Find sources of support for raising a nontraditional family in a straight world!The experience of parenting is commonly overlooked in psychological theory, and lesbians and gay men are not typically considered as parents or parents to be. Gay and Lesbian Parenting examines the psychological issues related to developing family and becoming parents for gay men and lesbians. Instead of pathologizing gay and lesbian families, it explores the emotional growth and development issues inherent in child-rearing.Traditionally, coming out as gay or lesbian meant abandoning any hope of becoming a parent or keeping your children if you already had them. But with the "gayby boom" in full swing, more and more gay and lesbian couples are having new babies, adopting children, and continuing to raise the offspring of previous heterosexual relationships. Although gay and lesbian parents still face unique challenges in building and rearing a family, as well as the usual problems heterosexual couples encounter, Gay and Lesbian Parenting unflinchingly examines these concerns and offers positive suggestions and ideas for dealing with the difficulties. This life-affirming book takes a look at the practical and emotional realities of raising children in nontraditional family structures, including: issues of kinship, shared motherhood, and possessiveness in lesbian couples legal issues entailed by the lack of marriage and legal kinship parenthood as a powerful force for personal growth and development fatherhood as a process of creating connectedness in the family, community, and place of worship original empirical research on the mental health of lesbians'children the history of the gay and lesbian movement as it relates to child-rearingGay and Lesbian Parenting affirms the power of gay and lesbian couples to raise healthy, happy children and to change and grow through their experience of parenting. This book is also essential for mental health professionals from psychiatric nurses to psychiatrists who are working with the gay and lesbian community.