A third of UK lesbian mothers face homophobia from other parents

The same amount of children have been bullied for having same-sex parents.

A study, carried out by Kantar and commissioned by DIVA magazine publisher Linda Riley, has found that over a third of lesbian parents (37%) have faced homophobia from other parents.

The online survey, which was commissioned for Lesbian Visibility Week, was one of the largest of its kind and heard responses from 1,400 women.

Speaking to Reuters, Linda said: “I’m actually surprised it wasn’t higher. I’ve got twins and they were bullied at around 10 by a group of other children.”

She added: “When you’re waiting for the children at the (school) gate, you get passive homophobia. You might not get people shouting at you, but you’ll get everybody whispering and pointing at you.”

Linda also told Reuters that other parents had prevented their children from attending a birthday party for her twins.

Aaron Burden

Sharing some of their experiences of homophobia, one mother said: “When my wife and I got married, our four-year-old daughter was so proud she stood up and told the whole school assembly. What followed was weeks of ‘lesbian weddings’ on the playground.”

Another, whose child attended a school where anti-LGBTQ protests were held outside, said: “Parents in school have asked teachers not to discuss my son’s home life.

“Parents have canvassed outside of my son’s school against LGBTQ relationships. Other children tell my son it’s wrong to have two mums.”

In once instance, a mother reported that the homophobia faced by their child became so severe they “stopped wanting to go to school.” The mother added: “We felt anger it was not dealt with by the school, and also guilty for feeling like we were the root of the kid’s upset.”

However, there were also some other worrying statistics thrown up from the research. Over three-quarters of lesbians (79%) felt that men were more visible within the LGBTQ community, and a further 86% were worried about transphobic attitudes being attributed to lesbians.

Speaking to the i, Paula Alexander, who parents two children: “Undoubtedly, there is still a long way to go before the LGBTQ community feels equal and fully embraced.

“And yet, 30 years ago, I knew of no lesbian role models and could never have imagined having my own children. Thankfully that at least has changed.”

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