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Same-sex parents still face challenges

The recognition of same-sex marriage across the country was a great step forward in civil rights for the LGBT community and their supporters. However, as you may not be surprised to hear, this legal move was not the end of family law issues for same-sex couples in Ohio and elsewhere.

Some states were slow to catch up with the idea of gay marriage. Property division and child custody issues continued to be complicated for same-sex couples seeking a divorce or wanting to have children.

Children with same-sex parents are happy

There are many children across the country with two mothers or two fathers. One partner might be the biological parent, or the couple may have adopted their children. Studies are showing that children of same-sex parents are as mentally and emotionally well-balanced as children with opposite-gender parents. You may be happy to learn this, as opposed to the traditional idea that children need both a mother and a father to thrive.

This information may show that growing up in a happy home is more important for children than growing up in a traditional family. In fact, with many parents – both same-sex and opposite-sex – getting divorced, you might agree that it is more important for divorced parents to provide a stable, loving environment even when the home has a single parent.

Adoption is a common solution to preclude custody issues

It may be difficult as the nonbiological parent in a same-sex relationship to assert your custody rights. One lesbian couple described how they married before the birth of their daughter, and they both put their names on the baby’s birth certificate. However, the nonbiological mother might have had little legal recourse if the child’s biological mother died or if they divorced.

As this couple was in the process of doing, nonbiological parents in same-sex marriages may need to go through the adoption process in order to have the same custody and visitation rights as the biological parent in case a family law issue arises.

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