In honor of National Coming Out Day, I wanted to highlight the growing number of families that are made up of same sex parents and remind readers about the film by Focus Features that had me smiling, laughing, crying and reflecting on my own unique family. The Kids Are All Right played at independent theatres a few months ago and is due out on DVD in early November.
Now that I’m a part of a blended family, I find myself having to explain our situation on a regular basis. Several of my son’s classmates are having a hard time believing that his father is not the father of my unborn child. I’ve had to correct assumptions with other adults about the fact that I am no longer married to my son’s father.
I try extra hard not to make assumptions about other people’s situations since I know many families made up of single parents, same sex parents and blended families like my own. Some single parents are single by choice, have had a spouse who has died, or have a co-parent who is involved as much as mine is. Some of these parents have adopted their kids, or have used other methods to bring their children into the world and may or not share their child’s last name. Each of these families are as special as the next.
No matter how your family was created, The Kids Are All Right provides a great look at life with teenage kids, a relationship with a partner that may not be as perfect as you would hope, and what it means to be a family.
Annette Bening and Julianne Moore are the parents in this film, a lesbian couple who used a sperm donor to bring their two children into the world. Mark Ruffalo plays the donor who the teenage kids end up searching for in order to find out a little more about their family history and to thank him for making it possible to be here.
While much of the film focuses on the relationship between the two women, it’s a powerful reflection of life as a teenager (and life with teenagers) as the young characters handle awkward, yet everyday situations, from friends who might not be the best influence, to managing romantic relationships for the first time.
The film is Rated R so parents should be cautious before seeing this film with their kids. It had me laughing out loud in several scenes and brought me to tears in many more (dropping off their daughter at college brought back bittersweet memories of my first day on campus). I highly recommend you add this to your Netflix queue if you haven’t had a chance to see it yet.
National Coming Out Day might be once a year, but there are things we can do each and every day to help support the LGBT community. The Coming Out Project helps LGBT, as well as straight-supportive people live openly and talk about their support for equality at home, at work and in their communities each and every day. Get involved today.
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