Over the years, our parents, family members, friends, and gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender members have found the reading materials on this list to be very helpful when they found out that their loved one is LGBT, or need to find a way to tell their family members and friends that they are LGBT. We have listed materials for parents, for youth, for young children and for general education. We hope you might consider having these books/publications as part of your collection.
If you have any additional books to add, send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org with the details.
Download the complete list here.
- Always My Child: A Parent’s Guide to Understanding Your Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgendered or Questioning Son or Daughter, Kevin Jennings: Adult Reference Shelf book for parents and teachers. A guide to understanding your gay, lesbian bisexual, transgender or questioning son or daughter by the executive director of GLESEN (Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network)
- Beyond Acceptance: Parents of Lesbians & Gays Talk about Their Experiences, Carolyn Welch Griffin and Marian J. and Arthur G Wirth
- Coming Out as Parents: You and Your Homosexual Child, David K Switzer
- A Family and Friend’s Guide to Sexual Orientation: Bridging the Divide Between Gay and Straight, Bob Powers and Alan Ellis
- Family Heart: A Memoir of When Our Son Came Out, Robb Forman Dew
- Just a Mom, Betty DeGeneres
- Now That You Know: A Parents’ Guide to Understanding Their Gay and Lesbian Children, Betty Fairchild
- Out of the Closet-Into Our Hearts, Laura Siegel and Nancy Lamkin Olson
- Straightforward, Ian Ayres and Jennifer Gerarda Brown
- The Blue Book: What We Wish We Had Known – Breaking the Silence and Moving Toward Understanding: A Resource for Individuals and Families (Fifth Edition), published by The Presbyterian Church – Mt. Kisco, New York. This free publication is a most helpful compendium of all the questions people have about the LGBT community including scientific, social, family life, and theological perspectives.
- 50 Ways to Support Lesbian and Gay Equality: The Complete Guide to Supporting Family, Friends, Neighbors-Or Yourself…, edited by Meredith Maran and Angela Watrous
For LGBT Youth:
- Am I Blue?: Coming Out from the Silence, Marion Dane Bauer
- Free Your Mind, Ellen Bass and Kate Kaufman
- Rainbow Boys, Alex Sanchez
- Rainbow High, Alex Sanchez
- Rainbow Road, Alex Sanchez
- Coming Out to Parents: A Two-Way Survival Guide for Lesbians and Gay Men and Their Parents, Mary Borhek
- GLBTQ: The Survival Guide for Queer & Questioning Teens, Kelly Huegel
For Children – age appropriate material to begin conversations about gay issues:
- The Sissy Duckling, Harvey Fierstein. Recommended for ages 5-8: Elmer is not like the other boy ducklings. While they like to build forts, he loves to bake cakes. While they like to play baseball he wants to put on a halftime show. Elmer is a great big sissy. But when his father is wounded by a hunters shot, Elmer proves the biggest sissy can also be the greatest hero.
- And Tango Makes Three, Justin Richardson and Peter Parnell. Recommended for ages 4-8: In the zoo there are all kinds of animal families. But Tango’s family is not like any of the others. “A little miracle for children. Funny, tender and true. The story of Tango will delight young readers and open their minds.” John Lithgow
- Pinky and Rex (Ready to Read), James Howe. A level 3 Ready to Read book: Pinky’s favorite color is pink, and his best friend Rex is a girl. Kevin, the third-grade bully, says that makes Pinky a sissy. Deep down, Pinky thinks Kevin is wrong, but he is still worried. Does Pinky have to give up his favorite things? Does he have to give up his best friend?
- Just Kidding, Trudy Ludwig. recommended for grades 1-5: Just Kidding, that’s what D. J. Friend, Vince says when he does something to hurt D. J’s feelings. “Trudy Ludwig has not only captured the heart of boy taunting, but also the best solutions.” Susan Wellman, Founder, The Ophelia Project.
- Heather Has Two Mommies (89 Edition), Leslea Newman and Diana Sauza. Recommended for ages 2-6: A preschooler has two Moms and discovers some of her friends also have very different sorts of families.
- Chrysanthemum, Kevin Henkes. Recommended for ages 4-8: On the first day of school, Chrysanthemum begins to suspect that her name is far less than perfect, especially when her class dissolves into giggles upon hearing her name read aloud. Pretty soon the girls are making playground threats to “pluck” Chrysanthemum and “smell her.” A story that has great compassion for the victims of childhood teasing and cruelties
- The Misfits, James Howe. Recommended forages 10 -14: Best friends, who were targets of cruel name calling, are now in 7th grade and not going to take it anymore. The students run against popular peers in the upcoming student council election.
General Education about LGBT issues:
- Becoming Visible (94 Edition), Kevin Jennings
- One Teacher in 10 2ND Edition, Kevin Jennings
- Understanding Homosexuality, Arthur Lipkin
- When the Drama Club is Not Enough: Lessons from the Safe Schools Program for Gay and Lesbian Students, Jeff Perrotti and Kim Westheimer