Posted by: mommytoo | October 4, 2007

reading list

i’m reading one of the only books we’ve found specifically for non-bio moms, called confessions of the other mother.  it’s a collection of essays by non-bio lesbian mothers.  last night i read the one by this woman, whose blog is linked on the right.  at first i thought there’s no way i’m going to identify with a woman who feels like a dad.  i’m so not butch, and i’ve wanted to be a mother – not just a parent, but a mother – for as long as i can remember.  but the story is really touching.  when her partner is in labor, the hospital straps an i.d. bracelet on her that says “father.”  i would be so offended.  but this lesbian dad, she takes it as a compliment.  she is all puffed up, feeling proud and protective and in charge.

i also just read not buying it, which although not about baby stuff specifically, is an interesting book to read when you’re distracted by long lists of things you want/need/think you need before baby is born.  and we do love shopping!

i wish i could find more books by and about non-bio lesbian moms.  the only ones i can find are about huge custody battles following bitter break-ups!  not what i need right now.  and then there are parenting guides, for gay moms and moms in general.  but in terms of the partners of the one giving birth, that’s a bit harder to come by.

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Responses

  1. I can’t offer you much in the way of books, but we have a great list of blogs:

    http://lesbianfamily.org/non-bio-moms/

    Some of the blogs are written by both parents, or by parents who are both bio and “baba,” as Polly calls it. They certainly aren’t all butch parents, although some are.

  2. There is another blog, Journey of a Co-mom. I have a link to it in my blog. She is the non-bio stay at home mom. She has written some really neat pieces on what being a mom is to her, why she calls herself a co-mom. Really interesting stuff, and I think my partner most related to what she writes, although, I’m the blogger of the family! Another blog is http://www.fumblingontrack.blogspot.com She and her partner are expecting in January I think, they each have a blog. I am actually friends with the author of confessions from a stay at homo, and when we were pregnant, she loaned us the book “The Expectant Father” but had taped a piece of paper over Father and said Partner! Anyway, when she gave us this, it happened to be our 2nd pregnancy and my partner, Peg, didn’t have much time to read it. I’m just mentioning it because she must have thought it was worthwhile if she gave it to us. Good luck, and I am glad to have found you!

  3. oops i think it’s http://www.fumblingontrack.wordpress.com

  4. I just found you by way of lesbianfamily.org. I remember a lot of what you describe about feeling invisible during the pregnancy, which was for me a very difficult time. You might like anaccidentofhope.wordpress.com. Trista has a 2 year old and writes really well. You also could check out Laura Benkov’s book, “Reinventing the family.” It’s older (mid-90s) but she has a couple chapters about your situation and a particularly good one about naming (i.e. Mommy, Mama, Ima, etc).

    The Harlyn Aizley anthology you’re reading came out when my wife was pregnant with our daughter (now 15 months). I remember feeling both thrilled that it had been written at all, but also rather scared after reading it. It seemed like the women writing who felt the most secure were those who identified as “Babas” or “lesbian dads” which was SO not me, though I know it works for other families (I also love Polly’s essay and blog). There were also several essays that started from the assumtion we should be “supportive” and not a central or primary parent, including Faith Solloway’s nursing essay (which scared me half to death) and the “Ubermother” essay at the end, both of which were excellent, but I certainly didn’t share that central assumption.

    I could go on, but this has already gotten long. Mostly I just wanted to pipe up and say that what you’re feeling during the pregnancy is real, and absolutely should be talked about and dealt with. My wife and I have found that It is far more subversive than we ever realized to truly parent together as two women, and in particular two mothers. So much of the definition of Mother is caught up in the idea of “one.” I also want to say that despite all of my fears during the pregnancy, our experience as parents has been absolutely wonderful. We truly are two mothers (which is what we both want to be) and our daughter is thriving.


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