Culture

A Gay Single Father Of 3 Is Using TikTok To Share His Family’s Love With The World

Living as a single parent is a tough situation in the best of times. During the time of Covid, it can create a completely different set of issues. José Rólon is showcasing life as a single gay father to three kids on Instagram and TikTok.

José Rólon is a single father in New York City and he’s celebrating his family on social media.

Rólon’s husband, Tim Merrell, died tragically in December 2013 of a heart attack while on a business trip. At the time, the couple had a young son and a surrogate who was 11 weeks pregnant. Rólon recalls that they had just taken a trip to Georgia for a medical follow-up with the surrogate.

“On top of the heavy grieving I then only had a week to follow through the pregnancy or not because at 12 weeks you can’t make the decision to abort. I think at the beginning, those first several days I was pretty clear that I was going to abort because I think there was just no way that I could raise three kid son my own,” Rólon recalls. “But, on the sixth day, which not only happened to be the last day to make the decision, but it happened to be my husband’s funeral service and burial, I woke up that day and realized that my son just lost his father and what if something were to happen to me. I didn’t want to leave him alone in this world and so I decided that day that I was going to follow through the pregnancy.”

Rólon adds: “I announced that we were pregnant while giving Tim’s eulogy in the church. Nobody knew that we were pregnant yet so you can just imagine the audible gasp that came from that.”

He has been documenting his life with the children in quarantine and it has been wonderful to watch.

Like other parents, Rólon is wearing so many hats with his children in quarantine. Not only is he still a single father, he has had to become an educator as well. He also became a social media sensation thanks to his children and his own need for release.

Rólon thinks that his social media presence is breaking down barriers and creating a chance for people to relate to him. Despite his sexuality and being someone of color, Rólon sees his dad content as something most parents will relate to.

One of the first videos to go viral was with one of his daughters massaging his hair as he works.

@nycgaydad

CLIENTS: How can you work and possibly be productive with three kids at home? ME… #coronavirus #homeschooling #parenting #gaydads #lgbtfamily

♬ original sound – Jose Rolon

“I think that it’s those types of relatable videos that resonated, but I think also that there hasn’t been much of a voice in this medium from a gay parent, a gay father,” Rólon says. “Even though we have been raising kids for a long time I do think that we’re still very much in the forefront of this movement of the LGBTQ+ community raising children. It has gone from something that is rare to something that has become more common.”

How many parents out there can relate? We have seen videos and photos all over social media that show parents doing the best they can to work from home with the kids. A lot of the videos remind us of the greatest benefit of working from home: family. Parents around the U.S. have relearned the joys of spending more time with family and less time in the office.

Social media was a way for Rólon to have an outlet when dating stopped due to Covid.

The dad knew how to juggle raising his family as well as enjoying some nights out. It was his way to recharge and come back as Super Dad. However, Covid changed all of that. Suddenly, staying home was the best thing he could do to take care of his children and keep them healthy.

“The scripted response around the attention we’ve been getting around TikTok is because I’m a gay dad who does play sports orally instruments or is good at arts and crafts. But the reality is that I just wasn’t getting laid,” Rólon admits while laughing. “That was my outlet. For me, whenever the kids were driving me crazy, the way that I was able to rejuvenate was by going out on a date or possibly having an intimate evening with somebody and then I could come back and be Super Dad. That wasn’t happening so, for me, I just need to put those creative juices elsewhere. That’s what I started creating those TikTok videos and from there, once they started going viral, people started paying attention and that’s kind of where we’ve been.”

Rólon’s TikTok videos are a wonderful look into a modern family.

There is so much love and happiness on Rólon’s social media pages. He is devoted to his children and their unity is heartwarming. You can follow Rólon on TikTok and Instagram under @nycgaydad to see his family grow and change on a daily basis.

READ: A Single Mom On DACA Is One Of The Newest Cast Members On MTV’s New Season Of ‘The Real World

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A Woman Saves A Dog During The Texas Snow Storm Using Tortillas

Entertainment

A Woman Saves A Dog During The Texas Snow Storm Using Tortillas

San Antonio, TX - Lost Dogs, Cats & Pets / Facebook

Texas recently dealt with one of the worst winter storms in its history. Millions were left without water and power for days and Sen. Ted Cruz was caught up in a scandal after being caught going on a Mexican vacation. One pup is catching everyone’s attention after being rescued thanks to tortillas.

One lucky dog in San Antonio was saved from the cold by a caring woman with tortillas.

Kristina Salinas-Labrador was out buying tortillas for her family on Thursday when she spotted a dog in the freezing cold in San Antonio, Texas. Instead of driving by, Kristin stopped her car and spent 30 minutes luring the dog to the warmth of her car using tortillas. Kristin told the WOAI reporter that he stopped to save the dog’s life because he was skinny and could likely die from the cold weather that crippled much of Texas.

According to her interview with WOAI, Kristin saved the dog because she felt like helping during the hard times Texans are facing.

“Dogs, they don’t know what’s going on; cats, pets, they don’t know what’s going on,” Kristin told the reporter. “So, we try to help them out – one dog at a time. I’m hoping the next person will stop, too, and help the different strays.”

This isn’t the first time that Kristin or her wife have picked up a stray animal.

