Idaho Allows Second-Parent Adoption

In the category of “this just in”–the Supreme Court of Idaho published an opinion today in which it concludes that Idaho law permits a lesbian to complete a second-parent adoption.   This warrants at least a short post.   I’ve written about second-parent adoptions in the past, (and very recently about  NY decision denying a second-parent adoption)  but let me do a quick recap:

Second-parent adoptions are of particular importance to lesbian families.  If a lesbian couple decides to raise kids, one way to do that is for one woman to give birth to the child.   By virtue of giving birth, she will be deemed a legal parent of the child.  In states where the lesbian couple can marry, if the woman who gives birth is married her wife will probably be considered the legal parent of the child as well.   (This is why the NY judge wouldn’t allow the wife to adopt the child, in fact.)   But in states that do not allow the lesbian couple to marry or recognize their marriage if they marry in another state, the non-birth-giving partner may not be a legal parent.   While there are other routes she might travel (I’m thinking here of holding out) the most common solution is to have her adopt the child.  But ideally she wants to do that an become a second

Even if other routes are available, adoption is in many ways preferable, because it is portable.  By this I mean that wherever the family goes, parentage via an adoption will be recognized, while parentage via marriage, say, may not be.  (Again, this is the problem in that NY case.)

Now to Idaho.   Jane Doe (need I say not her real name?) was the partner of Jane Doe I (ditto).   The two women have been together since 1995 and have entered into a civil union (in VT) and gotten married (in CA).  Idaho does not recognize either of those relationships.

John Doe was born to Jane Doe I in 1998.  Jane Doe I adopted John Doe I in 2002 when he was just 2 days old.   (As I understand it, Idaho wouldn’t permit a joint adoption by the two women.)   The boys are now 12 and 15.    Jane Doe, along with Jane Doe I, has raised them since birth.

Jane Doe sought to adopt the boys with the support of Jane Doe I.  Given the age of the children, they too were consulted and wished the adoption to proceed.   So an adoption petition was filed.   But the magistrate, without notice of her intention, denied the adoption on the ground that since Jane Doe and Jane Doe I were not married, Jane Doe had no standing to seek adoption.  In other words, she ruled that Jane Doe could not even begin an adoption proceeding.

This ruling was appealed to the Idaho Supreme Court and lead to today’s opinion.  In it the court determines that the magistrate erred because she looked beyond the language of the relevant Idaho statutes to the underlying intent of the law.    It’s a pretty settled principle that you don’t get to look to intent unless you first find that the actual language of the statute is ambiguous–subject to more than one interpretation.

In this instance the ID court found that the ID statute was unambiguous.   The statute states that “any adult person” can complete an adoption.   The Idaho Supreme Court found no ambiguity there and, in particular, found that reading it to say “any married adult person” was improper.      Thus, Jane Doe has standing and can seek to adopt.

It’s worth noting that whether Jane Doe can actually adopt is not yet determined by this opinion.  That’s a matter the magistrate didn’t reach and so she (or some other magistrate) must reach it on remand.    Further, as the concurrence notes, the ability to adopt without disturbing Jane Doe I’s parental rights (which is what makes this a second parent adoption) is to be determined by the magistrate.   That’s not ideal, but it’s surely a big step forward from where Jane Doe stood.

 

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137 responses to “Idaho Allows Second-Parent Adoption

  1. I struggle to understand the reasoning of the magistrate that entered the Order of Dismissal. I find it hard to imagine a reason which doesn’t involve prejudice, but either way, I hope that there is some form of sanction against her.

    These parts of the latest ruling points out something very strange about adoption in Idaho:
    “Significantly, Idaho Code § 16-2005(4) requires that parents consenting to an adoption simultaneously consent to the termination of their parental rights.”
    “The takeaway is simply this: parents wishing for a new spouse or domestic partner to adopt must offer to consent to the termination of their parental rights and hope that the judge doesn’t accept the offer.”

    • the knee jerk reaction “prejudice” anytime same sex couples aren’t automatically accorded parenthood of their partners child, is very disturbing.
      It is, of course, a logical outcome of the very successful, but false, presentation of same sex marriage as an equal rights issue.

      • Huh?! Can you imagine how the proposed adoptive mother could be any better qualified to adopt? Do you seriously believe that a male partner would have been been told he had no standing to seek adoption? Was there any justification in the law for what the judge did? How can this *not* have been motivated by prejudice?

        Yes I believe gay marriage is an equal-rights issue (how can it not be?), but that’s not what this is about. It’s an adoption case, and it wouldn’t really matter if the partner were female or male, or whether or not they were married to the birth mother.

        • seems like she adhered to the letter of the law rather closely. you may not like the law, and you may prefer the supreme court’s interpretation of the law based on other prededents, but to cry for discipline for someone adhering to the law is politics not law.

          • and yes, a male partner would have received the same response.

            • it looks like WordPress throws away stuff in double angle brackets, but this is from the opinion:

              (from the opinion)
              Idaho Code § 16-1 506 mandates that a hearing be held after an adoption petition is filed.

              The phrase “at the time fixed for hearing such petition” contains no qualifiers, limitations, or exceptions. It does not, for example, say, “at the time fixed for hearing, if any,” nor does the phrase hint that a hearing is optional, or even a judgment call within a court’s discretion. The language, by its plain, unambiguous meaning indicates that in the context of adoption proceedings in Idaho, a post-petition hearing is required. The magistrate’s summary dismissal of Jane Doe’s adoption petition, without first holding a hearing, constitutes a failure to comply with I.C. § 16-1 506.

              Because “any adult person” is susceptible to only one interpretation — a human being over the age of 18 — I.C. § 16 – 1501 is unambiguous. And, as an adult person, Jane Doe unequivocally has standing to adopt.

              (this is ml66uk now)
              The legislation specifically allows for an adoptive parent not to be married to the existing parent. eg “[t]he person adopting a child must be at least fifteen (15) years older than the person adopted . . . except such age restrictions or requirements shall not apply in cases where
              the adopting parent is a spouse of a natural parent . . . .”

              It doesn’t look like the magistrate “adhered to the letter of the law rather closely” to me.

          • Did you even read the supreme court’s opinion? The magistrate ignored the law completely.
            1) She didn’t have any legal basis to enter an Order of Dismissal.
            2) There is no requirement in Idaho law for a second prospective parent to be married to an existing parent.

            From the opinion:
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  2. There’s a lot of discretion given to judges in adoption cases generally, and I guess this ability to terminate or not terminate the original parent’s rights is part of that.

    As for what the magistrate did, it’s hard to see why anyone would deny Jane Doe the right to adopt the boys who she’d raised for over ten years each. What purpose does that serve, except as a mark that this family is less valuable/less deserving than other families. So your supposition about prejudice seems likely, to me. But even that said, I’m surprised that the Idaho Supreme Court reach the opposite conclusion so clearly. Idaho is hardly a hotbed of progressive activism, but it looks to me like the court was unanimous.

    • I actually agree with the reasoning. A second parent adoption should only be completed when the partners are legally recognized as sharing a life together ie marriage or civil union. If you are not married than legally speaking you are just any old random person on the street.
      If marriage or domestic partnership is unavailable in that locale, than perhaps the partners should be able to show evidence that they are in a marriage like relationship.

      • this of course, is if we are not applying a de facto doctrine, which is seems idaho does not.

