Fun

We Asked Gay Dads to Describe How it Felt to Become First Time Fathers Using Nothing But Gifs...

...and the results were funny, touching, poignant and everything in between. Check out our favorites below!

Gay dads become parents in all sorts of ways, but we all have something in common: that indescribable feeling—a mixture of excitement, pure love and terror — familiar to every new dad. Because words simply don't do it justice, we asked you to describe what it felt like to become dads using nothing but gifs, and the results were funny, touching, poignant and everything in between. Check out our favorites below!


Some dads expressed nerves familiar to any first time parent...

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Some expressed shock at how much their lives were about to change...

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Some were touching...

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Some were just downright hilarious...

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All were filled with lots o' love ...

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Change the World

Enter the First EVER 'Gays With Kids' Family Halloween Costume Contest!

Share your terror-ific family costume photos with us and you could win $500!

This year, we're DEAD EXCITED to be hosting our very first Halloween Family Costume competition! Every year we see the amazing costumes that our gay, bi and trans families come up with, and this year we really wanted to celebrate y'all with a fun and friendly family competition. Our amazing panel of judges (which includes comedian and fellow gay dad Alec Mapa, gay dad influencer Devon Gibby, and our co-founders Brian and Ferd!) will select the prize winners based on the following criteria: creativity, uniqueness, nerve... and overall fabulousness.

The prizes are...*drum roll please*

For first place: $500 cash prize

Two runners-up families: $250 Amazon voucher*

Competition information

Submissions must be sent to halloween@gayswithkids.com by October 31 midnight PST, along with dads' first names, Instagram handle (if you're on Instagram), and the city / state or country where they live.

Competition to be judged on November 1st, and the winners will be announced on Saturday November 2nd via Instagram and Facebook. Winners will also be notified via email and must respond within 48 hours to claim their prize.

All submitted photos will be included in our Halloween Gay Dad Family 2019 roundup

One of the runner-up families will be selected via a voting page (featuring 21 families) that we will set up on the website. When it's live on November 1st, 9am EST, we'll encourage folks to vote for their favorite family costumes! You'll have till midnight Friday PST - we know this isn't long so you'll have to act fast! - and we'll be sharing plenty of reminders via our Instagram to encourage folks to vote!

Rules for entry

Gay, bi and trans dads: Send us your favorite family photo(s) of Halloween 2019 showing each and every member of the family in costume: Dad(s) and child(ren). All those featured in the photo must be in costume, and must include at least one dad.

One entry per family, although you may submit up to 5 different photos of your family in the same costumes.

*For our overseas families: if selected as a winner, your runner-up prizes will be an alternative to the American Amazon gift voucher, but also worth US$250.

Meet the fabulous judges...

Alec Mapa

Actor, writer, comedian, and dad, Alec Mapa is America's Gaysian Sweetheart. We know him from his roles on Half & Half, Ugly Betty and Desperate Housewives. He's also husband to Jamie Hebert and proud dad to son Zion, whom they adopted through foster care when he was 5 years old. Watch Alec on his hilarious comedy special "Baby Daddy" on YouTube.

Devon Gibby

Dad of two through a previous straight relationship, and Instagram Influencer @dadndaddies joins our panel of judges. We've witnessed some amazing costumes from Devon in the past so we believe he'll be bringing his A-game to selecting the best, most creative, most faaaaabulous family costumes around!

Brian Rosenberg

Co-founder of Gays With Kids, Brian is dad of three kids through adoption and surrogacy. He lives in Boston with his husband Ferd, and together they started Gays With Kids almost six years at their kitchen table. Brian is proud of and humbled by the Gays With Kids community, and is excited to throw his hat into the judging pool.

A big thank you to our amazing sponsored and supporters!

All prizes were generously donated by some incredible dads in our community, for which we are super grateful!

Gold:

Thomas and Brandon are proud dads to their two sons through adoption. They're also the co-founders of Feinsod Consulting, a Medical IT Consulting firm, located in Orlando, Florida. Their firm offers a comprehensive range of services to ensure their client's medical and healthcare practices deliver technical excellence with every patient.

Silver:

Chad Henson is a doting dad to his daughter and husband to Ray. He's also a gay father who is grateful for this community.

Brian Martinez is the proud husband to Adriian, stepdad to their daughter, and also a food and lifestyle entrepreneur based in the Bronx. His five current businesses include Fresco's Cantina, The Coffee Break Company, The Bronx Barber Shop, La Parada Pit Stop, and Travesias, all located in the Bronx, NY.

Bronze:

Rick Clemons is a dad and husband, as well as a life coach, motivational speaker, author and podcaster. His superpower is guiding men out of the closets of their life - to break free of fear, make bold moves, and live life without apology. Check out his website: Gay Mans Life Coach,

Brandon Adkins and Jamie Wince are fiancés, set to marry in 2020, and also dads to their two kids whom they had through previous relationships. They are owners of Adkins Raceway, a karting experience for everyone at every age and every skill level based in Port Washington, Ohio. Even if you're new to the sport, they offer introductory karting classes, so if you're in Ohio, go check them out!

