We were given the most amazing gift. It has gone by so fast already. Brent and I can’t believe how much we love this little man. Parenthood has been everything we knew it would be. We also have to give a big thank you again to our birthmother Krista who has made all our dreams come true. We are officially Real Modern Dads! The journey has just begun with our story. Please make sure to share our story to promote adoption in a positive light.
Did you know? The intensity of the bonding process is greatest during baby’s first year. Good bonding is important and lets your child know they have someone caring and supportive in their life. BabyBjörn believes in the power of bonding, and believes baby carriers are an amazing way to promote bonding between you and your babies.
This was an awesome time for us. We put the timer on the camera and forgot about it, so it could catch it’s own moments. We sat on the couch in awe just staring at our little blessing. She has brought so much joy to our marriage and to our family. – Yvonne, Tiffany, & Zoe Doll
This picture was taken right after we got home after a 23-hour trip back to Barcelona, Spain from California. We arrived home and we were all so tired that the first thing we did was lay down in the bed. And our friend Jonathan, was the one who captured this moment of extreme happiness and tiredness. We heard “Hey! Let me immortalize this unique moment. You are 4 and you are home!” This picture means a lot to us, since it is the symbol of the end of a journey that started 15 months earlier, when we decided to have our second child through surrogacy. An amazing journey that has made us and our older son Joseph very, very happy. – Dad is Luis, Daddy is Juan Marcos, Big Brother is Joseph (7) & we are happy to present Jake!
Eli’s 3rd birthday party did not quite work out as planned. Baby Emmett was due the day before Eli’s birthday, so we planned the party a couple of weeks before his birthday assuming baby Emmett would be late like his brother. Baby Emmett came early and we had to move the party. With so much uncertainty of the date and Emmett being only a week old, the party ended up just being the four of us plus an old friend with her daughter. The cake was a spiderman cake actually made of chocolate & white cupcakes. Even though it was small, Eli had a blast! – Terra, Angela, Eli, & Emmett – from Tuscaloosa, Alabama
My sister was visiting and we decided to have dinner at a beautiful and favorite Cuban restaurant. It’s situated on the side of a hill looking over the San Gabriel Valley. The grounds are expansive and make for great photo opportunities. We had taken some pics and headed into the restaurant when we threw the kids on our shoulders. My sister snapped this quick! It wasn’t until we got back to our table that we realized how cool and special it was. This really photo depicts us well. We are a very active, fun, and jovial family. – Jason, Manuel, Mason (2.5) & Miranda (10 mo.) Willoughby from Pasadena, California
This is my family of three on our first vacation to Hatteras Island in the Outer Banks. My daughter is 7 months old and loves the ocean. We all wore our matching hoodies and wanted to capture our moment as a family with the ocean behind us. My name is Sherrie, I’m on the right. My wife’s name is Deb and our daughter is JoCee ReAnn.
I’m Shoshana. I’m the mid-twenties, mixed race, Jewish, pansexual daughter of two lesbians and an Indian sperm donor. My immediate family is completed by the addition of my younger brother, Reuven. Leah had me, Deborah had Reuven, and we share the same donor. Leah and Deborah are now separated, and we have the wonderful Anne as our step-mother. I recently started blogging about my experience in the hope of giving a voice to the children of LGBT+ families. I’ve been really overwhelmed by the response so far – lots of positive messages and almost 10,000 views globally.
Gayby Baby is an Australian film documenting the lives of young people growing up with same-sex parents. Director Maya Newell was raised by lesbian mothers, and she has a desire to give voices to an upcoming generation of young people from LGBT families.
Although the film doesn’t have a US release date, it premiered in Australia at the Sydney Film Festival in June 2015 and will be released theatrically in September 2015.
“The inspiration for the film came from watching lots of politicians and listening to them for years and years, talking about our families and marriage equality saying that ‘all children deserve a mother and a father’,” Newell says.
“Generally, I don’t think we look to the perspective of children very often, we don’t think they have a sense of agency or opinions or wisdom. Some of the kids totally surprised me in the making of this film, like these four kids are really smart and intelligent and have an incredible sense of morality and as Matt [one of the kids featured] says in the film, sometimes they have better ideas than adults. I really believe that.
“It’s a very affirming thing to know that you’re not alone… this film can speak for a lot of kids and when others watch it, they will know that they’re not alone.”
Newell is confident that the central message of love, support and the reality of parenting came through in her film.
