Gay Dad Photo Essays

Celebrate Mother's Day This Year by Checking Out These Fabulous Lesbian Insta-Mom Accounts

Most of our content focuses on gay, bi and trans dad. But this Mother's Day, we're bringing you ten two-mom families worth following on Instagram.

Although the majority of our content focuses on gay, bi and trans dads and dads-to-be, we're always excited for Mother's Day. It's when we get to show our love for all of the AMAZING sister-accounts out there that celebrate lesbian moms!

This Mother's Day, we asked a few of our fav two-mom Instagram accounts how they celebrate the special day, what they love most about being a mom, and what they've learned in the process.

Be sure to follow these awesome lesbian and bi women celebrating all things motherhood on Instagram.


"Being mamas has taught us to slow down and be patient, dance a little more" 

Saci and Jessica grew their family through known sperm donor home insemination. "It was important to us that our baby be half Black -- like Mommie Saci -- and that our child be able to mee the man when he's grown up, if he chooses."

On motherhood:

"Being mamas has taught us to slow down and be patient, dance a little more, and also how important family is to us - from our siblings to parents and even grandparents, Jai has brought such a light to our family and we are so thankful for our dude."

Follow the Duncan Minor family

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"Our daughter has strengthened our relationship as we communicate more"

Nyesha (Uma) and Samantha (Umi) had been together for seven years before welcoming daughter Abigail. "Samantha talked about children at the beginning of our relationship and while I told her I definitely wasn't ready, she understood but made it a non-negotiable that kids would be in the future." It was around year six when they both began sharing their feelings and jointly decided that a baby was part of their future. "We always knew she would get pregnant first so after many doctors visits and with a known donor we made it happen in 2018."

How this family celebrates Mother's Day

"Last year we shared gifts as a two-mom squad and spent the day at home with our baby. We embraced the wonderful calls and texts from our friends and family but it was nothing big since our daughter was only 3 months at the time. We did buy one another big gifts for the special day and both agreed that it was the last time we'd get a big gift just on Mother's Day.

We celebrate Mother's Day every day, we praise Abigail and are always thankful for her exciting presence."

Follow Umi and Uma here

***

"Motherhood really helps you focus on what's important in life" 

From the moment Que and Jamilla met, Que made it clear that motherhood was something very important to her. "I always knew despite what my outward appearance may suggest to others, it was important for me to carry our child." Although the path to parenthood was not an easy one for the wives, they wouldn't change a thing. "We appreciate each day we get to spend with one another and are so thrilled about our second Mother's Day!"

The most important lesson these moms have learned...

"Harper teaches me every day to laugh! As long as we are healthy and happy, everything else will work itself out. She is so happy and fun loving. We hope she always retains her humor."

Follow Jamilla and Que here.

***

"We forever have little friends and people that love us" 

Candice and Cynthia are new moms to triplets through ART. Candice has teenage daughter from a previous marriage and thought she was done having more children. After the two met, they realized they wanted children together, especially because Cynthia had never had any experience with babies and raising them since birth. "So after doing some research, we decided to give it a shot and attempted artificial insemination. On our first attempt, we ended up pregnant and with the biggest shock of our lives, we were pregnant with triplets."

The most important lesson they've learned as moms

"Sometimes you have to take things one day at time and your kids are always going to surprise you -- good and bad -- so be prepared."

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"The most wonderful thing about motherhood is feeling like I have a purpose in life now" 

Once moms Sondra Rae and Missy decided they wanted to bring children into the world, they decided to take the IUI route. "It took us months find the perfect donor and a doctor we adored." They experienced one failed attempt before becoming pregnant with their second IUI. "We are so thankful for our journey and wouldn't want to change it!"

The most wonderful thing about motherhood...

"Is feeling like I have a purpose in life now. Plus being able to see their smiles and personalities come through is amazing. I could be extremely exhausted but looking at them brings me so much joy."

Follow Sondra Rae and Missy

***

"Motherhood has shown us what is really important and what to focus on in life" 

Moms Christina and Katie chose Reciprocal IVF to make their family. Katie carried Christina's egg and they used a donor's sperm. "We chose this route because we could both physically be part of the process."

How this family celebrates Mother's Day

"We make breakfast as a family then get outside for a hike or time at the park. We try to be outside and active as much as possible."

