Doug and Nick Roberts connected three and a half years ago via a dating app, and on their first date, the two immediately felt a connection. Doug, a psychologist, and Nick, a neuroscientist, were married 18 months later. Today the couple live in the suburbs of Philadelphia, and they're ready to start their next exciting adventure together: fatherhood.
The husbands would like to have children, and Nick has always wanted to adopt. "We considered surrogacy, and may consider it in the future as we expand our family," said Doug, "but right now, it is cost-prohibitive. Adoption was easily the right choice for us as we begin to grow our family.
Doug and Nick began their adoption research and found two local adoption agencies that are both very inclusive of LGBTQ families. "We were able to obtain a lot of information directly from them, and the workshops they provide for expectant parents are wonderfully informative," said Doug. "Of course, having resources like Gays With Kids and Philadelphia Family Pride helped us as well, as we were able to see personal stories of couples who have been through the process."
After settling upon an agency that felt the best fit, Doug and Nick attended several adoption workshops, learning the language of families formed through adoption and how to successfully navigate the social and emotional challenges that they will inevitably face. "We plan to start the home study process within the next few months," said Nick. "Currently, we are assembling a profile book with our pictures and introductions of who we are and what we enjoy doing." (The dads recently attended the Ivory Portrait Studios Gay Dad Event and shot photos for their profile book (including this story's feature image!)
While the dads-to-be are eager to move quickly with their fatherhood journey, the cost of adoption has been a challenge. "We would start our family as soon as possible, if we were financially able to so," shared Doug. "Our biggest obstacle at the moment is building our savings for our adoption fund." So the husbands have have tried to figure out creative ways they can potentially add to their savings and reach their goal more quickly. One of those ways was to enter Wheel of Fortune. "I've watched the show since I was a kid, and I've gotten pretty good at solving puzzles at home," continued Doug. "I decided to audition when the show came to the area for traveling auditions, and I ended up making it! I taped an episode of the show in November, and it aired in January. It was definitely a one-of-a-kind experience, and my winnings helped us pay off our credit card debt so that all of our extra money we earn can go straight towards adoption savings!"
Whilst they move closer to the financial goal, Nick and Doug shared what excites this most and what they're most anxious about when it comes to parenting. "Like most expectant parents, I think our biggest concerns are whether we'll be good at parenting," said Nick. "How will this change our life? Will we still be good dads, even when we're tired, sick, or stressed?" Doug continued, "I hope our worries are a sign that we will be conscientious parents, and strive to provide our kids with all of our best. I think we also have fears about how our child will be treated in school and around other people, including family members, being the child of two gay dads."
But despite their fears, they're excited to have the energy of a little kid around the house. They can't wait to play, create and experience the ups and downs of life with their little one. They're also excited to see each other as dads, and grow alongside their child.
We're excited to follow the dads-to-be journey and wish them the best on their adoption journey!