Are you an LGBTQ+ couple looking forward to having a baby? If yes, you are at the right place.
Parenting options for gay and lesbian couples and individuals are more available than in the past years, thanks to the recent rulings protecting the LGBTQ+ community’s rights to adoption and marriage.
You have a right to choose suitable parenting options, and after choosing, professionals will be there to guide you step by step.
But first thing first, how do you know which parenting option of gay/lesbian couple to consider and which one is suitable for you?
Before deciding on adoption options, LGBTQ+ individuals should seek assistance from a medical professional or adoption professionals to direct them towards the better option for their situation.
Here, we provide basic information on baby options for LGBTQ+ individuals available so that you can easily choose the right one for you.
Baby Options for LGBTQ+ Individuals
If you don’t want to have genetically related children as an LGBTQ+ individual, you might want to go for the adoption way. There are many innocent and gorgeous children worldwide eager to have a home and loving parents, and there are many LGBTQ+ friendly adoption agencies who will be happy to match you with a child that is ideal for your family.
There are different ways you can use to adopt a child. If you have a good relationship with a child, you may consider being a second-parent, stepparent, or choose relative adoption. If you want to adopt an unknown child, you can select either of the following:
- Private domestic infant adoption: If you are looking forward to adopting an infant, you may need to undergo the private domestic infant adoption procedure. When women get unplanned pregnancies, they opt to place their infants up for adoption. Fortunately, most of these mothers are comfortable with LGBTQ+ individuals parenting their children.
- Foster care adoption: There are hundreds of children eligible for adoption through state care organizations. Foster care adoption provides you with a chance to make them part of your family. In most cases, these children are much older and may have experienced distress during their childhood. They are of different races and have different sexual orientations. Therefore, you have a chance to choose which kid you are comfortable adopting.
All you need is to work with your state foster care system to adopt one of these children. Although there are preparations and training to go through, the process is a bit shorter and affordable than the rest.
- International adoption: Although this kind of adoption is becoming more difficult since some countries do not recognize same-sex unions, it is still an option.
Before committing yourself to this process, you should talk to an international adoption agency to understand everything you need to know. Remember that you are likely to adopt a much older child or with special needs.
Assisted Reproductive Technology
Assisted reproductive technology (ART) is one of the popular options for LGBTQ+ individuals to have children. In this case, one of the partners is directly genetically related to the child. This makes it more appealing for LGBTQ+ individuals who want to be parents.
The success of ART depends on the medical history and fertility of a person. Those eligible for this process need to undergo:
Egg, Sperm or Embryo and In Vitro Fertilization
In every LGBTQ+ assisted reproduction, a sex cell is needed. It may be an egg for a male individual, a sperm for a female individual, or an embryo for those who can’t create a usable embryo on their own. Fortunately, there are many ways to find sperm, egg, and embryo donation in the United States today.
Lesbian couples can get a sperm or embryo donation, go through in vitro fertilization or intrauterine insemination procedures and then carry the pregnancy to term in their uterus if they are medically fit. On the other hand, gay male couples can go through the process without a surrogate. Meaning for gay men to have a child, there must be a combination of several ART skills.
If you are looking for a gamete donor, you can contact:
- The World Egg Bank
- Asian Egg Bank
- Cryos International
- Fairfax Egg Bank and Sperm Cryobank
If you are already working with a fertility clinic, your doctor can also recommend the best local sex-cell bank for you.
For LGBTQ+ individuals who cannot carry their own children, surrogacy is the only way of having a genetically related child. The good news is that there are numerous surrogacy options for LGBTQ+ individuals. There are many LGBTQ+-friendly surrogacy clinics ready to work with you and fulfill your dream of becoming a parent. Whether your child is born through surrogacy, you have parental rights as any other parents who are both genetically related to the child.
Mostly, in surrogacy cases, an embryo is created through IVF using one couple’s sperm or egg plus a donated sex cell. The embryo is transferred to the surrogate’s uterus. When the embryo successfully implants, the baby develops until the surrogate gives birth. With proper regal procedures, you can take the infant with you after delivery.
Having a Baby as an LGBTQ+ Final Thoughts
Lots of LGBTQ+ individuals are raising beautiful kids. According to the William Institute, in 2019, about 29% of those who identify as LGBTQ+ were raising children. In the U.S, almost 3 million LGBTQ+ persons have had a child, while 6 million children have LGBTQ+ parents.
If you are a member of LGBTQ+ and would like to be a parent, nothing should stop you. Whether you experience discrimination on your way to becoming a parent, overcome it for the sake of your dream. In fact, a child raised by LGBTQ+ parents is not less privileged than the one raised by heterosexual parents.