JTF is my BFF! (Jesse Tyler Ferguson Reads My Essay!)

jtfHave I mentioned that Jesse Tyler Ferguson is one of my favorite people? Well, he is, and not just because he chose my essay to read for the Modern Love podcast this week. He also did a great job of it.

Seriously, you should check it out here. (You can also hear an update from me and a teary interview with Susie as well. Get your Kleenex ready!)

Can’t wait to see JTF (I can call him that now. We’re tight.) in Fully Committed on Broadway this spring!

Yes, I’m shamelessly plugging his show. It’s the least I can do for my new BFF. Break a leg, pal!

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Are you new here? Well, you can be my BFF, too, by subscribing to this blog, following me on Twitter or, best of all, buying my book! The essay was just a small part of my story. You’ll never believe the rest of the crazy, emotional jiggery-pokery my husband and I went through to become dads. (Just try to act surprised now that you know the ending.)


The Mommy Man Guide to This Year’s Awesomest Mother’s Day Books!

Whether you celebrate Mother’s Day, Other’s Day and/or, like my family, you double down on Father’s Day, it’s time to start thinking of gifts for those important parental figures in your life. If you’re a Mommy Man fan, I have great news, because I have some awesome books to recommend, two of which are released today… and two of which feature me!

LTYMbook1. Listen To Your Mother: What She Said Then, What We’re Saying Now – Edited by Ann Imig

In case you haven’t heard, Listen To Your Mother is a storytelling series run by Ann Imig and performed in various cities every year around Mother’s Day, where people share their tales of motherhood. If you haven’t seen a Listen To Your Mother live show, you’re missing out. I know, because I performed in one. (My story was more about what my family came up with in place of motherhood. You can watch my reading here.) When I did the show, I got to meet some amazing women, who were also amazing writers and storytellers.

Now, Ann has collected some of her favorite stories from over the last few years in this anthology. Some are funny, some are sad and all of them are great reads. Best of all, I’m in it, with a story called, “More Than an Aunt, Less Than a Mom”. I’m so proud of this story and of being associated with this book and all the fantastic, big-shot writers in it. Definitely check it out!

gummibears2. Gummi Bears Should Not Be Organic: And Other Opinions I Can’t Back Up With Facts – Stefanie Wilder-Taylor

One of the best parts of performing in Listen To Your Mother was getting to meet Stefanie Wilder-Taylor. I’d known of her as the hilarious and insightful writer behind such bestsellers as Sippy Cups are Not For Chardonnay and Naptime is the New Happy Hour and one of the staunchest advocates of (some might even say the pioneer behind) the two-martini playdate. I was hardly prepared for the story she read that day, a raw, heartbreaking and yet still hilarious piece about coming to grips with the fact that actually, she had an alcohol problem.

Now you can read Stefanie’s story “Cocktail Playdate Dropout” in the Listen To Your Mother book above (and you should — it’s fantastic). And if that’s not enough Stefanie for you, you can see that she’s just as witty and wonderful on the wagon in this brand new book of hers.

I’m telling you, you can’t go wrong with some SWT, and your mom will love it, too.

MommyManCover3. Mommy Man: How I Went From Mild-Mannered Geek to Gay Superdad by Jerry Mahoney

I may have mentioned this one before.

It came out last year just barely under the wire for Mother’s Day, so you might’ve missed your chance to buy this for the moms in your life. Well, it’s not too late! Mommy Man is as mom-friendly as ever, full of jokes that’ll make her laugh, a few that’ll make her blush and plenty of emotional reflections on parenthood that’ll make her gush.

If you didn’t buy my book for your mom last year, this is your chance to redeem yourself, before this happens…

PressPublish Portland is This Weekend!

Photo by Ian Sane

Photo by Ian Sane


Just a quick reminder that PressPublish Portland is this Saturday, March 28, 2015 at the Embassy Suites in downtown Portland, OR. WordPress has assembled an amazing lineup of speakers, including me! I’ll be doing a presentation called “What Came First, the Book or the Blog?”, where I’ll talk about how blogging helped me get my book, Mommy Man, published and how I used my blog to market the book once it came out, including the story of my infamous Amazon Chart Twerk.

There’s still time to register, and if you use the special Mommy Man discount code SUPERDAD40, you’ll get 40% off.

That means you can attend for just $90 and still get a 1-year subscription to the WordPress Premium Upgrade (a $99 value) for FREE! That’s right, it’s like getting WordPress Premium for -$9.

If you’re even the tiniest bit interested in blogging and you’re anywhere near Portland, you won’t want to miss it!

Announcing… Press Publish!

press-publish-speakersI’m very excited to announce that I’ll be speaking at Press Publish, a conference started by WordPress for people interested in the world of blogging. A whole bunch of amazing bloggers will be appearing… and me, too! See the picture above for headshots of some of the awesome speakers. Don’t they look cool and interesting? I can’t wait to meet them! (I’m the cartoon one.)

