Tag Archives: lesbian parents

Staying One Step Ahead: 10 Warning Signs Your Child Is Being Bullied

It’ something no parent wants to hear…that their child is being bullied. With today’s hi-tech world of social media and easy access to online platforms, the issue of bullying is becoming an epidemic.

And it’s no secret that children with same-sex parents have an even bigger risk of being bullied. Since you can’t be with your child every minute of every day, one of the best ways to prevent bullying is to be aware of the warning signs.

That way you can be on the lookout for any potential changes in your child’s behavior and get on top of things before they get out of hand. Here’s a look at 10 warning signs to be on the lookout for when it comes to whether or not your child is being bullied…

1. Unexplained Physical Marks, Scrapes, Cuts, or Bruises

It could be just another day on the playground, or it could be more. Be aware of any injuries your child comes home with.

2. Afraid to Be Left Alone

Whether at the bus stop or being dropped off at school. If you’re child suddenly doesn’t want to be left alone or becomes clingy out of nowhere, this could be a sign he or she is being bullied.

3. Change in Eating Habits

Look out for the “I’m not hungry” excuse or any other changes in your child’s eating habits that seem out of the ordinary.

4. Damaged Clothes, Toys, Books, etc

If you noticed any of your child’s possessions or clothes damaged, be sure to ask what happened. Look for a direct response versus excuses. And if the damage keeps happening, definitely look into it.

5. Withdrawn Behavior

Behavior changes are a big warning sign of bullying. If your child is typically energetic and cheery and is now withdrawn, there’s a good change of bullying.

6. Acting Out

If your child is usually well-behaved and not one to act out or pick fights with you and is now suddenly doing so, he or she could be trying to deal with the anger from being bullied.

7. Doesn’t Want to Go to School

What kid actually wants to go to school, right? But in the case of bullying, they are going to be suddenly very adamant about not going…to the point where they may throw tantrums, cry, or even beg you not to make them go. If this happens, there’s a very good chance he or she is being bullied at school.

8. Sudden Drop in Grades

A drastic drop in your child’s grades can definitely indicate he or she’s being bullied. That’s why it’s always important to stay involved and keep track of their grades and progress in school.

9. Unexplained loss of Lunch Money, Toys, Electronic Devices, etc

This could mean your child was bullied into giving up something of value to either them or the bully. Be sure to keep track of your child’s belongings and find out if anything is missing and why.

10. Abnormal Physical Complaints…headache, stomachache

…or your child is making numerous trips to the nurse’s office. This could mean they are trying to avoid running into their bully and are coming up with excuses not to go to class or school in general.

One of the best ways to help your child with bullying is to be there for him or her. If you do notice some signs of it, talk to them. They may avoid the topic at first, or they may be relieved that you finally know. Either way, let them know they aren’t alone and you’ll tackle the issue together, as a family.

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Family Time: 6 Fun Ideas To Do Together

Between you and your partner’s busy work schedules juggled with your children’s after school activities and homework, family time may seem like a bit of myth in your house.

And with today’s technology of computers, texting, and televisions, spending time together as a family can feel more isolated than ever.

So if you want to spend more quality family time together but don’t know what to do, you’re in luck. Take a look at these 6 fun ideas to help get your family to enjoy spending time together again…

Schedule a Movie Night

Better yet…schedule a marathon movie night. Chose a theme together or pick and actor or actress you all like. Then agree upon a date to hold your movie night. And don’t forget about the snacks! What’s more fun than an Audrey Hepburn marathon while munching on popcorn and spending quality time with your partner and children?

Have a Backyard Campout

Pack up a picnic dinner or even build a fire and have a cookout. If you don’t have any tents, bring out a few old sheets and improvise. You can roast marshmallows and tell ghost stories by the fire. If you don’t have a backyard, then set up your own living room “campout.” It will be just as fun and give you plenty of fun family time together.

Time to Dust off the Board Games

And don’t forget about that deck of cards you know you have somewhere too. Schedule a family game night with snacks and drinks and plenty of opportunity to have a bit of friendly competition. Board games are not only full of some good, old-fashioned fun, but can also help teach your children various skills like math and vocabulary as well.

Arts and Crafts

It’s time to take a break from depending on the TV for entertainment and enjoy a bit of hands on fun. Spread out the newspaper, get out those paints or whatever materials you decide to work with and go crazy creating. Whether it’s making holiday ornaments or making a tie-dyed shirt, the possibilities are endless and you’ll have plenty of fun, quality time together to be creative.

Story Time

Young children aren’t the only ones that enjoy reading aloud. Your older kids and even you and your partner will find it to be a relaxing experience. And it’s a great way to get the family together and keep them interested in reading. You can even take turns reading aloud and see who has the best flare for the dramatic.

Have a Bake-off

…of any other type of cooking competition. Bake-offs tend to be the most fun though…especially if you’re up for a bit of a flour fight. For a fun way to have a bake-off, grab a box of cake mix from your pantry and divide it up among your family. Encourage everyone to add their own “secret ingredients.” Then bake the cakes and have a taste test. Perhaps the winner gets…the biggest slice of remaining cake? No matter the outcome, you’re bound to have plenty of fun with each other creating in the kitchen.

Above all, remember just to have fun with your family and appreciate all of those precious moments spent together.

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Are You an Anxious Parent? 5 Ways to Relieve the Worry

As a parent, you probably find yourself spending a lot of time thinking about your children. From worrying if they have all they need to wondering if they’re getting enough sleep and nutrition…there’s definitely plenty to keep your mind busy and maybe even anxious.

But you can also get caught in a negative cycle of anxiety, one that has you thinking about potential negative outcomes and questions about the future.

And while it’s okay to have some general anxiety from being a parent, too much worry can lead to poor health, both mental and physical. Here’s a look at some ways to help you relive that anxiety and relax a bit more when it comes to being a parent.

Ask What You’re Really Anxious About

When you confront what’s making you anxious, you’ll be less likely to deflect your anxiety onto your child and partner. Avoiding the problem isn’t going to help either.

You first must ask yourself what’s causing your anxiety. Once you’ve identified it, then you can address it and work through it so that it eventually doesn’t bother you again.

Identify What You Can and Can’t Control

This means focusing your efforts on things you can control in your household and letting go of the things you don’t’ have control over. Anxiety can manifest out of the things you think are out of your control. By letting go of those things you are taking control of yourself as well.

Know the Difference Between Facts and Fears

Worry and anxiety tends to come from fear of the unknown and the “what ifs.” Don’t let that way of thinking take over your mind. Instead, ask yourself if there is evidence to prove what you’re worried about.

You also need to understand what triggers your anxiety. Is it a fear coming back to haunt you from when you were your child’s age? In this case, there’s no evidence the same thing will happen to your child. It’s time to put that worry aside and move on with the present.

Stay in the Present

It’s not healthy to dwell on the “what if” scenarios about your child. Instead of letting your anxiety grow by thinking about the future, stay with the present. Be with your child and what is happening in the now.

Listen to your child and his or her’s needs in the present. From there you can help shape a positive future, leaving you with less anxiety and worry about the negatives that could happen.

