Is AP more or less prevalent amoung lesbian parents - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 14 Old 02-17-2006, 09:09 PM - Thread Starter
 
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It seems like if there is a parent that is hesitant or against AP its generally the man in hetero relationships.
That would lead me to believe that AP would be more common amoung lesbian parents. Is this your experience? Any particular parts of AP that are more or less common?

What about gay male relationships? Is AP common or not so?

thanks in advance for satisfying my curiousity.

Mom of a 7 yr old, 4 yr old, and 1 yr old. Wow. How did that happen?
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#2 of 14 Old 02-18-2006, 01:10 AM
 
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I don't know to be honest. We are kind of feeling our way through this whole thing, I would that as GLBT folk we would be more sensitive to our children emotionally ( so no CIO, spanking etc) . However, I think with some of the aspects of NFL I could see how many GLBT parents might be afraid. Our legal standings with our children can sometimes be complicated or suspect, and since we are already "out there" by virtue of our very existence as families, and by trying to be as visually "normal" as possible we might follow more mainstream practices. This is only my guess and observation. However, before I came to this forum one of the most dedicated slingin' daddies I met was a single gay dad of a gorgeous AA son. He had one coool mansling too! I was involved in a Rainbow Families group,though it seemed like the group never quite "clicked" like the one I found through here.
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#3 of 14 Old 02-18-2006, 01:35 AM
 
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On the other boards that I post on ("mainstream" ones), the lesbian moms are overwhelmingly doing AP stuff... no CIO blinkies, CD blinkies, BF, co-sleeping, using natural meds, reading lots on gentle discipline, using slings, etc. There's a couple vibrant lesbian forums out there - they just happen to be on mainstream boards. If you wonder why you don't see more lesbian families posting on Mothering... good question. It's kind of odd IMO.

From what I have seen, L moms seem to be typically AP. There are literally hundreds of L moms on blogger, take a look and you will see what I mean.

The gay-couple dads I know seem to be more "traditional" IMO (you'll see them posting most often on surrogacy message boards). More posts about gear and hiired help and consumerish stuff. "What is the best" this or that.

The gay men I have known who were AP were involved in "co-parenting" situations with gay/single women. Maybe because a co-parenting situation is less orthodox and more open seems to reflect this... or maybe because there is a woman involved who pushes for the AP stuff. Dunno. Interesting to think about though.

These are of course gross generalizations I have formed in my past 5 years of nightly reading gay/infertility/parenting/surrogacy/pregnancy/parenting web sites.
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#4 of 14 Old 02-18-2006, 01:39 PM
 
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Wow, good topic to think about! In my experience (working as a doula with new families) and being involved in a organization for GLBT parents, it seems about 50/50. Even though you would think "oh, families hiring a doula are almost always AP" about half the lesbians who have hired me are not even aware of the AP principles at all - basic things like slings, breastfeeding more than a few months, etc. With gay men I haven't paid as much attention since obviously they aren't birthing babies, lol!
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#5 of 14 Old 02-19-2006, 04:08 PM
 
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Well most of the lesbian mamas I know are fairly older (late 30's, early 40's) and middle to upper class. I've noticed a diversity in parenting styles... some ppl are more AP, others more mainstream. Of course, I live in a very conservative little city by Canadian standards, and most of the lesbians here are quite mainstream. I know a lesbian mama who bf'ed for 3 yrs, and another couple who gave me The Baby Whisperer as a gift when my daughter was born.

I've noticed ppl tend to stop breastfeeding early, IME because one mama feels left out, or there is a desire for the child to bond with both mamas more or less equally. Upon reflection tho, I'd say lesbian mamas I know stop bf'ing at around the same time as straight mamas around here for the most part.

Around here, the young, hippie, bi-with-a-guy mamas are the ones who are more AP, and more politically progressive. That is most of who makes up my crew, along with some surly childless butches.

ETA - My daughter's father is a fag, and he is the only gay man with a child I know. He is very AP, but then he is a psychotherapist, so his understanding and valuing of attachment and respecting children's developmental processes is influenced by that.
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#6 of 14 Old 02-19-2006, 04:10 PM
 
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I haven't noticed any difference when I live. Granted, I only know a few lesbian couples with kids closely enough to say with certainty, but they seem to be mostly mainstream.

- Krista

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#7 of 14 Old 02-20-2006, 01:13 PM
 
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On my lesbian mom's list (which btw is open to bisexual and trans moms as well, even those bisexuals in relationships with men) I was basically introduced to AP stuff on there. Not everyone is AP, but many are at least half, with quite a few die hards, including an AP mom of trips. Many are also into NFL in various ways as well. FYI if you are at all interested, check us out at Queernet Mom's List

Great list for moms who like to think and talk about all kinds of stuff, including parenting.

