School Age Children
Parenting 5-11 year olds
LGBTIQ parents have many of the same parenting challenges and joys as heterosexual parents.
The Raising Children Network is a fantastic resource for all parents with reliable information and resources to support them in the day-to-day work of raising children. The website has information specific to newborns, babies, toddlers and pre-schoolers.
However, there are some challenges unique to parenting children for LGBTIQ parents. You may want to talk with your child about your sexuality and/or gender identity. School-aged children can understand concepts such as gender, sexual identity, adoption, pregnancy and insemination. They begin to see that not everyone lives in the same circumstances as they do and that there are differences between families. At this age, they may be very focussed on the impacts having an LGBTIQ parent will have on them and how their peers will perceive them. We cannot make our children’s social lives easier or rescue them from their insecurities. However we can reassure them of our love, and be confident and patient with our children’s issues. Our sections on coming out and communicating with your children have lots of helpful information.
When children are young, it is a great time to expose them to books about different types of families. It can be hard to find books that are inclusive of a range of families in your usual bookstores.
Good places to start are the:
School-aged children might want to meet other families like their own. Our forum is a good place to connect with other parents. You could also connect your child with the Children’s section of this website and the organisation COLAGE for children of LGBTIQ parents.
If you have a school-aged child, you might be thinking about how best to engage with your child’s school to ensure a safe and supportive environment for them. The Family Equality Council has created a Back to School Tool which is a fantastic resource for parents. Our online forum is also a great place to talk to other parents about how they approached enrolling their children and engaging with their schools.