Dad starts “TikTok Stand In Families” a movement offering stand-in ‘families’ at LGBTQ weddings

Dad starts global movement that offers stand-in ‘families’ at LGBTQ weddings.
Dad starts global movement that offers stand-in ‘families’ at LGBTQ weddings. Courtesy of Shoop Shots Studios.

Dan Blevins is reaching out to the LGBTQ community to offer support for couples whose parents won’t attend their wedding.

Blevins spoke about the reasoning behind his efforts, “In 2018, I walked my own daughter down the aisle, and just the thought of someone not having that parent at their wedding or in their life, it was just heartbreaking to me”.

Last January, Blevins released an open invitation on TikTok offering himself as a stand-in parent for anyone in the LGBTQ community in the event their families are unsupportive of their relationship.

@the_zombie_dan #gay #lgbtq #alphabetmafia #samesexwedding ♬ original sound – Zombie Dan

“If you are a same-sex couple that’s getting married and you do not have biological parents there to support you, please let me know,” Blevins said in the video. “If I’m not able to attend your wedding, I have friends that will. We have a big network and it just continues to grow of moms and dads that want to be a part of your big day.”

“So message me, please share, duet, let people know,” he continued. “Let’s help spread this message that there’s parents that want to be there for you on your big wedding day and we’ll be your biggest fans.”

Thousands of users watched and interacted with the video, many shared their own experiences with rejection from their families.

“I just want parents,” one user replied. “My birth parents turned on me because I’m trans. I think what [Blevins is] doing is great.”

That one video blossomed into a community helping offer love, acceptance, and support for those who need it on their big day. The Facebook group “TikTok Stand In Families” currently has nearly 34,000 members.

“I don’t know if I can pass for a mom, but I am HERE to be your auntie, big sis, little sis, or cousin,” wrote one volunteer.

A 2018 study from the Human Rights Campaign found that 67% of LGBTQ youth hear their families make negative comments about LGBTQ people. It is behavior like this that contributes to the 78% of LGBTQ who chose not to come out to their families. The study also found that 48% of LGBTQ reported that their families have made them feel bad about their identity.

“I think we tend to take our family for granted,” Blevins told Today. “Filling that need of a mother figure or a father figure, even if it’s virtually, means so much to a lot of people.”

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