Editor’s Note: The following submission is from Casey Williams. Have an LGBTQ+ related experience or story to share? Having your article published on this site will automatically enrol you into a raffle to win a $50 Amazon Gift Card. Submit an article today via queerdeermedia.com.
[amazon_link asins=’B072K4P82T’ template=’ProductAdRight’ store=’ourqueerstories-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’b81a63f5-8ca1-11e7-9844-3195e2c18c68′]When you’re gay and grew up in an era when AIDS was taking thousands of lives and Greg Louganis had to hide his disease when cut his head on the diving board at the 1988 Olympics, the thought of getting married and having a kid was comical. But, that’s exactly what ended up happening to my husband and me.
In the fall of 2010, we decided to adopt. We had been together nearly nine years, so we were definitely attached for eternity one way or another, but we had no idea how much that decision would change our lives. We were never the kind of guys who went out and partied all night or traveled to Miami for The White Party. We loved each other very much and wanted to share our lives with a child.
After considering traditional adoptions where the mother never knows her child, we decided to pursue an open adoption in which the mother chooses her baby’s parents and all involved maintain an ongoing relationship. Not only were we stressed about adding a baby to our lives, but we began looking for a mother. It was a lot like dating.
But, we had lots of help from our adoption agency. We had amazing counselors who taught us about the highs and lows of the process, guided us through every contact with mothers, and helped us promote ourselves as good prospective parents. More important than helping us, the adoption agency made sure often young mothers were cared for and counseled through a most-difficult decision.
And, we had some rough moments. We were “live” for a couple of years before we began getting e-mails and calls from mothers. That’s a long time and a very long wait.
We became close with a mother in Ft. Worth, Texas who lost her baby in a car accident. We also spoke with a mother in Kansas who had multiple kids by the same father, including one on the way. She was interested in adopting with us, but her dead-beat boyfriend, who was often in jail, told her he wanted her to raise the child. It was simply unbelievable. We spoke with another mother who took her baby home, but decided she couldn’t care for him. We could hear the baby in the background when she called us. It was heartbreaking.
But, after nearly three years, we received an e-mail from a mother two hours away from us in southern Indiana. She was still with the father and both families were supportive of her choice to put her baby up for adoption. We fell in love with her immediately and we matched. Nothing except seeing our seconds-old baby girl roll out of the delivery room several months later will ever equal the day we found out we would be parents.
All of this took place during a time of shifting rights for these two gay dads. One day before our adoption was to be finalized, the federal court overturned Indiana’s ban on same-sex marriage. My husband and I raced to the courthouse, waited in celebration with others, held hands, and promised to love each other forever. One day later, we were back in the same courthouse with our daughter. We ended up being the first same-sex couple to both legally marry and adopt in Indiana.
That little girl, Amelia Rose Williams, with a middle name given to her by her mother and first name from her daddies, celebrates her third birthday on March 9. We remain very close with her birthmother’s and birthfather’s families and think of them as our own family. Everybody in Amelia’s life loves her more than the world and looks forward to the beautiful young woman she will someday be.
To Casey’s full story, check out his book “The Adoption of Little Miss Fancy Pants (By Her Gay Dads)”