A Letter Every Gay Father Should Write to His Future Kid

To Whom It May Concern, 

Whoa. A little official, right? I’m not quite sure who you will be yet, so I suppose I should be a tad bit formal. I’m Jeffrey, one of your fathers, and I am comfortable in saying that. Finally comfortable saying that. At 23-years-old, I know wholeheartedly that having two parents of the same gender will not be a detriment to you in any way.

That being said, there still may be some setbacks for you. Sorry, but you’ll have to work a little harder on Father’s Day and make two cards. For your extra effort, I promise to give you the day off from school every Mother’s day so we can spend it together; hopefully with one of your grandmothers. Actually, you can make me a card on Mother’s Day, too; I'm not too picky, but I hope it is one filled with some cash and little poems about how I am such a cool parent. I am still cool, right? Was I ever cool?

I don’t know what country you’ll be from, or what nationality you will be, or the circumstances of your adoption, but like any “expecting” parent, I am sure I will constantly wonder if you will be a boy or a girl. The first few years of your life, you will be dressed in little flannel shirts with ripped jeans and we will listen to 90’s music before you go to bed. You can complain, but it won’t do you that much good. I don't see us living in Buffalo, but I'll make you a deal; if you go to my Alma mater, Canisius College, your father and I will help you pay for it.

To be honest with you, it used to upset me knowing that I wouldn't be able to look at you and see myself; my thick hair, my light brown eyes, my big nose, or any other genetic possibly that I would pass onto you, much like any heterosexual parents would be able. That's fine, though. I don't know you yet, nor who your father will be, but I do know we will be nothing alike. I know that for sure.  You'll be my kid, and I'll be your dad. That's all that will matter.

Who are you going to take after? I was too sneaky and too problematic as a child, and it would be crazy to think that karma would forget about me that easily. I was manipulator, but sweet. I realized that if I could make people laugh, I could pretty much get away with anything; I hope you realize that early in life, too.

I want you to learn the hard way about things. Move away. Go away to college. Have your car break down on a road trip. Say "yes" when everyone else is saying "no," and vice versa, if that's really the way you feel.

Do weird things not only in your youth, but your whole life. Make goals and surpass them. Be a little cliche at times. Do something strange, like write a letter to your unborn kids.

Above all, do something you love everyday and also something you don't. Believe me, it helps put things into perspective. Catch you on the flip side.

This letter originally appeared on A Note to My Kid.

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Jeffrey Hartinger

Jeffrey is a graduate of Canisius College. He works at a nonprofit organization in Manhattan and writes freelance. You can visit his website at www.thewhygenerationusa.blogspot.com. He has a strong interest in politics, comedy, and music, in addition to using his writing to educate and entertain.

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