Yes, It’s True: Gay is Good

Study: Children Raised by Same-Sex Couples Healthier and Happier

Photo by Beth Lofgren Flickr/creative commons

Photo by Beth Lofgren
Flickr/creative commons

Our children are now 28 and 32 after being raised in what we originally called a post-gender family, in keeping with our world view that post-genderism is part of everyone’s future.

As their parents, Dan and I may have appeared to them, and most of the world at large, as a “straight” couple, but we both considered ourselves true androgyneswishing since our youth to encompass everything available to males, females, and everything in between. It’s why we fell in love and stayed in love, and eventually founded VenusPlusX to usher in what we call A New Age of Sexual Freedom.

While they were growing up, Dan and I consciously overrode any social constructs that might be limiting to our children’s own self-expression, encouraging them to find their own path, what felt right to them. We let them make their own decisions at family meetings, and left to their own devices, they always (or almost always) chose a path of their own that we agreed with. We didn’t have to superimpose our views over their own minds, something too many parents do when they view their children as extensions of themselves rather than distinctly sovereign in their own right. We never asserted parental power, and instead put ourselves as their equal, asserting that it is the power of Love that is greater than all of us. We didn’t do everything right but we always strived to and this kept our attitude pointed in the right direction.

They turned out great, both now in meaningful relationships, each seeking what Dan and I shared, true love. They are the most wise people I know.

Still yet another longitudinal study has come along, this time from Australia, that seems to surprise many people in showing that children growing up with same-sex parents have just as much and by some measure more happiness, self-confidence, and family cohesion, and better health and school performance.

As queer parents are simultaneously finding their own way in a world currently filled with discrimination, they are more humble about their roles as parents, and this helps children discover their role on their own. Opposite sex parents who see themselves as the ultimate authority over their children’s’ lives, should take note, and start aspiring to see themselves similarly, as trustees in service for their children’s safe and healthy passage into adulthood.


The Sexual Freedom Project: A Culmination of Things

As a new addition to VenusPlusX, I would like to express my views on some of the interesting media I have come across here.

One video I found is particularly intriguing because the woman speaks of the big picture – the culmination of things that influence our sexuality.

Everyone is a product of their environment, and everything connects. Social mechanisms such as school, church, media, and upbringing tend to have a large impact on individuality.

What do you think? Are you free from the external influences that we all experience, or how are you still affected?

Send us a video or essay expressing your thoughts for a free VenusPlusX t-shirt.

More videos here

With a Desire to be Free

I’m not good with beginnings. Never have been. I’m more of a middle and end guy. Beginning from a previous end is one of the hardest things I’ve had to learn. For the past year or so, I’ve considered myself a nomad. I’ve traveled to three continents and back. I’ve worked. I’ve lived. I’ve seen. I’ve toured. I got lost. I spent three months without unpacking my suitcase before having to repack it to venture out on another excursion.


All of this was done under the assumption that it wouldn’t be done. You see, my travels abroad were not endorsed by my mother and father. They wanted me to get a job and start saving money and live with them. That was something I couldn’t do, nor could I have explained to them why it couldn’t be done. I defied their request and promptly boarded my flight at 10 one rainy night.

This all started years prior on a cool Southern afternoon. I was ready to board my flight back to the Northeast Corridor and return to school. That evening, I would tell my mother that I am gay. I would lose all that I knew and would have to rebuild my character, my soul, my sense of self, from the ground up. Years of reflection have told me that it was this sense of self that I lost. I spent two years under constant fire–hearing the likes of “no mother raises a faggot,” “you are not God’s best,” “you are going to die and burn in Hell,” “you won’t be able to handle your life.” Worse was how she said it and that my father never defended me. It was how my mother looked at me as if she were looking at someone who was not her child.

She did look at me like I was not her son. She did criticize who I was. She was wrong. She is wrong. That experience taught me that I have more power over who I am than I initially thought. You’d think it to be common sense, though if who you are is never challenged, you never realize all that you are or could be.