        • As ml66uk’s response suggests, there are two different questions here. One is what the law as currently written in Idaho actually requires, and the “any person” language does seem sort of clear on that. The other question is what the law (in a general sort of way) should be–and I think that’s what your addressing. (And to be clear, that is often what I pick to talk about so I in no way mean to criticize your focus.)

          I can understand reluctance to allow second-parent adoptions unless there is some sort of proof of a stable relationship between the two people who are about to be co-parents. I think you’ve got that here–the two women have been together for nearly 20 years and have been raising these boys for over a dozen years. Now as it happens they have also traveled to other (friendlier) states to take legal steps to confirm their relationship. I would guess that all this would satisfy you in this case?

          But what if they hadn’t traveled to CA to marry? Suppose they figured that since ID wouldn’t recognize that marriage there wasn’t much point in doing it. Would that change how you’d think about this case?

          I guess I’m wondering what being married actually adds. Plenty of non-marital relationships turn out to be more enduring than marital ones.

          About de facto status–I think it is correct that ID doesn’t recognize it. But there’s another issue as well. De facto status isn’t really portable, unless you’ve actually litigated a case and established it. You could live in WA and be pretty confident you were a de facto parent, but if you moved to ID that status wouldn’t go with you. Adoptions do travel.

          • I’d question the need for there to be a relationship between the existing and prospective parents except as parents of the same children. “Co-parenting” isn’t very common yet, but is becoming more so, and I don’t see why two parents need to be in a relationship with each other, and regardless of whether two people are married or civilly partnered or just living together, there’s a good chance their relationship will be over within 18 years anyway.

            If two people(1) can show that they would be good parents, then why shouldn’t two brothers, or two sisters, or a parent and child, or two strangers who are already co-parenting be able to adopt the same child? Why should they have to have a romantic or sexual relationship with each other to be good parents? Bode Miller and Sara McKenna (2) don’t have such a relationship, seem fairly hostile to each other, and Bode Miller is married to another woman, but he was given parental rights and responsibilities based on DNA, though an identical twin brother with the same DNA would not have been.

            (1 France has gone a step further and allowed three legal parents)

            (2 https://julieshapiro.wordpress.com/2013/12/16/mckennamiller-custody-case-settles-and-what-do-we-know/ )

            • i could agree regarding siblings or other close relatives adopting together. they are family members and as such can expect to be part of each other’s lives. however, introducing unrelated people creates a chaotic environment for children.

              The Bode miller case is entirely different since bode miller was already a parent. he did not seek to adopt. so it can’t be applied here. julie may not like how he got to be a parent in the first place (genetics) but the fact is he was already a parent recognized by law. once people are ALREADY parents, then the status of their relationship to the other parent is irrelevant. removing a child’s parent does not make an unstable situation (parents not part of the same family unit) any more stable, it just creates more loss for the child.

              once again, just to keep the different issues separate, i am arguing the point without applying the de facto doctrine, and just imagining applying the principles at the very outset, not after any defacto parent relationship has been formed.

              • of course there is another issue with siblings adopting together, secondary in my mind, which is that it does not imitate the nuclear, biologically related family, which is originally how adoption was constructed. however, i believe the law is moving away from that model in any case, what with greater openness and so forth- adoption today is less about pretending to be biologically related that it was before.

                still, this is a bit problematic because identifying two siblings as parents to the same child reeks of incest. lets assume the two siblings are a brother and sister- or mother and son- would the child have birth certificate naming them as mother and father to the child? so insofar as the legal forms of adoption are still designed to mimic the biological nuclear family, despite other aspects changing, we still run into problems.

              • i also have a lot of doubt regarding the staying power of a so-called parent who is neither biologically related to the child nor has ever lived as part of the same family unit to establish a parent like bond.

              • actually the more i think about it, there’s a wild variation in how much siblings are involved in each others lives. some a lot, some none at all. so since law is based on generalizations, perhaps siblings co-adoptions should not be supported.

          • btw i don’t agree btw about non marital relationships being more enduring than marital ones. rarely do just-friends, even good friends, stay in each others day in day out over the long term, nor do they even desire to. they may love each other just as much when they finally sit down to catch up with each other, but few non-romantic/sexual friendships actually share a life like family.

            i agree if you are limiting your statement regarding ‘non marital relationships’ to refer to long term cohabiting relationships that are like marriage in any other way except for the piece of paper- they may be very enduring. But, as long as the state provides an avenue for such a relationship to be recognized as such, i think its the partners responsibility to take the steps to be recognized ie get married, if the states’s recognition is what they want. it’s not the for the state to determine the nature of people’s relationship. the issue arises when the state, like idaho, does not provide such an avenue.

      • “The statute states that ‘any adult person’ can complete an adoption.” There’s nothing in there about any particular relationship between an existing parent and a prospective parent.

      • Contrast that (your feeling that a second parent should have to be officially married and sharing their lives together to be able to adopt) with Marilynn’s belief (that I think you share?) that unmarried, uncommitted, living-separate-lives people should be allowed to intentionally create children together, which they would then be both legal parents of. Except for the genetic relationship of both parents in the second scenario, would there be any difference in the legal parenthood? Maybe you disagree with Marilynn about letting unmarried people intentionally conceive children together? Or maybe she disagrees with you that people should have to be married to adopt together?

        • I think there are too many children in the Foster Care system for us to discriminate against single able people or same sex couples from adopting them.

          • I don’t think we should either. Unless a person is unfit of course, but being gay or in a same-sex couple or being single doesn’t make someone unfit to adopt a child.

        • john i think you are a bit confused about the limits of government interference. you think that everything that isn’t such a good idea means the goverment has to automatically legislate against it. that may be true in other countries but its against the raison detre of the united states which firmly believes that it is not the governments job to police people’s personal behavior.

          • Not everything, Ki. The things I think should be banned are pretty limited: genetic engineering and cloning, same-sex procreation using stem cells, sperm and egg donation, surrogacy, artificial wombs, baby-selling, and intentional unmarried conception like craigslist arrangements (and yes adultery and fornication but those are already illegal in my state and I wouldn’t change the way we police or punish them, they are self-policed). The US doesn’t allow siblings to marry or procreate, right? And those other things are just as ban if not worse. There is some false idea that we have to let people do everything they want to create people, but it’s a false idea, similar to the idea 200 years ago that we had to allow people to own slaves. That was the United States too.

            And what was your point here, then: “A second parent adoption should only be completed when the partners are legally recognized as sharing a life together ie marriage or civil union.” Weren’t you saying that should be a law? Or do you just like unleashing your judgement about things, telling people they are bad and shouldn’t adopt or raise children, as though that would do anything except pit people against each other? I for one agree with Greg that anyone in his shoes would do exactly what he did and don’t judge him. I just think we should give him a different pair of shoes, so that sperm and egg donation were illegal and then anyone those shoes wouldn’t do them. No judgement of people, just proper government and protection of people’s rights and dignity.

            • adoption is a public matter. reproduction is private.

              • Reproduction isn’t private! It creates a person that the public cares about, indeed who is a member of the public. The parents of a child are sought out and identified and held responsible for their offspring. DNA identifies people’s children to near certainty, and the state uses it, and private people can use it to learn the facts, so it can’t be kept secret or private.

                Why not make adoption private, as private as you think sex is? Just let people privately exchange babies and not question anyone or stop anyone about what they are doing? Why should we inquire into the private lives of people who want to adopt, making sure they are in a “marriage like” relationship, just because a baby already exists, when you think we shouldn’t do that for babies that don’t already exist, even though we can stop people from bringing those babies into existence by shutting down sperm banks and stopping egg donation?

