10-year-old with same-sex parents finds pen pal in President Obama
November 20th, 2012
01:35 PM ET
1 year ago

10-year-old with same-sex parents finds pen pal in President Obama

(CNN) – When Sophia Bailey-Klugh, a 10-year-old, invited President Barack Obama to dinner, she didn't get a response.

So when he replied to her second letter–this one thanking him for his position on same-sex marriage–the girl with two fathers was really surprised.

– Follow the Ticker on Twitter: @PoliticalTicker

One of Sophia's fathers, Jonathan Bailey, posted the letter to Facebook on October 28, saying Sophia penned the piece "unprompted" and it made her two fathers "so unbelievably proud."

"Dear Barack Obama," she wrote. "It's Sophia Bailey Klugh your friend who invited you to dinner. You don't remember okay that's fine. But I just wanted to tell you that I am so glad you agree that two men can love each other because I have two dads and they love each other."

Sophia, who lives with her fathers in San Diego, California, went on to write about how other students at her school say her parents' marriage is "gross and weird."

"It really hurts my heart and feelings, so I come to you because you are my hero," she wrote, asking for advice on what he would do if he were in her shoes.

"I hope you win on being the president. You would totally make the world a better place," she ended the letter. "Please tell your daughters hi for me!"

Also on the page was a drawing of her two dads kissing, with the word "love" written overhead.

From Jonathan Bailey's Facebook page

A week later, Jonathan posted a letter with the president's letterhead at the top. It was dated November 1 and addressed to Sophia.

"Thank you for writing me such a thoughtful letter about your family. Reading it made me proud to be your president and even more hopeful about the future of our nation," the letter stated.

"In America, no two families look the same. We celebrate this diversity," Obama continued. "And we recognize that whether you have two dads or one mom what matters above all is the love we show one another. You are very fortunate to have two parents who care deeply for you. They are lucky to have such an exceptional daughter in you."

From Jonathan Bailey's Facebook page

Shortly after North Carolina voters approved a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage in May, Obama announced in a televised interview that he had "evolved" in his position on the issue and believed two people of the same gender should legally be allowed to wed.

Americans have largely been divided on the issue of same-gender marriage. According to CNN Exit Polls from Election Day, 49% of Americans said they agreed that same-sex marriage should be legal in their respective state, while 46% disagreed.

Obama overwhelmingly won the support of those who identified themselves of gay, lesbian or bisexual–76% to Mitt Romney at 22%. While Romney personally opposes same-sex marriage and civil unions, he did say he supported domestic partnership rights and favored the right for a gay couple to adopt children.

In his letter, Obama suggested that Sophia remind her friends at school about the Golden Rule: "A good rule is to treat others the way you hope they will treat you."

"Thanks again for taking the time to write me," he continued. "I'm sorry I couldn't make it to dinner, but I'll be sure to tell Sasha and Malia you say hello."

When Jonathan Bailey posted the letter from the president, he also offered his own personal thanks.

"Thank you Barack Obama – you have made one 10-year old feel mighty special (and her two dads too)," he wrote in the caption of the photo.


Filed under: 2012 • President Obama • Same-sex marriage
soundoff (393 Responses)
  1. Pritka

    Long as this little girl is happy and secure and loved, I am fine with it.

    November 21, 2012 12:04 am at 12:04 am |
  2. Majav

    Very cool in every regard! I am very proud of my President at moments like this. Could he please wear this hat more often? Always?

    The one that he was wearing when he ordered bin Laden dead without due process and against the authority of another sovereign nation is unspeakable shame. The one he wore when he condemned Manning of guilt before charges were even laid was a heartless travesty. Due process and innocence until proven guilty are hallmarks of being an American and certainly of our President who was a law professor at Harvard.

    Yes, this single act of kindness toward Sophia is the smallest of steps but a redeeming and reassuring one. Bless you, Mr. President. I forgive you, a little bit, anyway.

    November 21, 2012 12:05 am at 12:05 am |
  3. Ryan

    LORD help us – Romans 1:16-32

    November 21, 2012 12:07 am at 12:07 am |
  4. Chuck

    When i was a kid, children prayed to God, now they pray to the president

    November 21, 2012 12:11 am at 12:11 am |
  5. Getoverit

    @DataDriven
    November 20, 2012 05:12 pm at 5:12 pm

    To the brilliant individual who keeps insisting that Obama changed positions just to get votes:
    ----------–
    Ummmm...... He did....

    November 21, 2012 12:20 am at 12:20 am |
  6. Anonymous

    I hope this country can produce population in the future,if not this country loosing population just like china and japan also,1 country more men than women,and other country more women than men..I got nothings agains gay , or agree with ruthless retard republician either,they need to stop tell other how to run other peoples life like catholic or christian,you peoples need to take control,your peoples,you need to control your own retardation thinking and in control,of your idiology,thats why this country is crew up..you got so greedy thats why its make you dumb and dumber

    November 21, 2012 12:29 am at 12:29 am |
  7. rickrockin

    I dont care what anybody says, homosexuality is just wrong and unatural!
    Two men or two women living together. Whats wrong with this picture?
    Same with abortion used as a contraceptive, that just plain murder of innocents who cant protect themselves. I admire tea partiers, they're for good old fashion morals, and whats wro.g with that? America is heading towards the path of saddam & gamora,pardon my spelling, and if u dont like too bad

    November 21, 2012 12:31 am at 12:31 am |
  8. Cheryl

    If only so called Christians could focus more on their own behavior and less on others'.
    "And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye?" Matthew 7:3

    November 21, 2012 12:34 am at 12:34 am |
  9. Name David

    It is barbaric and demonic to involve or even support it. I can't imagine Obama to be supporting guy marriage even animals will not do that.