The event takes place Saturday, March 28, 2015 in Portland, OR. (They’re doing another one in Phoenix on April 18 with different speakers.) For more details, including ticket info, click here!

Hope to see you there. And if you have any tips on places to go and cupcakes to eat in Portland, let me know!

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Can’t make it to Portland? Well, get an extra helping of me in my book, Mommy Man: How I Went From Mild-Mannered Geek to Gay Superdad. It’s more of a bargain than ever on Amazon. And if you are coming, that’s even more reason to buy one now. I’m totally going to quiz you on it to see if you’ve actually read it. You’ve been warned!

Upcoming DC Surrogacy Conference

FTSlogoThere’s been a lot of negative press about surrogacy lately, and it makes me really sad, because, as I say here all the time, surrogacy changed my life, and everyone involved in our case feels like they gained something wonderful out of the process. I also say all the time that surrogacy is not for everyone, and there are a lot of unscrupulous people out there engaged in the practice. So if you’re considering surrogacy, either as a potential surrogate or intended parent, you really need to educate yourself to make sure you’re doing it the safest and most ethical way possible. 

The upcoming Families Through Surrogacy conference in Alexandria, Virginia on September 13, 2014 promises to be a great resource on the topic. They’ve lined up some fantastic speakers for the event, including me! This is the same group that organized the San Francisco conference I appeared in back in March, and they will answer any questions you have, whether you’re gay or straight and whether you’re considering domestic or international surrogacy options. (I’m heavily biased toward domestic and will be happy to share why, but there will also be people who’ve gone the international route on hand to share their experiences.)

If you’re in the DC area, I’d love to see you there, and I’ll have copies of my book on hand to sell and sign. You can get more information here.


My First Video: What to Expect When You’re Expecting… And Gay!

I was very honored to be asked to contribute to a recent surrogacy conference in Australia, held by the group Families Through Surrogacy, who also invited me to their San Francisco conference back in March. I’ll be speaking again at their upcoming event in Alexandria, Virginia on September 13, 2014, so if that’s in your neighborhood, come on down!

If you don’t live near any of those places, you’re still in luck, because I’m posting a video of my presentation here for you. This is my first attempt at producing a YouTube video, so don’t expect any technical wizardry, but if you’re looking for information on surrogacy or becoming a gay dad or just a glimpse of yours truly yakking away, then this is for you!

My Appearance on the Larry Flick Show

jerrymahoneysirius“Did you guys hear what they said just now? On the radio?”

“They said Jerry Mahoney!”

“Right. And who’s that?”

“That’s you!”


For a minute, my kids were impressed. As I was driving them to school, Larry Flick of SiriusXM OutQ announced I’d be in his studio later that morning. I was going there to promote my book, Mommy Man, but for all my kids knew I would be showing up to drop my new jam featuring Juicy J. In their eyes, Daddy was Katy Perry, and it felt awesome.

It was a lot of fun being on the air. Larry and his crew were very nice, and I got to plug the book, which was the whole point, I guess.

But I NEVER should’ve told Larry right before we went on the air that Drew was a big fan of his show.


So What If My Kids Are Gay?

ourfamilyI forget sometimes what outdated attitudes still linger outside of this nice little gay-friendly bubble in which I spend most of my life. Earlier this week, I recorded a podcast called Dadsaster. The topic was Gay Dads, and I was the gay dad they interviewed. I was a little surprised to discover that after interviewing me, the hosts were set to question a member of the anti-gay Family Research Council, as if “Gay Dads” was a topic that required a pro-and-con debate.

To me, the only thing anyone needs to ask the FRC is, “Why can’t you lay off gay dads, you obsessive creeps?” Maybe that was on their question list. I’m not sure.

What really surprised me was when the hosts, two straight dads — who were very polite and respectful, I should point out — said, “One of the questions people have is, are your kids more likely to be gay because they’re being raised by gay parents?”

It’s a question you hear all the time, which is what’s so maddening about it, because it’s a very easily answered question. Plenty of gays before me have explained very patiently and intelligently that they grew up with straight parents, but they still turned out gay, so why would anyone assume that my kids are going to be gay just because their parents are? That’s exactly the answer I found myself giving, yet I’m sure there are still plenty of people who will willfully choose to ignore that logic.

So now, with two days’ distance from the discussion, I’d like to offer another, more decisive answer to the question of whether my kids are more likely to turn out gay.

So what if they are?

The host prefaced his question by saying, “I don’t think it’s homophobic to suggest this.”


That’s exactly what it is, because the implication behind it is that it’s somehow bad or undesirable if your kids turn out gay. As a kid who turned out gay, I refuse to accept that.

Let’s say, despite all common sense, that gay parents were more likely to raise gay kids. So does that mean we shouldn’t be allowed to have families? Because the world would have — gasp — more gay people as a result? Nevermind that these would be happy, well-adjusted gay people raised by loving families. Just the fact that they were gay would suggest to some people that they weren’t parented properly.

And that’s not a homophobic position?

