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gay media, parenting and ambivalence

So this is out in the 'father's day' issue of Blaze - Adelaide queer street mag. I am a bit ambivalent about it myself - first they wanted a 'dad and baby' cover story. When i said i didnt have a baby; that images of our children (as foster children) cant appear in media; and that i didnt know anyone with a baby (though i have since realised i do!!), they were about ready to drop the story. I then suggested they use a stock image for the cover and then do an interview with one of the dads i know focusing on what the gay parent scene in Adelaide is like - is it different to the eastern states, how, etc. My suggestion was that surrogacy really hasnt 'taken off' here and that they would be better talking to gay men who came to parent via co-parenting arrangements/foster care/previous heterosexual relationships. They ended up just sending me some interview questions (that were quite normative, but thankfully they were willing to revise them) which i completed. When the issue came out there was no cover image, and the story inside was a very truncated version of the interview with a new Q&A added at the beginning that wasnt mine, and which makes it look as though i factually know there are no gay dads via surrogacy in adelaide. Having since learnt that there is at least once couple, and already knowing some men who parent through co-parenting arrangments with lesbian co-parents, it is annoying me that it looks like i claim to 'know' all there is about gay parents (rather than just being able to speak of our family). Another tiresome experience with the media where the story is 'bent' to a particular angle beyond our control (as is normally the case - i know this isnt unique to us!!). Interestingly, though, lots of people have said very positive things about the story, so i guess i should be glad of that!!

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Comment by Melina MIchelle Magdalena on September 6, 2009 at 15:35
Hi Damien - I've also had frustrating experiences dealing with media. I'm now quite wary of it, and that's a bit sad. I'm liking this kind of self-made media where I can be more in control of how I represent myself. Good on you though, for being involved. Annoying to be the token gay dad all the time, though - hey!

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