the unequal burden of inequality

The “baby talk” is always different for LGBTQ parents. The
discussion is inevitably much larger and much more complex than the
conversations of our non-LGBTQ counterparts. Baby names and bedroom
colors seem like minor points compared to the planning and hurdling
with which our families are faced.

Cavan Reichmann, the “juice” online editor, and his husband had the
“baby talk.” He chronicled that process in a
he published on Wednesday, stating:

For us, “The Baby Talk” involves many more roadblocks
and the odds of everything falling apart are much higher. We’re
limited in the number of adoption agencies that will work with gay
couples. Since we can’t legally marry each other, we’re not
guaranteed the opportunity to adopt a child as a couple. Instead,
one of us would adopt the child, and the other would file for
second-parent adoption.

All of this turns the creation of our family into a somewhat public
and rather drawn-out affair. We will share these precious moments
of our lives with an audience of attorneys, judges and state

Certainly shepherding in a new member of our family is worth any
cost. But the fact that the stakes change so much simply because
I’m gay hurts. It hurts to know that at the center of it all, we
are, quite simply, not equal, not welcome to the same rights. It
hurts to know that regardless of the hours and money we pour into
the process, it could all be taken away. It hurts knowing that,
from a legal perspective, our family will have to be pieced

Reichmann is right. He will have to overcome many obstacles. It
will certainly cost Reichmann and his partner a great sum of money
to have the same protections as non-LGBTQ families. Luckily, he has
the financial means to make all of this happen.

But many families don’t.

Regardless of sexual orientation, creating a family is a wonderful
but rigorous (and often stressful) process. But for LGBTQ people –
and particularly low-income income LGBTQ families – this process
can be truly overwhelming. Yes, being treated unequally hurts. But
the sting of inequality is that much stronger for low-income LGBTQ

That is why marriage equality matters so much to so many. These
1,138 rights and protections shouldn’t be obtained in part through
money, they should be obtained by default – through law.