Guest Blog Q & A – Jarrad @therealdadsofmelbourne
We have been following them on Instagram for a while now. Jarrad and Michael are certainly the real dads of Melbourne. Their little boy Reid (5) would give even the most stylish adults a run for their money. Reid owns more clothes than a lot of men; he is always styled to perfection and has a rocking haircut. We had the opportunity to ask Jarrad some questions about their life and experiences.
Hi Jarrad, it’s so lovely to be able to ask you some questions. Can you tell us a little about yourself and your family?
Michael and I have been together for 14 years, we met in Tasmania. We moved to Melbourne in 2001 when Michael took advantage of a work opportunity. I’m a fulltime stay home Dad, have a passion for interior styling and renovating. Michael has recently left the airline industry after 18 years with Qantas to embark on a new career. Reid is currently in 4 year old Kindergarten and is excited about starting primary school next year.
Marriage equality is very important to us. We certainly hope Australia makes some important changes in the near future. What are your thoughts on this issue and how can our readers support marriage equality?
We try to respect the fact that everyone has their own opinions on Marriage, however in our country the current Government should put the vote to the people rather than force their own personal beliefs on others. This is very important to our family. Not because we want a wedding or need the title of being ‘Married’ but we feel every human deserves the right to be treated as an equal and marry whom they love.
You mentioned to us that Reid was born via a surrogate. I’m sure that was quite a journey can you tell us a little about that?
He certainly was, Reid was born in Mumbai India with the help of an agency called Surrogacy India (SI). We investigated surrogacy for approx 5 years prior to choosing SI. It was important to us that we understood the process and that we chose an agency that was transparent and honest, after all we were bringing a child into the world, we wanted to make sure that it was based on respect, integrity and of course love. One of us is the biological Father of Reid, however we have decided to let Reid be the first to have that information should he want to know. We had our surname legally changed (combined) so that when Reid was born he had our Family name. Like many IVF couples we experienced the heartache of a miscarriage on our first attempt however we were blessed to be successful on the second transfer. The agency organised an anonymous egg donor (we choose from a catalogue based on medical, physical and academic backgrounds) and then we choose the Surrogate whom we will be forever grateful. We maintain a distant relationship with our surrogate and plan to travel to India one day soon to see her again. We are so proud of his Indian heritage, and grateful to everyone who made it possible to create our Family.
Since you and Michael are both male. Does Reid call you both Dad? Or does he have a different name for each of you?
Ha, we didn’t have any preconceived ideas of what we wanted to be called, so we let him decided when he started to talk. He calls me Daddy and Michael – DadduM (The M is for Michael) It’s stuck now.
Reid seems like a very mature five year old. Has he ever asked why he has two dads and other children have a mum and dad?
Absolutely, we have always been very open and honest with him about how he came about. We are so grateful to his Kindergarten Teachers who have embraced our family and helped explain to his classmates that all families are different and made up of different combinations of parents and guardians. In fact one of his mates is thinks it’s so cool that Reid has two dads and wishes he had the same!
What do you love most about being a dad?
This is really hard to answer, there is nothing I don’t love about being a parent. I think if I had to say one thing, it is when a parent approaches me at a children’s party or playground and says “Your son is so sweet, kind or has good manners”. It’s the feeling of being proud that cannot be described and something we didn’t think of when we set out on the fatherhood journey
We just adore Reid’s style. How would you describe it?
I don’t think I could really label his style to anything specific. We often get asked if he wears anything twice and the answer to that is yes. Although he has a lot of clothes, sometimes my most favorite pieces are surprisingly his most inexpensive. I have never purchased anything for him that’s novelty style clothes with transfers on them, and wouldn’t force him to wear anything that he is uncomfortable in. Thankfully he loves fashion.
Reid always looks immaculate. For anyone reading looking for styling tips for little boys. Do you have any go to stores for cute clothes and accessories?
That’s very kind of you to say, sometimes it’s hard to find that unique piece of clothing as boy’s seem to have limited choice compared to girls clothing. We are lucky to have the following stores to help us spend our hard earned cash!
Neckwear and Accessories
What are some of your favourite things to do as a family?
We love to meet up for play dates (coffee / wine for the grown up’s) with the friends Reid has made at Kindergarten. We have met some great Families as a result and really enjoy the social activities as much as the kids.
Thanks again for answering our questions. We love following you on Instagram, keep up the good work!
We believe that a loving family and happy children are what is important. The sex or preference of parents does not and should not matter at all. Hopefully someday very soon Australia changes and all marriages are recognised and legal.
You can follow Jarrad (plus Michael and Reid) on Instagram too – @therealdadsofmelbourne