                I do think that adoption is not a right the same way reproduction is, that is the difference that calls for the state evaluating people for ‘fitness’ to be parents.

                • In the USA, yes reproduction is private same like eating and drinking. maybe in other countries it is not. you don’t like it here, go there.
                  Adoption by definition means the creation of a legal status akin to biological parenthood, therefore involves the state BY DEFINITION.

                  • Screw that, I’ll participate in our country’s democracy and culture and re-establish human rights including children’s rights and adult equality and stop unethical creation of people and purchasing and manufacture of people. Life itself involves the state because of the fact that there is a state, and therefore by definition. There is no life outside of the state, even for piping plovers. If you don’t like it, go nowhere, there is nowhere for you to go.

                  • John,

                    Your thinking sounds a lot like Stalin’s Soviet Union and Hitler’s Nazi Germany where the state dictates people’s private lives. Reproduction and the decision of whether or not to have children is none of anyone’s business. You decided not to have children. That’s your right and no one should judge you for that. Same goes for every other human being on this planet.

                  • Having laws does not make us into Stalinist Russia. Especially when the laws in question are specifically in order to preserve liberty and equality and dignity and freedom. I’m trying to stop eugenics and preserve the right of everyone to marry and procreate naturally with the person of their choice (excluding the prohibited relationships that we currently prohibit, and only additionally prohibiting people of the same sex). You might remember that the Nazis were big on eugenics, and sperm donation and voluntary market-based genetic engineering are the new “liberal” form of eugenics. We shouldn’t “dictate” that anyone use screened sperm or PGD or genetic engineering, and we should protect people from social pressure to do so too, but at the same time, we should dictate (democratically, by the people) that scientists don’t create human beings from genetic engineering or in artificial wombs, and we should not allow incest, right?
                    You are certainly right that what goes on in our heads and in our bodies regarding marriage and reproduction is private, but the state is very much interested in protecting people and encouraging good decisions that promote the general welfare.

                  • Having laws that get into others personal lives does make this into Stalin’s Russia where people would live their private lives according to what you deem is the “right” way to live.

                    Comparing infertility treatments to incest is so out there that it’s impossible to take it seriously.

                  • I don’t think he was comparing fertility treatments to incest, but making the point that the state already has some regulation of reproduction, in response to this sentence of yours: “Reproduction and the decision of whether or not to have children is none of anyone’s business.”

                  • People can live their private lives however they want, but creating people is not a thing people do in their private lives, it is a public act. We have super wide freedom to choose whether to and with who and when and where, but it’s not something that individuals can do and we should expect that people who create other people be married to each other and take responsibility for their offspring. It’ll still happen without being married and we’ll handle it like we do, but it shouldn’t be legal to do it intentionally with donated gametes.

                    And I was comparing incest and sperm donation (which is NOT an infertility treatment!) in that both are unethical and both should be illegal. As to which is worse, it’s apples and oranges, they are each bad in different ways.

                  • And ml is right, I was proving the point that we do have laws that limit reproduction, it is not “none of anyone’s business.”

                  • So sex is a public act? What do we all have to go to a government agency when we want to be intimate with someone? LOL, talk about a totalitarian society you want to turn us into.

              • I’ll agree though that sometimes the reproduction is kept private, even legally by a court, when the original birth certificate is sealed and a legal fiction is put in place to keep the facts about who reproduced private. But so too are adults sometimes given new identities, and their old identities are sealed, so that the public legally knows them as a different person with a faked history. But such a practice doesn’t mean that identities are not public. Everyone’s name, sex, date of birth, and parents are a matter of public record, just can be legally changed (can date of birth be changed? I would have liked to have my birthday in the summer when I was a kid, so we could go miniature golfing like my friends with summer birthdays did.)

              • Very succinct. Accurate. It’s the winning formula.

                • You also think reproduction is private? You, who thinks people have an obligation to support their offspring and children have a right to know their parent’s identity? WTF?

                • and not just know their parent’s identity, but get their share of their genetic parent’s estate and survivor benefits. Am I confused? Doesn’t that mean you don’t think reproduction is private? Doesn’t that mean you think the state is supposed to find out the truth and hold people responsible in a public way? I’m really hoping you and Kisarita will detail your agreements and disagreements here. Otherwise I guess you are both just being wishywashy charlie browns and not really saying anything at all.

            • John,

              You are completely missing my point about being in my shoes. The difference between my shoes and your shoes is that you made a choice not to have children I didn’t have that choice my body dictated that to me.

              Anyone who would walk in my shoes may not have handled the situation as I did. Plus there is another part of the equation and that is my wife. If our situation was just my azoospermia, I would have been 100% on board with pursuing sperm donation for us to have a child. Not being biologically connected to the child isn’t an issue for me. Desiring the experience of going through a pregnancy and birth of our potential child along with parent in the child from birth is something that is very important to me. But I didn’t want that to come at the cost of my wife going through unpleasant fertility treatments with no guarantee they’d work. I would rather not have to go through the grueling adoption process and the risk of failed placements that people like Marilynn and Ki choose not to go through.

              The bottom line for me is that I don’t need your closed minded approval for how my wife and I live the rest of our lives. I don’t need Marilynn’s nor Ki’s either. Because if we don’t pursue adoption you won’t be there when our house is empty on Christmas. You won’t be there when there is no kid to dress up for Halloween. You won’t be there after our parents pass and we have no family to spend holidays with and care for us in times of need. You won’t be there to fill the void in out lives. You won’t be there when we get completely outcasted from our social circles because we don’t have children.

              The reality is you and people like Marilynn don’t care about my dignity. So I really don’t care nor respect your closed mined views until you’ve walked in my shoes.

              • Your dignity doesn’t depend on having children. I am sorry your life will not be as full and interesting as you hoped it would be with children. I do support your right to health care and public measures to improve people’s health, including protecting fertility, and I support your right to try to have children with your own genes (I’m trying to get Congress to protect that right with the #NMRA). But people are not supposed to be a means to an end, meaning it’s wrong to create children in order to provide you with fun and company. People are ends in themselves, and we are supposed to respect their dignity by respecting that. Your dignity grows by respecting other people’s dignity and fate. No one else can walk in your shoes but you, but if anyone could they would do everything exactly like you will do, your life and all your experiences of the world is your shoes. I am not expressing disapproval of you personally, as what you did is 100% understandable and inevitable. I am expressing disapproval of society and our culture and practices and trying to change laws and culture going forward.

                • I disagree with you about a lot of things, but I find myself agreeing more and more with your recent posts, and you’re certainly arguing your case a lot more persuasively. It’s as if there’s a new John Howard writing.

                • “Your dignity grows by respecting other people’s dignity and fate. ”

                  And your complete disrespect for the infertile community is the reason I have little respect for you as a person. Again you made a choice not to have children, myself and others had that choice taken from us.

                  • I don’t have disrespect for the infertile community, and more than abolitionists had disrespect for cotton plantation owners. As to having little respect for me as a person, that is a result of growing up in our culture. You couldn’t help your feelings. But you should learn going forward to respect other people more, even if you disagree with them.