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Tackling the “Terrible Twos”

Every parent has heard about it… when their little angel of a toddler suddenly becomes a tantrum throwing, not so angelic hellion on two feet…also known as the “terrible twos.”

Some experts argue that the terrible two phase is a myth and simple a stage in a child’s development. But if you and your partner are currently going through such a stage in your child’s life, it’s definitely a valid issue.

So what can you do if your child is seemingly entering the terrible twos and you’re both at wits end trying to figure out how to deal with it?

Here are some worthwhile tips to help you tackle those terrible twos and restore a bit of needed peace and serenity to your household…

Have Patience

This may be easier said than done, especially if you’re dealing with an unruly toddler who is throwing an abundance of tantrums and mood-swings with no foreseeable end in sight. While being patient might be the hardest step for you and your partner, it’s also the most important.

This means not only recognizing that you child is going through a stage, but also acknowledging that it will pass and that anger isn’t going to solve anything. Take some deep breaths, don’t respond to the moment with anger, and if you must, walk away for a bit.

Know Your Child’s Eating and Sleeping Patterns

As adults we get moody and even sometimes grouchy if we are hungry or haven’t gotten enough sleep. Children are the same way. Your child is learning about the world around them and their place in it…even at the young age of two.

Lack of sleep or missing a snack may trigger tantrums more easily. That’s why it’s important to make sure you keep your child on a consistent sleep and eating schedule.

Enforce Consequences

You can’t be a total softy with your child and expect those tantrums to just magically go away by giving them whatever they want. Giving he or she consequences when they are misbehaving is useful not only for the current terrible two phase, but also in their later development.

They will be much more disciplined and have better behavior if they know they will have to endure the consequences from bad behavior. Lay down the ground rule and make sure your child realizes the consequences if those rules are broken.

For example, if he or she pulls hair or hits when angry, let them now these actions are not acceptable and they will have a “time out” or whatever form of consequence you feel is appropriate.

Don’t Forget to Praise

This goes hand in hand with enforcing consequences when your child is misbehaving. If he or she does something that exhibits good behavior, for example putting away their toys without being told, then you should give positive reinforcement.

Acknowledge the good behavior with praise. Your child will remember your positive reactions and want more of that out of you in the future.

Turn Terrible to Terrific

With conscious effort from you and your partner, you can help transition your toddler out of the terrible twos stage. Give your child choices, praise them when they have done well, and follow a daily routine as regularly as possible.

With choices, your child will be less likely to start an argument. With positive reinforcement, they will be more likely to repeat the good behavior that garnered praise from the mommies.

And with a regular daily schedule, you’ll be less likely to find yourself in the middle of a tantrum because of a missed nap or because your child is grouchy from being hungry.

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Gettin’ Busy: Tips for Revving Up Your Sex Life After Baby

You’ve brought that precious bundle of joy home and the two mommies couldn’t be happier. But… you realize your sex life has been lacking (or maybe it’s basically nonexistent).

Between late night feedings, diaper changes, and work schedules, there’s no doubt that sex may definitely drop down on your priority list after your baby is born. Exhaustion and the stress of your new responsibilities as mothers tend to win out over making love.

Not to mention giving birth can leave you feeling sore, dry, and feeling not very desirable to your partner. Don’t worry…most new parents have been there before, so you’re not alone. So how do you rekindle that bedroom flame when everything seems to be working against you?

Here’s a look at some insightful tips to help you and your partner turn the heat back on in the bedroom after you’ve had a baby…

Leave Expectations at the Door

Not only is sex post-baby going to be different than before you or your partner gave birth, but everyone is going to be different when it comes to feeling like having sex again.

Be patient with yourself and your partner, and don’t have expectations about the sex.

Think of it as re-discovering each other and have fun with it. When you leave all expectations at the door, you just may find your sex life reaching new and exciting heights!

Be Patient

This goes for whomever gave birth as well as her partner. You may be on different pages with each other in terms of wanting to have sex again.

Be sure to communicate with each other and don’t shut your partner out if she’s not in the mood.

She’ll get there in her own time. Being patient with each other will not only help you ease back into your sex life, but it will also help when it comes to raising your baby as well.

Rev Up the Foreplay (A lot!)

It’s normal to be a bit afraid of post-baby sex, especially for the birth momma. Many thoughts could cross your mind like if your body is healed enough for sex, distracting you from you and your partner actually even attempting to have sex.

But there’s a solution to that…a little foreplay goes a long way. Whether it’s a seductive trail of kisses down the back or an all out make-out session, definitely partake in the foreplay.

Not only does it feel good, but it can help you and your partner reconnect and discover each other all over again.

Nap Time = Sex Time

You’ve put your baby down for a nap…why not have a little fun with your partner?

Yeah, it may sound a bit like having to schedule a bit of “nooky” time with your girl, but at least it’s a time when you’re both free and have time to yourself. And let’s face it, with a newborn; those moments are going to be few and far between. Everything else on the “to do” list can wait.

By thinking nap time equals sex time, you and your partner will have something to look forward to.

Get Naked!

It doesn’t matter how you’re feeling about your post-baby body (you look beautiful no matter what), getting naked is sexy and a turn-on.

And it doesn’t necessarily mean you have to have sex, but just the act of getting naked and feeling your partner’s bare skin upon yours may just help turn up the heat. Try taking a shower together, or maybe a playful game of strip poker…even some skin on skin spooning might do the trick.

You might end up feeling completely at ease and rested and fall asleep, or it could fuel the fire and make you want to take things further. Either way, there’s not much getting naked can’t solve!

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Step Away From the Rainbow Onesie… And Other Lesbian Baby Shower Tips

When it comes to attending the baby shower of a lesbian couple, whether you are also a lesbian or happen to be straight, there really shouldn’t be a difference between a same-sex baby shower versus one thrown by a straight couple.

The truth is, lesbian parents are going to need the same things as straight parents to raise and care for their baby. So there’s really no need to treat a lesbian baby shower any differently than any other shower you’ve been to.

But if you’re still struggling with what to do, how to act, or what to get the baby and moms to be, here are some helpful tips to help you avoid a potentially awkward shower moment…

Get Usual Baby Gifts

Just because it’s a lesbian couple, doesn’t mean you should get everything in rainbow print or bright rainbow-like colors. Let’s face it, this isn’t a gay pride parade, it’s a baby shower. Stick with the typical cute baby outfits and toys. Oh yeah, and don’t forget the diapers…lots and lots of diapers.


Recognize Both Moms to Be

This is important since both women will be taking equal responsibility with raising the baby. Don’t assume that one will take on a “mother” role while the other takes the “father” role. The couple will create their own blend of roles unique to them. It’s not up to you to figure that out for them.

Don’t Ask Who the Father Is

This is lesbian no-no 101. Whether it’s your first lesbian baby shower or not, you should never ask the couple this question. First of all, it’s really none of your business. And secondly, you’re basically insinuating to the moms to be that they are not going to be adequate enough to raise their child without a father figure. Even if you know the circumstances behind the pregnancy, this is never an appropriate question to ask.

