When Dana Rudolph's son was 2 years old, she started a blog. Unlike other parenting blogs, she wasn't looking to share what her son had for breakfast or trying to convince other parents of the best parenting strategies. She started the blog because LGBTQ+ parents like her had very few places to look for examples of what queer families look like and advice about the challenges they'd face. Since 2005, Mombian has been helping LGBTQ+ parents find queer and trans-inclusive books, songs, and TV shows. The site helps parents advocate for school forms to say "parent and parent" instead of "mother and father," figure out how to handle Mother's Day and Father's Day, and decide what they'd want their kids to call them, among many other things.
Rudolph's blog has been a resource LGBTQ+ parents desperately need, and on top of giving them advice, she's also given LGBTQ+ parents a day to publicly celebrate their families. #LGBTQFamiliesDay started as a day for queer bloggers to talk about their families online, but has since spread to social media like Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook. LGBTQ+ parents and their kids spend the day posting (very cute) photos and showing the world what queer families really look like.
It's an incredible way to kick off Pride Month, but that's not the only reason that Rudolph chose to celebrate #LGBTQFamiliesDay in June. Today, June 4th, is between both Mother's and Father's Day. So the day honors those holidays, but also emphasizes that not all families fit into the structure that Mother's Day and Father's Day reinforce. Instead of assuming that families have one mother and one father, #LGBTQFamiliesDay allows queer families to celebrate each other no matter what their family structure looks like. This year, Rudolph is partnering for the event with Family Equality Council, the national organization that fights for legal and lived equality for LGBTQ+ families.
"We're certainly proud of our families 365 (or 66 on leap years) days a year," Rudolph says. "But having one day when we can lift our voices together gives us strength and inspiration as a community and also helps raise our visibility to the rest of the world."
Read on to see 22 queer family photos.