PregnantTogether Offers Queer People Community and Support for Family Building and Beyond

Marea Goodman sits in the wilderness with their hands in their lap.
Marea Goodman. (Photo: Sand and Stone Media)

Queer parents and prospective parents can sometimes have a hard time finding support and community. Marea Goodman, a licensed midwife and queer parent, is hoping to make that easier with PregnantTogether, a growing virtual community for queer and solo parents and parents-to-be.

“I really wanted to create a space that centered the queer experience of getting pregnant, being pregnant, giving birth, and raising kids, and to have some way to bring tons of people together who otherwise would feel isolated in their communities,” they said in an interview.

“Primarily we have solo parents, queer couples, and trans men, but it’s open to everybody,” they said. “It’s definitely growing as the need grows and according to the folks that show up.”

Goodman themself has three children, now 3, 6, and 14 years old. Their now-ex had a 7-year-old child and was getting pregnant as a solo parent by choice when she and Goodman started their relationship. Goodman then bore the couple’s third child. “Now we are separated and figuring out co-parenting,” Goodman related. “I’ve had a lot of different family building experiences, as a non-gestational parent, now as a solo parent and as a gestational parent. Those are all the communities that I work with and support in PregnantTogether.”

Goodman obtained their midwifery license from the California Medical Board in 2015 and founded Restore Midwifery in 2016 in the Bay Area. In 2020, when they were pregnant themself, they began writing the book “Baby Making for Everybody: Family Building and Fertility for LGBTQ+ and Solo Parents” (Balance/Hachette) with fellow queer midwife Ray Rachlin. They were both motivated by their own family-building journeys, Goodman explained. “I felt deeply unprepared, even though I had been working with queer families getting pregnant for four years at that point, and attending births for 10 years. It was so different when it was all happening in my own body.”

The book incorporated “testimonials from people who have a diverse range of experiences,” Goodman said, and “it really opened my eyes to the power of community and connection.” PregnantTogether grew from a belief in that power and the idea of a space “where there are hundreds of other people who are going through the same things that you’re going through.” It now has about 200 members, mostly from the U.S., plus some from Canada and as far afield as Belgium and Slovakia.

PregnantTogether includes chat rooms and monthly virtual groups as well as monthly talks from experts on queer or solo-parent family formation, covering topics like “choosing a sperm donor, tracking your fertility, navigating known-donor relationships, and solo-parent family formation,” Goodman said. “We’ve had queer family lawyers talk about protecting your family; IVF doctors; and we just had a really beautiful workshop about tending grief through trying to conceive, pregnancy and postpartum.” The talks are recorded and kept on the site as resources, along with fact sheets and more.

“I’m not actively growing my family anymore,” they added, “but I just started a parenting section of the community, too, for as our kids grow. So we have a monthly queer parenting support group.”

“Membership is $20 a month or $200 a year,” they said, noting that people can pay with a Health Savings Account (HSA) or Flexible Spending Account (FSA). If one member of a couple registers, Goodman offers a free link for the other to have their own account. And for those who find this is still out of their budget, they said, “I’ll give discounts. I want folks to come.”

One frequent question in the community, Goodman said, is “Where do we start?” They will then point people to “tools for how to choose a donor and how to figure out which insemination method makes sense for them.” Another common question is “when to switch to a higher level of fertility care,” an expensive process that can be “really stressful.” PregnantTogether therefore offers a trying-to-conceive support group, which attracts 20 to 30 people every month.

The current political climate, too, has meant questions and hurdles for queer family building. One member couple in Texas “are going to Seattle to do reciprocal in vitro fertilization (RIVF) because they don’t want to have embryos in Texas,” Goodman shared. Not everyone has that option, they said, but asserted, “Queer folks have always found ways to be creative about growing our families and we’re really freaking resilient.”

For those facing obstacles, Goodman assures them, “You’re not alone,” adding, “There are lots of other people doing this, who have figured out creative solutions to building the families that they want to have. Tapping into those wider networks emotionally and logistically is really important, especially during this time when the political landscape is threatening many aspects of how we grow our families.”

Despite the challenges, Goodman said, simply deciding to grow your family means that you are “practicing so many of the skills of parenting, like patience, being open to change, and personal growth. There’s so much love that we bring even before a child exists in our bodies or in the world.” They urge people to see family building “as part of this longer journey,” and to realize that “You’re learning what you need to learn to be the parent that you want to be. It’s the most beautiful and humbling and growthful experience I think that a human can have.”

If you’d like to try out PregnantTogether, email [email protected] for a free month of membership.

Dana Rudolph is the founder and publisher of Mombian (, a two-time GLAAD Media Award-winning blog and resource directory, plus a searchable database of 1,600+ LGBTQ family books.

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