Don’t Over-think It

Chances are if you were invited to the shower, you’re close to one of the moms to be or both. Just because it’s a lesbian couple doesn’t mean different rules apply. Over-thinking what kind of gift to give or what to say to the couple is too much unnecessary stress. Put any preconceived notions aside and just have fun at the shower with your friends.

Express Your Happiness for the Couple

It’s a universal gesture to offer your congratulations to the couple at a baby shower, as well as expressing how happy you are for them. It shouldn’t be any different for a lesbian couple. Chances are you were invited to the shower because you’re a friend anyway, so it goes without saying that you’ll be happy for them and their soon to be new family.

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Getting Pregnant: Known Donor vs. Sperm Bank – Which To Choose?

So you and your partner have decided to get pregnant…congratulations on the big decision. Now it’s time for the next big choice…should you use a sperm donor you know, or should you go with the anonymity of a sperm bank?

Both options can have their pros and cons, and it’s definitely an important choice to make. Just remember that there is no wrong or right choice. There’s only the choice that fits the needs of you and your partner.

Here’s a look at the advantages and disadvantages of choosing a known donor versus a sperm bank…

Known Donor:

Many lesbian couples tend to consider this as an option first, since they already know the donor and can get an idea of what the child may look like, any health issues that could arise, and the overall personality of the potential friend or acquaintance that will be donating.

But there are other factors to consider if you and your partner decide to go the known donor route….

The Pros of a Known Donor:

  • Fresh Sperm: Yeah, it may sound gross, but the reality here is that sperm from a sperm bank is going to be frozen. Fresh sperm gives you more of a change from the insemination to take, which increases your chances of getting pregnant.
  • Known Medical History, Physical Appearance…etc: You won’t have to play much of a guessing game in terms of how your child will look physically, or what his or her personality will be like since you already know the donor. Plus you have the advantage of knowing any medical issues that could come up.
  • Co-Parenting Potential: This is only if it’s wanted. Most lesbian couples may choose to not have the known donor in the child’s life as a father or caretaker, but the option is always there if you find you need help or just want your child to know the donor.

Cons of a Known Donor:

  • Visitation Rights Potential: There’s always that “maybe” that your known donor may want to sue for visitation rights or custody. While that doesn’t mean it will happen, it might be something that will always stay at the back of your mind, causing unnecessary stress.
  • Differences of Opinion: If you do chose to keep him in your child’s life, his opinion on how to raise him or her may differ from you and your partners, causing conflict. Always keep this in mind if you choose to include the known with raising your son or daughter.
  • Costs Can Add Up: While the sperm may be free, other costs can arise such as the legal fees for drawing up contracts, sperm analysis. STD testing, and any other tests that may need to be done. You may also have to pay for travel expenses if your donor lives a large distance from you and your partner.

Sperm Bank:

It’s a popular choice from all types of couples, including the lesbian couple. That’s because of the anonymity as well as the convenience of knowing the sperm is viable and tested for diseases.

Here are some things to consider if you and your partner decide to get pregnant with a sperm bank…

Pros of a Sperm Bank:

  • Waived Parental Rights: Sperm donors are required to waive all parental rights. This means you’ll never have to worry about an unexpected visit from the donor or legal fights for custody. Essentially, once you buy the sperm, you own it.
  • Disease Screening: Tests for common STDs and genetic diseases are already done by the sperm bank, so you don’t have to worry about having it done yourself.
  • Open or Known Donor Options: A lot of sperm banks offer this option. It means that the donor would be willing to be contacted when the child turns eighteen, if you and your partner agree to this, of course.

Cons of a Sperm Bank:

  • Expensive: It’s definitely not cheap to get sperm through a sperm bank. With all of that convenience and tested sperm comes a price…and it’s usually very high. Be sure it’s an investment you and your partner can handle financially.
  • Frozen Sperm: The frozen sperm isn’t going to be as fast-moving or fast-acting as fresh sperm. This could make the getting pregnant process a bit longer than desired. So you’ll have to have patience if using a sperm donor from a sperm bank
  • Impersonal: While anonymity works for most couples, you still don’t know everything about the donor like you would if you have a known donor in mind.


When it comes to making the important decision of what kind of sperm donation to use, you and your partner need to sit down and discuss the options, pros and cons, and what you think will work best for the both of you.

Taking the time will make a big difference on not only your child’s future, but you and your partner’s as well.

The Complexities Of Being Step Parent In Same-Sex Relationship

When dealing with children from a past relationship, it can be especially tough when the new step-parent is the same gender as their partner.

Nowadays, it’s becoming more and more difficult to find a family that consists of a single household.

The statistics point to divorce increasing, marriage longevity decreasing, and of course the wider spread acceptance of homosexuality and bisexuality – these all lead to an increase in multiple-household families, those in which the parents are no longer connected except through the children.

I myself was a child of step-parents. My mother and father weren’t together for very long due to “irreconcilable differences” (for lack of better terminology) and both were married to other partners by the time I was six.

I never really thought anything of it, and in fact I felt that I was better off with the two households than I would have been if my parents had tried to stay together “for my sake”.

That being said, I have a very limited amount of information surrounding same-sex step-parent situations, but it’s always been a subject that interested me.

I have a number of bisexual friends who have children from former relationships, and generally speaking these children seem happy as long as their parents are happy – and isn’t that what matters?

With that being said, there are a number of differences when lesbians and bisexual women have children from a previous relationship.

Sometimes, the parent of the child is bisexual, or recently out of the closet.

In these cases, the parent (and step-parent) will have to decide whether to let the child know about their sexuality. There may be some confusion when the child finds out that their new step-parent is not the same gender as the parent’s past partner.

For especially young children, they can grow accustomed to the idea faster – but some may not choose to share this detail if they feel the child is “too young” to understand.

For older kids, they may be able to figure it out on their own. This can be a good thing or a bad thing – it all depends on how you handle the situation.

If you are honest with your child, the entire process can be made easier. Of course, your decision to come out to your kids (or step-kids) is entirely your decision.

Some people have preferences to not date people with children – and you can’t force them to accept it.

This can be true regardless of sexuality, but many lesbians have a specific preference against dating bisexual women, and they may see your biological child as “proof” that you’re not “really gay”.

It’s not really fair, as bisexuality isn’t an automatic indicator of unfaithfulness. But the fact is you may face women who won’t date you simply because you have a biological child.

This can make it difficult for the single parent, but once they find someone who accepts their child as their own, it’s a magical experience.

Some single parents choose to instead leave their child out of the equation. Again, this is your decision, but it’s sort of unfair to your child.

If you refuse to acknowledge that you have a child, imagine how the child is going to feel when they find out about it (and it’s always a possibility that you have to consider).

In some cases, their other biological parent may stir up drama.

Of course, we hope this isn’t the case. Break-ups are already nasty enough without mudslinging. If your ex happens to get into your child’s head about your sexuality and how it’s “wrong”, the only thing you can do to address this is to live your life in such a way that your ex’s quips have no effect.

Thankfully, these days, your sexuality is unlikely to interfere with your ability to get fair custody of your child. Just keep in mind that a jaded partner can say some pretty hurtful things – and you shouldn’t let these things get to you.

If your ex-partner is the same sex as you, and you are not biologically related to the child, you could face extra problems.

