holiday cheer

TELL QUEERTY: How Are You Spending Thanksgiving?


No, we’re not going to sell your answers to advertisers. (But only because Jaindl Farms — home of the White House’s turkeys — aren’t currently a client.) But come Thursday, most of us will be surrounding ourselves with friends, family, loved ones, and ex-sexual partners who awkwardly RSVP’d to our mother’s invitation despite the extent of our relationship being a one-night stand. Especially if you fall into the latter category, we want to know what all of you are going to be doing! So, tell us:

• Who are you spending Thanksgiving with? Are you hosting it? Who are you most excited to see around the Thanksgiving table?

• Be honest: Is “Thanksgiving Dinner” more like “Maker’s on the rocks” at your local dive?

• Is this a holiday you look forward to? Or does it stress you out?

• Are you staying home, in town, or traveling afar?

• What dish are you bringing? Or most excited to eat? (It’s okay to say “pumpkin pie,” we won’t judge!) Or are you responsible for cooking everything?


• Have you ever brought your same-sex partner to your family’s Thanksgiving? Big deal, or no? (Or are you the ones hosting Thanksgiving, and inviting everyone else into your big, queer house?)

• Is there anyone about to mark a “first”? Like, “First Thanksgiving with our newborn,” or, “First Thanksgiving with my ex-wife … and my new husband.” Share!

Obviously the answers will be different if you’re single and 20 or married and 40, but fill us in on the big plans!

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  • Aaron Heier

    Several friends and I are volunteering for the 21st Annual Scott Carlson LGBT Community Thanksgiving Dinner here in San Diego. The dinner, started by LGBT & HIV/AIDS activist Carlson, originally served those critically ill who weren’t able to cook for themselves. To honor his legacy of activism, the dinner has now morphed into a community-wide dinner, no one is turned away regardless of who they are (homeless, LGBT, straight, down on their luck, ill or healthy.)

    It’s amazing to see so many people come together to give thanks during the holiday for what they have, especially when some have so little.

  • Chris Richardson

    My partner and I will be having an “orphan” thanksgiving here at our big gay house. For homos and heteros alike, there is a place at the table. It is our favorite holiday and everyone can’t wait for Keith’s cooking (one of the benie’s of living with someone with a culinary arts degree). I do the pumpkin pie, he does the mac & cheese, turkey and everything else.

  • Scott

    Usually my partner and I take turns hosting Thanksgiving with a family we know but this year my Honey is heading to see his parents in Asia Minor while I stay home. So I’ll be at a restaurant with straight friends who have no family left (because they’re old and the family died).

  • John from England(used to be just John but there are other John's)


  • Mike L.

    Well I don’t celebrate any holidays at all barely do I celebrate birthdays, but I might drop by a cousin’s house (leaning on not wanting to bother) or just let it be a regular day like any other.

    Yes I’m a scrooge when it comes to holidyas.


  • Republican

    Spending it with family. We decided to order the turkey, sides, and appetizers and have them delivered to the host relative’s house to cut down on the work involved. Thank God for that, as I’m always the one who ends up cooking everything from scratch. I mean, I know I’m the best damn cook in the family (yay, gay genes), but a man has got to be able to relax on his days off, too. This year I’m just making a few desserts.

  • Republican

    Keith, reading your post made me cry. I’ll never understand how a family can just say “go away” to one of its own, especially during Thanksgiving. The holidays are a time of peace and love. It’s simply incomprehensible to me.

  • Aaron

    I have two Thanksgivings. Thursday is spent at my mother’s and then my siblings and I have Thanksgiving #2 with my Dad and his girlfriend on Friday. Both my parents live in the Bay Area so I don’t have to trek that far. I live in SF, they’re in the East Bay.

  • Keith Kimmel

    “No. 8 · Republican

    Keith, reading your post made me cry. I’ll never understand how a family can just say “go away” to one of its own, especially during Thanksgiving. The holidays are a time of peace and love. It’s simply incomprehensible to me.”

    Meh, I stopped letting it effect me a while ago. They have never told me not to come, specifically. But I have been made to feel unwelcome, so I don’t go. Its really a matter of convenience for me. I make it a point to be very busy when the holidays are near, so that I have an excuse. My family is not something I am proud of, nor is it something that I spend alot of time thinking about anymore. It is what it is and it will always be the same. Intelligent people know when they are powerless to change a situation, accept the fact and move on.

    If I were to go home, my mom would attempt religious conversions and Dad would tell me how homosexuals are a plague upon society. Grandma would play the lecturing Christian and condemn me to hell, while my uncles would probably try to bash me. Why subject myself to that when I can be around a couple of hundred adorable people who have nothing but kind words and acceptance for me? For the most part, I think our community and the people in it are beautiful in every way. Sure, the politics and the apathy of many of them pisses me off and stress me out to no end, but when we are not dealing with advocacy and politics, most of the same people just make me want to hug them and tell them how lovely they are.

    I don’t discuss or play politics on holidays. On those days, everyone is welcome and for those few hours, the score boards are clean. I even smile at and hug people that on other days I cannot stand. It really confuses them, lol. Like you said, its a time for love and acceptance, not bickering and pettiness. Last year I attended a celebration at a local Oklahoma City bar. This is the first year I am doing the OkEq thing. I’ll probably do something similar for Christmas.

