Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Make a federal case of it

Although the gay rights movement has come a long way since Stonewall in '69, I'm learning that there's still a lot of work to do. Quick exmple: I went to talk to our HR guy last week about opening a flexible spending account. I was told that Nickie cannot ever take advantage of he spousal benefits and I will have to legally adopt a baby before he/she can be put as a dependent because flexible spending is a federally regulated program.
To give an idea of what has to be done to adopt, here's the laundry list of things we need:

1. Birth certificate of the child
2. CORI forms for each parent
3. Petition for Adoption
4. Affidavit of Petitioners
5. Affidavit Disclosing Care and Custody
6. Motion to waive appointment of GAL & Atty for the child
7. Motion to waive homestudy
8. Motion to waive notice to unknown donor
9. Affidavit/letter from each party's doctor and the pediatrician that everyone is in good health.
10. Affidavit from the parties detailing their relationship, financial ability to support the child and reasons why the adoption should be allowed.
11. Money. Money. Money.

I appreciate the opportunity to be able to do all of this, because there are plenty of states where this isn't even an option. But... if I had a spot on my record or I was sick or I didn't convince the court my relationship was good enough, would they can say no to me? Really? I could screw a homeless man with a 50 DUI's and Hepatitis B and he'd be a parent to my child with no question. But because I don't have a dick and aren't carrying, I need to prove my abilities as a parent financially, physically and emotionally. The whole thing is just so backwards.

Even after the adoption is complete, only one of us can add the baby as a dependent on our federal taxes. And (of course) we file as single because feds don't recognize our marriage. Don't worry, though. The federal goverment is still more than happy to take a chunk of my check every 2 weeks. They don't discriminate there...

On the up side, my name will be on the birth certificate. I have full parental rights in Massachusetts before the adoption. And, we're still having a baby in about 29 weeks that will know us both as mom instead of mom and "roommate" or "friend". I'm very thankful for that.


  1. We totally understand your frustrations. It is ridiculous how many hoops you have to jump through. I could go boink a loser in a bar that I just met and he could be on my benefits, but because our country can't just let my partner and I marry, we are forced to spend thousands of dollars to get half of the rights.


  2. Ugh is right. It is so easy to take for granted my basic rights. I can not fathom where the strength comes from to deal with all of that without going completely postal. Very enlightening for this hetero who, btw, is SO excited for you guys!!

  3. So sorry the rights for gay marriage and parents aren't as they should be. I can't imagine what all that is like but know that I support you, Nickie and Ros. Congrats on your little one ... I have no doubt you will be great parents!! :-)

  4. I think it sucks that you have to go through all that. Because I am single, and therefore did not list a father on my son's birth certificate, I got a summons from the court demanding that I explain, in a written petition, within 10 days, why they should not be pursuing child support actions against the father. I was so mad! Talk about invasion of privacy! And life with a newborn makes it damn near impossible to do ANYTHING within 10 days!
    I wish the legal system would spend more time and resources tracking down actual dead beat parents and leave the rest of us alone!