                    And I didn’t make a choice not to have children, I just never had children and probably won’t have children. I would be upset if my ability to have children was taken from me, that is why I am trying to protect natural reproduction rights and advocate for public health care including fertility treatments (which again, does not mean sperm donation, but does mean medicine and health care and preventing exposure to toxins and pollution and diseases that might cause infertility).

                  • Yes, you have disrespected the infertility community by judging them with your totalitarian unempathetic attitude. I respect people that give respect. I respect Ki even though I disagree with her some of her opinions. She respects where I come from as I do with her. So this idea that I don’t respect people that I disagree with is non sense.

                    Unless you have a condition that makes you infertile you made the decision to not have children. So your opinion on this has very little value in my world.

                  • Greg can you elaborate on what you believe the infertile community (your term) is owed from the fertile community?

                    I believe that minors deserve legal protection and due process of adoption or guardianship proceedings if their biological parents are not going to be supporting them.

                    You are not offended by the adoptive process being followed in the majority of cases where people want parental authority over other people’s offspring. It would stand to reason that you would not be offended if the remaining minors not raised by their bio parents were given the legal protection of that same due process. Yet you are offended by this proposal because it would reduce the options infertile people or same sex or single people have for obtaining parental rights over the offspring of other people.

                    But that method eliminates legal protections for some minors who are not raised by their bio parents which is clearly a violation of their civil rights. You base your argument on the fact that everyone agrees the bio parents won’t be raising their child prior to the child’s birth and therefore adoption procedures can be avoided that way. Sure colluding to conceal the adoptive nature of a parent child relationship by not recording the biological parents as the parents of their own offspring does save a significant amount of time, money and public scrutiny and it allows for a free market economy and child trafficking to go unchecked.

                  • “Greg can you elaborate on what you believe the infertile community (your term) is owed from the fertile community?”

                    Something in exchange from serving those with children and currently they get NOTHING in return for. I mean they should get something for picking up the bulk of the workload in the workplace and paying taxes for a service they can never utilize. Seems fair they should get something for that don’t you?

                  • regarding picking up the bulk of the workload in the workplace, i believe this is a tangetn of course, but i really don’t get what you are talking about. perhaps it is your specific workplace that is the problem. i’ve never worked in any place tht treated employees any differently based on whether they had children or not. in fact many people, especially low-wge jobs, work double jobs precisely because they have children to support. my dad was always out late working precisely to support his kids. me, i often goofed off at work, taking beyond my allotted vacation days, arriving late, because i was making enough money for my own modest needs that i didn’t really care. in the meantime, you have the same FMLA that anyone else has. this is a problem between you and your employer, not anyone else.

                  • I am not the only one this happens too. The childless are expected to work longer hours and travel because they don’t have kids. If there is a project that needs to get done the childless person stays to work late while the one with children heads home for the day.

                    Women get paid maternity leave, what do the childless get? The get disability and a fraction of their salary when they go on it.

                    It’s time the fertile world made sacrifices for the childless world instead of being selfish and just living off the childless.

                  • again, if your employer is unfairly dumping on you than you really have to address it with your employer. no one else is responsible for that.

                    as for maternity leave, no you are wrong, only a very small fraction of employers provide paid maternity leave. and many employers do not provide disability insurance either.

                    it is well known that having a child almost always sets a woman back in her career. This is an extremely unjust situation towards mothers. so let me tell you its a bit galling that you complain so much about the workplace being unfriendly to you.

                    as for taxes, we all have to pay for things we do not directly use. thats what taxes are. there are many things my taxes go to that i might consider superfluous or i might disagree with. but actually schools is not even one of those things, cuz we all benefit from living in an educated society. besides, didn’t you go to school yourself once upon a time?

                  • This isn’t just about me. Other childless people experience it as well. Even people who have children admit that it takes place.

                    As for it being unjust towards mothers, boo hoo. Cry me a river. There are millions of women who can’t have children who would gladly trade places with them. It is downright offensive for you to come back with that.

                    There is a difference between paying taxes for things you pay taxes for that you could use such as welfare and Medicaid and things like schools the childless pay for that they’ll never be able to get a benefit from. And no, if we don’t have children we don’t benefit in any way from educating other people’s children.

                  • G does it really make you feel better to convince yourself that you are the world’s greatest victim ever? Go enjoy your pity party then. But don’t act like nobody else’s problems count. perhaps if someone had cancer you’d also say ‘cry me a river’ as long as they had children?
                    and if you don’t want to view yourself as part of society with an obligation to ensure its safe operation, which includes the education of the next generation then don’t complain that its society that casts you out.
                    And with regard to your employer, the problem is yours and theirs. not marilyns, not johns, and not mine, who got fired from my new job after two days coming late, cuz i had trouble getting to the babysitter by 715 AM. (perhaps you and i can switch employers?)
                    yes, perhaps other people have the same problem as you and my advice to you would be the same. y’all gotta stop acting like little boys and talk to your employers like an adult. don’t keep swallowing bs at work and then take out your resentment on the rest of us. that won’t solve your problem.
                    So far you’ve derailed the past few threads with such talk, which has nothing to do with this blog. Well address your issues elsewhere where they need to be addressed.

                  • Ki,

                    Again it’s not just me. It’s not about me being a victim. Actually the stories I’ve read among the childless, I’ve had it easy. Others have dealt with it much worse. I’m just bringing awareness to it.

                    As for me saying boo hoo to those who have cancer, you don’t know me and how cancer has impacted and will impact those who are close to me in my family. Plus someone deciding to have a kid is a choice, cancer is not a choice.

                    I’m not trying to take it out on you. All I am trying to do is to get you to recognize that being childless is not all it is cracked up to be. That is what drives people to make decisions you and I were never comfortable with. That is important for John, Marilynn and yourself to recognize in the context of these discussions. When you deny it you come across as being dismissive of our experience. All I am asking for is recognition. You don’t need to solve the problem just as I don’t need to solve your babysitting problem, but I do recognize that it could be a problem.

                • I second the applause. Nicely said John. You are on an eloquent roll.

                  • Of course you applaud another anti non biological parent agenda. Difference is you made a decision to have children while he made a decision not to have children.

  3. This is probably another case of the Magistrate setting up a legal challenge to the state’s ban on same-sex marriage. Did you see the story today of couples suing in Ohio to have their out of state marriages recognized to name the unrecognized spouse on state birth certificates? Why didn’t they just go to New York to have their baby, or heck, just have the New York court issue them their precious fraudulent birth certificate?

  4. This is wonderful news and I’m thrilled gay and lesbian couples will finally be treated fairly but even more importantly that their children will be afforded the legal protection of having both their parents legally recognized.

    • I think it’s good too, if a child has two people sharing parenting responsibilities and they want to make that official and be a family together, they should be able to be legal parents. That’s different from saying they should be approved to make more children together, which marriage says. This is just about choosing someone of the same sex to be a co-parent, in the same way that one might choose to co-parent with someone of the other sex. I like how Julie titled this post “Idaho allows second parent adoption” as it is a much more accurate headline than the AP headline “Idaho Supreme Court rules gay, lesbian couples have equal adoption rights” which implies the state cannot say that a man and a woman are preferable or not give a child to a gay couple. There is no right to adopt at all, so yeah, in that sense everyone has equal rights.

