Gay Dad Life

Love Letter From Natal, Brazil

Ewerton Brito, 43, and Jonathan Dantas, 32, are dads to 5-year-old Matheus in Natal, Brazil. In this interview, Ewerton, a professor at the Universidad Federal do Rio Grande do Norte, shares their story of becoming a family – and what gay family life is like in Brazil – with Gays With Kids. (A note: The interview is translated from its original Portuguese version by the author.)


GWK: We love a good love story. How did you two meet?

EB: Jonathan and I met about four years ago through Instagram. After the first photo comment, we started talking through WhatsApp, and after three months we met in person. Soon after, we began dating.

Ewerton and Jonathan

GWK: How did the two of you decide to adopt kid together?

EB: The first time we met, we talked a lot – and we talked about wanting to be fathers. At the time, I said that despite wanting kids, I felt it would be tough to make that dream happen because I did not think I could do it alone.

Six months later, we were living together and talked again about the possibility of adoption. We talked a lot, let the idea germinate and a few months later, we went to the Children’s and Youth Court for information on adoption. We were very well received by the local adoption agency.

Ewerton, Matheus and Jonathan

Eighteen months later, we met Matheus, who, at that time, was 4 years old. It was love at first sight! We were delighted with Matheus. In less than 15 days, Matheus was living with us on a temporary custody release. I always wanted to be a parent and adoption made the most sense to achieve our goal.

GWK: What’s life as a gay dad like in Brazil?

EB: Matheus was very well accepted by our families. Everyone loves him! We had no difficulty with his acceptance in the building where we live, at school or with our friends.

On the contrary, everyone shows great affection and admiration for the fact that we adopted. He goes to a school that is quite open to new family structures, and he is well adjusted for a boy his age.

Ewerton, Jonathan and Matheus

For his part, Matheus is thrilled to have two dads. When we go to the mall, the beach or other public place he’ll grab people's attention by calling out "Papai" and "Painho" [the variations of “daddy” he calls each of us]!

GWK: What struggles have you overcome as parents?

EB: Despite that gay adoption became legal in Brazil a few years ago, we faced some obstacles after the adoption, like difficulty getting some documents, such as civil registration, social security, etc. In general, we are very well received and accepted everywhere, though often, we encounter curious glances and comments from people who wonder about the situation.

Ewerton and Matheus

When Matheus arrived, I realized the need to make my sexual orientation public. Not that I’d lived hidden "in the closet," but I had not made my personal life public at work. This was a great gift that he gave me – I am much happier now.

I knew Matheus would be asked frequently about having two fathers. So when we gained full custody of him, I wrote a Facebook post announcing the adoption. The result was wonderful: many messages of support and solidarity!

I am more active in the GLBT cause now. I am delighted to promote our cause and encourage others to do the same.

Jonathan and Matheus

GWK: What is your daily family life like?

EB: Our day-to-day is like that of any family with children. Matheus wakes up at 6 a.m., and along with Jonathan, gets ready to go to school. (He goes to the same school where Jonathan works.) I wake up a little later, at 7 a.m., go to the gym and then go to work.

At noon, I pick him up from school. Usually, I take him to Grandma's house to spend the afternoon while we are at work working. Once a week, in the afternoon, he goes to the psychologist. In the evening, we usually have dinner together. Matheus goes to sleep early, at 8 p.m., but not before brushing his teeth and praying with us.

Ewerton, Matheus and Jonathan

On weekends, we go to the beach or the pool at our condo building, go shopping or go to the movies. Sometimes we just stay home (and he loves staying home with us playing superheroes!)

GWK: Are you part of a community with other gay dads?

EB: We do not participate in any organized group or community but have an interest in getting to know other people who live in situations similar to ours. Gays With Kids and other Instagram profiles connect us, virtually, with other families, especially gay couples with children.

GWK: What advice would you give to gay men considering becoming dads?

EB: I recommend that everyone wanting children learn about the adoption process [and] realize their dreams. Matheus changed our lives for the better. Before we were a couple; now we are a family!

Ewerton and Matheus

Jonathan and Matheu

Show Comments ()
Gay Dad Life

A Gay Dad Wonders: What Will the 'Roaring Twenties' Bring?

Jim Joseph says he's looking forward to "moving forward in 2020" and in the decade to come!

The Roaring Twenties are upon us, and with the new decade comes great anticipation.