"Motherhood has taught us perspective. It's shown us what is really important and what to focus on in life. We don't waste our time worrying about things that don't positively affect our family."

Follow Christina and Katie here.

***

"Slow down and take time to enjoy the slow moments... because the years go by way too fast" 

Angel and Leah has been together for 10 years before they got married, and were married for another 7 before they had kids. "We explored both foster to adopt and private adoption, spent hours scouring sperm bank catalogs for the perfect donor -- we wanted a Chinese donor and there aren't many to choose from -- and then, to our surprise, Angel's brother agreed to be our donor!" On their 10th try and first round of IVF, they became pregnant with twins who came out looking like both of them.

What has been the best thing about motherhood?

"Watching these tiny humans we created become their own individuals. We love to give them opportunities to explore new places through travel, and there's nothing better than watching their eyes light up when they experience something new for the first time!"

Follow Leah and Angel here.

***

"Motherhood is not something we take for granted"

Raffinee and Micaela decided to use an anonymous sperm donor and IUI to get pregnant. Micaela got pregnant with their eldest first after four trials of IUI. Shortly after -- very shortly after -- Raffinnee became pregnant with twins after five IUI attempts. "Our children are 7.5 months a part, so for a few months out of the year we have three children the same age that are not triplets!"

What have you learned since become a mom?

"Motherhood is not something we take for granted. Like most members of our LGBTQ+ community we had to work hard to come into motherhood! After many doctors visits, months of waiting and many tries later we became moms and our worlds were forever changed.

Becoming mothers has been our greatest adventure together. It has surpassed all expectations in almost every way imaginable. Motherhood has taught me so many things but I think what stands out the most is selfless, unconditional love. Having to show up even when you are sick or exhausted was a tough lesson for me to learn at first! When I'm sick I just want to sleep and that is no longer possible, haha! This is truly a love unlike any I have ever known and I'm continually surprised by how much these little have shaped me as a person."

Follow Raffinee and Micaela here.

***

"Our Mother's Days are basically about enjoying being together" 

America and Briana's path to motherhood was somewhat unexpected. "We married each other knowing neither of us wanted children; we were totally okay with being furbaby moms only." But in during their 12th year together -- their second married -- Briana was bit by the baby bug. Hard!

"After a lot of discussion and soul searching, we decided we were going to try to have a baby! Bri was on board to carry our baby, something I (America) never had a desire to do."

They found their sperm donor and decided to try home insemination. "You know how they say third times the charm? Yeah, she got pregnant on our third try, so we were very lucky."

How this family celebrates Mother's Day

"This year is our third Mother's Day with William. Because it's a day for both of us, we try to sprinkle the day with things that make us happy, with treats we both love. So far, this has included getting our favorite hand-crafted donuts, making art with our son's hands and footprints, beach walks, brunch out, napping together and cooking together. This year we're planning on planting tomatoes and finger painting wooden signs for our garden, and see whatever else the day brings. Our Mother's Days are basically about enjoying being together."

Follow America and Briana here.

***

"It's an amazing feeling when you see your children happy!" 

Denise and Ebony both chose the path of fertility treatments to have their children. Through using an open ID sperm donor, Ebony became pregnant via IUI and Denise became pregnant with twins via IVF.

What have you learned since become a mom?

"The most important lesson we've learned from our kids, specifically from our daughter, is to live in the present moment. Our kids are growing up so fast, so we have to be fully present in order to not miss anything."

Follow Denise and Ebony here.

***

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Personal Essays by Gay Dads

No, My Kids Don't Have a Mom; But I'm a Dad Who Learned From the Best

When his mom passed, Bradley Pounds couldn't imagine becoming a dad without her by his side. "But storms pass," he said, and "dreams endure."

A month before our first child was born via surrogacy, I came home late from work to find my husband sitting on the sofa in the dark. The blue light from the television lit up his face. His eyes were puffy; he'd obviously been crying.

Given the timing, I was surprised to see him in that state. This was our victory lap. Here's our story in a nutshell: After a nightmarish surrogacy journey failed a year prior, burning through 19 embryos and $50k with no results to show for either, we had opted to lay this project down and lick our wounds for a few years. Then, an incredibly generous woman stepped forward and offered to donate her eggs for no compensation. We took this as a sign that we were meant to get back in the game. We decided to throw a Hail Mary pass and try again, and this time we found ourselves working with an excellent reproductive clinic and surrogate sent straight from heaven. It all clicked, we got pregnant on the first try.

