Sunday, December 2, 2007

Being a GLBT Parent in Saipan

I recently wished all of you a happy Thanksgiving Holiday and then dove right into the celebration of our son's first birthday. He turned the big one on November 28th and we, both mommies, took the day off to celebrate the happy occasion. This was followed up with a big party on Saturday with hamburgers and hotdogs. For our daughter's first birthday, who is now three, we had a very small party. (It is recommend one child guest for every year the child is) However, this time we decided when the child is only one years old the party really is for the parents, not the child. Additionally, in this community we have been invited to many children's birthday parties and they are usually full of lots of adults and children. One tends to feel obligated to invite all of those who have invited you to their children's birthday party, not to mention if you invite one you have to invite all as word gets around. Ultimately you still miss inviting people out of pure short-sidedness and hope in the end to not have offended too many.

This leads me into talking about how it is to be a GLBT parent living in Saipan. I have only known of three other GLBT parents here is Saipan. (one gay local couple, one gay mainland couple, and one lesbian Asian couple) When I think of there being four GLBT parent couples (that I know of) in Saipan it makes me think it must be a fairly supportive environment. Yes there isn't any GLBT parent clubs or social support groups. However, I do not feel as if my life is in danger or feel contempt from others living around me which can happen living in other places. I can say that 99% of me feel's just like everyone else. The one percent that doesn't was based on less than a hand-full of experiences here in the past seven years. Living in those places where one does feel a threat it is important to have support groups however, living here I do not feel different from others and that need isn't so important. Every now and then I do miss the GLBT community support group though because it is nice to be around people like myself.

Island Dyke

9 comments:

Saipangoodboy said...

Support! Looking forward to read more story...

Saipangoodboy

Island Dyke said...

Hi saipangoodboy,

Thank you for your comments...in collaboration with another gay couple, we are planning on starting a couples support group soon (not necessarily couples with children). Since we are couples it is easier to begin something that supports where we are currently...I can see how it may help to inspire or off-spring other support groups as well.

More coming up on support...thank you

Island Dyke

Saipangoodboy said...

Hi,

Great idea, wanna to join with you even I'm still a single guy...

Bruce A. Bateman said...

Come on by, I'll support you in anything you want to do.

For a long time during my 'formative' teen years we lived next door to a lesbian parent couple. I never realized they were 'gay'. They were just our neighbors and our friends. Even when classmates at school would make rude remarks about 'queers' or whatever, I never really equated that with the loving family that lived next door. This was in the deep south and some of the redneck rhetoric could be vicious, but not once, not ever, did I ever hear a kid or a parent disrespect the McElwee family. That experience, probably more than any other makes GL relationships seem pretty normal, maybe even blase' to me. (Although, as a lesbian myself, I am a bit more inclined to accept that at face value than gay relationships. So I guess I'm not as 'liberated' as I make myself out to be).


We had a big first birthday party. Olive said it was expected both by her Philippine culture and by our Carolinian and Chamorro neighbors as well. Must have been 300 or so in attendance. Seemed nuts to me since Alexander could care less about any of it except the never ending source of playmates. That said we had a great time and got to meet lots of folks. It was a lot of work, however. Next 'must do' party is at 7. I'm thinking about being on vacation about then. HEHEHH

Later,
Bruce

rev said...

Bruce is such a wonderful bloke, i must say. ;-) sorry for not showing up at Porky's, been bz too...sleeping and eating and painting and griping....

Bruce A. Bateman said...

Come on by, Rev. We need to work on that design. The mojitos are great.

kazu_11 said...

Hi Laurie! remember me? I used to work at TR's in Saipan but I'm in Hawaii now. Your baby girl's name is Grace too, right? I'm so happy for you guys. Hope all is well. Say hi to Lori.

Island Dyke said...

Hi Kazu! yes I remember u! How is Hawaii? Lori says hi too! Yes Grace and now we have son Cristian, he's a ham! Cheers

kazu_11 said...

wow, that's lovely! congratulations! i like reading your blog. keep 'em coming.