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"A New Level of Love": Congrats to Gay Men Whose Families Grew in February!

This month's Congrats post was brought to you by Choice Network in Ohio. Choice Network is a national leader in LGBTQ adoption.

Gay men go through a lot of ups and downs on the path to parenthood. It can be one of the most emotionally draining times in our lives. But as each of these families who are celebrating births and adoptions this month agree: it's worth every hardship.

Congrats dads!

This month's Congrats post was brought to you by Choice Network in Ohio. Choice Network is a national leader in LGBTQ adoption. They have a goal of 50% of their families being created with LGBTQ people. "It is our core value that love makes a family." We're thrilled to be partnering with Choice Network to offer our congrats to dads whose families grew this month!


Congrats new dads Evan and Jordan on the birth of their daughter, Quinn Marie!

After a year long adoption journey, Jordan and Evan are thrilled to announce the arrival of their daughter, Quinn Marie. Quinn was born early January to two doting dads.

Jordan and I have been together for over 7 year," shared Evan, "and from early on in our relationship we knew we wanted to build a family together."

When asked what it was like holding Quinn for the first time, Evan said it was like nothing else he'd even felt before. "It's a new level of love, protection, responsibility that is just the best feeling in the world."

Congrats new dads AK and Brandon on the arrival of your son, Andrew!

The Orlando dads made a life-changing trip to Arizona to be present at their son's birth. "Andrew was one of the 'meant to be' adoptions," shared AK. "Our initial home visit was in August 2018, and we were matched early November! The birth family is from another state and they are simply amazing! This family was so supportive of the birth mother's decision to place for adoption."

The dads were the first ones to hold Andrew and to feed him, and they also cut the umbilical cord.

"I just never knew holding something so small could change your world completely in an instant! So many emotions of feeling like a dream and yet the parental instincts just turn on."

Congrats to dads McKenzie and Devin on the birth of the daughter Elizabeth!

3 years after meeting their surrogate, dads McKenzie and Devin welcomed their daughter Elizabeth in January 2019.

"When we first held Elizabeth, we both knew that our lives were changed forever," shared McKenzie. "It was an incredible experience that we will never forget."

"Becoming dads has proven to be the best decision we have ever made and we are looking forward to growing as a family," added Devin.

We're thrilled for this family who live in Okinawa, Japan!

Jordan and Devon finalized the adoption of their daughter, Ruby!

"It's official! Our adoption of Baby Ruby Mac has been finalized by the court system and we couldn't be happier - Ruby was so happy she spit up!"

Devon and Jordan are thrilled to announce that the adoption of their daughter was finalized on February 15.

"Today the legal system caught up to what Jordan and I have known since we first saw our daughter," said Devon via an Instagram post. "Baby Ruby Mac is our daughter. Today it's as official on paper as it has always been in our hearts."

Congrats to new dads Derek and Jeff who welcomed baby Abigail!

Baby Abigail (who goes by Abby) was born February 4, 2019. The Floridian dads are over the moon!

"Our adoption journey was so fantastic," shared Derek. "A friend of ours with whom we had discussed us wanting to have kids text us just before Halloween and said she knew a young couple who were looking for an LGBT couple to adopt their baby. She asked if we would be interested. We said of course but didn't really think much would come of it. Two days later we had a call with them. Two days after that we drove to Tampa to meet them. And five days after that they called us to tell us that they had chosen us. It happened so fast. And we had an instant connection with them. It just all sort of felt 'meant to be.'"

The dads were in the delivery room right until the birth mom started pushing. Once Abby had been delivered, the dads held their daughter for the first time. "When they put the baby in your arms for the first time and tell you to say hello to your daughter, there just aren't words to describe it. It's just love."

Congrats to dads Nick and Ray on the birth of their twins Lucca and Rocco!

On February 9, dads Nick and Ray welcomed twin boy and girl via surrogate, making them a family of five!

