As more and more gay men are becoming fathers, a new website has been launched to offer advice, assistance and support. According to a June 14 report by the Associated Press, two Austin men who are facing the challenges of fatherhood as a gay couple designed the nonprofit organization to help other men in their situation.
As first time fathers, Brian Stephens and Andy Miller launched The Handsome Father back in April after both felt they were alone in the process of raising their 7-year-old son, Clark. They did have straight parents around them, but none could offer advice or guidance in the process of adoption. As Stephens and Miller felt they had no mentors to turn to, they are now those mentors and just a few months after The Handsome Father’s launch, the couple is holding its first Father’s Day celebration in the form of a brunch for gay fathers on Sunday (June 15).
It is a great outlet for gay fathers and fathers-to-be as the website is designed to provide the leadership and information Stephens and Miller felt was missing when they went through their adoption process. The website’s mission statement says, “We believe that every man can be who he is and be a father. We foster a community of support to connect, equip and inspire gay fathers and fathers-to-be. We envision a world where all fathers find a community of support to grow and nurture their families.”
The website offers stories, blogs, a mentorship program and give links to other sites that may be helpful. There are different levels of membership and the response has already been strong as the Facebook page already has about 1,200 followers. The Father’s Day brunch is just an example of the type of gatherings Stephens and Miller hope to organize through the website. They hope to hold other events in other cities nationwide. Stephens feels the website is in itself is progress. He told the Austin American-Statesman, “Just the fact that it’s out there, what a difference that makes.”