Please don’t take this to mean that you should stay with a partner who is not good to you – we at KitschMix never recommend that.

However, unless you have already signed adoption papers, it can be incredibly difficult for you to prove that you have been a “parent” to the child.

If your ex decides to drag her feet through the adoption process, or changes their mind about your daughter being “your child” together, it’s entirely possible that you will have a long fight ahead of you.

Occasionally, the parent may blame their child when they can’t find a partner.

This is a completely different issue, and it’s definitely not fair to the child. I have known a few people who take it very personally when a partner leaves or rejects them because they have a child.

It’s important to remember that none of this is your child’s fault. It’s not his fault that you and his other parent separated, and it’s not his fault that your new partner doesn’t want kids.

Placing the blame on him is a form of emotional child abuse that is likely to lead to resentment later in your child’s life.

What can you do if you are a single parent looking for a same sex partner?

There are a number of people who specifically look for “RMF’s” (Ready Made Families). While the term itself has somewhat of a negative connotation, it doesn’t have to.

Some people are incapable of having children or they have a preference to adopt, rather than conceive. (I happen to fall in the second group.) For these people, your kids may be a godsend – as long as the timing is right.

Other people aren’t exactly looking to become a step-parent, but they don’t mind the idea. These people may not be specifically looking for what you have to offer, but they are open to the idea of having a child who isn’t related to them.

Wouldn’t you rather be with the person who would accept your child, anyway?

My advice to our readers is that you are open and honest with your children and your partners – and this can be especially true when it comes to their knowledge of each other.

Obviously your child doesn’t need to know every detail of your life, but they should know enough to not be blindsided if it comes up in the future.

Major Study Concludes Children Benefit More From Having Same-Sex Parents

According to a major new study, same-sex parents invest more time in their children.

The research, conducted by the Population Research Centre at the University of Texas, was carried out to confront prejudices against LGBT families.

In the study, researches analysed the time 40,000 parents spent with children while engaged in tasks including reading, playing and bath time, and found that same-sex parents spend significantly more time engaged in activities than mixed sex parents.

The difference is most pronounced in families with two mothers, where parents spend on average 40% more time on child-focused activities than straight couples.

The extra time comes largely because both mothers typically offer as much child-focused activity as mothers in heterosexual partnerships. Fathers with female partners spent only about half as much time with their children.

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The report’s author Kate Prickett explained:

Our study suggests that children with two parents of the same-sex received more focused time from their parents – 3.5 hours a day, compared with 2.5 hours by children with different-sex parents.

Our findings support the argument that parental investment in children is at least as great – and possibly greater in same-sex couples as for different-sex couples.”

Although it’s unclear why this difference exists, Dr Prickett thinks the answer may lie in how families are created.

First, it’s possible that selection plays a large part. That is, the ways that same-sex families come about, such as partnering with someone who already has a child, going through insemination or surrogacy, or adoption, suggest a strong desire to be a parent.

Second, parenting remains a gendered process. Fathers coupled with women still tend to be the main breadwinners, and their partners take on more domestic responsibility.”

Read more about the findings here.

Lesbian Couple Wins Right To Have Both Names On Their Childs Birth Certificate

A Utah court has ended a lawsuit filed by a lesbian couple to get the mothers’ names on their child’s birth certificate.

According to a local affiliate:

In a joint agreement filed with in U.S. District Court and obtained by FOX 13 on Sunday, the ACLU of Utah and the Utah Attorney General’s Office acknowledged that Kami and Angie Roe had received a birth certificate that included Angie Roe’s name as a parent of their child, Lucy. Lawyers for the two sides also agreed to make the judge’s injunction permanent, effectively ending the case.”

The ruling opens up the doors for other gay couples to place both parents’ names on birth certificates.

The lesbian couple, sued the state after the health department wouldn’t allow the couple to both be on the birth certificate, only the biological mother, even though the two were legally wed in Utah.

5 Key Tips For Finding A Lesbian-Friendly Pediatrician

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.

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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!

Baby Planning 101: 5 Things To Do Before The Newborn Arrival

When the time is nearing for your baby to arrive, things can get a bit hectic around the house.

And while you and your partner have probably gone over the newborn necessities checklist so many times you can recite it by heart, there’s a chance you may have missed something in all of the baby planning chaos.

Here’s a look at a few things that will help you maximize that checklist and get you as prepared as two new moms can possibly be for the big change that’s about to come your way

Choose a Paediatrician

Although this seems like an obvious thing to do, it can often times be forgotten until parents realize their baby is sick. And if you haven’t chosen a pediatrician before your child is born, it can be difficult to find one at the last minute that you entrust your child’s wellbeing with.

So take your time before the birth to find the perfect pediatrician fit for you.

A good way to do this it through recommendations from friends and family. And don’t be afraid to make calls and set up consultations to help you find the right doctor.

Freeze Meals Ahead of Time

Once the baby is home, it’s going to be a hectic and stressful time, not to mention tiring. Let’s face it, nobody is going to be in the mood to cook. Before your due date, be sure to stock up your fridge with healthy food options. It’s also a great idea to make freezable meals ahead of time.

That way all you have to do is warm them up in the oven and your good to go without having to worry about what to cook for dinner on top of everything else.

Pack Your Hospital Bag

It’s a good idea to have a hospital bad packed for you and the baby ahead of time. Must haves to include in the bag are toiletries and personal items, socks, lip balm, and snacks. Personalize your bad so that it fits your needs, and don’t forget to have your partner bring her own bag as well since she’s most likely going to be spending her time at the hospital with you.

Wash Crib Sheets and Baby Clothes

It’s always a good idea to wash anything that will be coming in to contact with the baby’s skin. And while you don’t have to wash everything all at once, pre-wash at least a week’s worth of clothing before the baby’s arrival so you don’t have to worry about doing laundry while you’re recovering from childbirth and taking care of the baby.

Make a Labor Playlist

It might not even be something you considered putting on your checklist, but so many moms have sworn by the calming feelings the get from listing to music while in labor. So take the time to go through your favorite songs and make  yourself a playlist. Music has proven to be therapeutic for many different situations, and childbirth is no exception.



Madrid Offers Assisted Reproduction To All Lesbian Couple After Court Ruling

Only days after a court handed down a decision in Spain against government restrictions on assisted reproduction treatments, Madrid regional premier Cristina Cifuentes said her government would immediately open the publicly funded services to all women regardless of their sexual preference or marital status.

Cristina Cifuentes

The announcement came after a Madrid court ordered regional government health officials and the Fundación Jiménez Díaz hospital to pay compensation to a lesbian woman who was cut off from the program following an order from the Health Ministry to deny services to unwed mothers and gay women.

After the couple filed numerous complaints and a lawsuit in May, the hospital said that it would re-evaluate all the cases and the woman is once again back under the assisted reproduction program.

The hospital’s decision to remove her from the program was based on a 2013 order by then-Health Minister Ana Mato, who excluded unwed mothers and lesbians from receiving artificial insemination and other fertility therapies paid for by the public health system.

Mato had issued the order based on a government decree to cut some €7 billion from the public health budget. Both Cifuentes and Mato are from the ruling Popular Party (PP).