"We couldn't believe they were here," shared Nick. "And so happy they were healthy. I felt this overwhelming sense of love for them... for my family."

Mittica, their eldest, is loving helping her two dads care for her siblings. "She brings bottles and shakes them up," said Ray. "She gets burp clothes and blankets for them, and she likes to hold the bottle to help feed."

Congrats to this family of five!

Congratulations to dads Suraj and David on obtaining their Parental Order for daughter Marnie!

On February 15, Birmingham dads Suraj and David were thrilled when they were granted the Parental Order for daughter Marnie.

"It was a brilliant feeling to finally get the parental order," said Suraj. "There's so much to think about with surrogacy and the legal side can seem really daunting. But we managed to everything ourselves and it went without a hitch."

"Our advice to people in the same position is stay calm and focused, talk to people who've been through it and you'll be fine," added David. "In the end, our day in court was one of the best days of our lives!"

Congratulations to dads Tom and Doug on finalizing the adoption of their daughter Camillia!

"My heart is full." On February 8, dads Doug and Tom finalized the adoption of their daughter Camillia.

"We brought Camillia into our lives straight from the hospital," said Tom. "She has always been a happy, spunky, and completely sassy little girl. She has the biggest heart and amazes us every day."

The dads have always known in their hearts that Camillia was in her forever home. "We honestly didn't know this level of love was capable until we had children."

Congratulations to Grant and Miguel on the birth of their son Jasper!

"After 3 years of perseverance and patience, our surrogacy journey ended with the birth of our beautiful child," shared new dad Grant. "There were certainly moments when we felt discouraged, but we always believed our child would find us when the time was right." (Read Grant's blog post about his journey to fatherhood on GWK here.)

We're thrilled for this Toronto couple who welcomed their son Jasper on February 2019.

"Holding our baby for the first time was surreal; it's the only way to describe it. We just stared at this beautiful child in disbelief. We have never felt this kind of love before and it takes your breath away."

We're excited to continue following Grant, Miguel and Jasper's journey as Grant keeps us up-to-date via his blogging.

Love makes good families. Whether traditional or non-conforming to historically accepted definitions of family - we accept you. If you are ready and willing to participate in open adoption and honoring the pregnant person who has chosen you, you are welcome here. It's that simple. We also will fight for you. Choice Network does not shy away from hate. We are armed with well documented research, honest stories of our own, and the inherent truth that love makes good families.

We proudly carry the Human Rights Campaign status of Leader in Supporting and Serving LGBTQ Families!

Visit Choice Network's site

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Gay Dad Family Stories

Demolition Daddies: These Gay Dads Recently Appeared on House Hunters Renovation

The dads say their star turn on the popular HGTV show is all thanks to their two-year-old son, Theo, who charmed the producers

"I'm really not sure what our lives were like before having our son," pondered Matt. "I remember always doing stuff, but I have no idea how I wasted all that personal time that I find so precious now. I took so many showers without someone trying to pull all the towels down to make a bed on the bathroom floor. It must have been nice, but also wasn't as memorable."

Matt DeLeva and fiancé Joseph Littlefield met in 2014 at a Pride event at the San Diego Zoo, and have a 2-year-old son Theo through adoption. For this Los Angeles-based couple, and like many others, becoming dads was an emotional rollercoaster. Before being matched with Theo's birth family, they had two other connections with birth moms that didn't work out. "Each was upsetting," said Matt. "When you talk to birth mothers, you start to get excited and mentally plan your future. When it doesn't work out, it feels like a loss."

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Learn How These Dads Used Social Media to Find Their Surrogate

In the latest "Broadway Husbands" vlog, Bret and Stephen discuss the rather unconventional way in which they found their surrogate: through a Facebook group.

In this, the Broadway Husbands' sixth video, Bret Shuford and Stephen Hanna discuss the rather unprecedented process they went through to find their surrogate. The lucky couple also chat about winning an "Intended Parents" competition, which granted them the free services of a surrogacy agency who is now helping guide them (and their new surrogate!) on their journey.

