Ruby Swanson’s life changed when her sixteen-year-old son walked to her office, closed the door, and with his hand still on the doorknob said, “I’m gay.” Despite her initial reaction of shock, fear, and denial, Ruby became a public advocate for equality and acceptance of the LGBT community. A Family Outing is the story of Ruby’s experiences. She addresses the deeply homophobic time in which baby boomers grew up, the emergence of the gay rights movement, and how the AIDS epidemic transformed the LGBT landscape.
A Family Outing is a memoir about discovering gay great-uncles and learning about their lives. It is about operating spotlights at a drag queen show, and about marching in Pride Parades. It is about the discrimination that gay people continue to face today and what emerges from the direct, clear-eyed prose. Finally, it is the picture of a woman who endured taunts from religious fundamentalists and political protestors to become an LGBT advocate.
“Filled with love, empathy and good storytelling.” - The Toronto Star
“A Family Outing is a genuine account of a parent’s experience. This book exemplifies the process of moving through the stages of confusion, to acceptance, to celebrating a child’s authentic identity. Moreover, it also outlin’s this parent’s endles devotion to a healthier LGBTQ community.” - Tamara D. Gartner, RSW, M.A., Registered psychologist, co-director of Inclusive Counselling & Consulting Psychological Services
“Ruby’s account of her family’s journey with a gay son is a story of courage and love.” - Michael Phair, gay activist and former Edmonton city councillor
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