Making LGBTQ single parents visible
For LGBT History Month, Community Worker for Outside the Box, Ciara Maguire, writes about their Queer Families project in Glasgow and the often overlooked experiences of LGBTQ single parents
LGBT History Month is a good time to reflect on including different families in all our communities.
We know there have been LGBTQ one parent families across history – but they are still much less supported and celebrated than they deserve.
And with this lack of visibility, many people don’t know about the experiences and brilliance of single LGBTQ parents in our society.
- single parent, Glasgow
Queer Families is a peer support project for LGBTQ families, running in Glasgow.
We provide a safe space for LGBTQ parents to share their experiences and knowledge without judgement, and many of the parents we work with are single parents.
We spoke to them about their experiences of being LGBTQ single parents, the challenges they face and what services can do to help this.
Being a single parent comes with its challenges, and when you’re an LGBTQ single parent, many of those challenges are compounded.
Here is some of what they told us:
Support for single parents
If you’re a single parent looking for support or advice, find out more about One Parent Families Scotland’s local services.
The Lone Parent Helpline and webchat is available weekdays from 9.30-4pm. Just call 0808 801 0323.
More support for LGBTQ families
You might also find it useful to check out LGBT Health and Wellbeing and their Rainbow Families events and resources for LGBTQ parents.
These experiences will be familiar to many LGBTQ single parents – feeling invisible, having to challenge homophobia or transphobia on your own and services not feeling inclusive to you.
But there are lots of things services and groups working with LGBTQ single parents can do to be more supportive. Not making assumptions and using inclusive language makes a big difference. Schools and nurseries can normalise talking about LGBTQ families and make sure LGBTQ focused activities and books are included.
Queer Families has produced two resources, a guide for LGBTQ families (and people who want to start families) and a guide for services supporting LGBTQ families with advice and tips for best practice.