Tag Archives: homosexual

Why Steven Davies sexuality is not a private affair

This article was originally published in Issue 5 of OUT Bristol magazine

Steven Davies

“Steven Davies is gay” bellows out every media outlet under the sun. “So what” chuckles the majority of cricket and sport fans in reply. 

Variations of this scenario are played out on news sites across the web in response to cricketer Steven Davies announcement that he is gay.  Undoubtedly in pubs up and down the country this sentiment will be repeated.  “Why do we (inherently implying the heterosexual majority) need to know about it”? This argument has deep repercussions for the wider LGBTI community and needs to be challenged.

Firstly, the idea that “heterosexuals don’t feel the need to ‘announce’ their sexuality”, is flagrantly not true.  When sport stars (often male dominated team sport stars) decide to grace twitter with their enlightened presence, it is all too often either a PR stunt where they describe their perfect nuclear family, or a lewd playground for grown men to make out of hand innuendo.  Apart from a few sniggers, no one questions the macho chauvinistic tweets that are based on crude metaphors. Equally, no one questions it when sports stars talk about “cuddling up with wife”, nor should they. Can you imagine though mainstream new media responding well to a tweet “just cuddling up with my man”? Sadly not.

Of course, these issues are not isolated to cricket, or indeed, even sport.  When the undercover bigot talks of privacy they are missing a glaring truth.  The heterosexual man can, and does, talk about his sexuality on a regular basis in a myriad of ways.  Subconsciously or not, the modern heterosexual man has plenty of acceptable and unacceptable ways of showing the world his sexuality.  Equally, being heterosexual is the expected “norm” in common discourse.  The argument to suggest that sexuality is a private matter has the logical consequence that all the related problems should be kept out of sight and out of mind.

This is why we, as a collective community need to welcome Steven Davies announcement with pride and enthusiasm.  Not because of the tokenism but because it is the start of moving LGB, as a very idea into common discourse. 

Secondly, his coming out is not the issue in itself.  The fact that he is the first professional cricketer to come out is the problem.  Being a male dominated environment is something that the cricketing world is conscious of; they occasionally have meetings on such issues.  Being a white dominated environment is equally something that the cricketing world is conscience of, they quite often have meetings to discuss this.  Being publically 100% (now with the one exception of Steven Davies) heterosexual does not seem to be something that the cricketing world has registered.  This is one of the greatest benefits of Steven coming out.  He highlights a problem, and without a shadow of doubt, it is clear that the problem now lies on the doorstep of the International Cricketing Council to do something about it. 

There have, to their credit, been powerful voices arguing for measures to tackle sexism and racism within cricket.  As a result, steps have been taken to begin to challenge these problems, although they obviously still exist.  What I am excited about now is that there is a well recognised, respected voice to begin to have the conversation about homophobia in cricket.  There is a long way to go, but at least now we can begin to have the conversation.

You can see Steven’s conversation with the Daily Telegraph about coming out here

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Welcoming Steven Davies announcement

Steven Davies

Once again, I would like to welcome a high profile sports star “coming out” publicly that he is homosexual.  I have a blogged before about how important it is to have role models that are openly gay.

Steven Davies is the only openly gay cricketer.  His decision to announce his sexuality publicly remains an incredibly brave move in an industry that is still hostile to issues of sexuality, especially in relation to sponsors. As Steven commented himself though, “If I can just help one person to deal with their sexuality then that’s all I care about”. 

I am convinced that his decision will do just that.

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A guide to the different options for homosexual men wishing to become fathers

Elton John and his partner David Furnish have just adopted a 14 month old boy

Many homosexual men wish to play a key role in family life.  The desire to be a father is extremely strong, and yet for many men it seems bewildering and confusing.  I have tried in this blog to simplify the different options for gay men who want to be fathers down so that it is all laid out in front of them.  No one option is right for every one.  It is up to every individual to decide what is best for them.

Adoption

There are currently about 4,000 children waiting to be adopted within the UK.  Gay men, either individually, or in couples are allowed to adopt children in the UK (assuming they meet the incredibly strict standards that the adoption process requires).  Being homosexual is neither a hindrance nor an asset to adopting a child.  A good place to start would be to choose an adoption agency and proceed from there (Look for an agency with supportive or useful information on their web-site).  Remember only 2% of children adopted in the UK are under 1.  You have to think hard if this is the route is for you as it is a tough experience by anyone’s standards.

Fostering

Gay men (again either as individuals or couples) can adopt in England, Scotland or Wales.  Again, you want to choose a foster agency and decide what type of care you feel best suits you (Emergency, Short-term, long-term, permanent, remand, kinship).  If you are interested in fostering LGB children specifically see The Albert Kennedy Trust.

Surrogate:

There are two types of surrogacy available (traditional and gestational).

Traditional surrogacy is when the child is genetically related to the mother. She can become pregnant through self-insemination or through using the sperm of one of the intended parents.

Gestational surrogacy is when the embryo is created in a clinic normally using the sperm of one of the intended parents and is then implanted into the surrogate mother.  Here you have greater control over the child’s genetic material as you can choose the egg that is used.

It is important to remember however it is illegal for any individual or organisation to charge to help you find a surrogate. It is also illegal for you to advertise that you are looking for a surrogate. If you are considering this route it essential that you get specialist legal advice.

Co-Parenting

This is when two people choose to conceive a child together and raise it together.  It is common in this situation for the child to have (and live with) more than two “parents”.  In the UK however, it is legally impossible to have more than 2 legal parents.

If you are considering this route however, the biggest obstacle is the plethora of practical issues such as who has parental responsibility, who is responsible for discipline and how much time will you get to spend with the child etc.

Donating sperm

This is a great way of allowing single women, lesbians and infertile couples the chance to have children.  Every year thousands of women are unable to have children because of a shortage of sperm donors.

Things to remember…when the kid turns 18 they can request your contact details. Unlike in films (normally US based) there is no payment for sperm donation (just expenses).  As a sperm donor, you are not legally recognised as the child’s legal parent.

It can however be a rewarding altruistic act that many gay men will choose to consider.

For more information see:

Most of the above information was taken from the guide for gay dads which can be found here

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