Two Gay Dads

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I believe things happen for a reason, don’t you? I began writing for Aiming Low several months ago and met Jared Karol of Lick the Fridge through his posts there. It wasn’t long before we discovered we both have twins AND we were born to gay dads. So there are two of us now–I know there are others, but they are not “out.” (This, my friends, is where the power of social media–Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, etc–will come in)

Jared recently started something on his blog called “The Letters Project.” Read about it HERE. On a whim I wrote him a letter about my dad, which he published on his site. You can read it HERE. Jared kindly replied, and now he’s written back and I’m sharing his letter below.

Jared and I are talking about writing a book together. I’m scared shitless about it and he knows far more about the publishing world than I; yet it’s something I’ve always wanted to do, and until now have never found anyone to tackle it with in earnest.

That being said, I’m formally shouting out to anyone interested in potentially doing this with us. I think a compilation of essays from folks with GLBT parents could be groundbreaking. Would you buy it, read it and share it with your friends? Do you have any thoughts? Sheesh, Jared, I hope you know how to write a query letter. And find an agent. And, um, all the other stuff.

Enough. I give you Jared.


Hi Erin,

I’m so glad we’ve started a dialogue about our gay dads.

Over the past 11 1/2 years since my dad died, I’ve done more than just accept his homosexuality – I have embraced it. I’m supportive of the myriad LGBTQ issues, I have many close gay friends and colleagues, and I write about gay issues on my blog.

All that said, until recently, I haven’t had any conversations with another adult with a gay dad. My colleague’s dad is gay and so is yours; that’s all I know. I look forward to exploring this topic with you. I’m sure we’ll discover that we have much in common, as well as many differences.

My dad is dead, yours is alive. In your letter you said you have trust issues because of “worrying about being left. Worrying about people lying to me, pretending to be something they’re not. Worried they’re not being honest.”

I don’t feel that way at all. I wonder if that’s because I’ve been able to embrace my dad’s homosexuality without the pressure of interacting with him on a regular basis. I wonder if he were alive how our relationship would have developed, and how my views about his homosexuality, and LGBTQ issues in general, would have developed. I don’t know.

The thing is, it was only in the last half year or so of his life that I started to hold the views I hold now. I was 27 and finally mature enough to accept it all. And then he died. I came to embrace the LGBTQ community almost entirely in his absence.

I would love to hear about your relationship with your dad, not only now, but in the years since you were 15 when he told you. Do you two have a good relationship? Do you see him or talk often? Do you live in a community that supports LGBTQ issues, or are there societal pressures that make it difficult for you?

There’s not a day that goes by that I don’t miss my dad, or see or hear or think about something that reminds me of him (his 63rd birthday is on March 20). But in some ways, I can’t help thinking that I wouldn’t be as comfortable with the fact that he were gay if he were still around. I guess I’ll never know.



*stay tuned for my reply & please don’t forget to vote for me for BlogHer’s Voices of the Year–CLICK HERE.*

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  • Anonymous

    1. Write the book!

    2. What an amazingly supportive group you’re building on this space. I love that you’re having these conversations and are able to help so many other reach out and discuss. xoxoxo

    • Erin margolin


      1. You make it sound so EASY! any tips? esp. w/ kids? LOL

      2. Thank you. I hope we continue to reach others and lessen the burden of silence.

      • Jared Karol

         I couldn’t say any better or any different than what Erin said (on 1 or 2), so I’ll just say. . . “What Erin said!”

  • Morgan (The818)

    Wow – I’m pretty sure this is going to be incredible.

    • Erin margolin


      Thanks, sweets! So happy to see you here and appreciate your vote of confidence. ;-)
      p.s. my no-heat curls lasted 2 days! I am SOLD and have been telling everyone I know about it/ showing them your post.


    • Jared Karol

       Thanks, Morgan. I hope you’re right!

  • Julie

    I love that you are talking about writing a book together! That’s amazing. :) 

    • Erin margolin


      Thanks! But talking about it and DOING it are two completely different things. I’m skeeeered!

      • Jared Karol

         Yes, never ask a writer what s/he’s going to write about, because then s/he’ll tell you and won’t write about it. Let’s hope Erin and I can brake that truism.

  • Jared Karol

    Erin, I’m so we’re doing this – both the exploration and the idea of moving forward with a book. I wish I could say that i know anything about the publishing industry, but I don’t. Query letter? Agent? Uh, we can figure that out together? I DO know a few people that have gone through the process though, and between all of our social media connections, I’m confident we can get the right advice we need to forward.

