Even after 10 years with Ruth, Kim tells the Salt Lake Tribune, “There’s just not an acknowledgement that we’re a family“.
Growing up, they heard the gay jokes. They thought gay people got diseases or would go to hell. Kim recalls hearing homphobic slurs in seventh grade. And a church leader told Ruth, if she wanted to be happy, she should get a husband.
When Kim and Ruth visited a gym, they weren’t allowed to buy a family pass. People assume they are sisters. And when they hold hands walking down the street, strangers stare in disapproval.
In December 1997, the couple had a commitment ceremony in Salt Lake City and relocated to Minnesota. A year later, they moved to Massachusetts to attend graduate school. That’s when they decided to have a child though a sperm donor. Ruth carried their first born. And under Massachusetts state adoption law, Kim and Ruth’s names are on Riley’s birth certificate. A few years later, Ruth carried another son, Casey, when the couple returned to Utah. But because of state law, Kim is not legally considered Casey’s parent.
“The biological thing doesn’t matter – these are my boys,” says Kim, a doctorate student.
It doesn’t seem to matter to Riley that he has two mommies. He calls one “Mommy Ruth” and the other “Mama.”