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My child is … gay

(China Daily)

10:34, January 06, 2013

The most difficult part of being in a gay relationship in China is often when the couple goes home and breaks the news to parents. (China Daily/Tang Guangfeng)

In Chinese society, where carrying on the ancestral line is a duty, it can be hard forparents to accept their homosexual child may never marry - at least in the conventionalsense. But as Shi Yingying finds in Guangzhou, there is help at hand.

Seven years ago, Wu Youjian became the first Chinese mother to openly support hergay son on television. Seven years later, she is still a lone voice among the parents ofgays and lesbians who struggle to accept their children's sexual preferences.

Xiao Qiang (not his real name), 44, is one of them.

"I watched her speech on TV, but I just couldn't do it her way - hug my son and acceptthe fact that this boy, who I watched grow up with such pride, favors men over women."

Xiao says he went home drunk every night for a whole month after his high school agedson revealed his sexual orientation because he fears he will never have a grandson. Itis illegal for same-sex couples to adopt children in China.

"It was the biggest wish of my life, why I worked so hard and brought my whole family toGuangzhou from my hometown in Hunan's Shaoyang, so my heirs can have betterlives."

Xiao runs a hair salon in Guangzhou's bustling Tianhe commercial district, and makesabout 7,000 ($1,123) to 8,000 yuan a month.

Twenty years ago, he arrived in Guangzhou as a migrant worker and worked as asecurity guard, pinning all his hopes on his son and saved to buy him an apartment.

"Now I have to work even harder to make sure I have a grandson, as the black marketprices for surrogate mothers in China is extremely high," Xiao says.

He has done his homework and says a grandchild from a surrogate mother will cost himanything from 120,000 to 0.5 million yuan.

"You've got the high-end option in California, where surrogacy is legal and your baby isborn with an American passport And then you have the lower end option of doing it onthe black market in China."

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