Dana Rudolph

Mother's (s') Day Gifts for Lesbian Mothers

Filed By Dana Rudolph | May 05, 2010 4:00 PM | comments

Filed in: Entertainment
Tags: Melissa Etheridge, moms, Mother's Day, rachel epstein

There's absolutely no reason Mother's (s') Day gifts for lesbian moms have to be "lesbian" themed. Flowers, breakfast in bed, an assortment of bath salts, a dual-speed cordless drill - all are perfectly appropriate no matter what mom's orientation, as long as they are something she'd like.

Still, for those of you wanting something a little more lesboriffic, here are some ideas for things to get your mom, your co-parent, or for your kids to get you:

  • Mom's Apple Pie: The Heart of the Lesbian Custody Movement, documents the lesbian mothers of the early 1970's who fought for the rights of their own families. In the process, they set precedents and founded institutions that still impact us today. Bilerico's two Kates are involved, too: Kate Clinton narrates, and Kate Kendell talks about the origins of the National Center for Lesbian Rights. I've done a full review over at Mombian. (Available directly from distributor.)
  • And Baby Makes More: Known Donors, Queer Parents, and Our Unexpected Families, edited by Susan Goldberg and ChloĆ« Brushwood Rose, is a wonderful collection of essays that explore the perspectives of those who have used a known donor, those who have themselves donated sperm or eggs or been a surrogate, and the children created by these acts. It's a great read on modern families, no matter how you created yours.
  • Who's Your Daddy?: And Other Writings on Queer Parenting, ed. Rachel Epstein, is another great collection of essays. The nearly 40 pieces from LGBTQ parents and our adult children across every letter of the spectrum offer personal, historical, and political insights and raise tough questions about parenting, gender, and society. It has still not been published in the U.S., but you can get it from the Canadian Women's Press or Chapters.indigo.ca, or from a few independent booksellers on Amazon.
  • If you are of the cooking-for-mom ilk (whether you are cook or eater), try Iron Chef and lesbian mom Cat Cora's Cat Cora's Kitchen: Favorite Meals for Family and Friends. Alas, her Cat Cora's Classics with a Twist: Fresh Takes on Favorite Dishes isn't out till June, but you can pre-order.
  • Melissa Etheridge's new album, Fearless Love. She's a lesbian. She's a mom. Many of us spent our coming out days listening to nothing but her. And yes, she and Tammy have split, but they're still moms.
  • Wanda Sykes made her comedy album Sick & Tired before she came out and became a mom (and it's not the kind of thing you want young kids to hear), but that doesn't mean the funny has faded.
  • Ellen DeGeneres isn't a mom, but her mother Betty has written much about her own journey to acceptance and activism on behalf of her daughter, first in Love, Ellen: A Mother/Daughter Journey and then in Just a Mom, where she offers advice to others who have written to her. (Both books were written in Ellen's pre-Portia days, but Betty's advice still rings true.)

Of course, if you don't like the consumerism of holidays like this, or if you don't like holidays that try to divide the world in such gendered ways, get the books from your local library (ask to order them if they're not in the collection!) or buy the books or media at any time that suits your fancy.

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Great list. I should mention, I'm in both Who's Your Daddy?: And Other Writings on Queer Parenting and And Baby Makes More: Known Donors, Queer Parents, and Our Unexpected Families.

I strongly recommend them both.

Oh, of course, Tobi! Bilerico is everywhere, isn't it? And I even mentioned your piece when I did my full review of And Baby Makes More. Sorry for forgetting to mention it here.

Good choices, Dana. I'm not a "mom" but I'd be happy to get the Melissa Etheridge album! :)

Oh bil, you know you're a mom on the inside.