    We make our own happiness and luck in life. If being around family makes you unhappy as it does for so many in our community, then don’t do it. If you have something your area, attend that. Better yet, volunteer at it. If you don’t, start it. Or simply grab the nearest homo, hug them and tell them you love them for who they are. Trust me, few things brighten a day more effectively.

  • Keith Kimmel

    (damn, submitted that before I was done).

    What I didn’t mention above was that when I partook in the little celebration last year, it wasn’t planned. You see, I was psyching myself up for the last part of my coming out process: telling family and living with the consequences of it. I went to the bar to get completely shitfaced and forget about all my problems. Before I could do it, someone got to me, embraced me and welcomed me and we wound up talking for a long, long time over the various items of potluck on offer that night.

    This year, hopefully I’ll be able to help someone else in the way that person helped me. He planted the seed that by Easter of the next year (2009) had brought about multiple fundamental changes in me, where I re-evaluated many roads my life was on and made lots of changes. I decided that I would no longer live in the closet and not only would I not be in the closet, I would live decidedly out of it. Its where my activism started.

    So yeah, what they do is mean and hurtful. But it only affects me if I allow it to. No one makes me angry, or sad, or hurt or anything else anymore unless I allow them to. Let me tell you, there are few things more self-empowering than cutting strings one by one that various puppet masters have found over you.

  • trav

    with the family, and my boyfriend is with his also… we’ll probably meet after the mid-day calorie binge to have tea and such, but thanksgiving is with the families.

    isn’t it weird/really common to be comfortably out to an entire family except for 1 member of the family? just asking.

  • tinkerbell

    I’ll be working at my home in the ER. No rest for the weary…miserable wretches! (Really, I do love my job and holidays are an acceptable part of it.)

    Anyhoo, going on a jaunt the following day for a few days so no harm, no foul.

  • GayGOP

    I will be spending time with the family. No boyfriend, or else I might be with his family, or he with mine.

  • Mark

    LIving overseas so no Thanksgiving; though even if I were in the States, wouldn’t do anything for it.

  • christopher di spirito

    This is our last Thanksgiving in New York. A lot of our house is in boxes and we’re focused on moving back to California so we’re not really focused on holidays, per se. In fact, I am not cooking a big Thanksgiving spread. Next year, we will get back to coking a Thanksgiving meal that would make Martha Stewart proud.

  • InExile

    They don’t celebrate it here, it’s almost impossible to find a turkey and everything to go with it. Please support Uniting American Families Act so those gay couples in exile can move back home.

  • Joey in CT

    Hahaha…This years Thanksgiving should be interesting. I started dating a boy a few months ago, and he invited me to T-day with his fam. The interesting part is that his Mom says “Awesome, he’s more then welcome to come. But we can’t tell Grandma who he really is (I guess Gram doesn’t know he’s a bottom). We’ll put Gram in Dad’s Study so she’s not sleeping across the hall from you!”. LMAO. So I find out that Gram is a Born-again. SWEET! I sooo can’t wait to interact with Gram. Kill her with kindness :-) Anyway, thats my T-day plans. Should be fun. I’m wicked nervous to meet them all, but I’m thankful to have a really great guy in my life and to be able to spend the next few days with him. He makes me feel like I never have and his pay-back for Gram and her Brainwashing book is going to be him meeting all 10 of my siblings…at once! :-) Sorry Babe! XO Happy Holidays all of you!

  • Stitch

    Thursday, hosting some friends with my partner. It’s our first together, and my first since coming out to my family (which partially explains why I’m not heading east to see them this year). Friday, going to dinner at an old friend’s place. Saturday, gathering with some co-workers for a “chosen-family” meal.

  • Joe

    With my French boyfriend and my mom and dad in the country…eating a funny French influenced meal with foie gras and cranberry sauce.

    Reading some of the above emails, I’m thankful for what I’ve been given. Good luck to everyone.

  • Republican


    Same here, man, same here. I’m so thankful to have a family that doesn’t give a shit that I love another man.

  • DarkKnight

    For years my partner and I have hosted an “orphan’s” dinner at our place. We pretty much make everything – which leads to an argument or two! – but somehow it’s always worked. The best have been when too many people showed up – the table somehow always expanded and the dinner was even better. (of course, guests who brought sides/dessert were never turned away.)
    This is our first year as guests at another “orphans” dinner. And yes, nearly everyone (but not entirely) is gay.
    Thanksgiving is for spending with the family. My partner and closest friends are my family, and we’re never apart at this time, somehow.
    We’ve had new bfs, re-kindled bfs, kids, dogs, birds; dishes that worked it, and sides that should have been sidelined. It’s our favorite holiday – the most…organic? – and it’s always a great time.
    Oh, and my partner insists on re-staging a “Kennedy-esque” holiday with football in the street. Love that.
    However you mark the holiday, I wish you all to be with your family – and you know who that is.
    Be together. And love from our table to all yours.

  • Stenar

    The whole family is coming over to my and my partner’s house for Thanksgiving dinner.

  • Ryan

    Dinner with the boyfriend, and a bunch of our expat friends here in London. Turkey is currently defrosting in the shower.. ahh good times. now to just go and finish cooking everything else.

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