According to the Williams Institute, there are over 111,000 same-sex couples in this country raising more than 170,000 children. With numbers like these, it's no wonder that holidays like Mother's Day and Father's Day have become sticky issues in some households. The issue becomes even thornier when school projects to make cards or gifts for moms and dads on those days come into the picture. So, how can Mother's Day and Father's Day be addressed at home and at school in ways that will make each child feel included and each parent honored? Here are three ways gay couples with children are handling this challenge and making it work.
1. Celebrate One Holiday for One Parent and the Other Holiday for the Other Parent
Some gay parents use two different words for mother or father to distinguish the same sex parents from each other. In a two-mom household, one parent may be called "Mom" or "Mommy," while the other one is called "Mother" or "Mama." Two-father households may call one parent "Dad" and the other one "Daddy"; "Father," "Pop," and "Papa" are also used.
These differences in the names the child calls each parent help the child distinguish the parents as different and with different roles in the house. The different names also come in handy on Mother's Day and Father's Day. Some gay couples simply give one holiday to one parent, and appropriate the other holiday for the other parent, changing its name to "Mama's Day" or "Daddy's Day," as It's Conceivable Now explains. This way, a child can make a card for each parent at school on the appropriate days, and each day can be celebrated individually at home, too, with each parent getting his or her own special day of recognition.