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Tan France Brings Home Baby Boy, Talks Fatherhood & Formula Feeding

Tan France Brings Home Baby Boy, Talks Fatherhood & Formula Feeding
Instagram/@tanfrance

The Queer Eye star is loving fatherhood and wants to destigmatize formula feeding.

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Tan France and his husband Rob welcomed their first child, son Ismail, via surrogate on July 10, and the Queer Eye star (and French tuck aficionado) is ready for all the joy and hard work that comes along with fatherhood. 

The couple first announced the birth on Instagram, where they also revealed that Ismail had been born seven weeks prematurely and spent three weeks in NICU. “But, today, we finally got to bring him home. We love him so, so much. Like, fully obsessed,” France wrote. “Our Surrogate is doing so great, post labor, and we couldn’t be more grateful for the greatest gift in our lives.”

Now that Ismail is home safe and thriving, the family is getting into a new routine, which as anyone with a newborn can attest is hard work. France joked about it on the latest episode of the PEOPLE Every Day podcast. "I am a little bit terrified to go back to Queer Eye next season because people will think, 'Who's that guy?' I know I will age 10 years in six months after we have our baby, but it's so worth it," France joked. 

France was quick to say that, no matter how challenging parenthood can be, it's worth it. "I know it's going to be tough," he said. "I know it is, but I'm positive the good is going to outweigh the bad." 

France also opened up about wanting a big family — although not as big as he once dreamed of having — saying that, at one point, he wanted six children. "Here's the thing. I know that I sound nuts, and we're probably not going to have six," he said. "I used to want six when I was like 30. I'm now almost 40. I definitely don't think my knees can handle having kids that long. I don't want to be running around after a toddler at 50, but ... I still want a minimum of three or four."

France has become an outspoken advocate for destigmatizing formula feeding. In a moving video posted to Instagram in collaboration with the organic infant formula company Bobbie, France shared why every infant feeding journey is valid. “It’s National Breastfeeding Awareness Month, where one type of feeding is put on a social pedestal and those who can not or chose not to are made to feel second best for formula feeding. No one should ever feel guilty for feeding their baby formula,” wrote France. “A fed baby is what matters most.”

“I always wanted kids, did I think it was going to be possible? No. I didn't think marriage to my husband was going to be possible let alone having children of my own,” France shared in the video. “I'm a gay, South Asian, Muslim man, and I'm also an immigrant in the U.S. There really hasn't been somebody like me on a global platform before. Being a father soon, I know there is also the added pressure to make sure that I am being the very best dad I can possibly be because people look up to those who are hopefully paving the way for them.” 

France went on to share that both he and his husband were formula babies and that, for their life, formula is the best option. “I believe two fathers will do a wonderful job. We have fought for the right. We have fought hard. We don't do that lightly. That means we are going to show our child so much love,” he concluded.  

Watch the video here. 

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Rachel Shatto

EIC of PRIDE.com

Rachel Shatto, Editor in Chief of PRIDE.com, is an SF Bay Area-based writer, podcaster, and former editor of Curve magazine, where she honed her passion for writing about social justice and sex (and their frequent intersection). Her work has appeared on Elite Daily, Tecca, and Joystiq, and she podcasts regularly about horror on the Zombie Grrlz Horror Podcast Network. She can’t live without cats, vintage style, video games, drag queens, or the Oxford comma.

Rachel Shatto, Editor in Chief of PRIDE.com, is an SF Bay Area-based writer, podcaster, and former editor of Curve magazine, where she honed her passion for writing about social justice and sex (and their frequent intersection). Her work has appeared on Elite Daily, Tecca, and Joystiq, and she podcasts regularly about horror on the Zombie Grrlz Horror Podcast Network. She can’t live without cats, vintage style, video games, drag queens, or the Oxford comma.