Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Changing the Shape of Future Dreams

With the emergence of marriage and adoption equality, the future has never been brighter for LGBT youth coming of age and thinking of all the possibilities their futures hold. Even as recent as ten years ago, when I was in high school in coastal Virginia, the idea of even the possibility of marrying and having children as openly gay seemed unimaginable.

These days that's not the case for Joe, 16, or Andrew 18, of New York. They are among the young people featured in The Staten Island Advance's look into how "the game is changing" for gay and lesbian teens who want the same things in their futures as their straight peers. And with the emerging trends, they have a high chance of having their dreams come true.

These New York teens need only look at the many LGBT people having committed households and raising families in boroughs throughout New York City. A surprising statistic featured in The New York Times finds that around half of same-sex couple in The Bronx are raising children (with smaller but still high numbers in Brooklyn, Queens, and Staten Island).

New York City may not be a representation of the rest of the U.S., but in many ways what is happening in The Bronx (which many not be as LGBT-friendly as, say, Manhattan) is a microcosm of what is taking place in areas urban, suburban and rural across the nation. LGBT people are coming out at increasingly younger ages. And with marriage equality in Massachusetts and California (remember: "Vote NO on Proposition 8!") now a reality, the sky increasingly seems the limit for young LGBT people whose future plans include the right to marriage and family.

No comments: