Monday, January 28, 2008

Positive Images

Stacy in a comment to my post Missing Carl asks about media with positive portrayals of GLBT individuals appropriate for a boy "reaching puberty." So folks, what have you got? A while back I asked for a list of recommendations for books for parents of gay/lesbian teens and you all gave up some good suggestions. (Always My Child is my favorite).

Here's my list to get us started. Some youth novels:
Rainbow High, and sequels
The Geography Club
Boy Meets Boy

Annie on My Mind
Dare, Truth or Promise
Girl Walking Backwards
Keeping You a Secret
Kissing Kate

What movies or television shows would you recommend?


  1. Thanks for starting a list:-) My poor boy is so confused right now.

  2. Buffy the Vampire Slayer, I love the Willow/Tara relationship, although I heartily disliked how she became a 'lesbian.' Bisexuality just does not exist on TV. But that's my own private rant.

    I loved "but I'm a cheerleader."

    Tanya Huff writes some fun fiction in which she naturally weaves in characters who are gay/lesbian/bi. I've enjoyed her vampire series and a fantasy series of hers, I think Sing the Fourth Quarter was one.

  3. Oh yeah, I LOVE But I'm a Cheerleader. Also, I hated Kissing Jessica Stein when I first saw it, but now I like it a lot -- it's about the first homosexual relationship between two women who have decided to experiment with relationships with other women **SPOILER** which doesn't work out in the end, because one of them is just straight, as it turns out. There's a nice coming-out scene, though, as I remember.

    OK, this one is a little odd, and I would probably recommend that the parent read it before handing it off to the kid, but I might recommend the Chronicles of Tornor Trilogy by Elizabeth Lynn (a fantasy series from the late 70s / early 80s I think). The first book and the third book aren't as good and don't necessarily have much to do with sexuality, but the middle book does (The Dancers of Arun, which could probably be read independently of the other two, since each book is about completely different characters). TDoA, without any sort of fanfair, portrays a world in which homo/bi/hetero-sexuality is all completely acceptable and completely a non-issue. I love the book, and read it independently of the other two, because I think the relationships in it are beautifully written. My warning is because 1, there is some semi sexually explicit stuff, and 2, one of the homosexual relationships is also incestuous, which, /in the context of the book/, is a complete non-issue and totally OK, but, y'know, you might not want a younger kid reading it without some sort of guidance or discussion.

  4. "But I'm a cheerleader" is fun, but also definitely a love-it-or-hate-it movie. Not very relatable, in my experience.

    I really like (and liked) "Am I Blue?", and I am thrilled that "Annie on my mind" is at the top of your list.

  5. There's an awesome British film called Beautiful Thing which really showed me for the first time that gay people/teenagers were ordinary like anyone else. I also really enjoyed Saved! and But I'm A Cheerleader.

    I like the Rainbow High books but find them way too American. I'd love to write something similar for a British audience. I really like Oranges Are Not The Only Fruit, too.

  6. Terrie12:52 PM

    Geography Club also has a sequel, The Order of the Poison Oak, which is very good.

  7. By the time they started writing books and movies like this I was already out and older.

    Beatiful Thing is one of my favorite movies. I wish I had seen it as a teenager. It is filled with all that confusing explorations, emotions and confused parents but with a happy ending. Depending on the age probably a good movie to watch with him.

    The gsa network has a list of books that might be a good resource. I haven't read them but it seems like a long list.


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