This is why I now consider myself an advocate.

Any one of us who have been admonished by anyone–society, close friends, family–are desperate to be understood. We are desperate to be free. We want to live our lives and be who we are without any pressure of conforming.

Conformity. Funny word, that one.

Why do people feel the need to conform? What about our societal structure tells us that we should conform to this small pool of potential selves? I simply told my mother that I am gay. You, the reader, could have told your father that you want to be an artist, not an engineer. You could have told your mother that you wish to not be called by a gender-specific pronouns. You could have told your best friend that you no longer understand the value of organized religion and will stop attending religious services.


The point is, we all have a desire to be free. Though we live in a country that calls itself free, do you not find it ironic that freedom is actually hard to come by?

Hello. My name is Philip. My story is not new. My story is not the worst one or the best one out there. But I believe in history: you must know where you have come from to figure out why you believe what you believe and what you can do to change that or enhance that belief system as you grow into the future. I am not perfect. I don’t want to be. What I want to be is a sponge that soaks up information and thoughts and spits out more and more questions. So let’s get started.

Blue sunrises, Philip

Images by: Nyttend – WikiCommons and J. Billinger – Media Wiki

Newsflash America: Denying Teen Sex Doesn’t Make It Go Away (Part 2)

In the U.S., teens often feel that if they were to confide in their parents about having sex or thinking about it, their parents would be very disappointed.

That is one of the reasons why teens don’t seek advice or guidance from their parents when it comes to sexual matters. But what about parents who don’t talk to their children?


Two major fears that American parents have are that if they broach the subject of sex with their teen, they may give the impression that they condone it or put the idea in their head in the first place. Let’s take a closer look at this concern that most American parents have.

For one, the fact that this parent doesn’t want their teen to think they “condone” teen sex reflects how, for American parents, teen sex is something to be feared and forbidden, even though the majority of American teens make sex part of their lives by age 17 or 18. Understandably, any approach that focuses on the dangers of sex does not give teens the tools to navigate the territory of sexuality and relationships in a healthy way. The evidence is in: the U.S. has one of the highest teen pregnancy rates and the Netherlands one of the lowest in the world.

But what is there to fear?

Obviously, there are the risks of unwanted pregnancy, HIV, and other sexually transmitted diseases (STD/STIs) when it comes to sex, but Americans tend to forget that there is as easy, cheap, and simple way to curtail these risks substantially: CONDOMS. Using latex condoms correctly and consistently are highly effective (nearly 99%) in preventing the sexual transmission of HIV and several STD/STIs during vaginal, oral, or anal intercourse, pregnancy, Using condoms also lowers female’s risk of developing cervical cancer and can help people clear HPV infection and/or reduce their risk of re-infection.

Other methods of contraception, such as hormonal methods, are just as effective. In fact, in the Netherlands, 6 out of 10 teenage girls are on the pill at first intercourse, versus only about 1 in 5 in the U.S. If more parents and educators openly taught teens about condoms and other contraceptives, teens would increase their use of contraceptives. Only then will the rate of unintended pregnancies, STD/STIs, and abortions drastically decline, and effectively reduce the risk of teen sex by teens who are too uneducated about sexual health matters to be sexually responsible.


Second, many experts agree that talking honestly and comprehensively to teens about sexuality does not increase the likelihood of sexual activity: it actually delays the onset of sex, reduce the frequency of sex, and lower the number of sexual partners among teens. Addressing sexuality frequently and with regard to different aspects, such as relationships, helps young people make more empowered and responsible choices about sex and their sexuality. Furthermore, when parents are able to provide guidance, teens will be less likely to rely on unrealistic and unhealthy media portrayals, such as porn, to help them understand how they should behave sexually.


For more detailed information, check out Schalet’s book “Not Under My Roof: Parents, Teens, and the Culture of Sexthat holistically compares American and Dutch teen sexual health outcomes based on the drastically different approaches to teen sexuality in the U.S. and the Netherlands.

