I had the great pleasure of watching a new documentary today called "Conceiving Family". The film chronicled four couples through their journey to build their family. All four couples spoke of their desire to be parents and the love they want to share with a child. They spoke of the options they considered -- including surrogacy and donor insemination -- and how they came to their decisions to adopt -- domestic, overseas, special needs, private and public. They share their anxiety, frustrations, challenges and finally their joy of realizing they would be parents.
Did I mention these four couples are gay? Oh yeah, the couples in the film are all same sex couples. How does that make you feel?
There are thousands of children, from newborns to teens, in need of a permanent family. However, there are still a lot of barriers to gays and lesbians adopting a child. Interestingly, the number of gay and lesbian households that are choosing to have a family is rising exponentially. In the USA, the Child Welfare Information Gateway says there are between 8 and 10 million children are being raised by gay parents -- An estimated two million Gay/Lesbian/Bisexual people are interested in adopting.
I went looking on the internet for some information and statistics to write this article. Aside from objective information, facts, and figures, I found a lot more.
One website says: "The implications are severe. With the acceptance of two homosexuals as joint parents, the family is torn from its traditional and God-inspired balance of a mother and a father both giving of their commitment, love and essence to the children."
Wow. I didn't realize that just being a heterosexual couple automatically makes you a great parent! Phew, that's a relief. No need to worry about those parents -- we need to focus on the torn families that will surely result from same sex parents.
This was just the tip of the iceburg, and frankly, although I knew there was a lot of opposition to same sex couples having children, I guess I didn't think it would be so hateful.
Interestingly, one of the couples encountered simular beliefs. The Christian Fundamentalist foster parents who had cared for the children that one couple hoped to adopt expressed fear that the children would, "grow up to be gay" with parents who are "going to hell for their sins." I don't want to spoil anything for those of you who may wish to watch the film, so you will have to see for yourself how this turns out.
There is a lot of prejudice out there regarding same sex couples and whether they should be allowed to adopt a child at all. There are others who say that sexual orientation doesn't matter, as long as the child will be in a happy home filled with love. There are also people who find themselves somewhere in the middle.
The film is enlightening, entertaining, humorous, and also pulls at your heartstrings. Some will rejoice in the message; others will be uncomfortable. I recommend the documentary no matter what your beliefs.
For more work by me, please visit Anne's Maternity Corner.