Searching for a pediatrician to care for your child can often times seem like a long and daunting task, no matter the sexual orientation of the couple.
After all, this is the person that is going to look after the well-being, health, and growth of your newborn well into his or her teen years, so choosing the right fit is a definite must.
However, for same-sex couples, finding a pediatrician can sometimes be even more difficult or even a bit scary. There’s no question that discrimination against LGBT couples in the medical world does exist, but that shouldn’t discourage you from finding the best possible care for your child.
Here are some helpful tips to consider when looking for an LGBT-friendly pediatrician…
Do Your Research
There are some really great resources out there when it comes to searching for the right pediatrician.
Check out The Gay and Lesbian Medical Association (GLMA) or The Human Rights Campaign Healthcare Equality Index websites for directories of healthcare providers that could be well-suited for you, your partner, and your child.
Doing the proper research prior to your child’s birth is also ideal since you don’t want to be stuck without a pediatrician after he or she is born, and the process of searching and interviewing can take quite a lot of time.
Ask for Referrals from Friends
Word of mouth is one of the best ways to find a pediatrician. Ask your same-sex couple friends who are parents who their pediatrician is and if they are happy with them.
You can also ask your same-sex friends who don’t have children who their healthcare provider is to see if their office can refer you to a pediatrician that is LBGT-friendly.
Set Up Interviews
If you’ve found a doctor you think might potentially be a good fit, set up an appointment so that you and your partner can get a feel for him or her. Be sure to write down any questions you might have.
It’s also important to make sure the doctor feels comfortable answering any questions you might have in the same manner he or she would with a straight couple, as well as making sure both parents are interacted with equally.
You don’t want a pediatrician who feels that one of you is more of the “parent” than the other.
Honesty is the Best Policy
Make sure you are up front with your potential pediatrician right from the start. It’s not only important to be open and honest about your sexuality, but also with your intent to raise the child in a same-sex household.
And as with any doctor, be open and honest about your medical histories as well as with any concerns either of you may have.
Work With Your Doctor
Whether it’s the first time your chosen doctor has worked with an LGBT family, or they have plenty of experience with same-sex couples, don’t be afraid to help your doctor with any questions he or she might have.
All of you have the child’s best interests at heart, so working together will ensure the child will be as healthy and happy as they can be…and the mommies will be just as happy knowing their child is in good, caring hands!
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