But the court opined that the order went against legislation passed in 2006 on assisted reproduction, which clearly states that such treatment is available to women over the age of 18, “regardless of their civil status or sexual orientation.”

It ordered both the regional government and hospital to pay €4,875 in compensation to the women.

Cifuentes said that neither the government nor the hospital will appeal the decision and confirmed that the patient is back in the program.

All women “have the same rights” when it comes to reproduction assistance, she said.

‘Who’s The Father?’ And Other Questions Not To Ask A Lesbian Parent

It’s a joyous time for the happy couple when you’re expecting a child, whether you or your partner are having the baby naturally or adopting. But even in this ever-evolving world where the acceptance of “less” traditional families is slowing catching up with the times, there’s still most likely going to be that one person that has to ask the expectant mothers one or more of those clichéd lesbian parenting questions. Here’s a look at some of those questions you should avoid asking a lesbian mother…

Who’s the Dad?

Why should this question even come up? You wouldn’t ask a pregnant straight woman who the father is, nor would you ask an adoptive parent who the dad is. So why be insensitive and ask a lesbian couple that question? If you want it put simply…there is no dad. But there are two very loving moms who have gladly taken both the role of mother and father, if that’s how you chose to look at it.

Who is the Biological Mother?

Even if you know the situation surrounding the pregnancy or adoption, this is not an okay thing to ask. Perhaps one in the relationship carried the child and gave birth, perhaps they had a surrogate, or perhaps there was an adoption. None of this matters, however, because asking who the biological mother is tends to imply that whomever gave birth to the child is more of a mother than the other partner.

Where Did You Get the Sperm?

Even if you know the lesbian couple well, this is a bit of a touchy and insensitive question to ask…unless they are very open about the topic. Otherwise it’s a very private thing and truly nobody’s business where the donor came from.

Won’t the Child Miss Out By Not Having a Father Figure?

This question suggests that two women are not capable of providing for the needs of their child the way a man could. It implies inferiority and is definitely not an acceptable question to ask a lesbian couple. It comes with the assumption that they aren’t capable of teaching their children “masculine” things like sports, for example.

What if Your Child Gets Bullied Because He or She Has Gay Parents?

Kids are going to be bullied no matter what their background is. Whether it’s because they are poor, a different race, gay themselves…the list can go on and on. So should a mixed race couple not have children because they could get bullied? What about a low-income family who can’t afford fancy clothes for their child?

The same goes for a child raised by a gay couple, so it’s pretty simple-minded to think only children from a gay household would get bullied.

Baby-Proofing the Mommies: 5 First Time Parenting Tips to Help Keep Your Sanity

There’s no doubt that first-time parents may find themselves a bit stressed out, worn out, and mentally tapped out when it comes to the demands of taking care of a newborn baby. But when it comes to taking care of your child, it’s also important that you take care of yourselves and each other as well.

Take a look at these five helpful tips to making sure the mommies are caring for themselves just as well as their caring for that new bundle of joy…

1. Tag-Team Those Late Night Feedings: Chronic sleep deprivation isn’t going to do anyone any good.

It can wreak havoc on your mood, memory, concentration, and ability to cope with every day stress. Instead of both of you getting up with the baby, it’s better to take turns…tag-team it. That way one of you gets to catch up on your sleep while the other tends to the child. Then switch it up the following night and so on.

2. Take Care of Your Health: If one of the mommas isn’t feeling well, the whole family is going to feel it.

Both of you should focus on good health and nutrition as well as proper sleep for yourselves too, not only the child.

3. Don’t Be Afraid to Take Time For Yourself: Know it’s okay to take time away from your child sometimes.

Quality “you” time is just as important as quality time spent with the baby. So go ahead and take some quiet time to finish that book, have coffee with a friend, or go for a relaxing walk. This will work wonders for centering you and refreshing your mind and body.

4. Accept Help: It’s okay to ask for help. In fact, it will do wonders for the stress level and exhaustion.

Accepting help doesn’t mean you are any less of a mother. It simply means you’re willing to acknowledge that you really could us a bit of a breather from the stress and tiredness…especially if you’re running on fumes from the late night feedings and basically everything else that comes with caring for an infant.

5. Spend Time With Your Partner: You and your partner decided to raise a child together, yes, but that doesn’t mean you should let your relationship take a back seat to the baby.

Make sure you find the time to spend together. Whether that means getting a babysitter so you can have an occasional night out on the town, or simply watching a movie together at home with some takeout without being interrupted, nurturing your relationship is just as important as nurturing your newborn.

5 Year Old barred From San Diego School Because She Has Lesbian Parents

A five-year old girl is at the centre of a fight that pits freedom of religion against non-discrimination rights.

It’s a fight that some say could wind up in the U.S. Supreme Court in the near future.

The girl learned a few days before school started that she was no longer welcome at the place where she had attended both preschool and summer school.  The reason, according to one of her mothers, is the school doesn’t want anything to do with homosexuals.

Sheena, who asked 10News not to use her last name said

They told us, ‘oh this is not about your child,’ but it is about my child,” said

Sheena is a stay-at-home mom.  Her wife, Lashaune, is in the Navy and is now away on deployment.

If we knew from the beginning that this was unacceptable, they didn’t condone or believe in this, if it was such a big deal, we would have never started her off there. I would never put my child’s emotional wellbeing in an unstable setting like that.”

Sheena told Team 10 she and her wife were summoned to the school the Friday before Labor Day, where they were shown to a room to meet with the pastor.  After a prayer, Sheena said the pastor dropped the bombshell.

It was heartbreaking. I didn’t finish the conversation with them when they took us in the room because I just, I didn’t want to look at them any longer.  I just couldn’t believe that they did that.”

Now the mothers are looking for an attorney to file a civil rights lawsuit against the school.

A woman, who only gave the name “Kailyn” and described herself as the director of Mt. Erie, told Team 10 the school has a non-discrimination policy. When asked whether it was discrimination to bar the 5-year old from attending kindergarten because her parents are lesbians, Kailyn responded:

The Bible says homosexuality is a sin. We don’t condone any sinful lifestyles.”

Sheena provided Team 10 with a copy of the school’s parent and student handbook, which was revised in June 2015.

On page four, right after the statement of nondiscrimination it reads:

Mt. Erie Christian Academy is a religious, Bible-believing institution providing education in a distinct Christian environment, and it believes that its biblical role is to work in conjunction with the home to mold students to be Christ like.

On those occasions in which the atmosphere or conduct within a particular home is counter to or in opposition to the biblical lifestyle that the school teaches, the school reserves the right, within its sole discretion, to refuse admission of an applicant or to discontinue enrollment of a student.

This includes, but is not necessarily limited to, living in, condoning or supporting sexual immorality; practicing homosexual lifestyle or alternative gender identity; promoting such practices; or otherwise having the inability to support the moral principles of the school (Leviticus 20:13a; Romans 1:21-27; Matthew 19:4-6; I Corinthians 6:9-20).”

On page 14 of the handbook under the section entitled VALUES, it reads:

MECA seeks to: Teach students the importance of loving and respecting each other, because all people are valuable in God’s eyes, regardless of physical, social, economic, ethnic, or other factors.”

