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The Challenges Faced By Gay And Lesbian Adoptions

Jun 26, 2014

Pursuing adoption by same-sex couples may require navigation through some legal systems, but is absolutely an option according to adoption counseling director Jennifer Bliss.  At her adoption agency, about 40% of the couples that adopt are same-sex couples. Furthermore, these couples, on average, have a very slightly shorter waiting period for adoption approval.  Bliss hopes that same-sex parents who would like to adopt are not afraid to come forward and learn more about the process. 

However, Bliss also warns that it is important to check state legislature because some states do not legally allow adoption to same-sex parents. Bliss has encountered same-sex adoptive parents that have moved to a state where these adoptions are legal and have had no problem becoming adoptive parents. She reminds same-sex couples to seek advice from professionals and not to be intimidated by the process because many states and agencies provide excellent support for same-sex adoptive couples.

According to same-sex adoptive parent Desmond Child, the legal adoption process for same-sex couples was a bit tedious but was eventually figured out. Child and his same-sex partner were adoptive parents in Florida during a time when the state would not legally recognize same-sex adoptive parents. Only one of the parents was originally featured on the birth certificate. Child and his partner moved to California for a few years in order to gain legal custody as same-sex parents listed on the birth certificate. The couple eventually moved back to Florida and an amendment to the original birth certificate was listed as an addition to the original. Fortunately, Florida has now passed a law to allow adoptive legal rights to same-sex parents and has a very progressive outlook on same-sex adoptions.   

Incredible progress has been made in terms of same-sex adoptions, and would-be parents of the same gender should not be afraid of the process. There are states that are more progressive, and parents may have an easier time adopting from those states. Certain agencies may also be easier for same-sex couples to work with, so this is definitely something for same-sex couples to consider.

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My husband is an adoption attorney and has dealt with a few cases surrounding this issue. It really is helpful to have an adoption attorney involved because they can help support you and defend your legal rights in this situation. It also might help move the adoption process faster if you have someone representing you.

This is an interesting issue but I think everyone should have the right to choose how they live their lives and if they can be good parents to the child then it shouldn't be an issue.

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