Families of Choice

The concept of families of choice has its roots in the idea that LGBTQ-identified people create their own families, because of the hostility they may encounter from their families of origin. Whereas LGBTQ families have sometimes been discussed as “friendship families,” the concept of families of choice refers to the ways in which all manner of relationships (including couples, ex-partners, friends, accepting family of origin, coparents, LGBTQ community members, and so on) can be included as family. Some argue that unlike heterosexual families, which impose heteronormative norms, values, and inequalities, LGBTQ families of choice are underpinned by a friendship ethic that promotes autonomy, mutuality, and democratic patterns of relating. Some suggest that because heterosexuals are increasingly rejecting “traditional” family scripts, mainstream families are becoming more ...

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