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My gay friend wants to take his son to a toddler group that is run by a Church - do any church-goers here run a toddler group?

(54 Posts)
TAFKAtheUrbanDryad Sun 04-Oct-09 10:51:37

He is worried that he will get a negative reaction from the leaders. I have to say, that going by my own toddler group (church run, with a very slight Christian bias) he would certainly get a few odd looks, and possibly some nasty comments behind his back if people found out that he was gay.

I know there are going to be people who say, "How will people know?" but there is no way you could meet my friend and not realise that he's gay! grin

Katymac Sun 04-Oct-09 11:09:16

It depends (imo) on the type of toddler group & the type of church

If it is OFSTED registered or conrolled in any way they should have policies in place preventing discrimination

If it is a nice Christian church - the people should be able to take people as they are and not be nasty & vicious

I may be in cloud cuckoo land sad

TAFKAtheUrbanDryad Sun 04-Oct-09 11:14:51

It's not OFSTED registered, I suggested originally that he go to the Surestart group, but he had some very nasty comments there. His ds doesn't need to see that either, IMO.

I actually forgot to put my question in my OP - if you run a Church-y mums & tots, would a gay man be unwelcome? Whispered about? And if he came to you - as the leader of the group - and said he felt discriminated against because of his sexuality what would you do?

TIA smile

MaggieBehave Sun 04-Oct-09 11:17:20

I sort of run one (taking a turn with four other women in the church) but tbh, I'm not very religious. The only one of us who IS religious has a gay musician friend so I don't think there'd be a problem!

I despise it when people use the bible to endorse their hatred of anybody else.

that said, my toddler group it's all women, but I think we'd all like to see a man there!

TAFKAtheUrbanDryad Sun 04-Oct-09 11:32:17

So, Maggie, what would you do if a hypothetical gay dad said someone was being rude/mean to him because of his sexuality?

We have a few dads at our toddler group, but AFAIK they all have wives! wink

ThingOne Sun 04-Oct-09 12:00:24

I think it depends entirely on the church and the toddler group. I'm a member of a large mainstream/liberal, city, CofE church (but at home with a stonking cold). I would be appalled if a gay parent felt unable to come to our toddler group. There are other churches in the town who do consider homosexuality a sin. These are definitely place for a gay parent to avoid. But even some evangelic churches are no longer the "we can cure you" places they were maybe twenty years ago.

MaggieBehave Sun 04-Oct-09 14:13:58

I just can't imagine it. They're all under 45. I think you'd have to add on another 30 years before there'd be a serious risk of somebody saying something homophobic. I mean most women of 'our' (very approximate here) have friendships with gay men.

Astrophe Sun 04-Oct-09 14:20:36

At our Evangelical church toddlers group, a gay parent would be welcome, as would any parent regardless of their situation. I suspect there would be some parents who might 'whisper', but, tbh, at our group it wouldn't be the Christian Mums who would do this, and overall I think the welcome would be warm.

ilovemydogandmrobama Sun 04-Oct-09 14:38:37

Oh, let him. If he does get a negative reaction, which is quite unlikely, then am sure it wouldn't be the first time.

Most Church run toddler groups are very inclusive and have probably seen/heard it all wink

MovingOutOfBlighty Sun 04-Oct-09 14:41:30

You are kidding me!

We go to a church run toddler group and the only thing that would start whispers about him is if he pilfered all the nice biscuits, such as the jam rings. grin

send him to our dads group, its fab and couldnt care less if his gay, straight or from mars tbh.

Does he have to go to that gorup? is it run in the building or by the church? maybe if his worried he could find his local childrens centre, they do loads of groups for little ones.

TAFKAtheUrbanDryad Sun 04-Oct-09 18:39:13

He's tried a Surestart group which he left because one of the mums started making nasty comments to his ds (like "Which one do you call mummy then?") and intimating that the only reason my friend wanted to adopt a boy - they didn't specify, btw - was so they could groom him. angry

I think after that he felt very wary of a church run group because he felt it would be worse, but given the comments on here I think I'll forward him the thread.

I know that the mindset of gay=paedophile isn't quite as prevalent as it used to be in the christian church, but it is still around, and I'd hate for him to fall foul of it again.

His other option is to look out a group specifically for BLGT parents - he lives in Manchester, so there must be something - but he doesn't drive and the church group is just down the road.

TAFKAtheUrbanDryad Sun 04-Oct-09 18:40:40

<<chuckle>> @ Blighty, btw. grin

pofacedandproud Sun 04-Oct-09 18:49:29

Depends on the church. there were two groups in two different churches that I used to go to. One would have been warm and welcoming, the the other horrified. I only went once to the second place.

hester Sun 04-Oct-09 19:18:44

TAFKA - that is truly depressing. I went to our local church-run group with no problems, but I'm a gay mum (with long hair and make-up) and I'm sure most if not all of them had no idea of my situation.

Every major city has lesbian and gay parenting groups, but none has the resources to provide any kind of regular alternative to mainstream mother and toddler groups, IME. I feel very sorry for this guy; he must feel very isolated.

Actually, my blood pressure is rising as I type about that Surestart mum. How bloody dare she? You would think even someone who thought homosexuality wrong would stop short of being nasty to a small child.

MaggieBehave Sun 04-Oct-09 20:40:58

movingoutofblighty at my toddler group, eyebrows might be raised if you 'forgot' to pay your £2 a couple of weeks running.

lisbey Sun 04-Oct-09 21:06:36

I have a good friend who runs a church toddler group - she would bend over backwards to make sure he was welcomed, which might be a bit uncomfortable, but would be done with the best intentions

BonjourIvresse Sun 04-Oct-09 21:08:01

how would they know he was gay? I don't usually talk about my sexual preferences at toddler group!

Seriously, there might be a problem at an evangelical church but I don't think most places would cause a problem.

sherby Sun 04-Oct-09 21:11:03

Love thy neighbour and all that

Didn't jesus say something about even whores reaching heaven before the righteous?

pofacedandproud Sun 04-Oct-09 21:12:20

Jesus is not the problem sherby. Christians are. grin

Fleecy Sun 04-Oct-09 21:16:50

I would hope that a church group would be welcoming and supportive, rather than judgy. I'm a Christian and I'd be appalled if our church groups weren't open to everyone.

Sadly, I'm sure that's not always the case - I fear Pofaced has hit the nail on the head sad

sherby Sun 04-Oct-09 21:20:33

lol poface, too true

Pinkfluffyslippers Sun 04-Oct-09 21:23:29

Suggestion..... some Quaker meetings (prob, just the larger ones) welcome kids and make provision for them at a meeting. ANd the Quakes are v inclusive... I know your friend was a looking at a toddler group specifically but if he wanted to do something on a SUnday then that might help..

Just a thought!

wicked Sun 04-Oct-09 21:25:19

How would anyone know that he is gay?

StewieGriffinsMom Sun 04-Oct-09 21:28:27

Message withdrawn

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