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Fathers' day. (reader forum).

Heaps of praise should be accorded B.D. Wong and his partner, Richie Jackson, for courageously sharing the story of their sad and wonderful journey to parenthood ["Baby Comes Early, Daddy Comes Out," June 10]. My eyes filled with tears when I read what could easily have been my own story (minus the stardom).

My partner and I are the proud parents of twin 2-year-old girls. One of our sisters served as egg donor, and one of us was sperm donor. After 36 weeks of excellent pregnancy with a wonderful surrogate (and family friend), we received a call informing us that one of our babies had not grown since her last ultrasound three weeks earlier and that her heartbeat was labored. We drove through the night to get to Los Angeles and arrived at the hospital one hour after our girls were delivered by emergency C-section. Reading this story, I relived the fear, despair, and feeling of helplessness of that long drive two years ago when we prayed with all our might for healthy babies. Our troubled baby was born healthy but small at 3 pounds, 5 ounces.

Parenthood has been life-transforming for us and feels like our natural occupation. While I believe that no gay (or nongay) person should become a parent unless they have a burning desire to do so, I also believe gay parenthood will ultimately do more to bring justice to the world and change antigay attitudes than all the parades and lobbying and political action combined (though I support all those things too). Every out gay parent I have met is committed, enthusiastic, generous, and loving because they have had to work hard to become parents. The next generation of children raised by such parents will have a tremendous impact on their peers and the world, and will destroy many of the false and negative stereotypes of gay people.

Randall Tarpey-Schwed

Mill Valley, Calif

Hooray for Jackson Foo Wong and his parents with the handy names! If my better half and I did that, we'd wind up with Lubin Dawson, an unfortunate name to hang on any kind.

I wouldn't worry about how Jackson will take his complicated entrance into the world when he's older, if anything, he'll probably be flattered so many people went to so much trouble. Anyway, kids are a lot more resilient than they're usually given credit for. Had I written a certain book, its title would be Heather Has Two Mommies and Isn't Fazed by It in the Least.

Kevin Dawson, Los Angeles, Calif.

While I applaud your article on B.D. Wong, I am upset by the photos used in the article. I'm no prude by any means, and I do like the playful nature of the photos in your magazine, but the shirt-open photos of B.D. with his son are questionable. I don't like the message this sends both inside and outside the community. This is supposed to be a serious news article. Why are you pandering to the stereotype of gays as skin- and body-obsessed individuals? Some might say I am overreacting, but given the current culture of antigay backlash, we don't need to fuel the fire that gays are pedophiles.

Matthew J. Tosiello, Falls Church, Va.
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Copyright 2003, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

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Publication:The Advocate (The national gay & lesbian newsmagazine)
Date:Jul 8, 2003
Words:541
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