Matthew and Ian Leprino are new dads to a baby boy, and owners of The Ridgewood Company, a Denver-area Real Estate Brokerage.


Gay Dad Life

"A Perfect Moment": Congrats to Gay Men Whose Families Grew This Month!

Congrats to all the gay dads and dads-to-be whose families grew this month from adoptions and births, or have recently announced pregnancies!

Wishing these growing families a lifetime of happiness! Congratulations to these gay men on their recent and expectant births, adoption finalizations and foster-adopt journeys, from all of us here at Gays With Kids!

"Truly a perfect moment," says Doug and Brent on the birth of their youngest son, Shepherd

Congratulations to dads Doug and Brent on the birth of their youngest son, Shepherd!

On June 28, Doug and Brent became dads for the second time through adoption when their son Shepherd was born. Their eldest son Sawyer is so excited to be a big brother and the dads are loving being a family of four.

"We finally felt our family was complete when we met him," shared Doug. "Truly a perfect moment."

We're thrilled for this Atlanta family!

With fatherhood around the corner, there is there is "an infinite amount to look forward to," says Richard.

Congratulations to dads-to-be Steve and Richard on their exciting news!

Steve and Richard are thrilled to announce that they are officially dads-to-be! Their little one, via private adoption, is expected in December 2018.

"Fatherhood has always been a dream for the both of us," shared Steve. "We're most looking forward to 'moments' with our baby. From brand new experiences... the first smile, the first laugh, seeing a flower for the first time, trying foods from other countries to ultimately showing them how to first and foremost offer love and kindness to others, above all else."

"While there is a infinite amount to look forward to," added Richard, "we so excited to wake up each and every day and everything new that comes along with it."

The family of three-to-be live in Urbandale, Iowa.

"There wasn't a dry eye in the courtroom," Joshua says, following the adoption of his daughter, Aria

Congratulations to dads Bryan and Joshua on finalizing the adoption of their daughter, Aria!

Floridian dads Bryan and Joshua are thrilled to have finalized the adoption of the gorgeous daughter, born in February earlier this year.

"After starting this journey one year ago and sitting in that courtroom with our 6-month-old, it really hit us," explained Bryan. "We were holding it strong together until we were answering questions from the attorney to the judge. At that moment, my husband Joshua started crying which made me cry."

"At that point," continued Joshua, "it really hit us how far we've come and there wasn't a dry eye in the courtroom. We couldn't be more proud to be her dads."

Congrats to Sean and Spencer, who recently became dads to twins, via surrogacy!

Congratulations to Sean and Spencer on recently welcoming their twins, Rowan and Clyde, via surrogacy!

Spencer and Sean began planning their surrogacy journey before they were married in September 2016. And on May 26 this year their dream was realized: the husbands became dads when their twins Rowan and Clyde were born.

The new dads are completely smitten and in complete agreement of their favorite thing so far as fathers: Watching their twins discover and experience the world around them for the first time every day.

This family of four live in Maplewood, New Jersey.

"September cannot come soon enough!" say dads-to-be Benjamin and Christopher

Congratulations to dads-to-be Benjamin and Christopher!

Benjamin and Christopher are excited to share the news: a little bean will soon be joining their family to make them dads!

"We are most looking forward to bonding with our little bean; to see him grow and experience the amazing wonders of the world with our friends and family will be priceless," shared Christopher.

"To be able to travel with him on our excursions around this big crazy globe is something we've always talked about and looked forward to," added Benjamin, "September cannot come soon enough!"

We'e excited to follow the journey of this Pennsylvanian family.

"I was surprised by the impact those pen strokes would have," said AJ, after the finalization of his son's adoption

Jeff and AJ are beyond excited to finalize the adoption of son, Hayden!

New Yorkers AJ and Jeff became dads to son Hayden the day he was born, March 21, 2018. Hayden joined his dads via adoption, and on August 1st, it was finalized. They are now a forever family of three. AJ shared with us how the day impacted him.

"I thought the finalization would just be another happy part of Hayden's adoption journey we could tell him about and celebrate through the years. After all he became our son the moment we matched so a signing of papers wasn't going to change that in my eyes. But I was surprised by my naivety the impact those pen strokes would have. It was a moment of pure joy and happiness that will probably forever bring tears of happiness to my eyes when I think about that day."

The thing these dads-to-be are most excited about? "Double the dad jokes!"

Congratulations to dads-to-be Ryan and Steven on the pregnancy news!

Ryan and Steven live in Madison, Wisconsin, and in six months or so, they're going to be dads! What are the dads-to-be most looking forward to?

"Building a bond with our child in the same way we both have with our own parents," shared Ryan. "Watching them grow and experience the world, all while getting to see it through their eyes. Plus, double the dad jokes!"