The documentary’s funding was raised through a crowdfunding campaign and government grants.
via Star Observer
The Supreme Court decision regarding marriage has provided access to all the same court actions available to opposite-sex spouses – and that includes recognition as the legal parents of children moms and dads have been raising with their wives and husbands.
Because same-sex couples had not been able to marry in Ohio or to have their out-of-state unions recognized, they couldn’t jointly adopt. They couldn’t adopt each other’s kids through a second-parent, or stepparent action either.
Paternity filings are now an option to couples who were married before adopting or having children. When approved, the determination allows the other parent to be listed on the child’s birth certificate, just as an adoption does.
Robert Morris, the Probate Court’s administrative magistrate believes the transition has been smooth, and employees seem pleased to be able to serve couples and families long denied access to court processes.
“It’s been kind of nice,” Morris said, “to sit up here and see the world change.”
via The Columbus Dispatch
Image not associated with article
We are Ashley and Devan Davis (we call each other “B”). We began our blog the day we decided to try for a baby, and for over two years it has grown to cover the heartbreak and joy of infertility, miscarriage, stillbirth, high-risk twin pregnancy and new motherhood.
The couple and their daughter Rubyrose live on their family farm, in Sebastopol, California. Like many mothers, Palendech and Johnson wanted to feed their four-year-old food they felt good about. But unlike other moms, they turned that desire into a growing business that is now on hundreds of shelves across the country.
Products from Hip Chick Farms don’t include starch, salt, or water fillers, and this is a rarity among chicken items in supermarkets. The conscientious moms are also careful about their ingredient sourcing, making sure they know how the poultry has been treated from day one. This is important for anyone interested in karma. The company was founded in 2013 by Palandech and Johnson.
Jennifer Johnson is a chef with 25 years of experience. She has prepared food for the likes of President Barack Obama and spent nearly a decade as a chef with Alice Waters at acclaimed California restaurant Chez Panisse.
The Pride Center at Equality Park will be building a playground to accommodate the growing need for a safe play area that provides social support, mentoring and educational and creative development for LGBT families in South Florida.
According to the 2010 U.S. Census, about one-fifth of same-sex couples (more than 9,000) in Broward County are raising children. This follows the growing trend of LGBT parents who are raising about two million children, nationwide.
Surveys of local LGBT parents at The Center over the past few years indicate that parenting presents unique challenges and that there are insufficient resources and services, locally. The Pride Center team encourages the community to embrace the challenge to advance more creative, social, educational and networking events and resources for families.
“With the national legislation of gay marriages and state adoptions by gay couples, we are evolving to fulfill our mission,” said Robert Boo, CEO of The Pride Center at Equality Park. “As our stakeholders expand their families, we must be prepared to respond to this changing environment and the playground build is an ideal start.”
To make this vision a reality, The Pride Center has launched a $75,000 fundraising challenge and is seeking community volunteers to help construct the 2,500-square-foot interactive playground (roughly half of the size of an NBA basketball court) on Friday, October 16. When completed, it will be the first playground of its kind in the United States to be situated on a LGBT campus.
To coincide with the playground build on October 16, a goal of $30,000 has been set and earmarked for site preparation and build. Approximately 150 volunteers still are needed for Build Day. Forty volunteers are needed for Prep Days on October 14 and 15.
The remaining $45,000 goal will be applied toward additional project features including shade mitigation, fencing, landscaping, drinking fountain, maintenance and programming.
Organizations and individuals interested in volunteering and contributing funds, services and supplies should contact Kristofer Fegenbush, COO of The Pride Center at Equality Park, at (954) 463-9005 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
About The Pride Center at Equality Park
For more than 22 years, The Pride Center has provided a welcoming, safe space – an inclusive home – that celebrates, nurtures and empowers the LGBT communities and our friends and neighbors in South Florida. The Pride Center’s programs and services meet the distinct socio-economic, health, spiritual, and safety needs of the LGBT community. It hosts more than 65 regular meeting groups each month and more than 35,000 adults and youth attend activities at the Center, each year. Outreach activities over the past year directly impacted 60,000 residents and visitors to South Florida.
via press release
Sperm donation is a topic that makes some people uncomfortable. For me, any qualms about discussing sperm vanished when I began producing a documentary about donor-conceived adults for ABC. Sperm became a constant topic of conversation as we tried to unpack why in the past, sperm donation was anonymous and shrouded in secrecy.
In making our film Sperm Donors Anonymous we are hoping to reach the thousands of men who donated sperm anonymously and say: please watch these stories of children conceived with anonymous sperm. Many are growing into adults, finding out the truth about their conception, and many would like to know about their donor. They have a right to know.
