Her dad came out to her when she was 5-years-old, and she’s been surrounded by gay people her entire life. Now she shares her unique view of the world with others in books, television appearances, and speaking engagements.
The Human Rights Campaign released its 2008 Democratic Presidential candidate questionnaire. The results provide insight about the current candidates for President.
For the first time ever, all of the announced Democratic candidates stated their support for extending federal benefits and equal tax treatment to same-sex couples who are parties to a union legally recognized by their state. The candidates also expressed unanimous support for extending federal benefits for same-sex couples and their children.
The Human Rights Campaign recommends women consider the following five factors when exploring the option of insemination:
1. Age. A woman’s ability to become pregnant declines and risk of an early miscarriage or Down’s syndrome increases.
- The risk of infertility rises dramatically as women reach their mid-30s.
- The risk of early miscarriage rises significantly with age, with the average 40-year-old facing a one in two chance; and
- The incidence of having a baby with Down’s syndrome, while only 1 in 10,000 for a 20-year-old mother, is about 3 in 1,000 for a 35-year-old mother, and 1 in 100 for a 40-year-old mother.
2. Health. Lesbian couples have an unusual opportunity: They can assess each other’s health history and choose the one less likely to transmit genetic problems to their child.
3. Insurance. Insurance policies may not cover donor insemination.
4. Workplace policies. Liberal maternity leave policies may be offered by employers but others may expect new mothers to return to work immediately after birth.
5. Desire. One of the most important factors to consider is: How deeply do you long to carry and bear a child? Is your motivation strong enough to enable you to carry a child through pregnancy?
The San Francisco Department of Human Services has started a campaign to recruit more gays and lesbians to adopt foster kids, especially teens, who are among the hardest to place. The agency sees gays and lesbians as an underutilized pool of potential parents.
The campaign is the first of its kind and controversial with religious types. It comes just two weeks after the evangelical Christian group Focus on the Family began its drive to recruit more Christians as adoptive parents to keep foster children away from homosexual parents.
Our friends at the Human Rights Campaign have listed sperm banks in the United States. These banks were found welcoming to many lesbians (although not necessarily to gay men who wish to donate sperm).
Gay families pay on average higher taxes than their straight friends with few benefits. And same-sex couples must file separate income tax forms (although they may have married in Massachusetts or committed via civil unions in New jersey, Connecticut or Vermont).
Those who registered as domestic partners in states such as California must also file separate income tax forms. In other words, families with gay and lesbian parents pay higher federal income tax than their opposite-sex married counterparts.
According to the IRS, the U.S. government does not recognize any couple other than legally married opposite-sex couples. It cites the Federal Defense of Marriage Act (FDMA) as foundation for the decision. The IRS warns that attempts to file a joint return could lead to fines or other penalties.
Get tax tips, links, and information specifically for gays and lesbians at GayTax.com.
Open adoption (or independent adoption without an agency) is a good choice for prospective gay and lesbian parents. By eliminating interaction with an agency, you avoid the barriers some create – such as restrictions based on marital status or sexual orientation. You are responsible for finding a birth parent, a social worker, and a judge; and the typical cost begins at $9,000 but can exceed $35,000.
On it’s web site, the Human Rights Campaign offers important steps to follow if you’re interested in pursuing open adoption.