Sheena said her family is loving and respectful. The fact that there are two moms isn’t unusual.

What does our family life have to do with anyone else? Like no one’s gonna be in danger.”

San Diego attorney Eugene Iredale said the First Amendment gives Mt. Erie freedom of religion, allowing it to bar a student whose parents’ lifestyle doesn’t meet their religious beliefs.

Iredale sai

Religions and religious institutions, that do not in their activity receive public money, have the right to discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation if that is part of their religious tradition.”

According to filings with the federal government, Mt. Erie does not receive any public funds.

Iredale said both California and federal cases have upheld the right of private institutions to bar membership based on religious beliefs.  That is exactly the opposite of discrimination laws that pertain to publicly-funded programs and businesses that cater to the general public.

Now the question is where do you draw the line? If you have a religion that believed in human sacrifice or amputation of the arm or the hand for theft, would we permit that in the interest of permitting the free practice of one’s religion? I don’t think so, and one could argue that psychologically… this is as devastating to the little 5-year-old girl as some of those other vicious practices.”

Iredale said he believes that in the next five to 10 years, the U.S. Supreme Court will have to decide a case like the one involving Mt. Erie because of changing public policy regarding homosexuality.

Sheena said she’s ready to fight for it.

I want my baby to be safe when she grows up. I don’t want her to ever have to be discriminated against because of her lifestyle. That’s not fair.”

Meanwhile, her daughter waits to be accepted to a new kindergarten.

She told Team 10

I miss my friends. I miss my teachers.”

Cathy Sakimura, deputy director and family law director for the National Center for Lesbian Rights added.

This type of policy is out of touch with reality.”

Sakimura said barring Sheena’s daughter from school could create a culture of fear among children at the school, allowing children to think it’s not OK to be LGBT or divorced.

She hopes the Mt. Erie situation will start an important conversation within the church community, one that leans toward better acceptance. She said many parents within the church and school community may be ready to change the policies to better reflect that.


Learn How to Save a Choking Baby in 41 Seconds (Video)

In a survey conducted by St. John Ambulance, 40% of the Parents have seen their babies choking and 4/5 didn’t know how to react in this situation.

With the help of an al star cast, they created a memorable short video to educate parents on how to save a choking baby.

This video is called the Chokeables, the celebrities take on the characters of animated objects that could potentially choke babies: a pen lid, small princes toy, peanut and jelly baby.

Are Lesbian Parents, Better Parents – New Study Suggests So

A new study published in the June issue of Demography, finds children of same-sex parents are getting more one-on-one time with their parents than children with different-sex parents, according to a new study .

The authors looked into the ways the 44,188 participants of the 2003 – 2013 American Time Use Survey spent time interacting with their children, in an attempt to measure the difference in outcomes of children raised by same-sex parents and different-sex parents.

Overall, women (regardless of the gender of their partners) and men coupled with other men spent ‘significantly more time’ with their children than a male-female couple.


This results in children of same-sex couples receiving one hour more child-focused parent time than children of different-sex couples – an average of 3.5 hours per day.

Authors Kate C. Prickett and Alexa Martin-Storey wrote in a post for The Society Pages.

A key implication of our study is that the focus on whether same-sex parents provide depreciably different family contexts for healthy child development is misplaced

If anything, the results show that same-sex couples are more likely to invest time in the types of parenting behaviors that support child development.

In line with a recent study that has continued to highlight that poverty — more so than family structure — is the greatest detriment to parenting practices, it’s hard not to see how delegitimizing same-sex families in ways that create both social and economic costs for them, pose a greater source of disadvantage for children.”


If This Life-affirming, Love-affirming, Family-affirming Photo Doesn’t Make You Smile, Then Nothing Will

A North Carolina lesbian couple’s photos, showing each of the partners pregnant, has all the world smiling after they were posted on Instagram.

Trading places

A photo posted by Mel Roy (@therealmelroy) on

The picture first was taken in 2014, when Vanessa Iris Roy was pregnant with the couple’s son, Jax. The second was taken in January of this year, when Melanie Roy was pregnant with their daughter Ero. That’s Jax playing at their feet.

melanie roy 02

Melanie told reporters

Vanessa and I have always said we would both like to carry. The woman’s body is incredible. The way it creates and grows another human being is amazing. We hope that our picture is that sign that some women may need to encourage them to carry a child.”

After a couple of months on Instagram, the side-by-side motherhood photos went viral. The Huffington Post reports they garnered more than 150,000 Likes on a Brazilian advocacy group’s Facebook page.

Melanie told The Huffington Post

It’s crazy to see that people were referring to my family as an inspiration. We are still in complete shock.”

Things you should Know about Sperm Banks

Sperm banking is a huge industry that has been around for decades but one that is relatively loosely regulated in the U.S.

Here are some things to know about the industry:

How many Babies come from donated sperm?

While anecdotal evidence might suggest that the use of sperm donors to conceive a baby is rising because of improvements in technology and its popularity among lesbian couples and single women, there is no way to know for sure. No federal agency or professional organisation tracks the number of children born from sperm donations.

The last time a count was done was in 1988 by the now-defunct U.S. Office of Technology Assessment, said Rene Almeling, a sociology professor at Yale University who has done extensive research on sperm and egg donation.

Also read: Woman Creates A Sex Toy To Aid Artificial Insemination Between Lesbian Couples

What they tell you

Sperm banks generally tell clients about a donor’s family medical history; physical traits like hair color, eye color, height and blood type; some educational and professional information; and some personal social preferences.

Additional information that might also be available for some donors, possibly for an extra fee, includes childhood and adult photos, audio interviews and other personality attributes.

Much of the information comes from surveys that the donors fill out.

What’s the cost

It depends on the sperm bank and various options the recipient can choose from. Georgia-based Xytex Corp., one of the bigger players in the industry, provides free profiles with basic information including medical history, genetic testing results, physical traits, and limited educational and professional background. There is a tiered pricing structure to see more extensive information.

A single unit of sperm from Xytex costs between $395 and $795, depending on a variety of factors, including the method of insemination the recipient plans to use and whether the recipient wants her child to have access to the donor’s identity once the child turns 18.


Donor anonymity

Sperm donors are generally anonymous when the recipient buys the sperm and is inseminated. Some sperm banks, including Xytex, allow a donor’s identity to be disclosed with the mother’s permission once the child turns 18. The child could then use the information to seek out a relationship with the biological father, or simply contact the donor with questions about family history.

Donor requirements

Donors are screened over a period of four to six weeks. The screening generally includes a blood test, a genetic test, a physical and collecting sperm samples. Donors are asked to provide three generations of family medical history, including mental health, as well as some social background and preferences.

Because of the expense of screening, donors are frequently asked to donate once a week for at least a year. To keep up their sperm count, they’re advised not to engage in any sexual activity for at least 48 hours prior to donating, to try to limit alcohol consumption and stress, and to exercise regularly and eat healthily. If the sperm count is too low, the sperm bank will throw out the sample and the donor won’t be paid.

Heather Peace Welcomes Her First Daughter into the World

Heather Peace’s wife Ellie has given birth to their first daughter.

