Parenting is hard work, even when you're a mom or dad in a loving nuclear family. When you're a gay divorced or unmarried father, the hurdles are even higher.
But that's no reason not to be the best parent you can be to your offspring. Below are some parenting tips for gay dads in Florida.
- Be open about your sexual orientation with your kids' teachers and daycare providers. There's no need to go into detail, but supplying them with this information can help them support your children in situations with classroom bullies.
- Live an authentic life. You're not promoting a gay agenda by having your same-sex partner accompany you to parent-teacher conferences and other activities involving the kids. You're demonstrating that the two of you are committed to being fully involved in your children's lives.
- Be open about your sexual preference with the parents of your children's friends. Some may not be as accepting as others, but it beats trying to hide something they will eventually discover one day.
Families come is all permutations
What constitutes a family? It's certainly more than blood ties, as adopted children everywhere can testify. When you and your partner are loving with and devoted to your children and their best interests, everybody wins.
While it's true that you're living a life separate from your kids' mother, the two of you can still separately work toward being the best parents you can be. The input of your involved partner should be welcomed rather than shunned. But regardless of the other parent's feelings toward the split and/or your new love interest, you should focus on the good qualities that you can share with your children, e.g., tolerance and inclusion.
Your parenting plan should give you equal access to the kids
Being a gay dad comes with some additional problems, but the rewards are well worth the struggles. If your parenting time isn't sufficient to build strong relationships with the kids, you might have a credible case for filing a modification of the custody order.
Learn what you need to do to be the best parent you can be to your children. That's the greatest gift of all to offer them.