Newsflash: “Mom” is not a gender– it’s a role. And “the mom role” can be successfully played in a family of two dads. This week we asked Julia Dennison, executive editor of Parents.com and also a co-parenting single mom of a toddler, to join us for a discussion on gender roles and how they’re changing, and about guiding your child to be comfortable with the differences in his family structure.
The “traditional mom role” – or social stereotype of what is maternal – includes cuddling love, talking about feelings, sensitivity to the kids’ needs, soft attitude (including on education). Can gay dads fill that role? Absolutely!
“Of course we all have social stereotypes and ideas about what is maternal,” says Julia Dennison, Executive Editor of Parents.com, “the word ‘maternal’ has all these connotations like, ‘the caregiver,’ ‘the person that the kids run to if they need an extra hug,’ there’s all these ideas about what moms might do and in the past that included a lot of things like keeping up the house alongside everything, cooking and cleaning. Of course now those moms, these women, are at the work place just as much as men, these ideas of what makes a mom or what makes a woman, are really changing so that the rest of the world is starting to be just as confused or just as changing.”
In the developing discussion, we talked about the differences between men and women, even if we can’t put our finger on what it is, is there a basic value to having both genders present in the upbringing of a Child.
Dennison thinks that the ‘maternal’ relationship with the child contributes a lot to the positive development of the child — but this relationship doesn’t have to be with a ‘mother.’
“If being a mother means talking about emotions and nurturing and the cuddling side, we see a ton of benefit from that,” she says, “so whoever does that, it doesn’t have to be [a woman], I think that there’s a benefit to that maternal relationship between the parents and the children.”
Co-Host: Braden Sanford
Braden is a blogger and a stay-at-home Dad raising 4 kids under 3… including triplets and identical girls (aka a valiant attempt to retain my sanity…). Braden blogs at doingitdaddystyle.com
Our Guest: Julia Dennison
Julia Dennison is the executive editor of Parents.com. She co-parents her 3-year-old daughter Esme (and pughuahua) with her ex . With an amazing experience in digital and print media, Julia is a content strategist, covering a wide range of topics from health, parenting, and women’s lifestyle, to pop culture, politics, food and technology.
ORM Fertility is proud to support our gay male patients’ journey to parenthood. Gay men wishing to build their biological family will need the help of an egg donor, gestational surrogate, and in vitro fertilization (IVF). Our ingrowing website offers information and resources to make it easy for you when you start your research on becoming dads.
For over 30 years, ORM Fertility has been at the forefront of fertility treatment, providing personalized patient care, cutting-edge technology, and some of the highest success rates in the industry. We are honored to be a trusted resource for the LGBTQ+ community.
Inclusivity is not just a buzz word to us. We pride ourselves in being a truly welcoming clinic and helping all families grow. Our expert team walks parents-to-be through every step of their fertility journey. Our treatments include intrauterine insemination (IUI), in vitro fertilization (IVF), donor sperm, donor egg, gestational surrogacy, genetic testing, and fertility preservation.
Co-Hosts: Yan Dekel, Alex Maghen
Guest Host: Braden Sanford
Guest: Julia Dennison
Opening Theme: Hercules & Love Affair, “Leonora” buy here
Articles Related to this episode:
How to Make Your Marriage Gayer (Stephanie Coontz, The New York Times)
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