Two of social media’s most popular gay dads have got engaged.
Australians Jarrad Duggan-Tierney, a civil servant and Michael Duggan-Tierney, a small construction business owner, became dads to son Reid in 2010. The youngster was born via an Indian surrogate.
Since that time they have amassed a large social media following as @the_real_dads_of_melbourne. They typically post adorable photos of their everyday family life and their sharply-dressed son.
However, despite being together 17 years, the two men have never married. Same-sex marriages only became legal in Australia at the end of last year.
In an Instagram posting they shared the news of their engagement. In the accompanying caption, Jarrad said, ‘With great excitement we are proud to announce we are engaged to be married! After 17 years of waiting and feeling as if this moment would never happen – It happened tonight. I proudly got on one knee in front of our son and asked the love of my life Michael to take my hand in marriage.’
Jarrad arranged to pop the question in a room full of white balloons, with images of the family hanging from helium balloons on the ceiling.
The two men met in Tasmania. Michael, a flight attendant at the time, was living there, and Jarrad was born and bred on the island.
Jarrad tells GSN that the proposal was a surprise for Michael.
‘It was a big surprise. I spent weeks planning with a friend to propose. He thought we were calling into a friend’s to get a gift. Little did he know we had emptied a room of her home and had it filled with balloons and images of our 17 years together.’
Is Reid excited for his dads’ wedding?
‘Our son was over the moon. After I shared some heartfelt words I lowered to one knee, our son yelled out, “I knew this would happen, I’ve been dreaming about this.” We are looking at a wedding some time next year as we have the engagement party to plan.’
Jarrad says that although the men were never sure if they would marry, because of Australia’s laws on marriage, he has never doubted his feelings for Michael.
‘I knew from the first moment, 17 years ago, that if I ever could I would marry this man!’