If we’re ever going to move beyond homophobia, we need to get over the notion that parents can or should steer their children in one direction or the other. We also need to stop making LGBTQ people prove their worth as parents. I initially asked the hosts if I could stick around and ask the FRC representative a few questions of my own. They declined, but when I thought about it, I didn’t really have anything to say to him or her anyway.

Who cares what those people think? They’re not going to stop me from having kids, and I’m damn sure not going to let my kids experience their bigotry as anything other than an amusing sideshow to our perfectly content lives. In a world that increasingly recognizes the anti-gay family brigade for the lunatics they are, they’re just fighting for relevance on whatever podcast or Fox News show will still have them on, so let them spew their hate. I’ll just continue to change the channel.

Before our kids were born, Drew and I speculated a lot about what they would be like. One day, Drew surprised me by saying he hoped they wouldn’t be gay. He was worried life would be harder for them — the same thing many straight parents say when speculating about their kids — and that if we raised a gay kid, it’d somehow lend credence to people’s fears about LGBTQ parents.

I know he doesn’t feel that way anymore, in part because our kids aren’t hypothetical anymore. They’re Bennett and Sutton, and they’re going to be who they are, and our job as parents is to make them happy, not to make them fit some notion of what the Family Research Council thinks kids should be.

Personally, I think it’d be fantastic if my kids were gay. You know what else would be fantastic? If they’re straight. Or bi. Or trans. Or jocks. Or bookworms. Or bookish jocks. Or whoever they happen to be, because whoever they are, Drew and I are going to do everything we can to make sure they’re comfortable with themselves and to let them know that their dads love them precisely because of who they are, not in spite of it.

Are gay parents more likely to raise gay kids? I don’t think so.

Kids who feel loved and supported, though? In a lot of cases, you bet they are.

UPDATE: The Dadsaster podcast is now up. You can listen to it here. It sounds like the FRC rep bailed on them, which is all for the best. In addition to me, they also interview Scout Masterson, one of the Guncles from “Tori & Dean.” It’s a good show. You should check it out.

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Thanks for making it to the end of my rant. If you like it, please share it! And if you haven’t already, please subscribe to this blog, like me on Facebook and follow me on Twitter. And, I don’t know, if you see me on the street, give a friendly wave maybe? That’d be nice.

Another (Link to a) Video of Me on TV!

Jerry Mahoney, Raising America, HLN, Kyra Phillips, Mommy ManThanks to my friend Janice Browne, I have the image above to post of my latest appearance on Raising America with Kyra Phillips on HLN. (12pm weekdays! Check it out!)

Some people said my backdrop was a little blah last time. (A plain white wall? What could be blah about that?) So this time, I livened it up with works from two of my favorite artists. For those of you art critics out there, these were produced with mixed media (crayons and fingerpaint). Bennett’s (on the left) is titled “Fireworks” and Sutton’s (on the right) is titled “My Beautiful Picture”. Bids will be accepted in the comments section below. Proceeds go to charity (i.e., their college funds).

As for the video, well, the wonderful Kelly of Are You Finished Yet graciously put her technically-challenged head together with mine and made a valiant effort to help me embed it here. Unfortunately, we came up as blank as last week’s wall. So instead of an embed, I’ll direct you again to HLN’s site or my Facebook page (where you can also like me!). This week, I defend straight dads’ right to the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue and applaud Willow Smith for not wanting to make a hip-hop Annie movie.

If anyone tech savvier than me and Kelly wants to take a stab at helping me embed the next one or put it on YouTube, I’ll graciously reward you with your own moderate-quality reprint of either “Fireworks” or “My Beautiful Picture”, your choice.


My Unexpected TV Debut

It’s appropriate that I used a Newhart episode to talk about my experience with the new HLN TV show Raising America with Kyra Phillips, because that episode was about a guest filling in at the last-minute on a TV show.

Well, guess how I made my first appearance on Raising America? Yes, somebody cancelled, and I took their place. This Jerry has something in common with the Unbelievable Jerry on Vermont Today.

Thankfully, Kyra handled the switcheroo with much more grace than Dick Loudon, and no one got called any names.

I apologize to everyone who was expecting to see me this Friday, because I won’t be on then after all. This is the world of live TV, I guess. The good news is I was on the air. I raised America. Kyra was delightful, my sparring partner ArmyWife101 was terrific and decidedly not a weenie, and most importantly, I didn’t embarrass myself. I don’t think so, at least. You be the judge.

You can watch video of the segment on the HLN site here or on my Facebook page here. (OK, I’m linking the FB page because I’m shamelessly hoping you’ll “Like” the page while you’re there. You thought TV would class me up maybe? Ha, fools! Seriously, though, if you’re interested in my appearances, you’ll get much more up-to-date info from my FB and Twitter than from the blog.)

Technical geekery footnote: Ideally, I’d be embedding the video right here, but unless I’m mistaken, WordPress only allows video embeds from certain sites, and HLN isn’t one of them. (If anyone geekier than me knows better, feel free to give me some tips in the comments.)