I remember as a kid that whenever a new decade came, it felt like "out with the old and in with the new." It seemed like pop culture and the way of doing things suddenly shifted. Witness 1979 into 1980 and the dawn of a new era in music, fashion, entertainment, and culture. Same with 1989 into 1990. Bam!

As I got older and started my own journey of growth, I started tracking decades by the milestones I had hit during each of the ten-year increments.

Keep reading...
Gay Dad Life

Gay Dads Tell Us Their Parenting Goals for 2020

Some are hoping to expand their families — others are hoping to keep the members they already have alive!

We asked our community on Instagram what their parenting goals were for 2020. Here are some of their responses.

Keep reading...
Gay Dad Life

10 Ways Gay Dads Inspired Us in 2019

No two gay parents have the same family creation story, but they still have one thing in common — they inspire us.

Every week, we bring you the stories of gay men and their families. While no two of these stories are the same, one thing they have in common is this — they inspire us. Check out 10 (out of the MANY!) ways gay dads moved us in 2019!

Keep reading...
Personal Essays by Gay Dads

As a Gay Dad, What's the Impact of Letting My Son Perform Drag?

Michael Duncan was excited when his 10-year-old son asked if he could perform in drag for charity — but he also felt fear and anxiety.

As LGBT parents, we have all lived through some sort of trauma in our lives. For many it is the rejection of our family, being bullied, or abuse. We learn to be vigilant of our surroundings and often are very cautious of who we trust. As adults, we start to become watchful of how much we share and we look for "red flags" around every corner.

So, what effect does this have on our children? Does it unintentionally cause us to be more jaded with our interactions involving others? For some the answer may be a resounding "no." But as we look deeper into the situation, we often find that through survival our interactions with others have changed and we may not even realize exactly how much we are projecting on those around us.

Keep reading...
Diary of a Newly Out Gay Dad

A Gay Chiropractor Explains Why He Came Out to His Patients

After Cameron Call, a chiropractor, came out to his family this past year, he knew he had one more step to take — he had to come out to his patients

Fear is an interesting thing. It motivates when it shouldn't, shows at inconvenient times, and is the author of stories that do nothing but hold us back. I would argue though, too, that fear has some good qualities. I believe it helps us to feel. And I think it can be a great teacher as we learn to recognize and face it.

For years fear prevented me from embracing my truth and accepting a large part of who I am. I know I am not alone in that regard. But for so long my fear convinced me that I was. Fear is what kept me from ever telling my parents or anyone growing up that I am gay. Fear mingled with strong religious teachings, embraced at a young age, which led me to believe that I could cure myself of my attractions to the same gender. And fear is a part of what kept me in my marriage to a woman for over ten years.

Keep reading...
Personal Essays by Gay Dads

A Gay Dad Gains Clarity After a Health Scare

A recent health scare helped give Erik Alexander clarity.

Sometimes fear can cripple the mind and hinder ones judgement. Having children of my own, I have come to grips with accepting the things I cannot change and learned to take action when there is no other choice. When it comes to my own personal health, the future and well being of my family gives me all the clarity I need to make the right decision about any kind of health scare.

This episode is dedicated to all the parents out there that are going through or have gone through similar situations.

Keep reading...
Gay Dad Family Stories

This European Couple Became Dads Through a U.K.-Based Surrogacy Program

Janno, from Estonia, and Matthias, from Belgium, were accepted into the "Childlessness Overcome Through Surrogacy" Program.

Janno Talu, an accountant, and Matthias Nijs, an art gallery director, were born in different parts of Europe. Janno, 39, is from Estonia, and Matthias, 28, is from Belgium. Their paths crossed when the two moved to London, each from their different corners of the European Union.

Janno relocated to London earlier than Matthias, when he was 24, and his main reason for the move was his sexuality. "Although Estonia is considered one of the more progressive countries in Eastern Europe, when it comes to gay rights, it is still decades behind Western society in terms of tolerance," said Janno. "And things are not moving in the right direction." In 2016, same-sex civil union became legal, but the junior party in the current coalition government is seeking to repeal the same-sex partnership bill. "In addition," Janno continued, "they wish to include the definition of marriage as a union between a man and a woman in the country's constitution. Even today, there are people in Estonia who liken homosexuality to pedophilia, which is why I decided to start a new life in the UK, where I could finally be myself."

Keep reading...

Fatherhood, the gay way

Get the latest from Gays With Kids delivered to your inbox!

Follow Gays With Kids

Powered by RebelMouse