This is what our healthy family looks like, our core family that is. It Extends, because that little boy there holding a mask over his head has never ever known what the rest of the country lives like. We are a Pagan community, this means that most of us, with our “coming out of the broom closet,” lost our immediate family — parents and grandparents, possibly uncles and aunts, and if we had grown children, the same with them.
Add to that most of us are gay, bi, or polyamorous. This means, when one of us has a child we have to definitely “redefine family.”
My husband and I are legal clergy for a Pagan organization we co-founded way before our youngest child came into the picture and, though we have three children over 25, we found ourselves raising a baby. At the age of three months, he had a “Wiccaning” not a “Christening” and he has grown up with many god parents, aunts, and uncles, and nanas and grandpoppies. He does not want for love and he hates that he has a whole bunch of people telling him what to do.
This year, when he started public school in a small town we were a bit angsty, but we felt it was important that he learn to live in a world much differently than the one we had pieced together for him. When the teacher in his “before school” conference asked if there was anything she needed to know about him, I almost did not tell her we were Pagan. But I knew his different way of presenting (very fluid in sexuality), and talking about the “Gods” plural, and celebrating holidays they had never heard of would give him away. So, I blurted out “well… besides the fact that he was raised by older parents, he has been raised by a Pagan community since we are both ministers.”
She just stared.
Fortunately, I was assured by the principal that there was no emphasis placed on religion in his public school — which I am sure the Buddhist and Muslim children appreciate in his class also.
Right now I am happy to report this offbeat child is happy and doing well in school, and learning how the other half live. And when his pink-haired mother with tattoos picks him up in the carpool line, no one stares anymore, they just wave.
Comments on We are the future: Our post-millenial, Pagan, LGBT, polyamorous family
In this day and age of so many children coming from homes where there doesn’t appear to be much love or stability, it still blows my mind that people take issue with ‘non-traditional families’ that provide both of these things. The form of the family shouldn’t really matter – and it sounds like your child’s teachers get that and I’m happy for you.
I think this is great! My wife and I are Pagan but we are raising our kiddos, 20 and 13, to make their own decisions when it comes to their spiritual paths. We are an open communication family when it comes to discussions and we’ve had modified rituals when they have asked to be involved. It took a hot minute for the parents of our children’s friends to wave but we’ve actually made some good friends! My wife made the comment just the other day – ‘it’s not like that anymore’ but I still feel it is sometimes. I’m glad to hear you and your family are thriving and that your little one is doing well in school!
This is only indirectly related… I’m actually in the process of writing a book that is linked the the quarter-cross calendar and tied into the seasons and traditions related to that. So I find myself reading a lot of Pagan literature, websites, etc. But ultimately I’m a newbie to the whole idea (I only fell down the rabbit hole because of my book). There is so much information and counter information, I’m guessing because Paganism is very old and regionally dependent. Anyways, does anyone have any good resources to recommend? I’m always looking for more information (especially in regards to Irish deities, etc.) Thanks!
Where did you get the mirror?! That is precisely what I am looking for.