Tuesday, June 22

AK Soufflé: The Family Way

- September 4, 2017


Since starting to make my TV chat show AK Soufflé I have had the privilege of meeting some amazing people, amazing because of not only what they do but who they are, the real person. I always chat with my guests in advance of the show, to get to know those I do not already know a little better and also to set up the boundaries, clear with them what they are prepared to talk about, it’s only polite.

I have been amazed by how open people are prepared to be, especially when talking about coming out. Some of the stories have been deeply moving and I have been reduced to tears on more than one occasion by a guest.

I find it remarkable hearing some of the things people went through as teenagers, parents who react badly, families who turn their backs on their young and often vulnerable offspring. For someone who grew up with amazingly understanding parents it is often hard for me to comprehend the cruelty that some LGBT+ people suffer at the hands of their families.

It may be 2017, we may have come a very long way as a body of LGBT+ people and we for sure have more rights than perhaps ever before in this country – a long way towards a real equal state, but for some young people we have not come far enough and we have still a terrible problem with the number of young gay, trans and even undecided men and women who end up homeless.

I have been reduced to tears on more than one occasion by a guest

For me family is paramount, I love mine and cherish the warmth that we have, but the more stories I hear the more I realise how precious family is and how some people simply do not have family to fall back on. I, and maybe you are the lucky ones.

One of my favourite guests has been Matt Rood who is now Mr Gay Europe. He is a champion of gay parenting, adoption and fostering and as a former foster parent himself he knows exactly what this entails. During his winning year it will be his task to promote the idea of adoption and fostering by gay parents and I applaud him for this.

If more gay people who are in a position to come forward and offer a stable home environment and family atmosphere joined in then maybe some of those less fortunate LGBT+ youngsters might have a better start in life.

To find out more about adoption and fostering go to www.newfamilysocial.org.uk

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