The out Waterloo Road and Lip Service star, who entered into a civil partnership with long-term girlfriend Ellie in 2013 and converted to a marriage last year, broke the news to her fans over Twitter.

The birth was greeted with congratulatory messages for the proud parents over Twitter from her fans, with many tweeting Peace their best wishes.

The news comes less than a month after Peace announced the pregnancy with her wife, Ellie.

Lesbian Couple Sues Utah for Legal Recognition as Child’s Parents

A married lesbian couple filed a lawsuit this week to force the Utah vital records office to recognise them as the legal parents of their child.

The ACLU of Utah and the national ACLU LGBT Project filed the complaint in U.S. District Court on behalf of Angie and Kami Roe, who seek to both be recognised as parents to their daughter, Lucy.

Under the state’s assisted reproduction law, the husband of a woman who conceives with donated sperm is automatically recognised as the child’s parent. But because Angie is Kami’s wife instead of her husband, the State Office of Vital Records and Statistics refuses to recognise Angie as Lucy’s parent, according to the ACLU.

The office told the couple that they must go through an expensive and invasive step-parent adoption process to become Lucy’s legal parents, the ACLU says. They argue in the lawsuit that the office’s refusal to recognise female spouses as parents violates their right to equal protection.

Angie Roe said in a news release.

Kami and I should not have to go through a time-consuming legal procedure to give our daughter the protection of having two legal parents. All we are asking is to be treated the same way that other married couples are already treated under state law.”

The lawsuit names Utah Department of Health executive director David Patton and vital statistics office director Richard Oborn as defendants.

According to health department spokesman Tom Hudachko…

While we have not had the opportunity to review today’s filing, we have been working for several months with both the ACLU and the plaintiffs in an attempt to reach a solution. Our hope is to resolve the issue at hand in a manner that serves the best interest of all parties,”

Leah Farrell, ACLU of Utah attorney, said in light of cases such as Kitchen v. Herbert, which make clear that Utah must extend the same rights in marriage to all couples, the state’s attempt to apply the assisted reproduction law differently for male and female spouses is untenable and harmful.

The Roes have also asked the court for a preliminary injunction requiring the vital records office to recognize Kami Roe as Lucy’s parent while the case is being argued.


​UK’s Foster Care Associates Call for More Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender People to Consider Fostering

Foster Care Associates (FCA) is calling for more gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender singles and couples in the UK to consider fostering. The step comes to reinforce the positive contribution LGBT foster carers make to helping children and young people.

A report by the Rees Centre, a University of Oxford education department, which specialises in research into fostering and education, has revealed that many LGBT foster carers express concern about how agencies, social workers and foster children might respond to their gender and sexuality.

FCA has built a reputation as one of the leaders in championing and supporting LGBT foster carers for more than 15 years.

They were one of the first independent fostering agencies to offer LGBT diversity training for all their carers and staff, and 2015 marks five consecutive years of being recognised in the Stonewall Top 100 employer’s listings as one of the UK’s most gay friendly organisations.


Crystal is an FCA foster carer, with her partner Katie. She said:

“As foster carers we aim to provide a safe and happy home environment for foster children and it is that level of stability which is so important to a child’s wellbeing. Being a foster carer isn’t always easy but when you see a child grow and improve at something you have helped them with, it makes all the hard work worthwhile. Teaching a child right from wrong is one part of our role and when you actually begin to see them listen and act upon your advice, you feel you have made positive strides forward.”

David Oldham, chief executive of FCA, said:

“We have some amazing foster carers, and from the outset we only recruit people from across the spectrum who are open to diversity. We’re committed to developing a cohort of supportive carers, both for each other and the children they looked after. Our underlying message is that fostering is open to everyone and it’s up to FCA to provide a safe and welcoming community to support and develop our carers from the assessment process through to placement.”

Approximately only 2% of FCA’s 2000 carers are LGBT, a percentage that the agency aims to increase partly through regular visibility at LGBT events across the country as well specific information and recruitment events to communicate that fostering is an incredibly rewarding life choice which is open to everyone.

For more information on becoming a foster carer with the FCA, call 0800 023 4561 or visit www.thefca.co.uk

Woman Creates A Sex Toy To Aid Artificial Insemination Between Lesbian Couples

‘Semenette’ is a new sex toy that can help lesbian couples conceive through artificial insemination.


Boston inventor and a reproductive health expert, Stephanie Berman, can up with the clever concept because back in 2011, she wanted to get her wife pregnant. The couple were dismayed by the available techniques.

“The only options other than going to a doctor’s office would be with a turkey baster or a needle-less syringe. We started using those types of things and quickly realized it was as awful as it sounds. There is nothing romantic or sexy and fun about trying to impregnate your wife with a turkey baster… I started thinking, what if I could recreate the technology that a turkey baster would provide, but in the form of a sex toy?”

Stephanie Berman

Having worked in women’s reproductive health for 11 years, Berman was convinced that there had to be a better way, and what’s more, that she could design it.

More: Researchers Discover It Is Biologically Possible To Make A Baby From Two Same-Sex Parents

After much research, prototyping, and engineering, Berman developed the Semenette, an ejaculating dildo attached to a pump. It can be used solo or with a partner (and a harness, if you so choose) — to conceive, for pleasure, or both.

Stephanie’s baby daughter, Isabella, born in March 2014, is a testament to the Semenette’s efficacy.


Berman said she wanted to create the toy to make the process of conceiving have more “privacy and authenticity and intimacy” for gay couples.

The toy, which is an ejaculating dildo attached to a pump, can be used with a harness both for trying to conceive and for pleasure.

 “I’ve seen a lot of couples go through months and months of trying and being unsuccessful. [I’ve seen] the emotional toll it can take on people, not to mention the financial burden.

There are so many communities that the toy is applicable for and beneficial for. For example, the trans community has been [hugely supportive]…men with erectile dysfunction…even heterosexual couples [enjoy the sensation]. At the end of the day, this is a pleasure product; it’s a product that can provide pleasure for an individual or for a couple.”

Stephanie Berman

The product is on sale for $139.99 (£92) and can be used for pleasure.

Researchers Discover It Is Biologically Possible To Make A Baby From Two Same-Sex Parents

A breakthrough by researchers from Cambridge University, has revealed that in just two years same-sex couples could have their own biological children by using stem cells of parents of the same sex.

The researchers have proven that human egg and sperm cells can be made from stem cells in the skin of two adults. They have stated that the technique could mean same-sex couples could have babies in just two years.

The scientists used stem cell lines from embryos as well as cells from the skin of five different adults. Ten different donor sources have been used so far and new germ-cell lines have been created from all of them.

The team, funded by The Wellcome Trust, compared the engineered stem cells with human cells from foetuses to make sure they had identical characteristics.

Azim Surani, leader of the project, told The Sunday Times:

We have succeeded in the first and most important step of this process, which is to show we can make these very early human stem cells in a dish. We have also discovered that one of the things that happens in these germ cells is that epigenetic mutations, the cell mistakes that occur with age, are wiped out.”

Michigan Doctor Refuses To Care For Baby Because The Parents Were Lesbians

Jami and Krista Contreras of Oak Park met with Dr. Vesna Roi before the birth of their daughter, Bay Windsor, in October. But it wasn’t until the girl was 6 days old and they were waiting at the practice for her first checkup that they learned of the pediatrician’s decision.

