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13 Celebrities Who Were Raised by LGBTQ+ Parents
LGBTQ+ parents have been, and will always be, here!
From Neil Patrick Harris and Anderson Cooper to Andy Cohen and Tom Daley, LGBTQ+ celebrity parents are an increasingly familiar and affirming presence in modern society. Less known, though, are celebrities who were raised by queer parents. Legends like Jodie Foster and Robert DeNiro both had LGBTQ+ parents, and of course, there's always the Jenners.
Here are some notable, famous celebrities with LGBTQ+ parents you might not have known about.
Ally Sheedy has been open and supportive of her gay mother, Charlotte Sheedy.
"My mom's been such a champion," Sheedy told the Windy City Times in 2011. "She's always been really politically conscious and active. That's what I remember growing up. I mean, I remember growing up during the women's liberation movement when people were gay, they were straight, they were this, they were that...there were no stereotypes ... so, I never had a moment where people were straight and then they were suddenly gay. It was my world."
Amy Adams was raised in a Mormon household but she left the church not long after her parent's marriage ended in divorce in 1985. She went to live with her mom, Kathryn, a semi-professional bodybuilder, and her new female partner.
"She's ripped," Adams told GQ of her mom in 2016. "For a woman of 65, she's gunned up. She rock-climbs!"
Andy Richter had no problem defending his gay father, a university professor, from homophobes on Twitter.
"Ha! My dad's gay, dummy," Richter tweeted at the time.
In her 2001 memoir Call Me Crazy, Anne Heche wrote of her difficult relationship with her gay or bisexual father (labels weren't specified), whom she also accused of sexual abuse when she was a child. When he died of AIDS-related complications, her mother Nancy became a a "Christian therapist" who works with homophobic, ex-gay religious ministries including Focus on the Family.
The mother of legendary actress Dorothy Dandridge was an accomplished actress in her own right. Ruby Dandridge made numerous appearances on popular early radio and television programs, most notably The Beulah Show. Ruby was also bisexual and reportedly entered into a same-sex relationship with Geneva Williams not long after divorcing Dorothy's father.
Jay-Z helped his mother, Gloria Carter, come out publicly when she read a poem she wrote on "Smile" from his 2017 album 4.44.
"Living in the shadow feels like the safe place to be," Gloria wrote in her poem. "No harm for them, no harm for me. But life is short, and it's time to be free. Love who you love, because life isn't guaranteed."
Jena Malone remembers her childhood raised by two mothers as exciting and perfectly normal.
"I was raised by two mums who were lovers," Malone told The Independentin 2008. "When I was younger it wasn't anything that was abnormal. I had two mums and for me that was really exciting because when I was younger most people seemed to like their mum more than their dad so I'd be like, 'Ha, I've got two of them!' And I feel I got a lot of love, respect and acceptance from them. I had a really healthy normal relationship with my parents."
When legendary actor Joel Grey came out as a gay man in 2015, nobody was more supportive and happy than daughter Jennifer Grey.
"I feel very happy for my dad that he has come to a point in his life where he feels safe and/or comfortable enough to declare himself in a public way as a gay man," Grey told People at the time. "Mostly because the more people are free to own their true nature, and can hopefully come closer to love and accept themselves as they really are, no matter what age, no matter how long it takes, to finally be free of the lies or half-truths, it is freedom."
Jodie Foster spent her childhood traveling for acting gigs with her gay mother, Evelyn "Brandy" Foster. She wrote a touching obituary, obtained by People, to her mom when she passed away in 2019.
"Evelyn was without a doubt the strongest person her family has ever met, a champion, a fighter, full of fire and love," the obit read. "No one could beat her style, all five feet tall with naturally 'cork screw' hair. Her family will remember those dimple smiles and big hugs and well placed four letter words. No one messed with Nana, an original like no other. May she live in all of us forever."
Kylie and Kendall Jenner
The makeup mogul and the runway model sisters are the daughters of Caitlyn Jenner, the retired Olympic track-and-field star and gold medal-winning decathlete.
Mandy Moore not only has a lesbian mother, but both of her brothers are gay. Her mother left her father for another woman when Moore was 23, but she described her family as "extraordinarily close" to People.
"Nobody is hiding who they are. There are no secrets in our lives. I love and support my mom and my brothers with my whole heart. And nothing makes me happier than seeing anybody live their authentic self, and to choose love. If anyone can find love, I support it, I salute you and I celebrate that."
Uncle Frank star Paul Bettany opened up to Total Film magazine about his late gay father.
"He came out of the closet at 63. He then had a 20-year relationship with a man called Andy Clark. It was a joyous relief for everybody, actually."
Things changed after Clark died, though. His father went back into the closet and said it had "all been a misunderstanding" and because he was Catholic concerned about the afterlife.
"The shame he felt for his sexual identity was devastating, he was unable to mourn the person who I think was the love of his life."
Robert DeNiro told Out in 2016 his artist father was "probably" conflicted about being gay.
"Yeah, he probably was, being from that generation, especially from a small town upstate," told Out. "I was not aware, much, of it. I wish we had spoken about it much more. My mother didn't want to talk about things in general, and you're not interested when you're a certain age. Again, for my kids, I want them to stop and take a moment and realize that you sometimes have to do things now instead of later, because later maybe 20 years from now -- and that's too late."