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Confessions of the Other Mother: Nonbiological Lesbian Moms Tell All!
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Confessions of the Other Mother: Nonbiological Lesbian Moms Tell All!

3.73 of 5 stars 3.73  ·  rating details  ·  175 ratings  ·  27 reviews
A 2006 Lambda Literary finalist in the LGBT anthology category

After author Harlyn Aizley gave birth to her daughter, she watched in unanticipated horror as her partner scooped up the baby and said, "I'm your new mommy!" While they both had worked to find the perfect sperm donor, Aizley had spent nine months carrying the baby and hours in labor, so how could her partner cla
Paperback, 208 pages
Published May 1st 2006 by Beacon Press (first published January 1st 2006)
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The Kid by Dan SavageConfessions of the Other Mother by Harlyn AizleyFamilies Like Mine by Abigail GarnerA Family by Any Other Name by Bruce GillespieFairyland by Alysia Abbott
Nonfiction: Gay & lesbian parenting
2nd out of 116 books — 20 voters
Asking for Trouble by Elizabeth Young32AA by Michelle CunnahA Bad Bride's Tale by Polly WilliamsManhunting by Jennifer CrusieA Promising Man by Elizabeth Young
Undies (no people!)
17th out of 29 books — 4 voters

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Community Reviews

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As much as I wanted to be a mother, I hadn't really considered that I wouldn't be the mother carrying my child - that I would be the "other" mother. This book was a great help when I was suddenly confronted with being the non-birth mom and let me know that I was not alone in this strange position. Straight society doesn't really have any good labels or concepts of what it means to be the non-birth mom and the dyke community is still trying to define it. This book shares the personal stories of n ...more
LJ Enriquez
This book was definitely interesting. As a heterosexual woman, it really opened my eyes to how heteronormative society is, both in regards to parenting as well as pretty much everything else. This book shares the stories of women who are trailblazers in a sense, forging a path where there previously wasn't one. The women talk about the struggles of lesbian co-parenting, but I noticed that the overarching theme was that you love your kid, whether they are your biological kid or not. These women a ...more
Overall I thought that this book provided an interesting and diverse look at being a non-biological lesbian mom. That said, some of the people in this book seem a little kooky, and I hope that I don't experience these problems because I am not nuts. It drives home to me that so many situations are so unique and there really is no guidebook for how to be an "other mother". As someone who is planning to be a non-biological bisexual mother, I found some of the rahrah lesbians talk a little limiting ...more
Valentin Mihov
From Publishers Weekly

More than 15 years into the lesbian baby boom, Aizley's collection of first-person accounts by nonbiological lesbian mothers is a long time coming. Nonlegalistic and (mostly) nonharrowing, these tales are only tangentially about powers of attorney, two-parent adoption, and custody battles, instead illumining what it is to be mom and not-mom at the same time. Some pieces explore the feelings of envy and loss of would-be but infertile mothers learning to accept their easily

I didn't enjoy every story in this book, but overall I really enjoyed the perspectives. My favorite quote from the book was something a non biological mom told her child "You didn't grow under my heart, you grew in it."
Ashley (For the Love of the Page)
I got this book suggestion from my friend Audrey and I'm so thankful I did. This book was wonderful and it felt really good to have a little insight from other people in my situation.
There were some real gems in this book, and virtually none of the contributions were unreadable, which is rare for a compilation book. Several stories were dull, though.
I just read it to make my hormones act up. Parts made me want to cry... Wow. I don't think I could handle being the non-bio mom!
If you have a particular interest in the subject, it's worth a read. Otherwise, pretty repetitive and predictable.
Good range of stories. Definitely a recommended read for those starting a "non-traditional" family.
I had high hopes for this book, I really did. In retrospect, I can't say exactly what those high hopes were based on, but I really thought that an anthology would be the perfect way to learn about the experiences of non-gestational mothers, to read a bunch of varied and interesting essays on the subject.

Instead, I think the anthology format was working against this subject matter. Almost all of the anthologized essayists related more or less the same narrative arc to the reader: "Being the 'oth
Eva Leger
Jul 02, 2009 Eva Leger rated it 2 of 5 stars
Recommended to Eva by: found it on PBS and thought it looked interesting
This is the first book I've read on this subject so it was definitely enlightening. I liked that it was set up as essays from various authors, with it like that instead of novel form, I was able to set it down when I wanted, pick it back up, and not feel like there was a great big gap.
I also liked the fact that the essays were so different from each other. I could tell write away that some of the authors I would get along great with and others I didn't like so much. Even the authors I could tel
I liked the variety of perspectives. I have heard from non-gestational mothers that this book as a whole presents a more negative impression of the experience of non-gestational mothers than what they experienced.
I am really glad I read this book, because it made me think of a lot of the stuff that I sometimes don't want to think about when it comes to lesbian/queer/same-sex parenting where one of the moms gave birth to the kid(s). The stuff I'm like, ehhhh, maybe we just won't have to deal with that....That's the stuff that of course you should deal with asap.

I'd really like to hear what anyone else who may have read it thinks about it, especially in relation to their own experience.
Sep 17, 2008 Deb rated it 2 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: lesbian moms who have time on their hands to read (HAH!)
Bought this at Michigan. SO far enjoying it and having a lot of head nodding moments! Even the title though....I hate being defined by what I am not instead of what I am. Ultimately this book was disappointing. It started out well, then the quality of the writing decreased dramatically and the stories became redundant. A good first effort though and a topic that will hopefully be further explored.
There were so many points of view in this book, it's almost guaranteed you'll find something close to your own. Even though I am planning to be the biological mother, I read this book to see if it would be useful for my wife. She still hasn't read it, but I have essays marked for her!

I came across this book at work and was interested in reading it since I often care for new families consisting of two moms. I felt like it was a gift to read about all these different families. The women were thoughtful and lovely.
This was very fascinating. I am not running towards the baby-making, but it was really interesting to read the thoughts of non-birth parents. There are essays by femme mama's and butch identified baba's and all sorts of things.
Rebecca Cohen
The writing in this book was mostly mediocre but it was nice to read stories of other nonbiological lesbian mothers. Next time, they should find people who can write better.
This book is definitely worth a read if you are a lesbian mom. It was interesting to read stories told from the perspective of non-biological moms.
Liz De Coster
Like so many story collections, this one felt uneven. Some reflections were interesting, some less so.
This series of essays provides a much-needed resource for lesbian couples considering motherhood.
Mar 31, 2009 TJ rated it 3 of 5 stars
Shelves: own
Good stories. Gives a lot to think about. Hope and joy in the stories, but also truth
I cannot believe that 1. I actually read this, and 2. it was extremely helpful.
Everyone could benefit from reading this book. Read it!
Repetitive? Yes. Weepiness-inducing? Also yes.
Interesting insights into lesbian parenting.
Kristen marked it as to-read
Feb 22, 2015
Becca marked it as to-read
Feb 22, 2015
Charlie marked it as to-read
Feb 19, 2015
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