Bill Horn and Scout Masterson may best be known as Tori Spelling’s self-defined “guncles,” but these two are more than another pair of gay sidekicks on a reality show. After meeting eight years ago at a drag reenactment of Grease and sharing their commitment ceremony with viewers on last season’s Tori & Dean: Home Sweet Hollywood, this loving couple are ready to adopt. Horn and Masterson speak with The Advocate about the challenges of an open adoption, their unique relationships with Tori, and the possibility of naming their baby Donna Martin.
The Advocate:First off, last season’s episode chronicling your commitment ceremony was beautiful. It had me tearing up.
Bill Horn: It was an amazing few days. We had all our friends and family come together.
Did you two enjoy the thongs that Tori’s husband, Dean McDermott, presented you as your something borrowed and something blue?
Scout Masterson: When he showed us those I thought, You have got to be kidding me! And he did check to see if we wearing them.
Horn: He was disappointed because I wasn’t wearing mine.
Now, after eight years of being together and holding the commitment ceremony, you have decided you are ready to adopt.
Masterson: Yes, we are approved and we are going through the open adoption process. It has been a complete roller coaster of emotions because each day we wake up and think today could be the day that a birth mom reaches out to us.
Can you explain what is an open adoption?
Masterson: An open adoption is when the birth mom decides she wants to place the child in an environment where there may be some relationship or openness with the adoptive parents. For some people we have met, the birth mom may join them for birthday parties or a holiday or a Sunday dinner, or it might just be pictures being sent to her. Bill and I like this because it is important to know where you come from. We would love to find a birth mom who wants to come to a birthday party or wants to come for a visit every year.
That means literally you might receive a call tomorrow and have three weeks to prepare for a new child. At the same time, the process could take over year. How do you make preparations for a baby in that situation?
Horn: It is a weird spot to be in because you don’t want that nursery there that haunts you. Parents talk about that a lot. We meet once a month to have these group sessions and [hear about] people who rush out and do everything and then that room sits there for a year. It is heartbreaking! We have prepared in some regards, but we are not racing to make sure everything is ready. We don’t want to be reminded by what we don’t have.
Masterson: At the same time, we know that it won’t be too long before Tori wants to decorate a nursery.
Tori seems almost as excited as you two.
Horn: She and Dean have been so supportive. Dean took our adoption brochure photos for us. Tori and Dean wrote our recommendation letters. Every day they ask, “Any news on the baby?” It is great to have the amount of support.
Have you been thinking of any baby names?
Masterson: We have a few that we like. We just don’t know if we are naming a boy or a girl.
Horn: We are going to name the baby Donna Martin. Actually, it could either Donna or Martin.
Masterson: Just to annoy Tori.
How did you two meet Tori and Dean?
Horn: I met Tori eight and half years ago on a trip. I’m a publicist, and it was a celebrity trip to Turks and Caicos. My company was doing all the PR and working with the celebrities and the press. I was actually assigned to Tori and her brother Randy. We got stuck in Turks and Caicos for eight days because it was over September 11 . It was a very emotional time for everyone. It was weird being in paradise while everything terrible was happening in home. You bond with someone.
It is great watching both of your relationships with Tori. Gay men on television are typically treated as accessories that women collect, but it comes across that Tori genuinely cares about you two.
Horn: She better!
Masterson: We are the uncles. We are the family. We spend holidays together — Christmas, Thanksgiving, New Year’s, and Easter. It’s not like we are simply friends; we are more like family.
I couldn’t help but notice that over the course of last season you two and Tori all wore Lambda Legal T-shirts. Is that an organization you all support?
Horn: Yes, we are big supporters of Lambda. I think because of the type of work that they do they don’t get as high of a profile, especially in the entertainment industry. They are the down-and-dirty lawyers. They are a great organization that unfortunately even some gay people don’t know who they are. It’s like they are the ones in there, in the courtrooms.
Masterson: We hosted Lambda Legal’s Liberty Awards last year, and Tori is going to host this year’s Liberty Awards on September 16, 2010.
That’s exciting! Lambda always puts together a wonderful event. What should we expecting to see on season 5 of Tori & Dean: Home Sweet Hollywood?
Masterson: Everyone is going to get a more intimate view of the family. The season starts out with us on a road trip. So Tori, Dean, and the guncles go on a cross-country road trip in an RV.
Horn: The RV looks bigger on the outside.
That’s very Oprah and Gayle of you all. Lastly, is there a way for a birth mother to get more details on the adoption or to reach out to you both?
Horn: We have a website, Bill-Scout.com, with information for our adoption. We are trying to get it out to as many people as possible. You never know what someone will overhear.
Masterson: We also have Twitters, ScoutMasterson and BillHornWoHi. For the adoption they have been such an integral part of our networking. I sent out the website and Denise Richards retweeted it to her one and a half million people. Those are our critical networking pieces to get the adoption word out.
Tori & Dean: Home Sweet Hollywood premieres Monday April 5 at 10 p.m. on Oxygen.