In the first video below, get caught up to speed with the dads-to-be. Plus: there's bonus footage! Ever wondered about the financial side of their journey? In the second video, Bret and Stephen talk candidly about how they're managing to afford their dream of fatherhood.

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Meet the Gay Dad Running For Common Council in South Bend, Indiana

Move over Mayor Pete Buttigieg! South Bend, Indiana may soon have another gay politico in the form of Alex Giorgio-Rubin, a dad of a 12-year-old adopted son.

You've probably heard of Pete Buttigieg, the young gay mayor running to be the Democratic nominee to challenge President Trump in 2020. But the town of South Bend, Indiana, may soon have another gay politico rising star in the form of Alex Giorgio-Rubin, a dad to a 12-year-old son.

Alex is running for a seat on South Bend's Common Council, in part, he says, to help make all families – including ones like his own – feel welcome.

As an out, married, gay dad, living in a Jewish household, raising a son who is on the Autism spectrum, Alex feels he can offer a unique perspective. "We come from the state that produced Mike Pence," said Alex. "We come from the state that made national headlines because of a bill that would allow businesses to discriminate based on sexual orientation; it's fair to say that the cards are stacked against my family, and many, many other families like mine."

Alex, who is currently a stay-at-home dad raising his adopted son, 12-year-old Joseph, is married to Joshua Giorgio-Rubin, a Senior English Lecturer at the Indiana University of South Bend. The two have been together for six years.

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This Gay Couple Was Inspired to Become Foster Dads Thanks to the Show "The Fosters"

Matthew and Brian say they used to feel like "unicorns" as gay foster dads. They're happy to see more LGBTQ couples take the plunge into the foster system.

Matthew Hamparian and his husband Brian Lawrence have been together for over 18 years and live in Columbus, Ohio. "We had talked about children for a long time," shared Matthew. They were inspired by the show "The Fosters," and watched it regularly as one of the staffers of the show was a friend of Brian's. In one of the episodes, Matthew remembers a conversation between a foster child and the biological child of his foster parents. The foster child asks if he was okay with the fact that he had to share his home with foster siblings. He responds that he is okay with it, because he and his family have enough of everything.

"It was very meaningful to us as we were both raised that when you got up the ladder, you threw the ladder back," explained Matthew.

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Terrell and Jarius need your help. Earlier this week they were made aware of an act of discrimination against a male transgender student at Johnson High School in Gainesville, Georgia

"Dex Frier was elected by the student body to run for prom king but is now facing backlash from the school's administration," shared the dads via their Instagram. "The school's Superintendent is forcing Dex to either run as prom queen or not run at all. This is very unjust and does NOT reflect the opinion of the parents nor the students."

Watch their video below:

Dex, 17, who came out identifying as male in his sophomore year, spoke with Gainsville Times about being nominated by the student body. "Frier said he kept his emotions in check while at school, but 'the moment I got home, I immediately started crying. I've never been shown so much support before,' Frier added."

He was later informed by school officials that his name had been withdrawn and he could only run in the prom queen ballot.

Sadly, there have been rival petitions started in support of Dex's nomination being withdrawn, and he's received backlash from those who believe he shouldn't be able to run.

Although Terrell and Jarius do not know Dex personally, they were made aware of what was happening through Jarius co-worker who is a parent at the school. "He's such a brave kid and is standing firm in his beliefs, and we should support him," said Jarius.

These dads are asking all of us to take a minute and sign this petition and share with friends and family, or anyone you think could help.

Gay Dad Life

Gay Single Dads Defend Andy Cohen's Right to Be on Grindr

After the Internet rushed to judge Andy Cohen for signing onto Grindr a couple of weeks after welcoming his newborn son home, fellow single gay dads rushed to his defense.

