Thinking of what to write today is worrying. Yes, there is a plethora of spontaneous possibilities, I’m not spoilt for choices, but I’m looking for something that really matters! There’s so much going on in the world today. From global warming, crime, poverty, even Brexit, there is such a lot to comprehend out there and here sits lil ole me… I’ve previously stated that I will keep this diary non political, though politics plays such a role in life and the choices we make, or rather are allowed to make, brought on via the political process. From having an online presence of zip, nil, nada, I am now loudly professing that I am a ‘Gay Dad to five young children, living in The Shires of England’! What does it all mean? We are family (Thank you Sister Sledge). Okay, there are lots of families out there, getting by, moving on and to be honest, there’s absolutely nothing that separates my family from any other! There’s no shame in affirming an identity using the word ‘Gay’ nowadays. Thankfully there’s more live and let live going on out there, but there’s still some level of hatred of the unknown by some people, even state sponsored hatred. I won’t point any fingers, remember I’m being non political (lol). There’s also a lot to be said of identifying myself as a ‘Dad’ also. That’s a big responsibility isn’t it? But time in memoriam, there have been exactly the same amount of dads as there have been mums, throughout the vastness of time (okay, that’s very debatable). These times are different though, in the fact than my mere existence is allowed, through law to be a ‘Gay Dad’ who is writing a diary, quite openly. Of course there have always been ‘Gay Dads’, those who stayed in the closet and did the done thing and married a woman, had children etc. But many of those people could never and did never profess to being gay, within the family context, that is. Talking of marriage, we are not married, John and I. When we ‘Did the right thing’ and tied the knot, after knowing each other some fifteen years, there was no such thing as Gay marriage, that came later. So we went into a ‘Civil Partnership’. It pretty much meant the same as marriage, except religion did not play a role in the matter. Okay, don’t worry, I’m not bringing religion into my diary either. The good thing (for us) about changes in law, allowing John and I to be recognised as a couple, was that it did not stop there! If you can be a couple in the eyes of the law – you can start a family and that’s exactly what we set about doing. I would like to say that it was easily achieved, but it was not and nor was the legal process we went through, here in the U.K. to obtain ‘Parental Orders’ for all five of our children, making us both equally, the legal parents to our children. We are both named parents on their U.K. birth certificates, as it should be. Remember that it was just the two of us that ‘conceived’ (the idea of) our children. Our egg donor wasn’t looking for rights of parenthood and in law, like a sperm donor, has none. As for our three surrogates however, women with no biological connection to our children, both here and in India, Thailand and Nepal, the law does give them rights of claiming motherhood, even though we had chosen the route of ‘Compensated Surrogacy’ not legal here in the U.K. so the British Courts had the final say in our families existence. A lengthy and expensive undertaking, but the correct course of action, that had to be taken. And there was I, thinking that my mind was blank today… and did I say that I am very proud as a parent, a partner and as a family.