A couple times now I’ve gone over how the legal misclassification of my relationship between Rob and me causes problems (1, 2, 3, 4). We’ve, in fact, both been married now a couple times (to each other :-)), but they haven’t been enforceable by law. Still, we really are fortunate, much more than most in this state. We do have a legal connection.
About 5 years ago we went to court. We sat in front of a judge. We were questioned, and we told our story, and shared our lives’ greatest intentions and most personal hopes. At the end of it all, the Judge ruled, and we suddenly were connected together by law and obligation for as long as we exist. We were both the parents, in law and in spirit, of the same children.
That’s a legal connection many gay and lesbian parents in Utah never figure out how to form. Our law here makes it so only single gay men and women can adopt and so many of our families have one parent who has no legal connection. They can’t even get their child on their health insurance. But we have those ties and abilities.
Thinking on it, in a way, it’s even better than a legal marriage; it’s a more important connection in law. There is no conceivable divorce here. We are tied together as a family, even if one of us went insane, bought a sports car, found a boy friend a decade younger, and left the other.
It may be for this reason those against gay rights are willing to keep kids already in our homes without the inheritance and health insurance they could get if all our families had these ties. They are afraid we’ll have any legal connection to each other and, I hate to fuel the fire, but I have to admit this is a large and important one.
So, that’s it. Rob, as the slang goes, is officially and legally my "baby daddy". And I couldn’t be more grateful for that fact, both in law and in reality. Unlike the stereotype, he’s a great baby daddy.
Now, where do I find that checkbox on my taxes?