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franny

Best neighborhood for gay families?

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westguy76    4

1. I think we can all agree discrimination is bad. (I don't think anyone claimed this)

2. If I have to tolerate something or someone it is a nuisance.

If you want to live with other's like yourself than just get on with it.

Hell as a middle class white anglo saxon bigot , I did.

Seriously though, I think this city is progressive enough that you would feel comfortable in any of the afore mentioned neighborhoods.

Spend as much money as you can. Yeah debt!!

And don't sacrifice your family's security or education for selfish reasons.

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I would say Montrose is probably the ideal area although expensive. What do people think about the downtown condos vs houses. It seems possibly they might be more friendly but I dont live in one so I dont really know from experience

I think Austin in general is probably the most GLBT friendly city in Texas from GLBT friends I have talked to but that is a pretty unrealistic commute.

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franny    0

Wow! This thread went all over the place without us. Fantastic input, thanks to everyone who replied.

Just a few points of clarification, none of it having to do with architecture.

We were probably overly idealistic about how much people would get used to our family over time. We didn't realize that lots of people are open-minded in theory, but get uncomfortable when their kids ask questions about, in this instance, where the daddy is. The people we've met in Tanglewilde are like that - perfectly nice but never quite comfortable, either treating our family as a curiosity or as not-quite-right. We've done everything we can, been very involved in the nabe, had lots of people over, but it's just not budging, or not budging fast enough. Also, the fact is there just aren't that many little kids in our neighborhood, and almost none on our street.

So - we have a couple of solid offers on our house, which is exciting, and it looks like we're moving to Godwin Park/Meyerland. We've decided to just walk house to house as a family, introduce ourselves, ask people what they like about the neighborhood, see if there are any other pre-K kids in the immediate vicinity. If we get the stink-eye a bunch we'll have some thinking to do, but my guess is, we won't. Once our daughter gets to Kolter I'm sure she'll make lots of friends. We aren't so dumb as to assume that everyone will love our family, or even like us, but we just want the chances to be a little stronger that kiddo will have some of the same opportunities for neighborhood fun that we had growing up.

We looked and looked in Westbury, and in Willow Meadow, but in the end the siren song of Kolter's Mandarin language program won out - we'd love our child to learn Mandarin early and Kolter's language program is one of the best. So hopefully Meyerland is as openminded as Westbury, even if it's not as gay. At any rate, lots of her DINK aunties and uncles live in Westbury, so she'll have some doting grown-up friends just to the south.

Oh, and BTW - there IS actually a place where you can see all presidential political campaign donations mapped, by street. http://fundrace.huffingtonpost.com/ . You can drill down to street level, and even find out what your neighbors who donated do for a living.

Please excuse the info overload, but I hope this thread and responses are helpful to other families, gay or straight, looking for a magical Sesame Street liberal, livable, affordable neighborhood with good schools. We sure do appreciate the assistance.

We're a lesbian couple currently in Tanglewilde with our 16 month old. Lately, it has become clear that many parents in the neighborhood are never really going to get comfortable with us. We both grew up in neighborhoods with lots of interaction, and we really want that for our child(ren.) We don't want our daughter to be punished for the fact that we're on the homo team.

Since for some reason HAR doesn't list voting patterns or predominant sexual preferences on their site, can someone point us toward a neighborhood with:

a) lots of gay or liberal families

b) near Medical Center/Bellaire/West U area (partner is in nursing school in med center and I work at 45 and Fuqua.)

c) good public elementary and junior high schools (realistically we'll most likely move before high school)

d) houses in the $200-300 range

e) a little style wouldn't hurt - we like midcentury modern but we're not the types to live in a "perfect" home with all vintage furniture

We're thinking Westbury, but which sections are most likely to fit all of the above? And are there neighborhoods other than Westbury?

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That has to be the most ridiculous advice I've heard in quite awhile. Yes, know your place, no PDA's (reserved for your hetero neighbors) and you might tolerated. I'm really not sure of what to make of that "nose" comment.

As far as neighborhoods, maybe Timbergrove?

As a proto-Victorian, I take umbrage to that ... I don't want to see PDA period. That's why God created boudoirs.

I don't understand. They use drugs? They display brief, non-sexually oriented nudity? They use the F word once and only once? What are you talking about?

ALL of those, Meme, are unacceptable public behaviors. Had I children, I would not want them exposed to any of what you cited.