    Can’t wait to see where this journey takes us.

    • Erin margolin


      I’m excited too…but no clue where to start and will seriously have to budget my time. & you are probably right about social media connections helping us w/ industry questions.

      Talk soon, hopefully! :-)

      • Jared Karol

         We’ll make it happen somehow, and if it takes us a while, then it takes us a while. Yes, we’ll talk soon.

  • Frelle

    I’m so excited for the conversation you’re having, and am grateful for your bravery in publishing your conversations.  I’m in awe.  Really really cool.  And I think the book idea is fantastic.

    • Erin margolin


      Thank you, sweetheart. Your vote of confidence means a great deal to me. Who knows if I’ll be able to pull off my end of the deal, but….all I can do is try. xoxo

    • Jared Karol

       Thanks, Frelle. I’m glad you’re excited about the conversation – I am too! Let’s see where it goes!

  • Juliecgardner

    Erin, Jared, this book should be written. There is a growing population of children who are or will be in your position and (fortunately, hopefully) a growing population of people who support them.

    I’m behind you both 100% and I KNOW you’re up to the challenge.
    Step by step.

    You’ll get there.

    • Erin margolin


      You are so sweet. I have not a clue where to start or what I’m doing. But I know people we can ask. But we don’t have anything actually written yet. Therein lies the problem! LOL


    • Jared Karol

      Thanks, Julie. I agree that there is a growing population of children who are or will be in our position. And, thankfully, there are a number of children with openly gay parents from the get-go, and so they won’t have to go through the same thing that Erin and I had to go through.

      Thanks so much for your support.

  • Anne Katherine

    I have faith in the idea and in both of you just from reading your original letter.
    I wish I could help but the only experience I have at this point is watching in silence and sadness as a boy who is best friends w/ my daughter struggles with coming out.  This makes me so mad at our whole society but I know these things take time.  Writing this kind of book you guys are talking about could be so helpful in raising all the issues surrounding homosexuality – all the feelings from all perspectives…. I hope you are feeling the pressure and get it done!!! 

    • Erin margolin

      Anne Katherine,

      I want to weep thinking of your daughter’s friend. He is lucky to have your daughter in his life—he needs that support and it makes me happy to hear.

      Someone made a good point—that I need to check to make sure this kind of book hasn’t already been written. And Jared and I have no clue what we’re doing, i.e. how to pitch it, where to start (i.e. agent? query letters, etc?) so who knows how long this will take. But thank you so very much for reading and commenting!

      • Anne Katherine

        I agree that you should research what’s out there…and if there’s something like you guys are thinking of — DO IT BETTER!  I know you can!  

        • Jared Karol

           Thanks, Anne Katherine. There IS stuff out there. I’m just not sure on the specifics or the reach. I agree with you though, that just because there’s something out there already doesn’t mean we can’t do it better.

          - Jared

  • Sweaty

    Hi Erin, I am a newbie to your blog, although I’ve certainly come across your name being mentioned in so many of the blog posts that I’ve read :)  The latest was Alexandra (the Empress), who specifically told me to check out your blog because you’re ‘brilliant.’ 

    I have yet to read more of your posts, but am certainly looking forward to it!

    I don’t know much about what it must feel like to have a gay father.  I know a friend whose father is gay, but nobody talks about it, so I think in the society where I live it’s still considered hush-hush.  I’d love to learn more about the children of gay fathers: and a lot of Jared’s questions for you resonated with the ones I have in mind.  Thanks so much for sharing your self-discovery with us.  I’d love to learn more about you and your childhood. 

    • Erin margolin


      That Empress sure does spread the bloggy love! I’ve “seen” you all over the blogosphere, too! I’m so happy you stopped by to read and leave me some comments.

      Please stay tuned for my reply to Jared’s letter….hopefully later today. I agree with you that this topic is still hush-hush in a lot of places, though it shouldn’t be. But sadly so many people are closeted due to the bigotry and ignorance that run so rampant. Le sigh.
      Hope to “see” you again soon!

    • Jared Karol

      Hi Sweaty,

      When you said, “nobody talks about it, so I think in the society where I live it’s still considered hush-hush,” I realized that is exactly the reason why I think what we’re doing is so important. The more people can start talking about it, the less hush-hush it will have to remain. As we all, the more dialogue there is on any subject the more likelihood there is for positive change. Please continue to be involved in the discussion. Every voice, and every perspective, and every experience is important and valid!