    November 21, 2012 12:38 am at 12:38 am |
  10. MesaMax

    It is child abuse to deny this poor child her right to have a mother in her life. She is being raised by two child abusers. She will be one mixed up teenager. This is what happens when right and wrong are considered relative, rather than absolutes.

    November 21, 2012 12:46 am at 12:46 am |
  11. GO_GOP

    Keep moving away from our Lord, America. Remember he died for our sins. One day you will all pay for this. Judgement day is upon us. Our president is anti Christian.

    November 21, 2012 12:55 am at 12:55 am |
  12. William Shakespeare

    So shines a good deed in a weary world...

    November 21, 2012 01:05 am at 1:05 am |
  13. Name Melody Morrison

    I agree with Sophia about her hero. It was a great election result. As a Canadian I share with so many Americans pride and immense faith in President Obama. He inspires me and I my heart and thoughts go out to him as he steers the course through these very troubled times. Thanks for sharing your story Sopia. I am sure your letters did and will help the President keep "fired up and ready to go!". I send best wishes from Canada.

    November 21, 2012 01:06 am at 1:06 am |
  14. Conservative Power!!!!

    Conseravites! The party of freedom and liberty! Well, unless we don't agree with how you choose to live your life and then we will impose our will on you!

    November 21, 2012 01:06 am at 1:06 am |
  15. Thinker

    So why, according to Obama, should we follow the Golden Rule from the Bible but not follow all those other passages about homosexual behavior being unnatural and all that? Funny how that works...

    November 21, 2012 01:09 am at 1:09 am |
  16. Sue

    Love has no boundaries. Heterosexual or homosexual. It just doesn't matter. Thank you President Obama!

    November 21, 2012 01:34 am at 1:34 am |
  17. Name

    Barack Obama really rocks! He has a heart of Gold! He loves all people! May God bless him and keep him safe!

    November 21, 2012 01:39 am at 1:39 am |
  18. NameLloyd

    I am glad to live in HAWAII where everyone is a minority and tolerance and respect are generally followed.

    November 21, 2012 01:40 am at 1:40 am |
  19. LouDogg

    This letter was obviously written by the parents. Just look at the wording and the high number of grammatical errors versus the low number of misspelled words.

    November 21, 2012 01:57 am at 1:57 am |
  20. Adult Adoptee

    As an adoptee, my heart breaks for this girl. It is bad enough to be severed from one's genetic, historic and cultural ident.ity, to grow up feeling like you lack biologic ties to the human race, but to be placed in a home that cannot offer an approximation of a natural family is cruel. I had a typical M/F set of adopted parents & STILL had to reunite with my family to feel normal & whole, gain a healthy example of human s.e.x.uality & learn that my life was conceived in my parents' love. I was actually adopted back into my family of origin but still feel like an outsider. The fact is that there was extended family that could have stepped in to help my very young parents but didn't. So yes, I feel like I have a clan but I think I will always question whether or not they truly want me.

    I felt weird because I didn't look like my adopted family, because I learned LATE that my adoption story was not the way babies come into the world, and difficulty with relationships as an adolescent and young adult for fear I might also having a bas.tard child that would . This poor child not only has that experience of never looking like a family member but also is told by her peers that she lives in a weird situation. When she is old enough to understand her own physical maturing and compares what she finds gratifying to what these two men must do with an orifice designed for evacuating fecal matter, I shudder to think what the effect may be.

    This child is young. Obviously, whatever surrounds one during the growing years is what one considers normal – whether it is harmful or beneficial. There may be the appearance now that all is well. I hope this child has access to good mental health support when she becomes old enough to avail herself of it.

    November 21, 2012 02:10 am at 2:10 am |
  21. Who cares

    Two man can love each other but two man should not adopt a kid. That is just messed up.

    November 21, 2012 02:27 am at 2:27 am |
  22. Adult Adoptee

    @ cj90210: It is not a given that adoption is a positive for the child. The adults in the situation make the decision to change a child's life for their own personal reasons and the child grows into adulthood having to deal with it.

    November 21, 2012 02:40 am at 2:40 am |
  23. Name Blue h

    we can not support same sex relationships.its all satanism.guys life is like a melting candle.turn to Jesus Christ.

    November 21, 2012 02:45 am at 2:45 am |
  24. Adult Adoptee

    As an adoptee my heart breaks for this girl. It is bad enough to be severed from one's genetic, historic & cultural identity, to not have a biologic tie to the human race, but to be placed in a home that cannot offer an aproximation of a natural family is cruel. I had a typical M/F set of adopted parents & STILL had to reunite w/my family to feel normal & whole, gain a healthy example of human s.e.xu.ality & learn that my life is a result of my parents' love. May she overcome her obsticles & also find pea

    November 21, 2012 03:05 am at 3:05 am |
  25. eve

    so where r God's people in america..... Wat is being preached nowadays in churches. Let dem know dat d time is near. Pray for dis hour is full of evil and dangeruos rules. Men r lovers of demselve n u think it is normal?....

    November 21, 2012 03:06 am at 3:06 am |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16