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memebag    15
ALL of those, Meme, are unacceptable public behaviors. Had I children, I would not want them exposed to any of what you cited.

Do you and your imaginary children see these behaviors in public as frequently as Jeebus does?

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InTheLoop    1

Franny:

I know your new neighborhood like the back of my hand, and it is a solid one. It is no more or less gay than Westbury, nor is it more or less gay than Bellaire or Willowbend. Some have offered unsupported "information" to the contrary about Westbury, then couldn't come close to proving it. It is all the same.

What we're talking about is "Near Southwest Houston" (NSH). In my opinion, you have chosen to live in the BEST part of Houston. There are professional/managerial people all over the place. Because of proximity to the Texas Medical Center (and a lesser extent Rice U.), no other largely middle-class (+) area of the Houston region can match the intellectual firepower of the near southwest side. Maybe the surgeons choose River Oaks, West U, etc., but there are Ph.D level researchers, educators and the like on most every block. I mention that fact because of your strong interest in educating the kiddo. You will be among like-minded folks over here; believe me!

This area is home to the largest Jewish contingent in Texas, along with several temples, the (much-recommended) Jewish Community

Center and numerous other institutions. If you care about top-notch community education, believe me, you will be thrilled to have Jewish neighbors. In my experience, most Jews place their kids' education at the top of their priorities. As a NSH-area student, I was very impressed (and pushed) by a very large group of academically-focused Jewish kids at (nationally-ranked) Bellaire H.S. I feel lucky because of it. Consider joining the JCC - it is a United Way Agency and membership is non-denominational. It is a kiddy wonderland and offers excellent adult fitness and cultural options.

I'm happy for your choice, but a little concerned about your "strategy". I've lived around NSH for forty + years, and I've got to say that grabbing the kid for a house-to-house introduction is, well, a bit risky - for any new arrival. Few do that - straight or gay. Move in, give it some time and EASE into the hood. Walk the block w/ the kid, play w/em in the front yard, etc.. Let your new neighbors observe you from a distance. Things will thaw quickly. Most everyone today is so overscheduled and stretched that your gender preference will likely be little more than an afterthought UNLESS you push the issue. I'd suggest maybe a "howdy" to your adjacent neighbors, and lots of friendly waves and smiles to everyone else for a time. Let your hood absorb you guys at its pace. It will, especially with a cute little tyke as your "calling card".

I've moved 5 times within NSH and strongly believe the low-key arrival is the best way to a harmonious neighborhood experience.

Congrats on an excellent choice. I know Tanglewilde pretty well and this area is far superior in my honest opinion. Good luck!

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Posted (edited)

We area Gay couple moving from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania to Houston.  We have 3 boys (4-5-8 years old) two are black.  I'm Native American and my husband is European.  What do you all think about The Woodlands & Spring Texas for a place to buy a home and settle down? 

 

Do you all thing that those two se two areas are nice, safe or open minded and tolerant? 

 

---Travis & Stephen

travisbernard.hunt@gmail.com

Edited by Travis Simpson-Hun

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trymahjong    219

Wow

I hope I can be the voice of caution---- friendliness of neighbors might not be enough for a successful transition if the school your kids attend is a zero. Maybe a little research on quality schools, then do the pros and cons of each neighborhood.

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UtterlyUrban    1360
Posted (edited)

Travis,

 

depending on the location of your jobs, you may wish to consider neighborhoods that are closer into town (especially if y'all are working inside loop 610 -- "the loop").  Inside the loop A few neighborhoods like Montrose and the Heights stand out as areas where historically family situations similar yours are not uncommon.  Depending on the age of your kids, the public elementary schools in each neighborhood can me fine.  It might get more challenging in middle school and high school.  Take a look at school rankings.

 

otherwise, the quality of the schools in most of the Houston suburbs (like the woodlands) are totally fine -- k-12 -- I can't speak to the "tolerance" question that you raise as I just don't know.  I can say this however:  I think that you will find that many of the Houston suburbs are loaded with folks from  "somewhere else".... virtually everyone is a transplant from another state.  They all moved here for a job or with a corporate move.  It will be a nice mix of folks.  You will be very surprised how many people you meet who are "new" to Texas........

 

best wishes and welcome to Texas!  My bet: you'll end up loving it here.

Edited by UtterlyUrban
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