Mothers have the gift of creating and giving birth to new life. Their patience, wisdom and nurturing hearts are unfathomably strong. Also, their sense of protection is enormous when it comes to their children. When a woman has the calling and desire to be a mother, nothing can stop her. A lesbian couple seeking to adopt is no exception.
Even though LGBTQI adoptions are now legal in all 50 states and in the District of Columbia, issues continue to manifest hurdles and obstacles for lesbian couples to traverse through. Stigmas and discrimination also, unfortunately, still exist. Following are some adoption tips for lesbian couples to help ensure a smoother path through your adoption process.
Know Your State Laws
As with all adoptions, state laws and regulations will vary depending on where you live. For prospective lesbian couples specifically, it’s important to be aware of any special rules that pertain to your custody and parental rights. Be sure to research everything you can in your state, and consult your adoption agency or lawyer with any questions or concerns.
Back in December, we addressed Nevada’s state laws regarding same sex adoption. You can check out that article here.
Research Your Options
An interesting aspect of lesbian adoption is that if one woman has a child, the other woman is still required to adopt him or her to gain legal parental rights in some states. This can happen through second parent adoption. If you live in a state that doesn’t permit this form of adoption, a co-parenting or custody agreement can be made between you and your partner. In Nevada, for instance, if the couple is either married or in a registered Domestic Partnership, they can adopt together.
In New York, the couple does not need to be married. An intimate relationship between the women or men is sufficient to allow the second parent to adopt. Adoption Choices of New York can provide home study services for these types of adoptions.
Part of the adoption process is being matched with a birth mother, who chooses the family who will adopt her child. Having so much hinging on her choosing you can be stressful and overwhelming, but remember to be patient. Even if it takes a while to find a birth mother who is comfortable adopting to you, it’s ok.
Keep in mind that you want the right birth mother to select you. You want the best fit for your family, and for your birth mother. To better understand her as a fellow mother, use your motherly instincts. As most domestic adoptions are typically open, the birth mother would be sent regular updates on how the child is doing and have a relationship with you and your partner or spouse as well. So, having a birth mother select you and establish a good connection with you is the best outcome possible.
Adoption Choices of New York
For more information on adoption or if you are currently in the process of adopting a baby and have any questions or concerns, feel free to contact, Adoption Choices of New York.
Make an Impact
Adoption Choices, Inc. is partnering with Crowdrise, a fundraising website for nonprofits, to help our adoptive parents and birth parents with much needed financial assistance. We understand that expenses keep clients from fulfilling their dreams. Both with birth parents making a plan for adoption, and with adoptive parents growing their family. It is our mission to provide financial assistance through grants and scholarships, awarded annually in November, in honor of National Adoption Month. Funds assist adoptive parents with matching and placements, adoption finalization and helping birth mothers improve their lives through higher education — and much more.
However, we can’t do it alone. Please read up on our programs and donate money where you are able. Your donation will make a huge impact.
About the Author
Rachel Robertson is a published journalist, book editor, certified Publishing Specialist, and aspiring novelist. She graduated from Central Washington University (CWU) in March 2011, having found her writing voice within the Creative Nonfiction genre and grew to work as a freelance book editor for small presses all across the United States.
In June 2018, she embarked on an internship with Virginia Frank and came on board with Adoption Choices Inc., Not for Profit 501(c)(3), in December 2018. Between her mutual passion with adoption and surrogacy, and her own personal history with adoption, Rachel is excited to research and share topics each week that will spread awareness and better serve the faithful patrons of Adoption Choices Inc.
When Rachel isn’t haunting her local Starbucks or Barnes and Noble, she’s avidly pouring over her Writer’s Digest subscription or cozying up with a cup of tea and book. She currently resides in the beautiful Pacific Northwest with her beloved wife and Border Collie.
“Gay Adoption.” Creating a Family, creatingafamily.org/adoption/resources/adoption-and-the-glbt-community/.
Human Rights Campaign. “Second Parent Adoption.” Human Rights Campaign, www.hrc.org/resources/second-parent-adoption.
Witt, Nicole. “Adopting a Baby as a Same-Sex Couple Shouldn’t Be Difficult; Here Are Some Tips to Make the Process Easier.” SheKnows, 10 July 2018, www.sheknows.com/parenting/articles/1088726/adoption-tips-for-same-sex-parents/.