Writing about mommying

Someone recently asked me if I had any trouble writing about motherhood. Quite the opposite. I find I can’t write about anything else, even when I try. Last semester I wrote an essay that I SWORE was about a dead possum, but then I turned it into workshop and my classmates–clever writers and editors that they are–helped me see that it was really about babies.

Yesterday, I published the first of writing projects. This one is not about dead possums. It’s about the Kafkaesque universe in which many of us queer families live, a world of competing legal identities and responsibilities.

The essay is called “The Bureaucracy of Us” and it was published in The New Inquiry. I have another essay coming out soon about a similar subject. It’s called “How to Unmarry Your Wife.” I’ll let you all know when it goes live.


9 thoughts on “Writing about mommying

  1. Really interesting piece. I have a more vivid sense now of some of the stuff you have to contend with. Congrats! I should point out that the piece is really about dead possums, though. Cheers.


  2. This is AWESOME. It is such a good, honest, non-whiny explanation of the kinds of shit we have to go through all the time. (Though we, said lesbian moms who got to claim the adoption credit, had the good fortune of moving to from Iowa to California, not Texas, so we deal with that kinds of this WAY less these days.) I hope your adoption credit goes through. You’ll likely get audited–we did. We had to return something like three rounds of paperwork, but we finally got it. You should too, since DOMA was overturned on June 26, and you adopted before that.

    We love you guys. Thanks for putting your awesome writing out into the world for people to read.


      • Now it’s me–the Discerner the IRS knows as “Head of Household”–tagging on my love and admiration. It’s exhausting to write about the rat’s-nest of state and federal laws we have to disentangle as we file diligent paperwork. Remember that Lambda Legal is a useful resource in moments like this, and do expect to have that tax credit denied–but I do think it’s important to stick with it. We’ll send your our files, if you like, and you can see which level of grumpiness won us our $3000.

        And like M said, thanks for your clear and exhausted voice.


  3. You express so clearly how the instability and volatility of the legal structures produce consistent anxiety and insecurity. Injustice and bullshit! But at least we are slowly, sloppily, moving in the right direction? (I know, I know: that tune again.) As for FL, AL, TX, et al: they may have no choice but to shape up eventually. Though of course, systemic justice does not equal social justice. Anyway, as evidenced in your blog, you and Marta handle it all with admirable intelligence and good humor! You are the best. Thanks, always, for the dialogue.


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