The first Gay Fathers meeting is a big step. Who will be there? What is this about? If this describes you, then relax, you are like the vast majority of men at their first Gay Fathers meeting. Do let someone know if this is your first meeting. Then sit back and join in the discussion when ready. If asked, answering with "I prefer to listen, tonight" will be respected.
We discuss many topics related to our experiences -- past and present -- about being attracted to men and being a father, and we encourage every man to participate. However, Gay Fathers of Toronto will not advise. We encourage every man to find the path best suited for him and his situation.
Many gay dads get frustrated with perceived attitudes of single, childless gay men, e.g. a general dislike of kids or a self-centredness that seems to compete with kids for attention. Becoming a parent changes people, but how? Perhaps understanding the nature of those changes triggered by parenthood (beyond feedings and diapers) would shed light on the frustrations many fathers feel when dating single men. When those frustrations increase rather than wane over time, gay dads frequently respond with “My children come first.”
Really? Always? Even during the years of marriage to their mothers? No father has ever reported that he told his wife “My children come first”, not even a 2nd wife. So, is the claim even true? Are there no exceptions? Adults use their children, sometimes as an excuse to avoid things and sometimes to give themselves permission to do things or go places.
When telling your boyfriend that your children come first, he is likely to hear “Well I know where I stand, and it’s not very well.” Is there a better way to articulate the problem? There are legitimate differences between single men and fathers, but is it possible that “my children come first” is a convenient way to end an unsatisfying relationship or to avoid risking emotional commitment.
*When two or more facilitators are usually present, the Second Facilitator will be happy to talk privately if you prefer.*
The 519 Church St Community Centre, Room 304 Map to 519 ►[Opens new window]◄
Gay Fathers of Toronto is independent and is not financially supported or sponsored by any organization or group. Self-supported since it first met in 1978, every man is asked to contribute $5 at each meeting to defray the costs of meeting space, the website, etc. however at your first meeting, you are our guest. If $5 is a financial burden and is the reason for not coming, please contact or email (firstname.lastname@example.org)privately. We are here to support, not to inhibit or to embarrass.
Meeting leaders are gay fathers and volunteers. Please note, they are trained to facilitate discussions; they are not life coaches, marriage counsellors, psychologists, or lawyers. They cannot give advice. Gay Fathers encourages all men to seek out professional assistance where it may be needed.
Mutual respect is expected. Predatory or intimidating behaviour will not be tolerated. Gay Fathers of Toronto has a Code of Mutual Respect. Ask a Facilitator to browse a copy of it if you want more information. Talk to a Facilitator or email us confidentially (email@example.com) about anything that offends or concerns you.