Dear Constance,

I’ve been with my husband for 5 years, we’re married, and we’re considering adopting kids (we’re gay), and I’m having second thoughts. Having a family is really important to him. He grew up in a conservative environment where having children is really important. I grew up in a more accepting world where people didn’t have issues with gay people, and some of my family didn’t choose to have kids. It was never a priority for him. His family has been accepting, which surprised me. I never really thought about having kids until he brought it up, and I thought that maybe one day, it would be cool. I love our life together, and I like how things are, and I don’t know if I’m ready for this change, and I don’t know if I want to go through a 2-3 year process to adopt a child. I’m sure we could be a loving home, but I don’t know how to feel about all this. We have great lives. What should I do?

Possible Gay Fatherhood in Seattle

Dear Fatherhood,

Having children is one of the biggest decisions we make in life. Today we get to make a choice about that, and especially for gay men, it is a specific choice that both men need to be enthusiastic about to endure the process and provide that loving home. If you aren’t dead set on having kids, then you need to talk about these feelings with your man. Starting a family may not be right for you, or at least right now. Depending on your age, you have time to really think about this and decide if fatherhood is really for you. Some of this desire to have kids might have to do with his family and to show that, he too, is normal. Before you start the adoption process or at least exploring your options: have this conversation and be open with him about your second thoughts and how much you love your life. Your relationship will be better, and when you make the decision, you’ll feel confident about it no matter how it goes. 

Finding a Father

Dear Constance,

I’m a woman and married to a wonderful woman, and we are getting ready to start a family, and we have a big decision ahead. We need to find a father for our children. She will be carrying the pregnancy, and she thinks that a sperm bank is the best way to go. It’s anonymous, clean, and professional. I’m not comfortable with sperm from some guy somewhere “out there.” I’d rather approach our many male friends and select someone we know. We can get a medical history and family history and all that, and we can at least know the father of our children. I don’t expect him to be involved, but when the kids get older and want to know who their father is, I don’t want to tell them that we don’t know. I’d like it to be someone we know. Which do you think is best? Am I just being a little silly about all this? Is a sperm bank the better option? Help?

Getting Pregnant in Oregon

Dear Pregnant,

This is a tough decision! You made such a good argument that I was nearly on your side! However, this must be decided carefully and together. I would have another conversation and tell her what you’ve written. You’re thinking long-term about things, and that’s a good sign. It sounds like you’ll be a great mom together with your wife. There are arguments for both methods, so you have to pick the best method for your situation. Pick a friend is comforting, but at the same time, that friend could want to be involved in the child’s life down the road, and if you have a falling out, you might regret having a permanent reminder of the aforementioned friend. Sometimes not knowing is just better, all things considered. You can be honest with your child down the road about your decision. Women have faced this choice for millennia, so I know that you’ll make the best decision. Good Luck!