Friday, February 21, 2014

That Time My 6 Year Old Asked About Same Sex Marriage

I think if you read my blog, if you know me, you know how I feel about same sex marriage. I think it's discriminatory and down right mean to assume that anyone can dictate who another can love or marry. So I am a supporter.


I've never talked to any of my children about it. My kids are young. They watch a lot of Disney movies where a prince and princess meet, fall in love, get married. I honestly don't know if my kids are ever in contact with kids who have two dads or two moms. It has never come up. And I'm not really one to bring those things up. I figure all in good time. When they have a question, they'll ask.

I'm not going to lie. These conversations do make me nervous. I know that my kids will see this and experience this WAY more than I did as a kid. That's a good thing, I think. But, it still doesn't make it easy to explain. Don't get me wrong...I'm dreading any kind of sex/love/intimacy talk down the road. This just happens to fall into that category.

See, I have 37 years of life experience. My viewpoints are shaped by those experiences. To try and explain romantic love, emotion, sex, to a child who doesn't have any experience with that is difficult. When all they see are girl characters falling in love with boy characters, it's not easy to explain the reasons or the motivations. They see what they see, and they think that's all there is.

A few weeks ago we were home, probably because of snow or sickness or cold weather. Who knows. But we were all home, on the couch, watching TV, playing, reading...

Clif landed on a replay of the Grammys. Not sure why, we don't watch those kind of things. I think we both find them dull and indulgent on the part of the honorees. Maybe Tay-Tay (Taylor Swift) was singing. We do enjoy her in our house.

Whatever the reason, we were soon in the middle of the Macklemore/Queen Latifah/Madonna Same Love wedding ceremony. Before I could even make a decision as to whether or not I wanted to have this discussion with my children at that moment, there we were watching multiple couples joined in matrimony. There were heterosexual couples, interracial couples, homosexual couples. I'm sure you've seen it or heard about it.

And there it was, two men kissing on the TV.

"Mommy, did that man marry a man?" Ainsley asked.
"Yes," I replied.
"I didn't know a man could marry a man!" Ainsley said.
"Sure, a person can marry any other person. It doesn't matter as long as they love each other." I my head I was quickly trying to figure out how to explain this to her in terms she'd understand.
"So then if they have a baby, there will be two dads?" She asked.
"Yep," I said.

And that was it. She went right back to doing whatever it was she was doing before the wedding caught her attention.

I know this is the first of many conversations we will have about this subject, but know what struck me? How absolutely fine she was with it.

I am a supporter of same sex marriage. I'm a supporter of love in any form. But apparently I have my own preconceived notions. Don't we all? I expected her to ask so many questions and to think it was weird. But why would she? To her, marriage is just two people who love each other. We've tried very hard to allow our children to be who they are and not put them in boxes based on gender or race or eye color. I'm proud of us for that conversation. Proud that she saw no issue. It makes me very hopeful for our future. I think maybe our kids are going to turn around and teach us all how it should be done.
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