Mommy, why aren't you married to a man?

Thursday, May 09, 2013

Originally posted at Kathryn Cloward

By Kathryn Cloward

Several years ago, my son and I had just finished our bedtime routine of brushing our teeth and reading a story. I turned the ceiling fan light off in his room, and the glow of a single nightlight allowed us to see each other.

He was sitting in his bed fumbling with a stuffed animal as I kneeled on the floor next to him when he asked, “Mommy, why aren’t you married to a man?”

In my peripheral vision I could see the photo of Landon, my partner Tara and I hanging on his bedroom wall as I replied, “Well, I was. I was married to daddy. But now I am with T.T. now.”

“But mommy, you’re supposed to be married to a man.”

The baseball-sized lump in my throat took shape and tears formed in the corners of my eyes as I choked out, “Oh Landon, no. Where did you hear that?”

He looked down at his stuffed animal and shrugged his shoulders.

I leaned in as close as I could to him, cradling his face in my hands as I continued: “I need for you to know that there is nothing, and I mean nothing, wrong with me loving T.T. and T.T. loving me. Everyone is free to love who they choose to love. Do you understand what I’m saying?”

His eyes didn’t shift away from mine as he nodded and smiled.

I smiled, too.

As Landon slid down into the cocoon of his bed, I tucked the sheets and blanket around his body. I kissed his forehead and said, “I love you so much boo-boo bear. See you in the morning.”

And his little voice responded as usual, “See you in the morning, too.”

I walked down the dimly light hallway to my bedroom and with tears gushing down my face, plopped onto my bed. I buried my face in my pillows and wept.

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Kathryn Cloward is an award winning author, songwriter, publisher, and entrepreneur.

This blog post is part of the Strong Families Mama’s Day Our Way celebration. You can read more posts in the series on the Strong Families blogStrong Families is a national initiative led by Forward Together. Our goal is to change the way people think, act and talk about families.


  1. Thank you for posting this. I appreciate the opportunity to share this piece of my story with the Strong Families community.