      • John you said “That’s different from saying they should be approved to make more children together, which marriage says. This is just about choosing someone of the same sex to be a co-parent, in the same way that one might choose to co-parent with someone of the other sex. ”

        I know what you are saying here and I agree. The politically popular term co-parent drives me nuts though. Co means ‘together with’ or ‘joint effort’. A parent is always one of a set of two. Parents either raise their children or they don’t. Parents cooperate with one another in raising their child or they don’t. The other parent is not a co-parent, they are just the other parent. If their spouse is not the other parent of their child, it means their spouse is a step parent, not a co parent. If they are a step parent and they want to be the other legal parent they can become an adoptive step parent if they go to court. A person cannot become a co-parent by marrying a parent, nor can they become a co-parent by adopting and obviously having offspring just makes a person a parent not a co-parent officially. Co-parent is not an official legal title for anyone and it literally means nothing more than the word parent means all by itself. Sometimes people use it to describe a parents who are not married, but the word parent does not imply that that a person is married to the other parent of their child to begin with so it just this weird politically correct term that does not seem to have a fixed meaning.

        • “Co-parent” doesn’t seem “politically correct” to me, and it just describes the relationship between two parents of a child, who don’t have and never did have the usual romantic/sexual relationship. Similarly, “co-husband”, “co-wife”, and “co-spouse” describe relationships between people who are married to the same third person.

          • Oh, that’s a different use of “co-parent” than I was using. I meant they are both equal legal parents and working together on it, pulling together at the same time as is typical of parents that are together, not that they didn’t have a sexual or romantic relationship. I think what you are referring to is more commonly called “shared parenting” or “equal custody” where divorced or never-together legal parents each take an equal role, but are not together. That should be avoided if possible.

          • huh? If I say that someone is a wife it necessarily means there is a spouse of some sort that they are married to. What’s a co-wife or co-spouse? The very nature of the word spouse means that they are in a marital relationship. The very nature of the word parent means that they and someone else have offspring together. Adoptive parents are the only brand of parent where there might only be one adoptive parent. Parent does not imply that there is a romantic relationship between the two parents. It just implies they have offspring with someone the other parent. How does the prefix co make it seem less romantic than simply saying that someone is a parent. And would the child refer to their parents in this manner? Surely it makes no difference to them in terms of referring to them if they are married or not. Plenty of one night stands result in people being parents without ever being a couple. It just seems silly and over the top to me

            • There are plenty of places where a man can have more than one wife, a woman can have more than one husband, or where two or more men and two or more women can be in a group marriage. This may or may not be recognised legally, but if A is married to both B and C, then the relationship between B and C can be described as co-husband, co-wife, or co-spouse.

              http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polygamy

              It is usually the case that parents of the same child have or had at one point a romantic and/or sexual relationship with each other. Where this isn’t the case “co-parents” can be used to describe the two parents or the relationship between them. There are websites for people who wish to seek partners with whom they can have and raise children, without actually being in the usual relationship themselves. Sometimes it’s lesbians and gay men, but it can also be people who aren’t strongly attached to either gender, or who have had bad experiences in their past.

              http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coparenting
              “Coparenting or co-parenting describes a parenting situation where the parents are not in a marriage, cohabitation or romantic relationship with one another. In the United States the term coparenting is often used to describe the relationship between two separated or divorced parents attempting to parent their shared children.”

              Google returns over 500,000 hits for “co-parent” btw:
              http://www.google.com/search?q=co-parent

              • “There are websites for people who wish to seek partners with whom they can have and raise children, without actually being in the usual relationship themselves.”

                This should be illegal. It wouldn’t be hard to shut those websites down by making intentional unmarried conception a crime and doing a few sting operations to catch people trying to do it anyways. There is no right to do it, and it violates human rights to intentionally create children for people to have offspring. Of course, marrying someone just to intentionally have children with them is unethical as well, worse than marrying someone for their money or family or connections or status. Though at least marrying increases the likelihood of growing into a solid family and presents the right public face to the relationship. There is no minimum level of love or attraction to marry, but there should be a minimum level of commitment and mutual support and respect.

                • I fatly disagree with this. People can meet one another however they want and have kids together whether or not they are married. It’s totally fine. What is not fine is abandoning them when they are born

                  • What basis are you using to say that it’s totally fine for unmarried uncommitted people to intentionally have kids with someone they intend to be divorced from? It’s a pretty radical thing to say, you seem to think you are just stating the truth but it’s never been the case that society said it is totally fine for unmarried people to have children. Divorce is bad enough without encouraging more broken homes, more kids raised between two worlds. It’s abusive, right off the bat.

        • Yes sorry I was using it as a verb, but also I meant to convey the legal aspect. They are a couple living together and doing the raising together, and it makes sense they should be able to be both legal parents, equals legally, if the existing legal parent(s) desire them to be. Not step parents, because that’s just through marriage, and marriage should only be for couples that are also approved to make offspring together. (And step parents don’t become legal parents, as you noted, they would also have to adopt to also be legal parents). If siblings or same-sex couples wanted to both be legal parents, adoption is the only option for them, same as it is for anyone that wants to become legal parents. They shouldn’t have to be eligible to marry each other to both become legal parents.

          • OK but we agree that co parent is not category tied to one of the various forms of legal parenthood. Step parenthood is a legal form of parenthood that brings all kinds of access to benefits to the step child but only for the duration of the marriage and without undermining the child’s rights to care and support from both their parents even though they are not a romantic couple.

            • Right, co-parent is not a legal term, it just describes the cooperative partnership desired by the people raising a child together. They can co-parent without both being legal parents or married.

              Step parenthood is a legal status that brings benefits? I didn’t know that it was official, I assumed it was just an understanding, like a de facto status. Don’t step parents have to adopt their spouse’s child to become legal parents, just the same as if they weren’t married? At any rate, marriage should’t be allowed to same sex couples because it’s only for couples approved to make more babies together, not for couples that are raising existing kids together.

              • “At any rate, marriage should’t be allowed to same sex couples because it’s only for couples approved to make more babies together, not for couples that are raising existing kids together.”

                Sigh… We’re going over old ground here, but following that line of reasoning, infertile couples wouldn’t be able to get married either. Plenty of people have children without getting married. Plenty of people get married without having children.

                I’m reminded of a quote from Jerome Corsi:
                “Sex is not about fun. You want to have fun? Read a book. Go to a movie”
                http://www.opposingviews.com/i/religion/christianity/sex-not-about-fun-says-tea-party-speaker-jerome-corsi-video

                I’m just glad that views like yours and his are a small minority.

                • If it is old ground, then surely you know that infertile married couples are approved and allowed legally to have children together using their own genes, they just probably won’t (not that we the public know that, as far as we are concerned they just don’t yet have children together, but we support and affirm their right to and would celebrate their good fortune if they did). They are not prohibited from having children together, like same-sex couples should be, who should go to jail for trying to create genetic offspring together, or even for using donor gametes (though that is a separate issue from marriage).

                  • But John that would be couples intentionally trying to have children which is bad in your Stalinist world, isn’t it? So you wouldn’t celebrate that, now would you? And doesn’t your invisible man from the fairy tale book oppose fertility treatments?

                  • Not quite, they are approved to have sex and we approve of the conception of children (which is a conceptual idea, we approve of them producing children as an abstract concept), but we really approve of them welcoming those children as unexpected gifts that arrive on their own accord from God/nature, not as manufacturing them on purpose as a means to an end. We don’t necessarily approve of using technology such as IVF though marital privacy means they could do that (though it doesn’t mean a right to adultery like sperm donation is). And medical privacy means they have a right to get healthy with includes restoring fertility, the body’s ability to be fertile. Sperm donation, surrogacy, and adoption are not “fertility treatments.” I don’t think medical privacy requires allowing specific technologies like IVF but that was the argument and it does result in the outcome to which they have a right and approval, namely conception of offspring together from their own genes. IVF could be thought of as a sex position, some of which are supposedly more likely to result in pregnancy than others. But because it happens in clinics with other people, it really isn’t contained in the home like marital privacy is said to be.

