Jul 18, 2013 snoozn commented on Sprawl Kills.
Don't forget gay-friendly smaller towns. This often includes college towns and other more highly educated areas. I live in a town of about 100,000 and gay kids seem to have it pretty good here. A friend of my middle school son recently told his group of friends he was gay and the reactions ranged from "Yeah, I thought so!" to "Oh, I didn't know that!" and then conversation turned back to video games. The whole group came to our house for an end of school sleepover and not one parent complained or kept their kid home. Trans-gender kids are well-accepted at local schools also. So it's not just big cities!
Apr 15, 2013 snoozn commented on Youth Pastor Watch.
So, all these "youth pastor watch" columns have me wondering if anyone has really looked at the statistics. Dan makes the point that your kids aren't necessarily safe in church. But I'm wondering if there is any real data that compares various people who work with kids. Are youth pastors more likely to molest than coaches or scout volunteers? I don't know, but it would be interesting (and useful) to find out.
Jul 18, 2012 snoozn commented on SL Letter of the Day: Now Hold It.
This looks like a question where Dan should have brought in a real doctor rather than consulting WebMD. Just because two different sexual activities can aggravate the same condition doesn't mean both are equally dangerous. I agree with @6 that LW should consult a kink-friendly ob/gyn. She might even be able to fix the problem. My daughter had urinary reflux (which causes recurring UTIs) and had minor surgery that completely fixed it. I remember when she was diagnosed they told me she was lucky she had a big bladder because it would be bad for her to hold in her pee. So please see a doctor!
May 18, 2012 snoozn commented on SL Letter of the Day: Show This Woman Some Love.
I attended a speech by a guy named Jonathan Mooney who talks about kids with special needs and learning disabilities. But one thing he said, I think could equally apply to kids with ANY kind of extra challenge:

He said that studies have found one factor over and above all others makes a difference in whether or not kids with learning challenges succeed. That one factor is to have at least one adult in their life who advocates for them, who stands up for them, who they know is on their side.

It sounds like you may not have had a person like that, which makes it even more impressive that you've come so far. But now YOU ARE THAT PERSON FOR YOUR NEPHEW! Which as Dan and pretty much everyone has said is so wonderful. Remember that the difference you make in his life is real and important.

I think you should choose whichever route works best in dealing with your family of origin: ignore them as pathetic idiots, be angry at them and use that anger positively, pretend they don't even exist. Whatever you do, don't let them affect the way you value yourself. They have fallen for a sad, sick scam -- you got away.
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Feb 29, 2012 snoozn commented on SL Letter of the Day: Not Wanting Kids—Your Own, Someone Else's—Doesn't Make Someone an Asshole.
@8 Cato,
There's one of my pet peeves! People who say "I hate kids." Do people who say this really not understand that it is no different from saying "I hate black people" or "I hate handicapped people" or "I hate old people?" NEWS FLASH: kids are people! Really! They're smaller and younger than adults, but they are actual people with a full range of personalities.

Now I have no problem with TESTY being open that she doesn't want to date people with kids. People have all kinds of deal-breakers about who they'll date and there's nothing wrong with this one. Being a step-parent is a huge responsibility.

But that's much different from HATING an entire class of human beings.
Feb 22, 2012 snoozn commented on SL Letter of the Day: Infantile-ism.
I suggest that BIATCH's boyfriend DTMFA!
Jan 18, 2012 snoozn commented on Savage Love.
@69 Bundling bags...now why didn't I think of that! But really, I know I can't "stop my kids from having sex" nor do I wish to as long as they are mature and make good decisions. I talk to them about trust and about good and bad reasons for having sex, etc. As far as enforcing rules, well I grew up in a pretty lenient household. So I see the positive side of having parents make rules so that kids don't act completely on impulse. If my kid thinks they are ready for a sleepover with someone they actually want to sleep with, I'd like them to discuss it with me and spend some time thinking about whether it is really a good idea, which leads me to why I disagree with...

@70, because I definitely don't see pregnancy as the main downside of having sex. There are plenty of risks, both physical and emotional, associated with sex. Teens and young adults are vulnerable and I want my kids to go down the path of having positive sex rather than negative sex, whatever their orientation.

@73 and @74, yep my oldest had a few of those group sleepovers with everyone in the living room where parents could theoretically pop in at any time. Is it a nerdy thing? Maybe -- my oldest is a nerd!

Whatever I do and whatever my kids' orientations end up being, I'm sure I'll screw up somewhere. Ah well, I never expected to go through life without doing leotarded things now and again.
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Jan 18, 2012 snoozn commented on Savage Love.
@59, thanks for the input. I agree that mostly I'd want to be fair about it. I want all my kids to feel like they're living with the same set of rules, even when those rules may be different from other households. Which means that by about puberty, no sleepovers with whatever gender he/she is attracted to. At least not until he/she is mature enough and has a partner who I trust enough to allow for "that kind of sleepover."

Of course I'm still stuck because my two near- or at-puberty kids don't seem to be attracted to either gender as far as I can tell. At least neither is too big on sleepovers at the moment either!
Jan 18, 2012 snoozn commented on Savage Love.
I don't know if I'll need this advice or not (2 kids with orientation so far undetermined), but I'm wondering how parents of gay kids handle sleepovers. It's pretty straightforward with hetero kids, like my oldest. Same sex sleepovers are just dependent on if you want to allow that kid to stay over. Opposite sex (until you decide it's okay for your kid to have sex in your house) are not allowed or require some kind of enforced separation. So with gay kids, do you just do vice versa, allow sleepovers with opposite gender friends but not with same gender?
Oct 24, 2011 snoozn commented on Religious Bigot to Straight Parents: Ask Hospitals to Keep LGBT Staff Away From Your Children.
I was once in a situation where I should have written a note to the hospital that I didn't want my daughter exposed to religious wingnuts. A few days after the Columbine shooting I had to take my youngest to Denver Children's Hospital for some tests. My older daughter, who was six at the time was with me too. While I stayed with the baby to comfort her during the tests, my six-year-old stayed with a nurse in another room. On my way home I found out the nurse had talked to her the whole time about Columbine and how the killers were in Hell now and what was happening to them. Scared the shit out of her. And SO INAPPROPRIATE. So yes, this is stupid. I think medical PROFESSIONALS need to avoid all controversial/religious/political discussion with children, ESPECIALLY when the kids' parents aren't around.