We are officially settled in Corpus Christi, both loving our jobs and being so close to the majority of Krystal’s family. Our lives finally seem to be out of this holding pattern of long distance, discontent in jobs, planning for a wedding, and the general chaos life brings your way. We finally feel some stability; which for two Type A people is very comforting. We have decided to begin the process of starting a family. This does not mean (in any way) that we will be pregnant any time soon, but what it does mean is we are beginning to educate ourselves and gather information so that when the time is right we have what is necessary and feel comfortable to make decisions. As you might guess we are in need of a few components that the nature of our relationship does not require; so the process is a tad more complicated than your average heterosexual couple.
We began our journey by going to RMA Fertility in San Antonio to make sure we were both healthy and had all options open to us. If you are struggling with infertility or are a same-sex couple we highly recommend RMA. They are the only Human Rights Campaign Certified Fertility Provider in the State of Texas. The staff was wonderful and accepting never getting Krystal or I confused and never making us feel like this process was abnormal or “other-than.” We both had a sonogram which came back with a 5 star rating of healthy and I just underwent a hysterosalpingogram or HSG this past week. All tests results and procedures have come back healthy and normal. So we have the green light to begin the process whenever we are fiscally ready.
One thing we loved about RMA is they require a mental health screening where you meet with a professional (or skype like we did) who gives you TONS of information, resources and also provided us with an excellent lawyer that specializes in second-parent adoptions. Although the financial spectrum was enough to make us choke on our own spit; all of these tests and processed have educated us and allowed us to really think about what family is to us and how we want to go about making it.
If you are looking for books for your own future family or simply out of curiosity here are a few we bought off of Amazon that were very thought provoking and provided a lot of helpful information. We have several others we are still reading and will post once we have read them in their entirety.
In this practical (and sometimes hilarious) guide, Kathy Borkoski of LesbianConception101.com walks you through your options and helps you decide what is best for your situation. By giving you all the information she and her wife learned over a year of insemination, ultrasounds, and questions to their patient doctor and lesbian mom friends, she shows you how to get started on your own path to pregnancy. In this how-to guide, you will be given: A glossary for all the confusing processes and jargon, Easy-to-follow steps to get you started, Questions you should be asking each other to make the tough decisions, Cost estimates so you can plan for the real expenses of lesbian babymaking, and Stories from real lesbian moms about their journeys.
This candid peek into a previously unexamined side of lesbian parenting is full of stories that are sometimes humorous, sometimes moving, but at all times celebratory. Each parenting tale sheds light on the many facets of motherhood, offering gay and straight readers alike a deeper understanding of what it means to love and parent in the twenty-first century.
For those of you that require a quick education on same-sex conception and lesbian conception in particular here is your lesson for the day.
Second – parent adoptions: Although Krystal and I are legally married and our marriage is both recognized on the state and federal level neither of us would be assumed the parent if we had not gone through the actual pregnancy and labor. So for example if Krystal were to carry the baby and give birth, I could put my name on the child’s birth certificate but this act alone would not guarantee or give me any parental rights. Which is where the lawyer becomes necessary. I would need to go through the process of a second-parent adoption and legally adopt the child before having any legal rights over the child. Should a death or divorce happen, if I had not legally adopted the child that I conceived of with my wife I would have no legal rights. This is even the case if we were to do reciprocal IVF where Krystal were to carry a child that is biologically mine, because I did not give physical labor to this child it is not considered mine in the eyes of the law. This second parent adoption process averages up to $5000 and includes lots of paperwork and a home visit as well.