                  • Have you seen the movie Demolition Man? These crazy ideas like needing approval to have sex sound exactly like that.

                  • These days people don’t need approval to have sex, but marriage should still bestow that approval. And we should not give approval of sex by unmarried people. But if people go ahead and have sex, we shouldn’t arrest them or put them in the stockade (though I think collecting Massachusetts’ $30 fine for fornication on the income tax form would be a good revenue generator, and be more fair to people who do not have unmarried sex. Unmarried sex costs society Billions of dollars in having to treat std’s and when kids result, all the court costs and social services to track down the father, and yet people that don’t have any sex pay the same as the people that do. That’s unfair, we should collect the $30 fine with a fornication checkbox on the tax form.)

                  • “And we should not give approval of sex by unmarried people. ”

                    Wow, so we really are dictating people’s personal lives. I can’t even believe you are for real.

                • “I’m just glad that views like yours and his are a small minority.”

                  Me too, otherwise we’d end up like the Russians did during the Soviet Union era.

              • John yes step parenthood is a legal status with benefits. For instance a legal step parent can claim their step child as a dependent on their tax return and their step child would get their social security death benefits if they were a minor and dependent upon their step parents income at the time of their step parent’s death. This ability to receive these death benefits from the step parent they are dependent upon does not interfere with their ability to collect upon death benefits if one of their actual parents dies while they are a minor because they would have also been dependent upon the support of their non-custodial parent – even if that non-custodial parent was not paying a dime of support, its understood that of course they should have been providing support and therefore their child remains entitled to this benefit. Furthermore being a legal step parent entitles you to the birth certificates of your spouse’s offspring or of the marriage certificates of your parent’s spouse this is informative and empowering in families where secrets are kept – simply being recorded as a spouse or as offspring gives rise to a legal step relationship. Step relatives are considered family according to State and Federal governments for benefits purposes so for instance you could, as an adult decide to care for your permanently disabled step sibling and claim them on your taxes as a dependent relative where you could not claim your full flesh and blood sibling as a dependent relative if they’d been adopted by another family and had a different name. Sucks right? Step families have tons of benefits. Ooodles.

                • Step families only have these benefits if it is laid out in a will or if people are named beneficiary on an insurance policy. In reality anyone can be named a beneficiary regardless or relation. Concepts like this continue to be ignored by you because they invalidate your arguments.

          • “because that’s just through marriage, and marriage should only be for couples that are also approved to make offspring together”

            Well then someone like myself who is physically unable it do that would probably be up in an interment camp in your world, if that’s the case? I wonder how people like yourself who made the decision not to have kids would fit in?

            • There is no requirement to have children. You and your spouse are approved and allowed to have children, we bestow all sorts of benefits on you and heaps of respect and support, whether you have children or not, just because you married and are approved in concept to conceive offspring together. That isn’t chopped liver, you should be happy you have all that. Same-sex couples shouldn’t have that, they should be put in jail if they try to create genetic offspring together and society should not approve or allow them to conceive genetic offspring together. Society should say “find someone eligible if you want those benefits!”

              • “That isn’t chopped liver, you should be happy you have all that. ”

                So, I should be happy that my house is empty on Christmas? I should be happy that once our parents go, we’ll have no family? I should be happy that I am expected to carry thr bulk of the workload while my colleagues who have children don’t? I should be happy that I will pay taxes for schools that I’ll never have children that will utilize them? I should be happy that I will lose friends who have children because we no longer have anything in common?

                Yeah, I should be happy….LOL

                • Your colleagues once had no children as well you know and they were also in your same shoes supporting the fertile world. I’ve never heard another sole be upset about this.

                • you are really presenting an unsympathetic picture of yourself G. whining about your situation at work instead of standing up to your employer, complaining about doing the same civic duty that everyone else has, and dismissing everyone and anyone else’s problems other than your own. you are not going to win friends and influence people like this.

                  • This isn’t just about me Ki. Others have it much worse. The only thing I’ve experienced is one of my bosses expecting me to travel more than a colleague with a one year old. With technology I have the ability to work from home and get things done. But there are others out there who experience it much worse than I do. So no, I don’t want you to feel bad for me. I want you to recognize it rather than dismiss it. If you are interested in holding onto your friends who are going through infertility and being there for them you’ll be more sympathetic to others.

                  • He has to realize that everyone who has kids was at one point someone who did not have kids and they were in the same position with work as he is currently. He feels like he’s different than them because he thinks he’ll spend the rest of his life in that situation and he thinks that could not possibly be the case for anyone else that has a kid. He’s acting like he got to the end of his life and he’s reflecting back on it as a 110 year old man who never ended up having someone dependent upon him for care.

                  • Again, there is a big difference. Those people have the ability to have children. I don’t. The chances that I end up being childless for the rest of my life are greater than me having a child. So your point is invalid in reality.

                  • once again- if you can’t do it just say no. there are some workplace assertiveness books that you might find helpful. and stop begging for pity and compassion when you have precious little to spare for anyone else- be it begrudging a co worker who may be harried while trying to juggle work and kids, thousands of women who get set back in their careers, the school kids of your city who need to be educated, mothers who have seen children die. me and john don’t agree on much but he was right when he said, you want dignity? behave with dignity and treat others the same.

                  • Ki,

                    This is exactly while you will lose your friends who are going through infertilty because you forget where you came from. Don’t come crying here when you lose them because of your lack of empathy and recognition for what they are going through.

                  • If God forbid your spouse were to become ill and dependent upon you for her care you would avail yourself of the laws that grant you the time to deal with her care without loosing your job. Don’t forget that you got married by CHOICE and her care would be at your CHOICE. NO DIFFERENT THAN HAVING CHOSEN TO HAVE A CHILD. Frankly many people don’t choose to have children they simply have them and those children are in a dependent position just as your wife would be.

                    Your so sure that you’ll never ever use the benefits of time off to care for a dependent family member? Really? Would you divorce your wife if she got ill just to make your point that you’ll never use these benefits? Would you expect that she’d divorce you so she’d never use these benefits?

                    Whining and whimpering about how put upon you are in the work place when everyone else has at one point been an employee with no dependents to care for. Your not nearly as special and unique as you’d like to believe Greg. Join the global club. In fact you are a member of the global club like it or not. The people with children that you think get special treatment did not always need it and they put in their time just as you are. Quit sniveling about it. You don’t know when you’ll need to avail yourself of these benefits. If you adopt then you’ll be using things like education for your child unless you put them through private school. And then do you think people who put their children through private school should not have to pay taxes for public education? There is a whole movement in that direction you could join of wealthy elitist separatists who think their sht does not stink every man for himself. I guess they think if they don’t have a fire they should not be paying for the fire department. Maybe they’d like to put their own well and power plant on their property and maybe they better not go to the museum or the library or loose their job or whatever.

                  • “If God forbid your spouse were to become ill and dependent upon you for her care you would avail yourself of the laws that grant you the time to deal with her care without loosing your job. ”

                    Marilynn, how is this something special that I receive being childless that those with children wouldn’t receive? The answer is that they don’t. FMLA has nothing to do with what I’m saying. Everyone has access to that so your example doesn’t make any sense.

