Noodle Soup for the bowl

Amanda Gulledge

Amanda Gulledge
April 27


JUNE 6, 2010 12:15PM

Mommy, What's gay marriage?

Rate: 59 Flag




My youngest son is seven years old and works a skateboard better than most teens. He also enjoys hunting and guns, playing baseball... and reading.

He went this entire season of baseball without striking out and has just finished an autobiography by a World War II vet. We don't know which is more pronounced: his athletic side or his brainy side, but we enjoy them both.

His eleven year old brother, on the other hand, is easier to peg. He is not a sports fan and wears the title of: Nerd, with pride. Not long ago, I heard the following conversation:

Big brother: (pushing his glasses further atop his nose as he pauses in front of the football game on TV)

Running after a ball... I don't get it and hopefully never will.

Lil brother: (eyes never leaving the game on TV)

I'd love to be a professional sports guy.

Big brother: (shaking head left to right and placing a condescending hand on his brother's shoulder)

Just what the world needs, another unproductive citizen.

As a former college ball player, It took all their father had not to comment.

We're your basic Southern family except we are not religious and we live down the street from a lesbian relative.

Cousin Jennifer is a red-headed photographer that loves dogs and all things girly. She also loves her long-time girlfriend, Judy. Judy is a gorgeous brunette who serves in the United States Army.

They are also a fabulous babysitting duo and my children request them anytime their father and I are going for an evening on the town. We have the same rules for them that we would have for a straight babysitting couple:

Just keep the kids safe and no lovey dovey adult stuff in front of them.

It works out very well. They play non-stop games and teach them interesting things. They are obviously crazy about each other and it gives off a very positive energy that my children soak in and release to those around them. 

So, even at 7, he understands "Gay." But until recently, we've never had to explain the issue of legality. 

Yesterday, I walked into the living room to see him surrounded by all the paper guns he had been making. I saw the finished Civil War book at his feet. He was sitting Indian style in front of his brother who was gobbling down pancakes.

He glanced over at his older brother and then back at me. Something was on his mind. Suddenly, he blurted out:

Mommy, when will Judy break up with Jennifer?

I don't think they plan on breaking up, I replied.

When they do, will she stop being my cousin?

Judy loves you very much, Honey.

I scooped him up to snuggle with him in my lap. I just had to nuzzle that sweet neck while he was still small.

They won't break up, I assured. Why the sudden worry?

His brother chimed in:

Well, I  explained to him that gay marriages aren't allowed, here.

I see, I sighed.

I just rocked this little ball of confusion and stared off into space until I felt his warm tear reach my arm. When I realized he was crying, my chest tightened and threatened to burst open.

When his brother heard his little whimper he walked over and did the usual "hand on shoulder", but instead of the expected snark he gently asked:

Why are you crying?

His brother (lifting one little eye from under my arm) whispered:

They made love illegal.

To which his big, brainy brother replied:

Love isn't bad... that law is.



More Noodle Soup for the bowl


© Amanda G 2010.


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Superb. And I love your kids._r
Well done, Amanda - again!!!!!
Kids are so pure and right most of the time. We should listen to them.
Oh, what wonderful children. You're doing something right. :)
A beautiful post, Amanda. Good for you, in raising your children to be thinking, feeling people.
Oooh my. Where's my tissue? You had me at "he's 7." I finished the story and now I'm in love. If only children could hang on to the sensibilities life tries to beat out of them as they grow. You must be so proud, Amanda. And kudos to Daddy for biting his tongue.

from the mouths of babes come wisdom
if that is the blood and guts of the next generation then we are in very good shape
you and your husband have taught them well
I'm waiting for the gay divorce epidemic.
this touched my the niece of 2 loving, wonderful gay uncles i remember learning what your sons had to. their love and understanding at such a young age is a credit to you:)
Wow. You did good raising those two boys of yours. Thank you. (and hell yeah, I'm crying right now!)
Wow. How very wise.
Excellent post..
It should be in all the schools
rated with hugs and love
Made me cry too.
Gosh what good kids!
Pardon my religion but "Out of the mouth of babes and sucklings hast thou ordained strength ". Knowing there are children like yours, being guided by mothers like you, I worry a little less about the future.
you have done a wonderful job.
a difficult one too
My experiance was that they got into some heated arguements and were forbidden to see certain children because of their parents.

