Anytime is a great time to talk to your kids about being an ally to their LGBTQ+ friends, family, and the community at large! But Pride Month is an extra special time to do so. Every June (and July if you’re like us and live in San Diego), we get the chance to exclusively celebrate the LGBTQ+ community. Including the many gender identities and sexual orientations that make up our world. No matter what age your children are, there’s never a wrong time to teach your kids about allyship and the history of Pride.
Setting the Tone
In our house, whatever makes you you is worth celebrating! It’s important to Bobby and me that there is always an open space for communication and self-expression in our home. We’re no strangers to serious conversations with our kids (i.e. the pandemic, racial tension, homelessness, etc.), but we never approach them through that mindset. We tap into our core values (love, acceptance, patience) and approach each conversation through that lens.
Teaching kids about Pride is no different. Not only is it important to us to talk about what it means to be an ally, but also the history of how pride came to be, and why we’re so dang happy to celebrate it.
Getting the Facts Right
We are proud allies of the LGBTQ+ community. As such, we’re also keenly aware that pride wasn’t all the, for lack of a better phrase, sunshine and rainbows that we see today. While we’re happy to have reached a point in our history where we can have the parades and parties, we want our kids to know that there was so much that came before.
There was the Stonewall Riots, which sparked the modern pride movement in the US. And the fight to legalize gay marriage in the US and around the world. (Took us long enough!) Even learning the symbolism behind the pride flag. Essentially, we feel it’s important to convey that yes, this is the time to celebrate, but here’s why we’re doing it, and here’s what still needs to be done.
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Above all, we want our kids to practice what we preach. Teaching them about being an ally in their everyday lives is a huge part of the discussion. We break it down into simple terms (What is an ally? How can you be one?) and see what kind of answers we get and go from there.
Allies are some of the most powerful voices to help others understand the importance of equality and pass the mic to those who can speak on discrimination firsthand.
Keeping the Conversation Going
Teaching kids to be an ally goes far beyond Pride Month. We’re proud to be allies and want to keep doing the work once the festivities are over. To us, that means being inclusive, open-minded, willing to talk, willing to listen, and committed to self-educate. It’s not up to the LGBTQ community to educate us—we have to do it!
Whether that’s donating or volunteering for a local nonprofit connected to the community, seeking out LGBTQ+ artists and makers to support, or actively having more discussions as a family, we want to continue our support long after Pride Month! A one-time conversation is always good, but the only way to see actual change is consistent and routine work and advocacy. All are welcome in this house and we’re hoping yours is the same!
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