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Wednesday, 11 January 2012

Video: Groundbreaking Turkish documentary on parents of gay children

Via Artmika




'My Child' is an independent feature documentary-in-production where parents of LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender) individuals in Turkey intimately share their experiences with the viewer, as they redefine what it means to be parents, family, and activists in a conservative, homophobic, and transphobic society.

LGBTs in Turkey

'I believe homosexuality is a biological disorder, a disease. It needs to be treated.'
Public statement by Selma Aliye Kavaf, the Turkish State Minister Responsible for Women and Family (March 2010)

In Turkey, every day, LGBT individuals are subjected to various forms of discrimination and violence, some unfortunately resulting in loss of life. Such violence cannot solely be explained by conservatism and various phobias. The discriminatory laws, police violence, banning of LGBT associations, and censoring of web sites with LGBT content are only a few examples of the systematic government policies and ongoing human rights violations.

Redefining what a family is… LISTAG

In this atmosphere, to fight against this mentality and its practices, a few parents of LGBT individuals got together in 2008 and established LISTAG (Families of LGBT in Istanbul) as a solidarity and support group for friends, families, and especially parents of LGBT individuals.

Acting in solidarity with LGBT organizations, LISTAG has intervened in the current political sphere, by releasing public statements and engaging with politicians. It has actively been working against homophobia, transphobia, discrimination, and hate crimes, being a source of inspiration and strength for LGBT individuals, by reminding them that it is not impossible to come out to their families.

About the Film

In the documentary, MY CHILD, these courageous and inspiring group of mothers and fathers tell their personal stories of the birth of their child, of how they found out about their child’s sexual orientation, of how they learn to accept and embrace… When they talk about how they experienced the coming out of their children, they refer to it as the ‘death of a child and birth of a new one’. They say this extremely traumatic experience has also led to their own rebirth, as they have been questioning what it means to be an individual, to be true to oneself, and to be a parent.

Apart from their personal stories as parents, the film also tells their stories as the LISTAG parents, as activists, of how and why they came together, how they work together and support other families, how they try to reach more parents, about their activism for visibility, acceptance, and equal rights.

For more information about the film, see their website: www.listagfilm.com

To support this worthwhile cause, please follow this link.

Says production team:
“[...] Until now LISTAG parents have been using pseudonyms. The press releases, interviews were all given under different names and without photographs. Now they believe that it is time for them to come out publicly, even more forcefully, using their own identities.

Because of all these reasons, realizing this film and bringing it to the screen is very urgent. That is why we have given ourselves such a short time to complete this documentary. We have started this project in June 2011 and aim to finish it by May 2012.”

“[...] In case we succeed to collect more funds than we need for our budget, the extra funds will be donated to LISTAG, the parents’ organization.
In addition to helping us to realize our dream, with your donation, you will be contributing to the struggle for LGBT rights in Turkey. We hope to show our appreciation and gratitude by providing a series of incentives.”
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