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Dr Robert Saltzman

Recently a gay couple (2 men) moved next to us. They have one little kid (6 yrs old) as result of the previous relationship of one of them with his divorced wife.

The problem is that we (a straight couple) have a kid the same age as theirs, and he is asking us to visit them and socialize with them.

We have nothing against their own way to be or live. Neither are we homophobic in any way, but do not know how to handle this situation.

Would you be so kind as to give us an idea of what to say to our little one in order to handle this situation.



Hello, CP--

Since you say you are not homophobic, why not simply socialize with your new neighbors as you would with some neighbors who were not gay? Since socializing with neighbors is a perfectly normal human activity which does not really need explanation, you do not need to try to explain anything at all to your child unless he himself asks questions--questions about why there is no mom in that family, for example. If that happens, you simply tell him that there are all kinds of families, some have a mom and a dad, some have two dads, some have two moms, and some have just a dad and no mom, or a mom and no dad. That explanation has two great advantages:

1. It is true.

2. It is non-judgmental.

Be well.

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page last modified May 15, 2008

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