bothered.


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#18 of 22 Old 12-16-2013, 07:16 AM
 
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If you've got older kids, there are some queer retellings of fairy tales out there. Malinda Lo's Ash is Cinderella, and excellent. This piece has some more recommendations, but I think they're written for adults: http://www.thebookrat.com/2013/03/Queer-fairytale-retellings-piece.html
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#19 of 22 Old 03-18-2014, 12:11 PM
 
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I realize this is a pretty old post but I am interested in finding some young adult books that have gay men depicted in them. I am straight but my 8 year old son has been commenting frequently about his interest in other males at school and has had a crush on another boy for some time now. I just want to have some books around that have positive gay men in them for him to read if he's interested. Specifically I would love something for the age group of around 2nd - 5th grade. I have found some suggestions online but wanted to see if there were any recommendations from anyone here. 


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#20 of 22 Old 03-18-2014, 01:31 PM
 
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Hi shanna-cat! There is a link for resources at the top of the main forum page and it includes some info on books. This link below is from Rainbow Books. This is a list of books from 2013. They also have more info on the site. This might be a good place to start.
http://glbtrt.ala.org/rainbowbooks/archives/1025



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#21 of 22 Old 03-18-2014, 10:56 PM
 
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Hi Pokey!! thank you, this was a great start for me. I will probably be lurking here a lot more and possibly asking more questions... 


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#22 of 22 Old 03-19-2014, 06:54 AM
 
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Hi Shanna-cat, I can't get to that list (my computer hates me) but you'd do well to start with almost anything by David Levithan. Boy Meets Boy and How They Met are both wonderful--Boy Meets Boy is a very sweet, happy love story about two boys in high school, and How They Met is a collection of short love stories that spans a wide range of sexualities. They might be a little old for an 8 year-old, but both are quick reads, so you can have a look first and judge for yourself if he's ready or needs to wait a couple years. Good luck!

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