Last week, we wrote a post about reports that "What What Happens Live" host Andy Cohen had been "spotted" on gay dating app Grindr several weeks after welcoming a newborn into his home. This has some of his followers on social media all worked up"

"Get off Grindr and start being a dad," said one follower who appeared to think single parents must take a vow of celibacy the minute they start changing diapers. "You're sad, that kid has no chance," said another.

Well, suffice it to say that this judgment from people who are presumably not single gay dads of Andy Cohen certainly struck a nerve with our gay dad audience! We received well over 100 comments on this post on Facebook, the vast majority of them coming to Cohen's defense. We caught up with two fellow single gay dads to find out why the story struck a nerve.

"We don't have to live like monks!"

One of the most liked comments on our piece came from Owen Lonzar, who wrote the following:

"I have always been a good single father to my biological son who came to live with me when he was 7 years old. He is now 25 years old and we are very close. I used Grindr and dated while he lived with me. I never had anyone sleep over and he certainly never saw some man he didn't know hanging around my home. Single parents have to date responsibly and with sensitivity to their child but that doesn't mean they have to live like monks!"

We asked Cohen to elaborate a bit more on why the backlash against Cohen bothered him. He had the sense, he said, that much of the criticism against LGBTQ parents comes from gay men without children. "Gay men without kids have a lot to say," he said. "And all of it is ignorant, because they have no idea what it means to actually be a father." He said he was particularly disappointed in gay critics, given our shared history of discrimination. "You would think with all the prejudice we have faced that gay men would be less judgmental themselves," he said.

"Are we supposed to be celibate?"

Another commenter, Josue Sebastian Dones-Figueroa, who is a divorced father of five, questioned what Cohen's critics would prefer him do. "So what, parents are supposed to become celibate because they have kids?" he asked.

We followed up with Josue to ask him to elaborate a bit more: "The idea that just because he is a dad that he would need to stop being a man," he said, questioning why Cohen should have to put his life hold and stop dating, or having sex, just because he's now a father. "If the child is cared for loved and not neglected what is the problem? Life goes on right?"


Gay Dad Life

Internet Conflicted About Advice Given to Closeted Gay Dad in the Guardian

Ok fellow gay dads: if you were the advice columnist at the Guardian, what would you have said?

Recently, in a post titled "I met my girlfriend's parents – and realized I once slept with her father," a man wrote into the advice column at the Guardian with the following predicament:

"Five years ago, I went through a bi phase and used to sleep around with pretty much everyone that came along, including other men. This changed when I fell in love with my new partner, who is everything to me. I recently met her parents and halfway through lunch realised that I had slept with her father. I was going to propose, but when my partner and her mother were away, he told me to end it with his daughter. I'm obviously in love – shall I just ignore him, or tell my partner?"

Pamela Stephenson, the Guardian's columnist, responded as follows:

"I am not sure you could ever have a comfortable future with your new partner. To tell the truth would be to court disaster: a probable break-up, plus the risk of a permanent rift between father and daughter and father and wife. Hiding the truth would lead to toxic secret-keeping that could be equally destructive in the long run. If this whole family was as open-minded and sexually open as you, it might be possible for you to become part of it. However, the father – your former lover – has made it clear that you will not be welcome. Walk away now, and avoid the massive pain that would otherwise be inflicted on your partner, her family and yourself."

Not all commenters agreed with Stephenson's advice.

"Assuming your girlfriend knows that you were bi until falling in love with her and that you slept with everybody in your path [which she deserved to know up front anyway] then you can give HER the option what to do with this bond, rather than leaving the choice to her dad," said one commenter.

Another said, "Walking away without explaining why would be callous and also allow the father to escape the possible consequences of his actions."

It's worth noting that none of these commenters, nor the columnist, are or will ever be gay dads, whose perspective on this bizarre situation may be uniquely valuable. Many gay dads have become fathers while still in the closet. And even those who became dads after coming out can still sympathize with the detrimental impacts of the closet on our lives and those of our families.

So what say you, gay dads, about this man's predicament?

Fatherhood, the gay way

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