Parents or teens can use her book or this post and “Newsflash America: Denying Teen Sex Doesn’t Make It Go Away (Part 1)” as conversation starters to move your family’s ideas forward in a healthy and safe way.

Image source:Wikimedia
Image source:Wikimedia – Another Point of View. User: Lamilli






Newsflash America: Denying Teen Sex Doesn’t Make It Go Away (Part 1)

Also in Spanish


Amy Schalet, author of “Not Under My Roof: Parents, Teens, and the Culture of Sex” (University of Chicago Press, November 2011), states that denial is the real problem for American parents when it comes to teen sex.

. . . But talking to teens about sex does curtail unwanted teenage pregnancy

Amy Schalet, an assistant professor of Sociology at the University of Massachusetts Amherst originally from the Netherlands, urges American parents to stop denying that teens have premarital sex or participate in other sexual activities. Once parents accept that teens have sex, and teenage sexual development is normal, then parents and children will be able to have open relationships. Also, teens will see their parents as available resources when they start exploring their sexuality and develop sexual morals. “Adolescents,” according to Schalet in an interview, “still need their parents as support, to help sort out what are healthy relationships, to take precautions against the risks of sex, and deal with experiences of first love.”

But most parents do want to talk and be resources for their children. However, only expressing concerns and warning against the dangers of sex are not the way to foster trust and openness in any relationship, making it difficult for teens to confide in them. Therefore, a culture of “sneaking around” is established where teens hide their sexual activities from their parents, which never ends well for either teens or their parents.

Americans view teen sexuality as merely a storm of hormones, generating the expectation that teens can’t actually have sex in the context of loving relationships. Schalet says that this can lead to the psychic burden of being split between being a “good” child and a sexual being: a phenomenon that does not happen as readily in the Netherlands.

In the Netherlands, Dutch families, the educational system, and the health care system go through the process of “normalizing” teenage sexual development: young people are encouraged to “self-regulate,” or refrain from sex before they are ready. But Dutch and Americans have severely different ideas to when teens are ready to have sex.

Most Dutch parents agree that teens are not ready for sex before the age 16 and that sex should occur in steady relationships in which both teens are in love and use precautions. Moreover, Dutch parents don’t want teenage sex to be a secret: they want to stay connected with their teens and be able to exercise influence and provide support, which includes providing teens with contraceptives.

For example, Dutch parents allow their older teens to have sleepovers with their partners, knowing full well that sex might occur. The conditions for the sleepover are generally that (again) the teens are in a steady relationship, are in love, and the parents have met or are familiar the partner (showing how Dutch parents, like their American counterparts, do not particularly want their teens to have “one night stands” or “hook ups,” for these pose greater threats to sexual health through STD/STIs transmission). On the other hand, Americans believe teens will never be ready for sex and expect youth to abstain from sex until marriage.

But why are parents in America so reluctant to speak with their children about sex when the Dutch aren’t?

Find out in “Newsflash America: Denying Teen Sex Doesn’t Make It Go Away PART 2 coming soon!

Tags: Teen sex, The Netherlands, Parents, teenage pregnancy, teenage sexual development, sexually transmitted diseases, abstinence


Caption: The Dutch acknowledge that children grow up to become sexual beings way before marriage. Therefore, parents and educators do all they can to help prepare teens to be sexually responsible and healthy when they are ready and decide to become sexually active.

Creative Commons Image by: FaceMePLS


The Sexual Freedom Project: A Culmination of Things

(También en Español)

In developing your sexuality, what kinds of messages do you find everyday, at home, in the media, at school, or on TV? What contradicts and what affirms you?

Make a video, write a poem, song, or an essay — or even create an original work of art — and express your thoughts. If we feature your contribution on the site, we will send you a free VenusPlusX t-shirt to thank you.

Video by Tiye Massey.