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Raising My Rainbow: Adventures in Raising a Fabulous, Gender Creative Son Paperback – September 3, 2013


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Raising My Rainbow: Adventures in Raising a Fabulous, Gender Creative Son + Gender Born, Gender Made: Raising Healthy Gender-Nonconforming Children + My Princess Boy
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Broadway Books (September 3, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0770437729
  • ISBN-13: 978-0770437725
  • Product Dimensions: 7.9 x 5.1 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.9 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (126 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #54,770 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Starred Review. In her first book, Duron comes out of the mommy blog closet with an optimistic and delightful memoir of her family's process of understanding, supporting, and celebrating their gender-creative son, C.J., who prefers Barbies to trucks and princesses to pirates. The story of the phenomenal growth that this mother exhibits as she tries to do what she thinks is best—steering C.J. toward gender-neutral toys, navigating ever-changing rules about what is okay for him to wear in public—is humorous and light, even when the issues involved are heavy. Duron employs a range of resources as she tries to understand her son and how best to parent him, including speaking to her gay brother and his transgendered friend, finding LGBTQ resources on the Internet, and discovering peers when she begins publishing a blog about C.J. (RaisingMyRainbow.com). In Duron's story, parents will find support for a love them, not change them style of parenting, optimism about the outcomes for their gender-creative children, sympathy for the difficulties of parenting, and an affirmation of the appropriateness and necessity for fierce advocacy. Duron's call for compassion should be heeded by educators, caregivers, and neighbors—an open heart, a desire to listen and learn, and a willingness to accommodate go a long way in doing well by someone who differs from your expectations. Agent: Kari Stuart, ICM Partners. (Sept.)

Review

Praise for Lori Duron’s Raising My Rainbow
 
"Heartwarming, though wrenching…what makes Raising My Rainbow fresh and enjoyable is Duron’s utter lack of pretension.”
New York Times Book Review

“A powerful book at the right time.”
 —Andy Cohen, author of Most Talkative

“Lori Duron, a writer of extraordinary generosity, has given us a guide to parenthood both gentle and revolutionary.   Raising My Rainbow is a valuable resource not only for parents of gender-nonconforming children, but for readers everywhere who seek the courage to stand up for the ones they love.  Fierce, wise, and illuminating.” 
—Jennifer Finney Boylan, author of She’s Not There and Stuck in the Middle with You.  
 
“Because of Lori's courage, there is now an answer when searching how to parent a child who is gender fluid, gender non-conforming, transgender, gay or whatever label you use.  This book is a wonderfully authentic read that will bring depth, joy and understanding to parents, extended families and anyone seeking to learn how parents can and do love gender creative children.  To acceptance!”
—Cheryl Kilodavis, author of My Princess Boy
 
"[S]mart and witty...first-of-its kind...a frank, funny, feminist book."
The Advocate

“[A]n optimistic and delightful memoir… Duron’s call for compassion should be heeded by educators, caregivers, and neighbors—an open heart, a desire to listen and learn, and a willingness to accommodate go a long way in doing well by someone who differs from your expectations.”
 —Publishers Weekly, starred review
 
“A heartfelt examination of raising a boy who wants to be a girl.”
Kirkus

“It takes a village to raise a child, and it takes a gender creative parent to create a gender creative child.  Lori Duron is just one of those parents, and Raising My Rainbow is a must-read for the entire village.  Beautifully written, humorous, and deeply open and self-reflective, this book, the first of its kind, gives us a window into a mother’s joys, pain, and courage raising a child who goes against the binary gender grain of our society. This is not only an outstanding book, it is a big step forward in making it a better world for all of us.
 —Diane Ehrensaft, Author of Gender Born, Gender Made
 
"First drawn to Lori's work as an educator and LGBT activist, it was my role as a father that provided the most poignant critical lens for Raising My Rainbow. While nobody has a blueprint for parenting, Lori's compassionate, insightful, and yes, humorous take of raising a "gender creative" child should be required reading for anyone bringing up or working with children."
 —Frank Bua, author of Lost and Found, and Board Member, Family Equality Council

“I fell in love with this. Lori Duron has written a very important book, and as an author she is extremely generous in sharing the story of her family and in particular her own journey which made her realize that her job regarding her son is to ‘not change him but to love him’. Duron and her husband and oldest son beautifully rise to every challenge C.J.'s gender creativity presents to them. As a reader, I felt privileged to witness their journey.”
 —Lesléa Newman, author The Boy Who Cried Fabulous, Heather Has Two Mommies, and October Mourning
 
“Lori Duron has painted an exquisite picture of the complex journey that is raising a gender diverse child. In chronicling her family’s transformation from confusion, to fear, to acceptance and ultimately fierce pride, she has provided an unwavering celebration of her child's gender self-determination. Not just a book for families with gender nonconforming children, Raising My Rainbow is wonderful resource for all parents committed to honoring children for who they are.”
 —Joel Baum, Director, Education and Training, Gender Spectrum TM
 
