Wednesday, November 25, 2009

A happy thanksgiving for me...and for a family in Montana

I'm happy to have my 26-year-old daughter home for Thanksgiving...and happy that she's looking forward to my devilled eggs and stuffed mushrooms that will be part of our thanksgiving meal.

And there's another happy thanksgiving in store for 4-year-old Morrgan Avery Gibson-Boettcher and his two moms. The couple, Kellie Gibson and Denise Boettcher, finalized their adoption of Morrgan earlier this month. They might be the first lesbian couple in Montana to adopt a child jointly. According to the coverage in the Billings Gazette, the arguments supporting their adoption were bolstered by last month's Montana Supreme Court ruling protecting the relationship between a child and both her parents, even though only one mom had done the legal adoption. I posted about the case here. The couple is publicizing their success to encourage other couples who may be not know it is possible.

Their story has another interesting twist. Morrgan is Kellie's great-nephew, the grandson of Kellie's sister. The couple cared for Morrgan briefly when he was 3 months old, but then he went back to his biological parents. He had been physically and emotionally abused when he came to live with with Kellie and Denise three years later.

We don't know how many gay couples become caretakers of a child whom a biological relative cannot care for. On this thanksgiving, Morrgan can be thankful he didn't live in Florida or Arkansas or Utah; in Florida no gay person can adopt. In Arkansas and Utah, no gay person living with a partner can adopt. There's litigation challenging the bans in both Florida and Arkansas. Maybe next year same-sex couples and their children will have more to be grateful for.

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