Another doctor at the same practice told them their Roi “prayed on it” before deciding not to see the child. Two women say they believe a pediatrician refused to care for their infant daughter because they are lesbian.

“I was completely dumbfounded. We just looked at each other and said, ‘Did we hear that correctly?’”

Krista Contreras

Jami continued.

“As far as we know Bay doesn’t  have a sexual orientation yet so I’m not really sure what that matters. We’re not your patient – she’s your patient. And the fact is that your job is to keep babies healthy and you can’t keep a baby healthy that has gay parents?”

Jami Contreras


The incident happened last October, but the Contreras decided to go public with their story to raise awareness about discrimination against same-sex parents.

The couple said the doctor later wrote them a handwritten letter saying that “after much prayer,” she felt she could not “develop the personal patient-doctor relationships” that she usually builds with patients. However, she did not specify that sexual orientation was the reason for her refusal to see their child.

The doctor told the newspaper she couldn’t comment on the case, citing federal privacy law. She defended her commitment to pediatric medicine and helping children, saying her life is taking care of babies and she loves her patients and their families.

While the doctor’s actions could be considered inappropriate, there is no Michigan or federal law prohibiting such a decision, Wayne State University Constitutional Law Professor Robert Sedler said.

Many states have legislated against such discrimination, and Michigan has explored the idea. Republican Gov. Rick Snyder has called for legislative discussion to amend the state’s civil rights law to prohibit discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people in employment, housing and places open to the public. But bills backed by the business community died last session and are unlikely to gain traction in the GOP-led Legislature.

Gay rights advocates are studying a potential 2016 ballot initiative.

No lawsuit is planned since the women, who married in Vermont in 2012, concluded the doctor did nothing illegal. They said they went public with their story to raise awareness about discrimination faced by the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community.


Lesbian Couple Demand Both Names on Son’s Birth Certificate In Indiana

A married couple, Ashlee and Ruby Henderson, has asked a federal court to force Indiana state and county officials to name both of them as parents on their newborn son’s birth certificate.

They were married in November in Indiana, and Ruby Henderson gave birth in December to a son through artificial insemination, but state and local officials have refused to list both as parents on his birth certificate.


Tippecanoe Department of Health officials told the Lafayette couple it would take a court order to list Ashlee Henderson as a parent on the birth certificate, the couple said in a lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court in southern Indiana.

Allowing a father to be listed as a parent on the birth certificate, which also provides associated benefits to a child, but not for a same-sex spouse is a violation of the U.S. Constitution, the couple said in the lawsuit.

More: Lesbian Parents Win Right To Have Names On Children’s Birth Certificates In Virginia

Indiana law “stigmatizes persons in a same-sex marriage and sends a hideous message to their children by implying that these children are somehow less deserving of the presumption of two parents and legitimacy,” the lawsuit said.

Randy Vonderheide, an attorney for the Tippecanoe County Health Department, said officials use birth certificate forms they believe comply with state law and should consider changes following rulings that make same-sex marriage legal in Indiana.

“The administration hasn’t caught up with the times. The system isn’t set up to accommodate same-sex marriages.”

Randy Vonderheide

Lesbian Parents Win Right To Have Names On Children’s Birth Certificates In Virginia

Lesbian Parents living in Virginia, have won a legal fight to have both of their names listed on their twins’ birth certificates.

However, after an 18-month game of wait-and-see as the issue of gay marriage was being settled in Virginia, Richmond Judge Designate T.J. Markow last month ordered the Office of Vital Records in the Virginia Department of Health to amend the birth certificates to show Maria and Joani as the “only parents of the children.”

Maria Hayman delivered the twins in June 2013. Joanie Hayman contributed the eggs after they were fertilized with sperm from a donor who revoked his parental rights.


Joanie Hayman’s name couldn’t be listed on the twins’ birth certificate. Under the Virginia Code, egg donors don’t have parental rights.

Because of the unique nature of the twins’ birth, the couples attorney, Colleen Quinn saw an opportunity to make a legal case for Joani’s inclusion on the birth certificates and offered to take on their case pro bono.

The Haymans started their legal fight a few months after the twins were born not just to make a statement, they said. Legal recognition of their already-formed family was important to them.

“This is best for our family, so we’re going to try. I thought it would be longer. Even if you’re with your partner and your children and you’re a family, it matters. But it’s on paper when the world recognizes you as a family.”

Maria Hayman

Lifting Same-Sex Marriage Ban In Florida Allows Lesbian Couple To Be Legally Recognised As Joint Parents

A Florida judge has ruled that genetics are not required for parenthood.

This is a first in Florida, but by lifting of a same-sex marriage ban now means an infant has the right to call both women in a lesbian couple her parents.

Palm Beach Circuit Judge, Lisa Small, ruled that both Lisa Maxwell and Christine Stephens-Maxwell are the parents of 7-week-old Satori. Satori was born last month after Christine became pregnant through in-vitro fertilization. The couple had married in New York in 2012.

Florida law recognizes that a baby born to a married couple from in-vitro fertilization is the child of both husband and wife. But Circuit Judge Lisa Small extended that recognition to the spouse of the child-bearing wife, now that Florida recognizes same-sex marriages.

“To afford the constitutional protections to which petitioner is entitled, the court interprets ‘husband’ … to mean the spouse of the child-bearing wife.”

Palm Beach Circuit Judge Lisa Small

Before the ban was lifted earlier this month, Lisa would have had to adopt Satori.


“I can’t imagine having to go to a hospital, having to go to a school and being turned away and not recognized that this is my child who I love dearly”

Lisa Maxwell.

Lisa Maxwell’s petition also asked Small to recognize the couple’s out-of-state marriage, which she did.

“Not only can we get married, but we can create wonderful families.”

Christina Stephens-Maxwell

Small’s ruling builds on the ground-breaking federal court ruling that legalized same-sex marriage Jan. 6 in Florida.

Italian Court Recognises Legal Status of Child Born to Lesbian Couple for First Time

An  court has for the first time recognised the legal status of a child born to a lesbian couple in a ruling, made public yesterday, that challenges the country’s official stance on marriage only being between a man and a woman.

Italy, where the Roman Catholic church still has a great influence on politics, does not allow same-sex marriage or civil partnerships. However, in recent months some courts and town councils have begun to recognise the validity of same-sex marriages contracted abroad.

The appeals court in Turin ruled that the birth of the child, conceived by artificial insemination and born in Barcelona to a Spanish and Italian lesbian couple, should be transcribed into the official records of the town where the Italian woman lives.

The ruling gives Italian citizenship to the child, who was born in 2011, and means it can come to Italy to be with the mother, who is now divorced from her Spanish ex-wife.

Same-sex marriage is legal in Spain and a Barcelona court gave joint custody to both women.

The Turin court’s ruling, which was issued in October but only made public on Wednesday, overturned a 2013 verdict that the birth could not be legally recognised in Italy.

The appeals court said it was acting in the “exclusive interests of the child, who has been brought up by two women which the (Spanish) law each recognises as its mother”.