In our home---well I've worked in theater for over fourty years.
If only the grown-ups thought like that, the world would be a far better place. Hugs to you and your darling boys, Amanda. How proud they must make you. ~R~
I love you, I love your kids, and I love this conversation. This brought so much joy to my heart. Many, many, many thanks Amanda.
Great boys. Putting down what they say is priceless. So is audio-taping them, with or without their knowledge. depending on you.

I did it. I wasn't collecting evidence; only encapsulating memories. Years from now they'll listen in wonder.
My heart is full to bursting on this one. You have a touching way with words that is lovely to behold. Thank you again, Amanda. Well done.
OOPS! forgot to rate first!
What a touching scene and I too love your kids. You have created a great legacy you and the old ballplayer. You should both be proud.
Amanda, your kids are profound. You should be proud! R
Wooo, brought another tear to my eye, dear. Powerful lessons in tolerance and love - and writing. Oh, and BTW, from that photo the little fella's a spittin image of his mom. Probly best not to share that observation with him, yet, tho.
...and in child-rearing, of course. ;-P
You really have a wonderful pair of boys. A fine reflection on their parents.
Awesome!! From the mouth of babes.
I love your kids too. Well done mom!
Tears in KansoZ. How sweet!
Amanda!!! Exquisite and Purely wonderful...the world needs more love - period. How wise of your boys to see and understand what should be obvious to us all! Thanks for the love you teach and share with your family, and stories like this. Your writing is uplifting, and transformative! xo xo xo!!!
Nicely done. Quick and accurate.

I'm too tired to think about legality or marriage or gayness. But, I need to say that you son is gorgeous and has such an intelligent and cool expression.

I am a fan of your family!
You've got great kids, Amanda
ok, totally made me cry. you and your kids are great. i wish more adults had their understanding of this particular issue. well done.
At out house we say, "It's okay for people to love whoever they love." Your boys are awesome.
You've got to be proud of your boys, and the rest of us are proud of you. You and your husband are, obviously, doing something right.
Out of the mouths of babes.
Awesome kids you got!! ~nodding~

Wise beyond age and words!
Gay uncle, longtime babysitter here. Rated!
Jesus this is beautiful.
That last line made me tear up. Brilliant!
I only signed up to leave you a comment on your story. You are an absolutely wonderful mother and your children are great. I wish we had more parents like you in this world. I would make this world a much better place.
I made a profile just so that I could comment on this. I had thought it was going to be an average touching story of a great kid. I hadn't realized, even when I got to the last five lines, that I was going to end up crying. I'm a gay 16 year old boy and the last time I cried was when I was 8 watching Joan of Ark burn on a stake. Your sons are amazing people, and this reminded me just how important the LGBT fight for acceptance and equality is, and I thank you and your sons from the bottom of my heart.
Well, I just shed tears reading these comments. You are so very welcome. I'm sorry that a large portion of our world remains in the dark ages about equality.
Amanda, you and your husband should be so proud of yourselves. You're obviously doing an amazing job raising two wonderful little men. I have 7-year-old twins (boy/girl), and was just bawling. Excellent job.
Wow, goose bump post! Thank you so much for sharing!
*sigh* My eleven-year-old said, "Ew," when there was a gay reference on TV the other night. His dad is a huge homo-phobe and, as you've read, I can only guide him on my 50% of the custody arrangement. So to, "Ew" I said, "What's 'ew?' People that love each other, you think that's gross?" "Well, no but..." "Just because it's not your preference doesn't make it 'ew.' I think it's sweet." He didn't argue and hasn't said it since. I think he said it because he thought he was "supposed to," not because he actually thought it was gross. Either way, I hope someday he develops his own opinions and doesn't just parrot his idiot father.

Oh wait, this was about YOUR boys! Haha, they sound pretty fantastic and this was a touching story.
Hey Amanda,
I'm loving your writing... and your kids!!

-Ary J
This is lovely.

Very moving, Amanda. I've reposted a link to this post on my own blog, "Don't Ask Me; I'm Making This Up As I Go Along" ( The repost is at .

Thanks. ~sniff~
Amazing! Thank you so much for sharing this!
Thank you for reading and for all of your kind words. One day this will cease to be an issue, I hope.
that's so adorable, and touching. Made me cry!