Although Adam Motz always expected that parenting would be full of adventures, he never imagined that he would share his parenting journey on social media with hundreds of thousands of followers as part of the dynamic Illinois LGBTQ+ TikTok family 2 Dads 2 Twins. In You Come From Love, his first children’s book, he conveys a message of love that is heartfelt and universal.
In 2019, Motz, an attorney and musician from Chicago, and his entrepreneur husband, Tee Lam, started IVF and gestational surrogacy to have a family. After sperm from both men was used to fertilize eggs from a childhood friend of Motz’s, the resulting embryos were transferred together, and one of Lam’s closest friends carried the babies to term. Reve and Sky, twin girls, were born in August 2021.
Throughout the book, Motz celebrates the universal values of love and history that are important to his family, reflecting the diversity within his family — his husband and he are of different races, faiths, and nationalities, and their twin daughters are of different races — one Black, and one white.
Although he credits medical miracles for making his dream of having children a reality, Motz knows that his daughters will someday wonder where they came from.
His book was inspired by his and his husband’s experience with surrogacy and their desire to teach their daughters about love and diversity, Motz tells The Advocate.
“I was just sitting at the kitchen table kind of daydreaming, and I really imagined all the questions that these girls would ask me when they were a little older because kids ask a million questions, and the lawyer in me just wanted to be ready for any question they might throw my way,” he says.
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They have two dads, and their family isn’t like most, so he thought his daughters might ask about their origin story.
“So my husband and I have talked, and we plan to share as much as age-appropriate with them at the right time about the medical science that brought them to be and the people involved,” he says.
He also emphasizes the importance of sharing diverse stories, especially in light of potential anti-LGBTQ+ legislation and book bans. Regardless of their background, any family will be able to appreciate the message of love in the book, he says.
Motz says social media has become influential in normalizing diverse family structures.
People are initially curious about the four of them when they are out in public, he says, but eventually, they realize they are a typical family with the same values as everyone else.
But having to battle their insurance company, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Illinois, after it denied coverage of fertility services because they are a male couple was a one-of-a-kind experience, Motz says. Eventually, they filed a discrimination complaint and settled it after two years of fighting.
Although Motz is aware of the challenges their daughters may face because they have two dads, he's prepared to be there for them.
“It’s really important that they understand first and foremost that they come from love. So then the follow-up question to that is, well, what does that mean? And that’s what I talk about in the book,” he says. “Love is all of these different things. It’s the universe, and it’s your ancestors. It’s your family.”
You Come From Love is out now.