      - Jared

  • Anonymous

    I am intrigued now. Curious if I were to write a letter what I would write about. Angry that being gay is still such a stigma, especially a gay parent. Despite living in one of , what I consider, the most backwoods states in many ways, I can say this issue about being homosexual has not been as pervasively complained about as in other locations. When 2 gay salon owners, both male, in Lexington found a surrogate and had her carry their baby everyone was happy for them, for the most part. When she had triplets we all oohed and awed. I think what a parent chooses for their lives in the bedroom should have no bearing on what kind of parent they are. As long as they are honest with their child, and themselves. 

    • Erin margolin


      I love what you said, especially your last 2 sentences. AMEN! Honesty is what is most important. And no, being homosexual has no bearing upon what kind of parent someone is. People can be so silly.

    • Jared Karol

      Thanks for your story, Angel. I wish all of us could be as enlightened as you and the folks in your hometown. I think there is more of that perspective out there, and the more we talk about it, the more people will be comfortable talking about it. I agree that it’s too bad that there is a stigma. A lot of is based in fear and/or ignorance, so the best thing we can do is keep talking about it, and continue to celebrate the great stories like the one you shared with us.

      - Jared

  • Susi

    I think it’s a great idea to write a book about these issues. I have a friend who happens to be gay as is his dad. I don’t know the story between him and his father but after reading this I’ll have to ask him about it to see how he dealt with all these issues. Loved reading your “letters’.

    • Erin margolin


      Thank you so much for reading & commenting. Your friend and his dad sound really interesting–would love to hear the story of how all that played out. ;-)

      • Jared Karol

         Susi, I too would love to hear their story. I’m sure I speak for Erin when I say invite them to get engaged in the conversations we’re having. They are more than welcome to write me a letter, and I would be happy to read, respond, and post on my blog. As I’ve said many times, the more people involved in the dialogue the better.


  • Kimberly

    I think this is a wonderful idea to get a compilation of stories put together.
    My friends married 2 years ago and are looking into adoption. Perhaps it’s much different when they are already openly gay? I am not sure.
    But one thing I am sure of…They’ll be wonderful parents.

    • Erin margolin


      I am sure they will be wonderful parents and by the time they adopt and those kids grow up? Hopefully shiz like this will be HISTORY. Seriously!
      But truthfully, I’ve always assumed being born/brought up into this by two gay parents would be completely different from my experience. I can’t say for sure whether or not it would be easier…?

      • Jared Karol

         Kimberly and Erin, I think the key difference is that when a child is brought up from birth (or a very young age) with no stigma attached to the fact that s/he has same sex parents, there is no discovery like Erin and I experienced. I taught 6th grade for five years at a progressive school that openly embraced the LGBTQ community, and had many kids in my classes with two moms or two dads. It was never an issue – for the kids, for the families, or for the community of parents, teachers and the larger community. When the idea of same sex parenting can be normalized, the widespread fear, and the shock of kids having to find out can be eradicated.

        - Jared

  • stephanie

    I would buy it and share it with lots of people because I know the writer but, you have to sign it! I have a friend (who I’ve mentioned to you when we first connected) who’s Dad came out when she was, I want to say 15, they have a complicated relationship with each other and he has a complicated relationship with himself.  I can’t wait to see what you guys come up with!

    • Erin margolin


      Of course I’d sign it! And I’m sure we’ll have to self-publish and we’ll never make any $$ off it, etc. etc…..oh well. Thank you so much for reading this and for the confidence!

    • Jared Karol

      Hi Stephanie,

      Your comment reminded me that everyone has has complicated aspects of their lives that may or may not be related to their sexual orientation and their personal relationships with others. I think that’s important for us all to remember as we move forward – Just as I, as a heterosexual man, have many challenges and difficulties in my everyday life that have nothing to do with my sexual orientation, the same must be remembered when we are talking about homosexual relationships.

      - Jared

  • Elaine A.

    I know you can write anything you would set your mind to write, Erin and this sounds like a wonderful collaboration.  I’m looking forward to your response letter too! xo

    • Erin margolin

      Thanks, Elaine! My response letter is up today, and it’s a doozy. I’m a little nervous. ;-)


  • Bill-The Authentic Life

    I think you know I would buy it, Erin.  Because as a Gay dad, I would want my daughters to know they are not alone.  I am just catching up and maybe you are well on your way with this.  I wish you the best of luck.