Couples who are in healthy and loving relationships usually want to have a family and raise kids with their partners. Whether they are a heterosexual couple or same-sex partners, they want to experience bringing another life into the world and see that being grow from a cute, cuddly baby to a fine, well-mannered adult.
While we already have tons of information on straight couples, different-gender households, and opposite-sex parenting, many of us may still not be that familiar with same-sex parenting. If you are a member of the LGBTQIA+ community and plan to have a baby with your partner in the future, or if you are an ally who simply wants to learn more and educate yourself about what starting a family is like as an LGBTQIA+ person, read on for some key information on same-sex parenting.
What does same-sex parenting mean?
Same-sex parenting refers to the process of raising one or more kids in a same-sex household. Same-sex parenting is unique because biologically, it is not possible for both parents to be genetically related to their children. It also means that parenting must first start with an alternative form of conception, such as artificial insemination or surrogacy, or through adoption.
To start a family, same-sex couples can look into the following options:
Adoption – As of 2022, full joint adoption by same-sex couples is legal in 27 countries, with additional countries allowing some form of same-sex adoption through step-parentage. In the United States, all 50 states have legalized it as of 2017.
Insemination – Insemination is the process of fertilizing an egg using donor sperm that is injected via a syringe. The donor sperm can be from someone who is personally connected to the couple, or from a sperm bank or fertility clinic.
Surrogacy – Many LGBTQIA+ couples go the surrogacy route to have children. In surrogacy, a surrogate is selected to carry the fertilized egg in their womb and give birth to the baby. The surrogate can be a family member, friend, or someone who offers their surrogacy services and is in good mental and physical condition.
What are the key benefits of same-sex parenting?
Nowadays, the topic of same-sex parenting still raises some concerns. However, despite all the controversies, researchers have found that same-sex parenting offers some key benefits. In fact, households with same-sex parents expose children to views and perspectives that they are less likely to learn from traditional households.
The following are examples of the benefits of same-sex parenting:
Many opposite-sex relationships or encounters result in accidental pregnancies. However, in same-sex relationships, pregnancies are a conscious, intentional, motivated, and deliberate decision. When same-sex couples decide to become parents, it means they have had lots of discussions about it. They have looked into their options, done their research, and so on. It is not something that results from a one-night stand.
Non-traditional gender roles
You have probably heard things like “that’s a woman’s job” or “that is a man’s job” from adults around you or even your parents growing up. These statements very likely define a “woman’s job” as childcare, washing the dishes, cooking, and doing the laundry and a “man’s job” as having a 9-to-5 job, fixing the car, or mowing the lawn. In same-sex parenting, these traditional gender roles are erased. The parents can equally divide household labor, financial responsibilities, and other duties according to their strengths and not their gender.
Introduce their children to diversity early on
A good majority of households around the world are still made up of a dad and a mom. In same-sex households, children can be shown what diversity looks like, i.e. other types of families exist. They can be made aware that same-sex partners can start and build families too. Even if they have two dads or two moms, their family can be as healthy, happy, and loving as anyone else’s, and there is no reason to feel jealous or insecure.
Raise their children to be accepting of other people’s differences
Because having opposite-sex parents is still the norm in today’s society, being raised by same-sex parents may make children feel different than other kids their age. However, by growing up in a non-traditional household, children of same-sex parents can develop an understanding and grasp of same-sex partnerships and families from an early age. As they grow up, they are more likely to be more open-minded and tolerant compared to their peers as they have firsthand experience of what it is really like.
Help their children be who they really are
Through the years, a lot of LGBTQIA+ adults have shared stories of growing up in conservative households and how it forced them to pretend to be someone they were not and prevented them from being their true selves for a very long time. They expressed their fear, sadness, anger, and disappointment in their family members and the rest of society for not being accepting of them just because they were in love with the same sex. In same-sex parenting, children can be taught that love is love, no matter the sexual orientation. They can be assured that they can express themselves however they like and not be treated any differently.
Demonstrate strength and resilience during tough times
It is not a secret that the LGBTQIA+ community has gone through a lot throughout history and still faces discrimination, bigotry, and bias up to this day. But they have shown how strong and tough they are, and how ready and willing they are to fight for what is right. They continue to do so despite the opposition so that the next generations of the LGBTQIA+ community can live better lives. With same-sex parents, children can learn to be strong and resilient during difficult times and develop traits that can help them overcome challenges that come their way.
What is the role of surrogacy in same-sex couples?
Many same-sex couples dream of becoming parents, and one way to make that happen is through surrogacy. Around the world, there are various organizations and groups that work hard to help same-sex people in loving relationships have children they can love and care for.
If you and your partner are in California and have been thinking of becoming parents someday, your journey to surrogacy starts now. As early as today, you should start doing your research on the surrogacy process, including how to find a surrogate, how to calculate the surrogate cost, and what to expect before, during, and after the baby is born. On the internet, you can do a quick search of “how to find a surrogate California,” “surrogate cost in California,” or “where to look for a surrogate California.” You should also look up LGBTQIA+ organizations and groups near you that can offer advice and support from start to finish.
By gathering as much information as you can about surrogacy for same-sex parents in advance, you can know what preparations must be done and be ready to face the challenges ahead.
Joy of Life Surrogacy understands your desire to create your own family, and we would like to help make that happen. By working with us, you can avail of professional services that ensure your entire journey to create life gives you many inspiring and wonderful memories. Contact us today and we can answer your questions about the costs, legalities, hospital procedures, post-partum care, and more while guiding you through this life-changing experience from start to end.