“Laugh-out-loud funny, tug-at-the-heartstrings moving, and thoroughly thought provoking, Raising My Rainbow is a must-read for anyone who has ever worried that their child—or a child that they know—might be perceived as ‘different from’ or ‘other than.’”
 —Jody M. Huckaby, Executive Director, PFLAG National
 


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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
5 star
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4 star
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See all 126 customer reviews
This is a great, well written book.
M. Sirak
The story of CJ and his family is wonderful, this should be considered a parenting book as it reminds us what parents should do for their children.
Adolfo Ruiz
This book made me really reconsider how open I am to people who don't fit into the neatly constructed boxes I have in my mind.
Karie Hoskins

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

39 of 41 people found the following review helpful By Karie Hoskins VINE VOICE on August 2, 2013
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
This book made me very uncomfortable in the some of the best possible ways. I consider gay rights/marriage equality one of my top hot button issues. I cried with joy the day the Supreme Court struck down DOMA. And yet, all of my "pat myself on the back for being so accepting" squishy liberalness came into question as I was reading "Raising My Rainbow."

It's one thing to say and think you are open minded on a subject. But to feel that way when you truly try to walk in someone else's shoes - that's something else entirely.

The author, Lori Duron, is very detailed in her description of life raising a "gender-nonconforming" child. The struggles she and her husband go through as they become aware of C.J.'s preferences for "girl stuff", his desire to wear makeup and dresses, the day to day reality of having a son who causes people to stop and stare (and worse) really stopped me in my tracks. I pictured my son at 3, 4, 5 asking for and doing those things. He did play with a doll for a while, a boy doll, and I cringe as I remember feeling proud of myself for being so accepting. He only played with it for a few months, and then my son continued on the traditional "all boy" path. So as I read this, I pictured the reaction, the physical, visceral reaction my husband and I would have had if he'd been more like C.J. It would have been hard, really hard. I'd like to think I would have been as fiercely supportive and protective as Lori, but this book made me really think about that.

"Raising a gender-nonconforming child can be excruciatingly lonely, a tear-worthy existence that we walk through and try to shield our children from.
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24 of 24 people found the following review helpful By LindaT VINE VOICE on September 1, 2013
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
I knew that this book would be a challenge to read and review. I also knew that it would be fun to read.

I started elementary school in the '50's and two of my middle school years were also spent in the same decade. Late bloomer that I was, I didn't even know that "gay" behavior existed. When I was a bit older and learned that gender is a lot more "fluid" than I thought, it was almost traumatic. Also, I was raised in a spiritual tradition where it was highly frowned upon to act like a member of the opposite sex. Of course, with more years and maturity I learned a lot of things, and to be honest, my personal jury is out about many things I used to think were strictly no-no.

The author shares about her experience with her son C.J, who saw himself as a boy but enjoyed "girl things" and gravitated to princess toys, Barbies, Hello Kitty as well as the color pink. (Gender non-conforming) She shows a fascinating little person in C.J. All things considered, he manages to make friends and enjoy life. Most importantly, she decides to accept her boy exactly as he is, even though it isn't always easy.

By far the hardest part of it is the teasing and ridicule from other children as well as hostility in the outside world. But Lori Duron handles it well, as I am sure she continues to do. It's worth the price of the whole book just to read about the action she took to stop the bullying of her older son (not C.J.) who was being teased unmercifully about his younger brother.

Gender identity is a hot topic right now, and I think this book would be beneficial for anyone to read whether you agree or disagree with the author. The concluding chapter is extremely thought provoking, and it's tempting to copy it all down here.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Jesse A. Robles on September 4, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
When I first started reading CJ's Moms blog I thought it was just a lighthearted blog about this adorable boy. This book is a testament of how important a families love is in the development of a child. More than that, though, it also serves as an invaluable resource for parents that are having trouble understanding how to deal with with their special little ones. I would recommend this to parents and non parents alike; it's easy to fall in love with this family and to become a cheerleader in their journey.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Valerie Willman on September 9, 2013
Format: Paperback
I read another great memoir this week. Hooray for memoirists! Raising My Rainbow: Adventures in Raising a Fabulous, Gender Creative Son by Lori Duron is sweet, and nurturing, and real. It's honest, and ... well ... I'd want to be her friend if I knew her in real life.

When her son, at age three, found a Barbie, Lori and Matt Duron's life changed forever. As well as their two sons'. What follows are years of self-doubt, unconditional love, and the angst of whether or not he can bring his "girl" toys with him when he leaves the house.

It was life-affirming to read about her advocacy, the friends they surrounded their little family with, and the joy that beamed out from little C.J.'s face when he was dancing in an all girls ballet/tap class with a sparkly tutu on.

It's a story about love, first and foremost. It's a story about the minutia of decisions parents need to make when the challenges arise, as they always do. It's a story about acceptance, and providing the best for your child.

I recommend this book to all.

Five stars.
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