As for real life, most of my mom's friends in my rainbow families group seem pretty mainstream, but I do run into other AP lesbian moms on occasion. A few of my die hard AP friends are lesbians, many bloggers. Dads usually are not, the whole breastfeeding thing probably turns them off since they obviously cannot do it. As well as my lesbian mom friends who adopted, the emphasis on breastfeeding can be hard to take as an adoptive parent. I don't know many cosleeping lesbian parented families, and in foster adoptions its near impossible to do, as well as adoptive breastfeeding a second child. Though I do have AP lesbian mom friends who have done the whole shared nursing thing, that was cool. But yeah, I was introduced to cosleeping through my lesbian moms email list, and became a convert after our son was born.
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#8 of 14 Old 02-20-2006, 01:47 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jwebbal
As well as my lesbian mom friends who adopted, the emphasis on breastfeeding can be hard to take as an adoptive parent.
Well, as adoptive moms, sometimes I found it painful to see my daughter's formula referred to as "junk food", but I tried to just let go. Breast feeding is in no way essential to being an attached parent. There are lots of moms on MDC who, for one reason or another, can't breastfeed, but are still very attached mamas.

I'm in an all lesbian ECFE class right now, and I would say that parenting styles run the gamet. All of our kids are between 2 and 3 1/2 years old. Some mamas are all about time-outs and potty training charts; some practice gentle discipline. Some co-sleep; one family gates their children in their bedroom. Some watch lots of television; some none at all. For some reason, I always expect lesbians to be more progressive with parenting, but I have to say, that doesn't seem to be the case in my small sample of mothers.

I have to say though, we all are very loving parents raising great children. There's quite a range of parenting styles and beliefs that still result in happy, healthy children.
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#9 of 14 Old 02-21-2006, 02:31 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Diane B
I have to say though, we all are very loving parents raising great children. There's quite a range of parenting styles and beliefs that still result in happy, healthy children.
Exactly!
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#10 of 14 Old 02-24-2006, 04:51 PM
 
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it seems about half and half in my community(s). That may be more than in the general population. Doesn't breastfeeding corrolate with level of education? In that way it would make sense that since lesbians seem to be older when they start having kids they would be more likely to bf if they gave birth. And BF just gets the ball rolling.

For our family personally, breastfeeding is the biggest issue. We both want to be home with the kids and work outside the house some. No one in our close community has bottle fed a baby. My partner doesn't know how to go about bottle feeding. We're on our second baby who won't take a bottle. It's been a sore spot for almost 3 years. Everything else AP, sure. It's just that boobie thing. And she's used a suplimenter, b/c that was all either kid would take, but it's uncomfortable. I understand her frustration at feeling like she can't meet her baby's needs. I could see that being a bigger issue in other families.

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#11 of 14 Old 03-21-2006, 09:11 PM
 
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I know exactly 7 lesbian parents IRL. I am into *AP* (don't really know what that means now that my kids are old enough to go to school and I have to work all day long to support my single parent household... guess I'd rather say something more like 'Natural Parenting' or 'Conscientious Parenting'). I know that one couple is slingin', breastfeeding etc. One couple *seems* AP but I don't really know them all that well, but their son is intact, I know that. So that is 5 out of 7. The other two I know... one is a walking disaster. Drama queen, doing drugs, leaving her child to go find straight women at bars to get drunk and sleep with, threatens people, just completely out of control. The other one, I just don't know at all, but I didn't get that *AP vibe* when I met her.

So I would say, based on my expiriences, that 70% or so are more AP type people.

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#12 of 14 Old 03-23-2006, 03:18 AM
 
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wow, that's a really interesting question. I wonder how it could be studied....

It seems that the hetero-bias in a lot of AP information/communities could be balanced out by an on-average later/more deliberate childbearing of same-sex couples, but I have no idea how it really plays out.
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#13 of 14 Old 03-27-2006, 08:19 PM
 
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I would have to say that the majority of the lesbian moms that I know are more mainstream. There are a lot out there that practice AP and don't know that it even has a name and some really look down on things like extended BF and co-sleeping. But you get that with all parents.
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#14 of 14 Old 03-28-2006, 04:55 PM
 
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Reading with interest... Mainly because I have been wondering lately why more of the lesbian moms in my irl circles don't AP? So that brings about the question to myself, why do I expect them to AP?

Dh and I are both bisexual but that doesn't really have anything to do with how we parent. Perhaps I expect lesbians, and gay men for that matter, to be more liberal minded and I tend to equate being liberal with being AP - not neccessarily a fair equation though.

Or maybe there's absolutely no correlation at all and I'm just giving my brain an unncesary workout
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