Although the past 16 months have been an emotional rollercoaster, Ryan and Steven are beyond excited for their new adventure.

Change the World

Gay Dad Opens Up About His Experiences With Conversion Therapy

The California-based gay dad was one of 8 people to be interviewed about his experiences with the disproven practice of conversion therapy for The Cut.

Conversion therapy, the disproven practice of attempting to change an individual's sexual orientation through psychological interventions, has been in the news a lot lately. This past May, Maryland became the 11th state to completely ban the damaging therapy for minors. Some states are even considering bills to further prohibit the practice for adults.

Hollywood is paying attention to the trend, with two major movies, Boy Erased and The Miseducation of Cameron Post, to be released before the end of the year.

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What to Buy

Shop with a Purpose with Our 2019 Holiday Gift Guide

Want to find amazing gift ideas while *also* supporting LGBTQ-owned and allied businesses? Look no further than our 2019 holiday gift guide!

'Tis the season to show loved ones you care. And what better way to show you care, by also supported our LGBTQ+ community and allies whilst doing it! Shop (LGBTQ+) smart with these great suggestions below.

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Diary of a Newly Out Gay Dad

A Newly Out Gay Dad Feels 'Demoted' After Divorce

Cameron Call showed up to his first family Thanksgiving since coming out and getting a divorce — and struggles to find himself "stuck with the singles."

Cameron Call, who came out in summer 2019, has generously agreed to chronicle his coming out journey for Gays With Kids over the next several months — the highs, lows and everything in between. Read his first article here.

Denial is an interesting thing. It's easy to think you're potentially above it, avoiding it, assume it doesn't apply to you because you'd NEVER do that, or maybe you're just simply avoiding it altogether. After finally coming out, I liked to think that I was done denying anything from now on. But unfortunately that's not the case.

And this fact became very clear to me over Thanksgiving.

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Resources

New Report Details the 'Price of Parenthood' for LGBTQ People

A new report by the Family Equality Council takes a deep dive into the current state of cost for becoming a parent as an LGBTQ person

Parenthood is expensive. But parenthood while queer is still prohibitively costly for so many segments of the LGBTQ community interested in pursuing a family, according to a new repot by the Family Equality Council, titled, "Building LGBTQ+ Families: The Price of Parenthood."

Among the more interesting findings was this one: the cost of family planning is relatively similar for all LGBTQ people, regardless of income level. This shows "that the desire to have children exists regardless of financial security," the report's authors conclude.

Research for the report was conducted through an online survey of 500 LGBTQ adults over the age of 18, and was conducted between July 11-18, 2018. For comparison, the survey also included 1,004 adults who did not identify as LGBTQ.

Other interesting findings of the report include:

  • 29% of all LGBTQ+ respondents reported an annual household income under $25,000 compared to 22% of non-LGBTQ+ respondents.
  • 33% of black LGBTQ+ respondents, 32% of female-identified LGBTQ+ respondents, and 31% of trans/gender non-conforming LGBTQ+ respondents reported annual household incomes below $25,000.
  • Respondents for this survey were selected from among those who have volunteered to participate in online surveys and polls. All sample surveys and polls may be subject to multiple sources of error, including, but not limited to sampling error, coverage error, error associated with nonresponse, and error associated with question-wording and response options.29% of all LGBTQ+ respondents reported an annual household income under $25,000 compared to 22% of non-LGBTQ+ respondents.
  • 33% of black LGBTQ+ respondents, 32% of female-identified LGBTQ+ respondents, and 31% of trans/gender non-conforming LGBTQ+ respondents reported annual household incomes below $25,000.
  • Regardless of annual household income, 45-53% of LGBTQ+ millennials are planning to become parents for the first time or add another child to their family. Those making less than $25,000 a year are considering becoming parents at very similar rates as those making over $100,000.
  • Data from the Family Building Survey reveals that LGBTQ+ households making over $100,000 annually are considering the full range of paths to parenthood, from surrogacy and private adoption to foster care and IVF. The most popular options under consideration in this income bracket are private adoption (74% are considering), foster care (42%), and IVF or reciprocal IVF (21%). At the other end of the economic spectrum, for LGBTQ+ individuals in households making less than $25,000 annually, the most commonly considered paths to parenthood are intercourse (35% are considering), foster care (30%), and adoption (23%).

What to Buy

A Gift Guide for LGBTQ Inclusive Children's Books

Need some ideas for good LGBTQ-inclusive children's books? Look no further than our gift guide!

Every year we see more books released that feature our families, and we're here for it! We're especially excited for the day when diverse and LGBTQ+ inclusive books are less of "the odd one out" and rather considered part of every kids' everyday literacy.

To help us reach that day, we need to keep supporting our community and allies who write these stories. So here's a list of some of the great books that need to be in your library, and gifts to the other kids in your lives.

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Fatherhood, the gay way

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