Three Children’s Books About Boys Who Wear Dresses

10,000 Dresses (2)

By: Amber Leventry There seems to be a shift happening in peoples’ attitudes about gender and gender expression. The shift feels positive and attitudes appear to be accepting. Boy/girl labels were removed from Target’s shelves of children’s toys, a television show on a major network showcased a popular transgender teenager, and more books about children […]

Made by Raffi: A Children’s Book About Gender Stereotypes and a Boy Who Knits

Raffi in Yarn Shop

By: Amber Leventry Raffi is a schoolboy who doesn’t like rough and rowdy play. He likes calm and quiet; he dresses a bit differently than the other boys; he feels different. Like most kids, Raffi isn’t sure what that means, but then he finds his passion when a teacher teaches him how to knit. Raffi […]

Mom vs. Fox News: Can She Take Down the Big Bully on the Block?


By Lisa J. Keating I’d like to bring to the surface and discuss the real life damage that occurs because of the type of reporting on gender diversity by Fox News and other conservative media outlets. Who really gets hurt? The kids who identify as cisgender boys and girls? No. I believe it is a […]

A Gay Dad Says Good-Bye to Joan Rivers

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By Rob Watson The old adage is that celebrities pass away in threes. In the past few weeks, this theory could be said to have been “proven true” with the passing of Robin Williams, Lauren Bacall and Joan Rivers. One can only wonder if when Joan was calling Robin out fondly as one of the […]

A Gay Dad Mourns the Loss of Joe Bell, Killed in the Line of Duty (of Being a Dad)


By Rob Watson “Making headway, one step at a time”. This was the last communication from Joe Bell on his epic quest to walk across the United States and do everything within his power to end bullying, intolerance and suicide. His journey was not the result of an idealistic publicity stunt. It was a mission. […]

A Gay Dad Sounds Off on Tweeny-vision and the Bully Playground

tween televison

By: Rob Watson Jasmyn Smith committed suicide. According to her family and friends, she had endured “a year and a half of being heavily bullied, both at school and online”. She was…eleven. I cannot stand that this happened. I cannot stand that she was only a year older than my sons. I am sure that […]

Reason #4 Why My Marriage is Just Like Yours

Lucas' Friends (3)

By Shannon Ralph Reason #4: We worry about our children. Ruanita and I take turns worrying about our children. I’ll obsess about Lucas’s lack of vegetable intake in his limited diet, while Ruanita worries about Sophie’s shyness at school. I will worry about Nicholas spending too much time playing video games while Ruanita worries about […]

How to Protect Kids from Bullying Without Turning Them into a Bully


Note from the Editors:  The Next Family understands that bullying is an important and sensitive topic laced with varied theories, research, and opinions.  The viewpoints expressed in this article and those previously published on our site (Bullying Series Part I, Bullying Series Part II, How to Bully Proof Your Child) do not necessarily define or summarize those of The […]

Bullying Series, Part II: Diminishing Opportunities for Power


By: Joe Newman, Behavior Consultant Paul was in the third grade when his grades began to slip.  He was attentive in class and a good participant in class discussions but struggled with the reading and writing that was expected of him.  In order to help Paul keep up he was often pulled out of non-academic […]