                    What I am saying is that for example we are expected to work longer hours. Let’s say a project needs to be done and there is a childless person who has a date that night vs someone who has to pick up their kids from daycare. Guess who is staying late? It isn’t the person who has to pick up their kid from daycare. Do you think that is fair? I don’t think so either.

                    It’s that type or stuff. In my case it was said by one of my bosses that because I don’t have kids and I’m young that I can travel more this year vs a colleague who has a one year old who gets to work from home and travel just 2-3x’s a year. It ignores the fact that I have a wife and dog that I miss terribly when I travel. Why should having a kid being the deciding factor? You talk about equal treatment don’t you think that the colleague should have to travel as much as me?

                    Yes, Marilynn people make choices to have children. There’s called birth control, Abstinance and abortion that are options if they don’t want them. I never had that choice. That choice was taken away from me. You keep saying if I adopt, well I may not or we may make the decision to and never be picked.

                    The difference in your other examples is that people could have a fire, they could sene their kids to public schools, they could utilize a museum or library. Whereas I am not able to have children. There is no could or no option to utilize it. So again more invalid arguments.

                  • Maybe an infertile old maid might be in the position to claim they never might need these benefits of family leave. Oh wait an infertile old maid who is orphaned and never adopted. Few people make it to the end of life with nobody dependent upon them at all and those people deserve the full support of their community and I am happy proud to pay for an infrastructure that provides care and support for people who are alone and in need. I want it there for me should everything crumble beneath my feet and I want it there for others in their time of need as well. I am a deeply compassionate and empathetic person and I resent the implication that my actions with regard to helping people find their lost relatives are pointedly to harm or destroy the bonds with people who raised them. Your just too fkg bitter to see that people do things just to be nice. You resent doing things just to be nice. You think you should not have to pitch in and help those in need. Resentment sucks Greg.

                  • What if someone had a date night and you had to take care of your sick freaking wife?

                  • What if your colleague had a date night and your father was in the hospital after having a stroke? Who do you think would be staying late at work then? Huh? You think you’d be sent traveling if your father was on life support and your colleague was going to miss his boyfriend and parrot? You’re family needs would trump his then too. God your so incredibly focused on yourself you cannot see yourself in other people’s lives.

                  • Marilynn,

                    You’ve clearly missed my point about workload. My argument is not about FMLA. I thought I made that clear but you missed it. It’s not about anyone being sick it’s normal day it day things like there being expectations that those who don’t have children can work longer hours. I don’t think it’s that complicated to understand my point.

        • It’s all about making sure it’s noted the non biological parent is not a real parent whom the child has no respect or bond with. In Marilynn’s world DNA trumps all.

          • Greg my position is hold people with offspring accountable for them as parents, no exemptions for gamete donors. Making people accountable for their own offspring is something we already require of everyone but gamete donors so it’s not like it’s impossible or there is not a road map to follow,, just apply the same rules and get the same results as the rest of the population. And those rules when applied to the rest of the population are not taking anything away from infertile people. No offspring, no parental responsibilities pretty simple. If someone with no offspring adopts then they have parental responsibility. If they are a step parent they have parental authority during their marriages but don’t replace their step child’s parents. Logic trumps all

            • As we have pointed out before, there are situations other than gamete donation where a biological parent is not legally required to support the child.

              • No doubt but gamete donors are uniquely and specifically exempted resulting in their offspring not getting the same legal protection as other people whose parents are unmarried. Also other people in other situations get similarly f-d over when their bio parents are not named on their birth records, those need to be addressed as well but the topic here is gamete donors and they are especially set out as not having to support their children. Like their children are somehow not as human as everyone else’s.

            • “No offspring, no parental responsibilities pretty simple. ”

              Yep, pretty simple in your world. No offspring means you aren’t a real parent in your world. Marilynn logic trumps nothing.

          • there non bio parents are not on my radar at all I have no malice, If a person wants parental authority over someone else’s offspring there are ways to do it where it actually sticks by adopting or legal guardianship

            • You hate non biological parents because you don’t feel they are family. You hate kids joining non biological families and changing their last names to their new families. You support legalized babysitting and children aging out of Foster Care with no families leading them to living troubled lives.

              • You sure run your own little movie in your head about other people’s opinions and it really does not matter to you if that is what the person thinks because its what you want them to think so you can be justified in being a jerk to them. Look I don’t hate anyone. I want all people with offspring held to the same exact rules which does mean that nobody else would be naming themselves parents on the birth certificates of people who are not their offspring. It means parental authority over other people’s offspring can only ethically be secured in a court approved proceeding. So I don’t hate them they are a non-issue to me.

  5. Julie you say step parent adoption is preferable for lesbians because of its portability in areas where their marriage may not be recognized. It is an honest account of the relationship. It does not feign biological relatedness as marital presumption does and it does not skip the critical step which protects the adoptive parent from having legal parenthood forced on them and same goes for rearing and non rearing bio parents. no force clear consent. also it makes it offiaial in a way presumption cant even for straight people. Just look at the state department calling the result of presumption adoption adoption fraud. Skipping the critical adoption process leaves the legality of the relationship tenuous because you are supposed to adopt if you want parental authority over someone else’s bio child. Im working with people inreunion to correct parent names on current birth records rather than asking to unseal the orig or gainaccess to donor files. correctin the name on birth certif wont invalidate an adoption but for those who snuck in on false marital presumption it leaves no record of legal parenthood behind. these are adults im dealing with so authority is not an issue. theyll keep a copy of the old verson for inheritance but it leaves the persons parenthood in the past on the record anyway it was based on a false presumption

    • “Im working with people inreunion to correct parent names on current birth records rather than asking to unseal the orig or gainaccess to donor files. ”

      More work to take out the non biological parent. Keep up the non biological parent hate Marilynn.

      • God Dmn that is so freaking arrogant Greg. You really think that people should have to live with falsified birth records – fake identities cut off from their biological family all to placate the feelings of someone who wished they were their parent but is not? Why do you think the infertile person is so much more damned important than the kid they want to raise that the kid has to loose their true identity and have falsified medical records just so someone else can feel better about themselves? If they don’t like who they really are, why don’t they change their medical records and their own identity instead of forcing anothere person to live life playing the roll of their child in some grand charade. Why do they count so much more that they get to manipulate the identity of someone else.

        • Why must non biological parents be disrespected and betrayed? Why must you severe non biological families forever? It’s pretty simple you hate non biological parents. It must make you feel good when you break their hearts and cause those families to break a part forever.

          • Tragically too many people believe that biology means something when it doesn’t mean anything.

            • Disagree with that. Biology does mean a lot but it doesn’t trump all as Marilynn feels. Biology and Biography shapes who we are as people.

              • There is a responsibility that comes with being a bio parent which is that you are the first in a chain of custody, you are the source of another person. It will always come back to you back to your decision to raise or not raise your own offspring.

                • So again biology trumps all when it comes to parents in your world. Non biological parents are second class parents in your world.