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Gay Dad Photo Essays

Spring Has Sprung For These Gay Dads!

We're loving seeing gay dads and their kids wearing pink, picking cherry blossoms and enjoying the warmer temperatures! Send your spring pics to dads@gayswithkids.com!

We're seeing something very exciting all over our Instagram feed: pastels, short sleeves, and lots and lots of PINK! Send us your spring family pics to dads@gayswithkids,com for a chance to be featured in this photo essay!!

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Gay Dad Family Stories

This Women's History Month, Gay Men Honor the Gals Who Help Make Them Dads

Each and every man becomes a dad with the help of a woman. We asked gay dads to honor one who helped them along in their path to parenthood to help us celebrate women's history month.

Each and every one of us became (or will become) a dad with the help of a woman--more often than not, with the help of multiple women. So this Women's History Month, we choose to celebrate these women by asking you to tell us a bit about them. Enjoy these inspiring stories below. Want to honor a woman in your life who has helped you become a dad? Tell us about her at dads@gayswithkids.com

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Adults

Why This Adopted Gay Man Will Never Have Children

Do we have a biological right to parenthood? Kevin Saunders, a childless 52-year-old gay man, says no.

Guest post written by Kevin Saunders.

Two dear friends of mine, each partnered, capable gay men of relatively sound mind and body, have recently decided to become fathers, and I could not be more unnerved. The expense, the risk, the potential for disappointment, the logistical complexity that they must navigate leave me baffled and at times enraged with the lingering question that I have, out of respect, refrained from asking, "WHY, WHY, WHY do you want to do this?!" These feelings toward what most would consider a happy occasion beg a reciprocal enquiry: "Why do you care?" The answer is rooted in a disposition and a history that has left me skeptical of the innate right to biological parenthood that many, gay or straight, seem to feel entitled to.

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Gay Dad Life

Gays WITHOUT Kids (If Just For a Day...)

Andrew Kohn explains why he decided to leave his kids at home this Pride

I'm not a monster. Yes, I saw the wagons carrying lovely toddler children waiving their flags and eating their graham crackers. The children were plentiful wearing their Pride family shirts, bejeweled in rainbow. The weather was perfect and the crowds were as prideful as ever. But my husband and I had a day where we didn't have to worry about someone else, not on the constant lookout for the next available bathroom or calming emotions because we could buy one unicorn costume and not every unicorn costume. We had a day without kids.

Yes, Pride has become commercialized. Some companies want my gay money, but others march and have a presence because one gay voice spoke up and asked why the company hasn't marched. I marched in the parade with my employer – who marched for the first time this year – because I started the conversation about why we hadn't marched before. My husband and I were present. We honored Stonewall. And praised Nina West. And we did it without carrying a bag with extra panties and a couple sippy cups.

Believe me, I get sharing the day with your children. With your family. But in my house, we live Pride every day. Two white dads caring for two black kids makes us walking billboards for equality, love, and acceptance. I don't need a day to celebrate my family with my children. We do it in the grocery store. We do it at preschool. We recognize our uniqueness and celebrate it. My children don't need a meltdown and a long walk to tell them about their history and their fathers' connection to the past.

Instead of worrying about where we would find lunch and, again, where the closest bathroom was, I saw beauty that took me by surprise – and I was able to be in the moment with it. Trans men waking boldly and bravely around only wearing only their bindings. Watching high school kids sitting in the grass, wearing crop tops and eating french fries, literally carefree looking up at the clouds. We experienced a community that was free and uninhibited, if just for one afternoon, where who you are isn't odd or something to be hidden. But rather something that is a definition of you and should be your reality 365 days a year.

I know that being gay and having kids can be overwhelming at times. We ask ourselves if we're representing our community adequately (or have we become too heteronormative?). If we have children of a different race, are we giving them the experiences they need to know who they are, as well as navigate that world with gay parents? Are we so embraced at school functions because of our contributions to community or are we a token family? And yes, I'll ask it, are we good enough for acceptance by all gay families, who as if we're single again, judge each other on wealth, looks, and status? No family is better than any other, and gay parents certainly have opportunities to be better towards one another.