Nicole Salinas-Labrador, Kristin’s wife, told NBC News that the dog’s name is now Taco. Nicole admitted that she and her wife often stop for stray dogs and cats when they see them while out and about. Nicole joked that her wife used her “Mexican ways” to get the dog in the car, according to NBC News.

The couple is taking care of Taco until they can find a forever home for the sweet pup.

Credit: San Antonio, TX – Lost Dogs, Cats & Pets / Facebook

“Hello everyone! Thank you for sharing and for your interest! He was scanned for chip and he doesn’t have one. And no one has still claimed him,” Nicole wrote in a comment under the Facebook post. “He is with me and my family for now. He is getting fully vetted today and making sure he is in perfect health. Anyone that is interested in adopting him feel free to PM me. This process will def take some time.. I do extensive background checks to make sure any stray that is in my care goes to the absolute best forever home. Any questions feel free to message me.”

READ: Sen. Ted Cruz Makes Quick U-Turn From Mexico After Outrage He Abandoned His Frozen Texas

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This Poor Mom Had To Spend 20 Hours Detangling Her Daughter’s Hair To Free It Of 150 Velcro-Toys

Fierce

This Poor Mom Had To Spend 20 Hours Detangling Her Daughter’s Hair To Free It Of 150 Velcro-Toys

Robin Utrecht/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)

I think it’s safe to say that during this strange time of quarantine, that we can definitely count parents among the heroes.

Stay at home orders and efforts to keep children at home, have caused parents to have to reevaluate their daily schedules. Now, so many parents are working double time to give their students the attention and education that they truly need.

A Pennsylvania mom recently highlighted the chaos of this new reality after showing what happened when she let her children play with toys after they’d finished their school work.

In a post shared on her Facebook Lisa Hoelzle shared a nightmarish experience of having to detangle her daughter Abigail’s hair after her son Noah dumped her into a hairy situation.

I post the good …. well here is some of the bad ☹️☹️☹️ Friday at 4pm until Saturday at 10pm was my worst Mom…

Publicado por Lisa Tschirlig Hoelzle en Domingo, 10 de enero de 2021

Hoelzle’s children are both 6 years old and like most kids in the United States right now, staying at home and doing virtual school. After finishing their school day, Noah and Abigail headed down to their basement to play with Bunchems, a toy that includes tiny Velcro-like balls that stick together.

It didn’t take long for sweet Noah, who Hoelzle describes in her post as a “jokester,” to dump a full container of the Bunchems on his sister’s head. Little did he know he’d just launched his sister into a mother’s “worst Mom nightmare.”

“I think I had an out-of-body experience,” Hoelzle wrote of the moment she saw her daughter’s hair. “She had about 150 of these things layered and matted in her hair. They made it worse trying to remove them themselves because they connect together kinda like Velcro.”

Bunchems hair
LISA TSCHIRLIG HOELZLE/ Facebook

Speaking about her initial plan of action Hoelzle, said that it took around three hours to remove fifteen of the Bunchems. When her husband, Dan, arrived home the two Google their next approach and only then realized “the severity of what we were up against. It suggested using conditioner and vegetable oil to loosen it but that made it worse and so messy. He got out about 10 more Before you knew, it was 1 am and Abigail could not keep her eyes open I slept with her head on me so they wouldn’t get more tangled. Not that I really could sleep.”

When it came to cutting her losses and, cutting her daughter’s hair Hoelzle said she just couldn’t do it. “If we cut them out because of how deep they were she would have winded up with a short pixie cut,” she explained. “It crushed my heart and I just couldn’t in my heart give up without trying my best to get them out. I am that Mom that has a bow to match each outfit! Haha”

The next day, Lisa went back to work, this time armed with mineral oil and a detangling comb.

“There was also a lot of tears (mine)” Hoelzle joked. “Abigail consoled me and Noah because he felt awful what he did. Abigail was surprisingly amazing about it !! She is usually the child that acts like you are killing her when I brush her hair! When she started to wine about it my Mom brought in a Lollipop and stuck it in her mouth! Lol. Hey, you got to do what you got to do! It was such a long day. I never watched so much kids U tube to entertain her but after 20 hours total after pulling and working them out of her head and lots of hair loss I got them all out. Followed by an hour or more in the bath tub with conditioner and combing out the knots.”

“I feel like we had a miracle with all of our prayers,” Hoelzl added. “We saved her hair and although it is thinner it wasn’t as damaged and ruined as I thought so Thank you God!!!” she wrote.

While Hoelzle says her fingers are “literally swollen” from the experience she is thankful to be done with the “awful situation.”

Bunchems hair
LISA TSCHIRLIG HOELZLE/ Facebook

She is now set on getting the word out about Bunchems and the severe consequences the toys can have.

“This will be something we will never forget very traumatic experience in the Hoelzle household this weekend,” she said before asking her friends to spread the word. “Trash you Bunchems if you have them or if you love them where a shower caps when playing with a sibling! Lol. This will be something we will never forget very traumatic experience in the Hoelzle household this weekend. I kept trying to think we have our health it [could] be worse but boy oh boy what a sickening feeling!”

Bunchems are still available to purchase but they were discontinued last year, likely for this reason.

According to New York Post, spokesperson for Spin Master, the company behind Bunchems said that they “quickly developed instructional videos for our YouTube channel and websites as a way to proactively educate people on how to play with the product and how to remove Bunchems from hair if they do get tangled.”

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