Laws need to be passed in Australia giving them this right. It’s time to put an end to the secrecy and the lack of openness that has surrounded donor-conception. Anonymity is a flawed process causing distress and grief for children, parents and sperm donors themselves.
When we started our project, director Lucy Paplinska and I made contact with sperm donors and donor-conceived adults through the Victorian Assisted Reproductive Treatment Authority (Varta).
We met Michael Griffiths, 40, a musical theatre performer who, at 28, found out by accident that he was donor-conceived when he read it in his mother’s unpublished autobiography. This revelation had a profound impact on him, causing a great deal of soul searching. Unfortunately, Michael was conceived in South Australia where many donor records were deliberately destroyed, but he was determined to discover his donor’s identity to complete the picture of his own identity.
At a group meeting in Melbourne, we met Ian Smith, a donor from the Madmen (Melbourne Anonymous Donors). Ian spoke about how he felt for the seven children he had never met. He and other donors at the meeting revealed a side to this story we hadn’t heard before. Here were guys who donated sperm more than 30 years ago, who at the time of donating thought little about “offspring”. But now they were open to contact, and in doing so, were supporting the donor-conceived people they knew who were fighting for the right to identifying information about their donor.
Lucy and I often asked ourselves what the fertility doctors who used anonymous sperm for almost 40 years were thinking. But it is estimated that the majority of the 60,000 donor-conceived people in Australia don’t know they are donor-conceived. Their parents haven’t told them, the clinics won’t tell them, and it’s not recorded on their birth certificates.
The clinics, in order to get on with the business of creating babies for infertile couples, made a decision in the 1970s that anonymous sperm donation was the only way society could deal with this new fertility treatment. This plan works as long as children don’t find out they are donor-conceived, and parents can shoulder the burden of keeping their secret.
Ross Hunter, who we also met in Melbourne, found out he was donor conceived at age 33. He wants to find his donor but his conception records are still to be located and his donor is not on a voluntary register or DNA database. Along with a group of other donor conceived folk, Ross started a campaign called RUDC? (Are you donor conceived?), encouraging children to ask their parents this question. But encouraging kids to ask also means encouraging parents to tell the truth. Parents are more likely to do this if they think their children will be able to find their donor.
The research to date isn’t conclusive on how many donors are open to contact. However it’s clear from our research that many donors are open to contact. We were fortunate two of our participants located their donors during filming and both were open to contact.
We followed Michael Griffiths as he returned to Adelaide looking for information about his donor. One donor came forward after reading a newspaper article but wanted to remain anonymous to Michael until a DNA test could prove paternity. A few weeks later, I went to visit the donor to ask if he would participate in our documentary.
I discovered he donated as a student. Seeing Michael’s face in a newspaper sent a jolt through him and he became determined to find out about the children he had fathered. He rang and emailed everyone he could think of – clinics, government, doctors. He showed me the file he kept tracking the correspondence; it was huge.
Here was a man coming to terms with the fact that he had children out there. He was willing to do a DNA test and go on a register, but no organisation in South Australia would facilitate a test, or give him information. When he told me his family was very musical (Michael is a singer and pianist), it was hard to hold back the tears. I could see clearly that the power of biological connection was going both ways, it wasn’t just the children who had a need to know.
Victorian clinics like Monash IVF now write to donors when requested by their biological children, as they have kept identity profiles. Some donors reject contact, and when they do, the clinic cannot give the children any identifying information. This rejection is painful. I know that making contact and handing over identifying information isn’t what anonymous donors signed up for, but there are real children out there.
I stayed in contact with the anonymous donor in Adelaide, and through the process of his DNA test with Michael. While waiting for the results of the test, he was on tenterhooks. He said he felt like an expectant father waiting for the birth of a child.
Article: 17th August 2015 www.theguardian.com
via Pride Angel
April DeBoer and Jayne Rowse are getting married Saturday in Southfield. Federal Judge Bernard Friedman, who struck down the state’s ban, will perform the ceremony.
DeBoer has said more than 200 people were invited, and the wedding won’t be open to the public.
The couple sued the state after they couldn’t jointly adopt each other’s children. That case grew into a challenge to a Michigan constitutional amendment that recognized marriage only between a man and a woman.
Friedman overturned the state’s gay marriage ban in 2014. In June, the U.S. Supreme Court said same-sex couples have a right to marry.
Image via MSNBC