Our Pride ended in a small fight while walking to the car, like all good Pride's should. But it wasn't about kids bickering, or kids getting upset they didn't get the right treat. It was about us centering ourselves in a community that isn't exactly welcoming in certain spaces to gay families other times of the year. It was about us catching up with our past while also seeing our collective future.

And the kids didn't seem to mind. They had fun with a babysitter and lived their Pride out loud when they shopped for daddy and papa gifts for Father's Day. That's our Pride. Maybe when the kids are older, and really get the meaning of Pride, we'll start marching together in solidarity. But for right now, daddies needed a little time alone to reconnect with their LGBT family. And while there may be too many beer ads and not enough voter registration tables, we celebrate visibility and love. And my husband and I had time together, reminding us of who we are, who our original family was, and how we will connect who we are now, and our children, with that family as it grows.

At the end of the day, we're all in it together. And my children will be enriched by the experience. Just not this year. This year, we fertilized our roots so that our branches can grow.

Antwon and Nate became dads through the foster care system. Nine months after becoming licensed, they received a call on a Tuesday, and two days later, their daughter moved in. "It was very quick," said Nate. "Honestly, it was more just shock and nervousness for me."

As new parents, Nate took unpaid leave for two weeks, before going back to work part-time. Antwon didn't receive any leave.

"It's definitely important to have time off to bond, but it's also important to be financially stable when you do it," said Antwon. "I don't think you should have to choose between staying financially afloat or showing your kid love... and I don't think anyone should have to make that choice."

Only 15% of dads in the U.S. have access to paid paternity leave. We want to change this.

Watch Nate and Antwon's video to find out how:

Sign the pledge: www.dovemencare.com/pledge

Like Antwon and Nate, we're helping Dove Men+Care advocate for paid paternity leave for *ALL* dads! Over the next three months, we will be sharing stories of gay dad families and their paternity leave experience. Our goal is to get 100,000 folks to sign the Paternity Leave Pledge.

Dove Men+Care has collected over 30,000 signatures on the Pledge for Paternity Leave in three short months, in a mission to champion and support new legislation for federally mandated paid leave laws in the U.S. With the conversation growing on Capitol Hill, Dove Men+Care will target key legislators to drive urgency behind paid paternity leave policy and provide a social proof in the form of real dad testimonials, expert research and signature support from families across the country.

Our goal is to help Dove Men+Care bring 100,000 signatures to key policymakers in Washington, D.C. for their Day of Action on the Hill, and drive urgency behind this issue.

If you believe *ALL* dads should receive paid paternity leave, sign the Paternity Leave Pledge.

Gay Dad Life

Gays With Kids Turns Five!

Wow! Time certainly flies when you're busy becoming the world's biggest online resource and magazine for gay, bi and trans dads!

As if we don't have enough going on this June (Stonewall's 50th anniversary! Father's Day! Taylor Swift rounding up all the gays in West Hollywood for her latest music video!) we're also celebrating another milestone here at Gays With Kids: we're officially turning five this month. (And we don't look a day over two, right?!)

To celebrate, we took a look back at some of our most popular essays, photos, news stories and more. What do you want to see us cover in the NEXT five years? Let us know at dads@gayswithkids.com


#10. The Hardest Part of Foster Care? The Wait, Say These Dads-to-Be

Several years ago, we brought you this article: The Hardest Part of Foster Care? The Wait, Say These Dads-to-Be. The article included a video of Antwon and Nate, who were in the midst of their process to become foster dads, which quickly became one of our most popular posts of all time. In this video, they shared how difficult it was waiting for "the" call from the agency letting them know their lives would be forever changed once a child came to live with them.

Want to see how the dads are getting on several years later? Check out this updated video here!

#9. Famous Gay Dads and Their Kids!

Our article, Famous Gay Dads and Their Kids, featuring well-known gay dads from Neil Patrick Harris to Ryan Murphy, quickly became one of our most popular. In the years since, as the ranks of gay dads has continued to grow, we've brought you MANY more stories of gay men in the limelight who are venturing into fatherhood. Check them all out here!

#8. The Story Behind America's Youngest Gay Dad

The Story Behind America's Youngest Gay Dad, which ran back in 2015, is also one of our most popular posts of all time! The post explores the story of Brian Mariano, who became a father with an ex-girlfriend while still in high school. "Everybody in my life is really supportive of me," he said. "If it's someone new and a friend mentions I'm a dad, they will stop. 'Wait, what? How are you a dad? You're gay.' It's like that 'Mean Girls' quote sometimes. You know – 'if you're from Africa, why are you white?'"

