This week I had the amazing opportunity to take part of an adoption hearing for a family that I work with. This has been a long journey for these two moms and to be able to see the joy on their faces when the judge proclaimed the new shared last name and all the official rights of adoption.
Now, I come from a family made up of a mother and a father, I also am married to a man and have two incredible sons. My community, small and rural, is made up of many heterosexual couples. This is not the case everywhere- the world is changing and the family structure is growing more diverse. I know quite a few grandmothers who have taken on the primary caretaker role, even a few great grand parents taking on this as well. I have some great friends who their families are made up of two moms or two dads. I recognize many people feel passionate about this and here’s what I think… Love Makes a Family.
As with everything, literature can help children become more aware of diversity. As I sat in the courtroom this week watching this incredible family I realized my children don’t have as much exposure to same sex parenting. So what did I do… looked up some books! I found this great article in Parents Magazine that highlights some great books.
I love how the author shares that you don’t need to explain the mechanics of same sex parenting but to show children doing kids things with their family. She writes:
“One of the nice things about kids’ books is that they build self-confidence by normalizing children’s experiences. Just as children with heterosexual parents read books that mirror their families without making the parents’ relationship the focus of the book, children of same-sex parents benefit from reading books that feature families like theirs. But, of course, kids’ favorite books are centered on a topic that toddlers care about almost exclusively: themselves!”
So here are some great books to check out-
The Family Book: by Todd Parr (I LOVE Todd Parr’s books!)
King and King by: Linda de Hann & Stern Nijland
The Different Dragon: by Jennifer Bryon
No matter what your own family structure is it is important to share with your children that not all families are alike. These are just a few picture books for elementary aged children that can highlight that not all families are made up of a mom and a dad.