Lesbian motherhood: an exploration of Canadian lesbian families

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University of Toronto Press, Apr 1, 1996 - Family & Relationships - 159 pages
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The issue of gay and lesbian parenting has been the focus of much controversy in recent years. The views of politicians, the public, and the clergy have received much media attention, often overshadowing those of the parents themselves. Fiona Nelson attempts to bridge this gap with Lesbian Motherhood, the first study of its kind, which explores the many aspects and stages of lesbian motherhood.

Nelson's study is based on over thirty interviews with lesbian mothers in Alberta. The women fall into two groups: those raising children who had been conceived in prior heterosexual relationships and those raising children who had been conceived within lesbian relationships. The two groups provide a valuable comparison because, although the effects of the social context can be quite similar for each, their experiences of mothering are often strikingly different.

Nelson explores such issues as reproductive decision-making, interacting with other mothers, the effects of the social context in which lesbian mothering is occurring, lesbian step-parents, domestic and parenting roles, and raising boys. The non-supportive social milieu in which they exist is one of the major factors distinguishing lesbian families from many other families.

There is some discussion in the book of the political activism that has occurred in Canada around the legal status and equality of lesbian women and their families. There is also a Canadian resource directory for lesbian mothers and prospective mothers.

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Reproductive DecisionMaking
D I Families
Blended Families

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