#7. When His Son Got a Tattoo, He Freaked Out. Then He Saw What it Was

This article, When His Son Got a Tattoo, He Freaked Out, definitely plucked the heartstrings of our readers! Which is why it's one of the most popular articles on our site of all time.

"Guess what dad I'm getting a tattoo," Richard's son, Jonathan, texted him. "Don't you dare," was Richard's response. But Jonathan went ahead with it anyway. At first, his dad "fumed." But then he found out what the tattoo was.

"So I got my first tattoo!!" Jonathan wrote on Facebook, of his roman numeral tattoo on his side. "This date is the day that my life changed. This is the day my dads adopted me. The greatest day in my life knowing that for the rest of my life I would finally have a loving family that loved me for me!" (Another one of our most popular posts is this photo essay of gay dads who explain the meaning behind their tattoos.)

#6. 8 Black Dads Share What Black History Month Means to Their Families

Last year, during February's Black History Month, we ran an article titled 8 Black Dads Share What Black History Month Means to Their Families. To create the post, we asked our community a simple question: as a Black gay dad, what does this month mean to you, your family, and your community? The answers we got back were reflective, poignant and deeply moving, which is why this article became one of our most-viewed ever.

Check out the story here.

#5. 19 Photos of Matt Dallas & Blue Hamilton That Will Make You Green with Parenting Envy

Ok the popularity of this article, 19 Photos of Matt Dallas & Blue Hamilton That Will Make You Green with Parenting Envy, doesn't need that much explanation. Gorgeous, talented, successful and good dads? What's not to love! Also check out this more recent post, Things Husbands (and Gay Dads) Do According to Matt Dallas and Blue Hamilton, which is also quickly climbing the ranks of our most popular!

#4. A Gay Dad's Message From His Heart to his Facebook Friends

This article, A Gay Dad's Message From the Heart to his Facebook Friends, by gay dad Michael Anderson, ran in the troubling aftermath of the 2016 Presidential election, when so many LGBTQ people, our allies, and other vulnerable communities looked (and continue to look) towards an uncertain future.

"Suddenly I don't feel secure anymore," Michael wrote. "Vice president-elect Pence has an extensive anti-gay record from supporting gay conversion therapy on kids that literally includes trying to (but failing to) electro-shock the gay out, to signing legislation in his state in 2013 to jail any same-sex couple who attempted to get a marriage certificate. All of the progress that we have made that gives my family a sense of belonging and security is very likely to be erased."

For more of our ongoing political coverage, including the 2020 race, check out these articles as well.

#3. Helping Gay Men Afford Adoption Through Sizable Grants

Our third most popular article, Helping Gay Men Afford Adoption Through Sizable Grants, features our good friends Help Us Adopt, an amazing non-profit organization that helps adoptive parents offset the substantial costs associated with the process. They are also dedicated to inclusivity, and are one of the few financial resources available for gay adoptive parents. Check out this great profile of their work!

#2. 9 Times Gay Dads Crushed Their Pregnancy Announcement Pics

Gay dads love a good photo opportunity. So obviously this photo essay of gay dad pregnancy announcement pics is high up on our list as well. This photo essay, 9 Times Gay Men Crushed Their Pregnancy Announcement Pics, is our second most popular. Check out this most recent roundup of pregnancy announcement pics, which is also climbing the

And Our MOST Viewed Article of All Time Is... 

Gay dads do Halloween right! So it's no surprise that this article, 13 Dads Giving You Major Family Halloween Costume Goals, is our most viewed of all time! And though Halloween may still be months away, why not prepare early with a look at some of our other most popular Halloween articles!

Gay Dads Snap Pics at the Pumpkin Patch
Nobody Does Halloween Like Neil Patrick Harris and Fam
31 Gay Dads Serving Major Halloween Costume Inspo (and Where to Get The Looks!)
Get Your DIY Skills On for Halloween, Dads!







THANK YOU!

Lastly, a big thank you to all of our readers! It's thanks to you that we now can claim the biggest online community of gay, bi, and trans dads in the world (not to mention two GLAAD award nominations ;) We can't wait to see what the next five years bring!

Fatherhood, the gay way

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