Something that really matters brought you to our website. Maybe you read a child’s story that rocked your perspective and you’re thinking about marriage and family in a new way. Maybe you heard a Them Before Us ambassador on the radio during your commute, and their words resonated with you. Perhaps you’ve been steeped in a legislative effort to defend the rights of children and today you learned you are not alone.
If you want to make a difference but you just don’t know what to do, you’ve come to the right place. We are here to equip you to be a children’s rights champion.
Them Before Us – Why We Need a Global Children’s Rights Movement by Katy Faust and Stacy Manning is the Children’s Rights manual that will inspire you to become a defender of the most vulnerable among us- kids. It methodically spells out the dangers of putting Us (adults) before Them (children) and insists that adults do hard things so the rights of children are protected. Our book will help you navigate the difficult-but-necessary conversations that result in changed hearts, minds, and laws.
Them Before Us pairs gold standard research with hundreds of stories from real children, many of which have never been told before. This book debunks prevalent myths concerning children’s rights such as:
- Kids only need love and safety—moms and dads are optional.
- Love makes a family; biology is irrelevant.
- Marriage is a vehicle for adult fulfillment—it has nothing to do with kids.
- Children are resilient and will “get over” divorce.
- Studies show that kids with same-sex parents fare “no different” than kids with a mom and dad.
- Sperm and egg donor kids are fortunate because they are so wanted.
- Surrogacy is a great way to help wannabe parents have a baby.
- Reproductive technologies are no different than adoption.
There’s nothing else on bookshelves that approaches all questions about marriage, family, parenthood, surrogacy, adoption, reproductive technologies, divorce, same-sex parenting, cohabitation and polygamy from the child’s perspective: a perspective that is birthing a new generation of children’s rights advocates.
You can be a part of that generation.
Here’s what researchers, experts, and sociologists have to say about Them Before Us: Why We Need a Global Children’s Rights Movement:
The breakdown of the intact, married family has been a disaster for American children. In Them Before Us, Katy Faust & Stacy Manning offer an incisive and deeply disturbing account of the ways in which children have paid the biggest price for the erosion of marriage. As they make clear, this is an issue that Republicans who are concerned about limited government must confront insofar as the size and scope of government balloons when the family falls. And this is an issue that Democrats who are concerned about poverty and the health of the American Dream must confront insofar as children raised in non-intact families are much more likely to grow up in poverty as children and end up poor as adults. This is an important book for everyone who is concerned about the welfare of children in America today.
- W. Bradford Wilcox, Director, National Marriage Project, University of Virginia
Katy Faust’s voice is as essential as it is unique, and her vital work over the last decade has culminated in this eminently well-reasoned and important book. Her focus is on three particular types of family dynamics that untold millions of children are increasingly being subjected to today: widespread divorce and ever-expanding stepfamilies, the contractually donor-conceived, and intentionally motherless and fatherless same-sex families. How are the children in these homes faring? Katy is one of the few people even asking this question, and her book provides the answers. She contends, correctly, that we must put Them (the children) Before Us (the adults).
- Glenn T. Stanton, director of global family formation studies at Focus on the Family and author of Loving My LGBT Neighbor, The Ring Makes All the Difference, and The Myth of the Dying Church.
Faust and Manning will take you on a comprehensive and heart-wrenching tour of the damage done to kids when adult desires are privileged over children’s rights to their own biological mother and father. But they won’t leave you in the ruins. At the end of each chapter, they’ll offer practical suggestions to begin rebuilding a culture that prioritizes kids’ best interests. Read Them Before Us, and be ready to do the “hard things” adults must do so that children won’t have to.
- Mark Regnerus, Professor of Sociology, The University of Texas at Austin
Them Before Us recasts all debates about all other rights. It brilliantly articulates the need to enshrine in law the right of every child to the marriage of its biological parents, a right that comes with the existence they gave it at conception. To the degree this right is honored, not only the child, but whole nations will thrive or wilt.
- Pat Fagan, Ph.D. Director of the Marriage and Religion Research Institute, The Catholic University of America
Katy Faust’s book is a must read for those who are interested in the rights of needs of children. She speaks the hard truth. As someone who lived in a traditional and an alternative family structure in her childhood she is empathetic to those who may have a different perspective while remaining focused on the rights of children to grow up in the most secure and least stressful environment. You may not agree with everything she believes or advocates for but you will learn a great deal about the needs of children physically and emotionally and perhaps come away with a deeper understanding or change of perception or even a change of heart.
- Erica Komisar, LCSW, psychoanalyst, parent guidance expert and author of Being There: Why Prioritizing Motherhood in the First Three Years Matter.
Any one chapter in this book would be enough to convince you that “adults should make the necessary sacrifices, so children don’t have to,” but the cumulative impact of chapter after chapter makes for a powerful and irrefutable read. Combining solid research, a mountain of scientific data, and a stream of devastating personal stories, Faust and Manning have done a masterful job of arguing for the rights of children. After reading this book, you will agree that “Them Before Us” should be the mantra of every family in America and the world.
- Alana Newman, Founder of AnonymousUs.org and Narrator of the film Sexual Revolution: 50 Years Since Humanae Vitae.