Trials and Tribulations of Lesbian Parenting


My straight girlfriends always tell me how lucky I am to have another mom on my team.  They tell me about all the things they could get done or how much smoother their homes would run if they had a wife. 

Well, I’m here to tell you what it’s really like.  Sunshine and roses? Oooooh no, not always.

Take, for example, the times when we are out in public with our children and one of them has a meltdown about something or other.  So there I am, doing the whole mom-with-screaming-child-in-public thing and am trying my darndest to football-hold that child and make a quick exit.  Then they start, at the top of their lungs, in hysterics, screaming for ‘mama’ (my wife).  “Mama!!! Mama!! I want my mama!!!”

That’s when the situation gets even more uncomfortable because now everyone in the place thinks you are STEALING A CHILD.

Then there was the time when mama was home with our 2 little girls.  They were going to have a fun morning together and visit me at work for lunch.  I called to check in and she’s just unloading them from the car to drop it for an oil change while they play at Chuckie Cheese.  Fantastic!

Then I hear, “Wait, why isn’t the baby wearing any shoes?” 

And a toddler voice pipes us, “She wasn’t wearing any when you put her in da van. I think you weft them at home….with da diapers.” 

“Gotta go honey, I need to run to the store.”

And that’s how the world’s tackiest shoes made their way into my daughter’s closet.

Sound familiar? Hmmm, I thought so.

Last, but certainly not least, was the time when I brought our youngest to get ice cream. She wasn’t quite two and had just learned the word ‘daddy.’  She was obsessed with it and not having a particular person to attach the title to, in her mind, all men were now called ‘daddies’.  She points out the daddies at the library, the grocery store, and everywhere else we go.  No biggie, she’s still in the toddler-talk stage that no one else can understand.

So about the trip to get ice cream.  The nice ice cream man makes up a baby-sized soft serve cone and hands it over.  My daughter gladly accepts with eager eyes.  I remind her to please say ‘thank you’. 

Clear as a bell she looks at him and excitedly says, “Thank you Daddy!”

And that’s when the sunshine and roses gets real.  Real awkward. 





5 thoughts on “Trials and Tribulations of Lesbian Parenting

  1. Love this! Sorry that it happens but at least it makes for great stories! My kids have also referred to random men as “Daddy,” especially men in books. But they also identify themselves with the Seven Dwarfs. I think they key in on gender and height in books to identify who is who. I can’t be one of the Dwarfs because I’m too tall and I’m a girl, but they can because they are short boys. They haven’t really picked out hair or skin color as characteristics that match or don’t match them, but this will probably come. Plus they purposely call me “Dada” or him “Mama” or call either of us by the nanny’s name just to watch us pretend to freak out. Yesterday, Big told us he wanted a new mother and father so I could see him making a scene in a public place and saying he wanted his real mama.

  2. This made me laugh, thanks for sharing! I love the forgotten shoes story.

    I think that all kids initially use “daddy” generically to refer to strange men, and it’s just as awkward when your husband is standing right there. My son definitely did that a few times, though I think we mostly avoided anyone but us hearing it. I have said multiple times, “honey, I swear, I have no idea what he is talking about.”

    The other seriously awkward mis-identified daddy story happened to my husband around the time that our foster (soon-to-be adopted) daughter came to live with us. She is African American and my husband is white. They were out at a restaurant that had a TV showing a recap of some basketball game with an African American NBA player doing a crazy dunk and the crowd going wild. Our daughter started jumping up and down, pointing and the TV, and loudly yelling “that’s my daddy.”

    Now that I think about it, we also have the awkward, someone-might-call-the-cops because we are kidnapping our own child, whenever she has a meltdown in public. Once at Disney World, when my husband was holding her, she started screaming for me, and normally, I wouldn’t want to give in on something like that, but it just made sense to avoid having some good Samaritan intervene in the “kidnapping.”

    1. And I just noticed the picture you have at the top, so you will be a suspected kidnapper pretty much anytime she has a tantrum, and doubly-so if she is asking for “mama.”

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