Gay Dad Life

The Home Study

This is the 12th article in Jason P’s series about Foster-Adopt. To read the first in the series, click here.


Thankfully, we loved our social worker, who also just happened to be one of our instructors from the certification classes – she was bright, caring and  kind. In fact, if she hadn’t been our social worker, I could have easily seen her being one of our friends.

“So what are your arguments like?" she asked, setting off the questioning with a bang.

Our fights, I thought? Is this a trick question? She has to know we're only human, right?

“Well, Eric goes silent and internalizes his anger and that drives me crazy because I like to talk and talk and talk and talk and talk about it until I finally drive him over the edge and then one of us apologizes and that’s that.”

“So who gets mad more often?” she replied, typing away on her laptop without any acknowledgement of my previous answer.

“But what about when we argue?” I asked, seeking some sense of where she was going. “That’s okay, right?”

“Of course it’s okay,” she replied. “So, who gets mad more often?” she went on, clearly not interested in discussing our arguments any further.

There we were again, smacked over the head in the first five minutes of our home study with the reminder that none of this was about “us.” Even our home study, a study of “our home,” an analysis and report about us as individuals, our relationship, our life, our good days and our bad, was really more of an examination designed to profile us for when it came time to match us with a child. I mean, even the questions regarding the way we argued really had nothing to do with Eric and me - they had to do with the discovering what kinds of triggers might exist in our home and how they might effect a child's ability to cope and heal.

“I have to remind you,” the social worker interjected, clearly sensing my confusion. “We don’t find children for families – we find families for children.”

Yes! We know! We’ve heard it over and over and yet it was still a struggle to comprehend how we were giving up so much of ourselves and our life only to be continually reminded that none of it was really about us. In fact, at this point in the process, it wasn’t even about our desire to have children – it was about making sure the next step for whichever child walked through our door was hopefully the last stop on their journey to finding a forever home.

Over the next three hours, we discussed our story – how we met, what our life was like, what happened during our regular days, nights, weekends and holidays, who we were as a couple and what kinds of adversity we had faced in life. We each took turns describing our hopes, dreams and fears and through many tears and tissues, we both realized what an extraordinary transformation was happening in our lives.

To read Jason P’s next post in the series, click here.

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Gay Dad Life

Dads Tell Us Their 'Gayest Moment Ever' as Parents

We may be dads — but we're still gay, dammit! And these "gayest moments ever," sent to us from our Instagram community, prove it.

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We asked the dads in our Instagram community to share their gayest moments as a dad, ever, and their responses were just as hilarious as they were relatable.

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How Single Dads Are Celebrating Valentine's Day This Year

Valentine's Day is not just for lovers! We caught up with 8 single gay dads to see how they plan to celebrate Valentine's Day with this year.

Valentine's Day is not just for lovers; it's also a day to celebrate our loved ones. And that's exactly what these single dads are doing.

Within our community, GWK has a large group of admirable, active, and awesome (!) single dads and we want to honor them! On Valentine's Day, they and their kids celebrate their family unit in the sweetest possible ways. We asked the dads to share these moments with us, and, where possible, one of the most heartwarming things they've experienced with their kids on Valentine's Day to date.

Hear their stories below.

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Gay Dad Photo Essays

11 Gay Couples Share Secrets to Their Long-Term Relationships This Valentine's Day

This Valentine's Day, we spoke with 11 gay dad couples who've been together for almost a decade or longer to learn what's made their relationships last

You're the peanut butter to my jelly, the gin to my tonic, the strawberries to my cream, the Mr. to my Mr.!

Happy Valentine's Day folks! We're excited to celebrate this day of lurrrrvvve by featuring a few dads in our community who've been together for almost a decade or more! And they're ready to share their secrets to a successful relationship and parenting partnership.

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Adoption by LGBTQ couples, like same-sex marriage, is illegal in Russia. But the couple managed to circumvent the ban by having Andrei adopt as a single parent. Andrei became only the third single man in Moscow, he was told during his placement process, to do so.

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Guest post written by Michael and Tawyne, hosts of A Gay Man's Wife

Michael: Growing up, I always knew I was different. I knew that what my family perceived as normal wasn't who I was. Only when I hit a certain maturity in my teenage years did I understand that I was gay. Still, I didn't know what that meant for me at the time. When I was 16 I met Tawyne (15) and immediately felt something that I didn't quite understand. She was wild like a tornado and captivated me. Throughout the first year of our friendship we fell in love.

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Politics

Supreme Court to Hear Major Case Concerning LGBTQ Foster Care Parents

The Supreme Court agreed to decide whether cities are allowed to exclude tax-funded adoption agencies from foster care systems if they refuse to work with gay couples.

In 2018, city officials in Philadelphia decided to exclude Catholic Social Services, which refuses to work with LGBTQ couples, from participating in its foster-care system. The agency sued, claiming religious discrimination, but the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit unanimously ruled against the agency, citing the need to comply with nondiscrimination policies.

The case, Fulton v. City of Philadelphia, follows a 2018 Supreme Court decision regarding a Colorado baker who refused to make a wedding cake for a same-sex couple. In that case, the court narrowly ruled that the baker bad been discriminated against, on religious grounds, by the state's civil rights commission. It did not decide the broader issue: whether an entity can be exempt from local non-discrimination ordinances on the basis of religious freedom.

The court — whose ideological center has shifted to the right since the addition of Justice Brett Kavanaugh in fall 2018 — may choose to do so now. Advocates quickly called on the court to consider the potential impact on the more than 400,000 children currently in the foster care system:

"We already have a severe shortage of foster families willing and able to open their hearts and homes to these children," said Leslie Cooper, deputy director of the ACLU LGBT & HIV Project. "Allowing foster care agencies to exclude qualified families based on religious requirements that have nothing to do with the ability to care for a child such as their sexual orientation or faith would make it even worse. We can't afford to have loving families turned away or deterred by the risk of discrimination."

"It is unconscionable to turn away prospective foster and adoptive families because they are LGBTQ, religious minorities, or for any other reason unrelated to their capacity to love and care for children," said HRC President Alphonso David. "We reject the suggestion that taxpayer-funded child welfare services should be allowed to put discrimination over a child's best interest. This case could also have implications for religious refusals that go far beyond child welfare. The Supreme Court must make it clear that freedom of religion does not include using taxpayer funds to further marginalize vulnerable communities."

The court may choose to override a 1990 decision, Employment Division v. Smith, which created the current standard for carving out religious exemptions. In that case, the court ruled that laws that target a specific faith, or express hostility towards certain beliefs, are unconstitutional — but this standard has long been abhorred by religious conservatives, who think it doesn't offer enough protections for religions. If the court does overrule Smith, it could have far-ranging consequences. " As noted on Slate, "it would allow anyone to demand a carve-out from laws that go against their religion, unless those laws are 'narrowly tailored' to serve a 'compelling government interest.'"

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For more, read the full article on Slate.

News

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In the article, Langbert said she knew from a young age that her family was different from those of most of her peers, who had one a father and a mother. But otherwise, she writes, she didn't feel like her family differed much. "Like any other parents, Dad sat in the carpool lane after school and taught us how to ride our bikes," she writes, "while Papa took us to the movies on the weekends and separated the whites from the colors."

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Fatherhood, the gay way

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