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Sunday, October 31, 2010

It's a voice that comes from deep within

I have been working with a friend  of ours who is at the end of a Psych Masters. They have been working on an assignment to come up with an idea for a group therapy model. I mentioned to them early on in our journey that I found it frustrating that there was so little out there for fathers, let alone gay men planning to become fathers. If it was not for the Internet I don't think many men would be able access information on pregnancy or parenting. So we worked together on a group programme that provided practical information and then allowed for a group session to discuss issues identifies by the group. It has been a very interesting process. Men are very disenfranchised when it comes to this whole process. We are a little luckier than most because of our profession. But I know we both have many doubts and are just as nervous as most new fathers. Add to that the inherent fears of social pragmatism and heterosexism and at time is can be a little overwhelming. I said that when we first started telling people it was almost like coming out again. In some ways it was exactly that. "Oh, when is your wife due?" was a common question from numerous colleagues at work who did not know me other than to work with. So it came down to the fact that Vince and I had made a firm commitment to telling the truth and having to fill in the blanks. That brought back many old feelings of guilt, fear, anxiety, anger, shame  and so on. How would they react. Was this going to be the time that someone would attack me and who I am. I know where I've been and these are real and deep seated feelings that have taken years to conquer. Going through this process with our friend has almost been a therapeutic process in it's self. I have had to look at many issues I have carried around for years. I have been lucky and my experience has been mostly positive. I get more grief about my weight than I ever have about being gay.

This week I had a little melt down and began to question where I was and why I was here. Would I be a good Dad? Was I being selfish? Could I protect my family? I had to remind myself that in the words of Miss Maybelle "I know where I'm going" and "It's a voice that comes from deep within" that tells you that you have the strength and conviction to be a great dad. You have had to work harder to get here and it is going to be amazing. We are going to love our children and teach them our values and and beliefs. We will do unto others as we would have done unto us.

I want to thank our friend Lou for the free therapy and for the amazing insight. I am hoping that I can share her work when it is all finished. Who knows. It could become a whole new vocation. Primary Health Care!!!!

We are now 24 weeks. Goodnight world. Sleep tight and dream. I did, and it's coming true!!
Love to all, J.


  1. If your friend Lou wants a perspective from a very pro-active 90's Dad I'll give you Mike's e-mail.He who used to complain bitterly, and once to Garden City management that he should not have to go into a Ladies Loo to change HIS baby's nappy. It did lead to a parenting room next to the Lady's Loo where he could take the boys. It was very frustrating back then. He would get questioned why he was bottle-feeding instead of getting his wife to feed the baby 'properly'. We are getting there as a society but it is a slow process.

  2. Wow, Jem, I just sat and read this whole blog from start to finish and it is such a special record of this time! It's so great to get all this first-hand and I've subscribed to the feed so that I don't miss out on anything, so keep writing!

    All my love to you and the other beautiful man.

  3. PS, you're both going to be AMAZING parents, so no more doubts...

  4. Heya,

    I've been working on a book which might come in handy. You've probably come across a lot of the resources listed already, but there might be some new ones in there, and there's a section about starting a support group that you might be interested in too.

    I do work for the (non-profit) company who published the book, but I comment as a friend of gay parents (and a lurker at &duck) rather than a marketing spammer!

    Best of luck with your incredible adventure!