                  • Let me say it loud and clear – they are second in the chain of custody and there is nothing they or you or anyone else can do to change the fact that they are indeed second in the chain of custody if they are involved at all. Heck they might be third or fourth or fifth in the chain of custody but they cannot ever be first in line because there are people who were obligated to the care of the child they are raising before they were. Their presence and effort does not erase the original obligation of the bio parents and that is what is critical. When ever someone relieves themselves of their parental obligations and passes that torch to someone else that transfer needs to be handled ethically in court for the protection of the minor who cannot speak up for themselves. So if an adoptive parent wants to not raise the kid they adopted they should have to go to court as well. It’s just that bio parents are the first in line, the first to have that special obligation to act ethically and not be absent from their child’s life as a gift to someone else or as a service to someone else that reimbursed them or a middle man to have them be absent from their kid’s life.

                  • You’ve said it loud and clear, non biological parents are inferior in your world. Pretty ignorant if you ask me.

            • would you favor a change where biological parents had no responsibilities to there offspring whatsoever under any circumstances? That they did not have to be recorded as parents of their own offspring not even for health purposes let alone support purposes? Because that then would be even and fair to all offspring at birth. Every person would simply be a ward of the court and would be distributed to the most appropriate individuals – not necessarily the people they are the offspring of and not necessarily the people who commissioned to own them.

          • how does reuniting a separated family sever the non bio family forever?

            • Because you (as in you personally) do it with the intention of breaking the bond the person has with their non biological parent. Thus the non biological family is separated and the biological is reunited. The ultimate goal of your is to break apart that non biological family to get that biological family back where you feel it belongs in the person’s life.

              • No. Once again let me make it clear that I’m not concerned with the non bio family. I don’t wish them any ill will and I could care less whether they stay together or fall apart my goal is to reunite them with their biological family and the non bio family will stand or fall on its own accord. Just to be clear its now been well over 200 families I’ve reunited and not one of them has stopped being a legal member of their non bio families nor have they stopped talking to them or interacting with them. So if that was my grand design I’d have failed miserably at it. The fact that I’m going to try with many of them to have their birth records corrected to be medically accurate will impact the legal status of step parents who were quasi-marital parents by virtue of being presumed parents and named on the certificates of other people’s offspring. They’ll be legal step parents if they remain married to their biological parent though. They’ll still talk to them though. And for those who are adopted it won’t impact the fact that they are still legally adopted by their adoptive parents and are still legally their adopted child. It won’t impact the legitimacy of their adoptive relationship or status at all that the person’s birth record becomes medically accurate. So again what I do does not intentionally destroy the legal validity of the adoptive family nor has anyone I’ve helped stopped interacting with their non bio family. So your making stuff up just to be inflammatory and you need to quit attacking my character and my intention by lying about me.

                I try very hard to do what I do out of care and love and concern for the rights of separated families. I’m not worried about families that are not separated be the bio or non bio because bringing families together does not tear families apart.

                • “No. Once again let me make it clear that I’m not concerned with the non bio family. I don’t wish them any ill will and I could care less whether they stay together or fall apart”

                  It’s obvious that you don’t care about non biological families. You have clearly put them off to the side due to your anti non biological parent agenda. You have done your own work to damage your character. Maybe if you were a little more sensitive to the importance of non biological families you’d learn a thing or two for your own good.

                  • I have done nothing to damage my character. Quote me till the cows come home. I’ve never damaged a non-bio family by reuniting someone with their bio family. They have never damaged their non bio family by reuniting with their relatives. The reunion and correction of records has nothing to do with non bio families. Nothing.
                    You yourself have said that non-bio parents should not view the desire to search as a threat it has nothing to do with them. You yourself have said you think everything should be out in the open so there is no need to search. What is your problem with not only out in the open but properly documented?

                  • “I’ve never damaged a non-bio family by reuniting someone with their bio family”

                    LOL, I find this very hard to believe. I bet the house that all of these people rarely act with their parents anymore because you have poisoned their children’s head that their parents are second in line thus inferior.

              • G, do you have to make everything personal? why can’t we just talk about law and society?

      • no it does not take them out, they have an adoption decree their relationship is still valid. If they don’t have an adoption decree then of course there is no legal relationship any more except for that of step parent if they happen to be married to a bio parent on their birth record.

        • Yes, it does take their role out and back to where you feel it belongs and that’s as a legalized babysitter with no parental role in a person’s life.

          • No they are still the same legal adoptive parents they were. Correcting the birth certificate won’t alter the adoption decree and won’t alter the person’s name which was legally changed on the adoption paperwork.

            You really feel like adopted people have a job to do that involves living a lie their whole lives. That just sucks royally.

            • And you feel that adults who adopted THEIR children are legalized babysitters who should never be seen as having a family bond. Because non biological families are inferior in your “biology trumps all” world.

  6. A lot of political agendas here and I’m not interested in falling down that rabbit hole of nonsense. Again, I’m just happy that LGBT couples will be able to procreate as they see fit (in whatever manner that is) and have step parent adoption available to them. A truly wonderful thing for them and their children.

    • LGBT couples are not procreating. LGBT people are procreating with members of the opposite sex. That’s what you meant to say. The LGBT couple is raising children together but they sure as hell are not procreating and having offspring together. Lets be crystal clear about the fact that gays and lesbians procreate the exact same way straight people do, with members of the opposite sex.

    • Same-sex couples should not be allowed to procreate offspring “as they see fit (in whatever manner that is).” Not only is sperm and egg donation unethical and harmful to natural reproduction rights and equality and should not be allowed, but future manners of turning stem cells into eggs or sperm to avoid the “third party” would be even more unethical and bad public policy to allow. There is no right to procreate with someone of the same sex, and it would be expensive and it harms equality so it can’t be justified. Since when was gay rights about procreating, anyway?

      • There’s nothing unethical about sperm and egg donation. Thankfully, rational legislation in many states agrees.

        • There’s nothing ethical about it, you mean. 🙂 But I do think 3PR is better than future methods to avoid the problems of a “third party” using stem cells developed into opposite sex gametes to create biologically related offspring. At least with donor gametes the child is still created equal, as the natural offspring of an actually existing mother and father, same as everyone else. Some people might disagree with me here and say that producing mutually-related offspring using genetically modified stem cell derived gametes would be much better than using donor gametes, but some people are Transhumanists and postgenderists and eugenicists who want to overcome the limitations of reproduction by sex, with it’s non-optimal combinations of egg and sperm based on the circumstances that bring a man and woman together in love, which isn’t very scientific or optimal as far as eugenicists are concerned. They want to do all sorts of things to improve the race and increase the intelligence of people and enable people to have children with better genes than they got from their parents, but the huge cost and intrusiveness of doing that would far outweigh the imagined benefits. So we should ban that ASAP, before we worry about 3PR, with rational federal legislation.

          • While I am not sure it is the best science experiment, I am confused why you think creating eggs or sperm for a person who could not make them, either due to infertility or wrong gender, is eugenics or selecting for better traits or genes. The eggs and sperm would just carry whatever genes were carried by the person they were made from. What makes you think an infertile or sane sex partner would have genes any less random than a fertile opposite sex couple?

            • That’s true, creating gametes from stem cells wouldn’t be eugenics, it would probably be very un-eugenic. But the people who want to be allowed to do that don’t care, they just see it as a way to break through the natural sex barrier and start making people with artificial gametes. That’s when they imagine they will also start improving the gametes, and straight fertile couples will then be pressured to use artificial gametes also. But they don’t want to have to promise that it will work or be safe at first, so they need people willing to take the risk for non-eugenic reasons, like heroically creating the first same-sex child, or helping some war vet produce sperm.

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