Should gay people be allowed to adopt?

The law opening up adoption for same-sex couples came into force on the same day civil marriage was opened up. The issue of adoption hardly caused any controversy in The Netherlands where more than seventy percent of the population believes gay or lesbian couples can make good parents.

Surveys and research into gay parenting showed that there is no reason to assume that same-sex parents could not be excellent parents. The Dutch Family Council, supporting the notion of same-sex adoption, said children being brought up in such an environment do not run any additional risks.

Same-sex couples are now allowed to adopt, although they can only adopt children that have their normal residence in The Netherlands. This restriction was introduced out of respect of other countries\' laws and out of fear that international adoption agencies would stop cooperation with The Netherlands altogether. That would affect heterosexual couples as well.

Apart from this restriction the same conditions apply as when a heterosexual couple wishes to adopt a child. The couple should have been living together for at least three continuous years, should have cared for the child for at least one year and the adoption should be in the obvious interest of the child.

Only sixty to about one hundred \'Dutch´ children come up for adoption each year. Most of the adoptions by same-sex couples will probably take place through adoption by the female partner of the biological mother of the child or by the male partner of the father. So in fact these are step parent adoptions.

When two partners of the same-sex marry and one of them has a child, the other partner does not automatically become the second legal parent, although he or she does have a duty to support the child. Through adoption the non-biological parent can become legal parent.

Adoption is not the only way to gain legal parenthood. Two partners can assume joint authority over a child. Legislation dealing with joint authority of a same-sex couple over children was already in place.

As with same-sex marriages, the family relation created through adoption by a same-sex couple might not or only sort of be recognised abroad. The joint authority over the child will usually be recognised, but maybe not the succession rights of that child. Naming the child in a will of course puts an end to all uncertainty in this respect.

Personally I feel same-sex couples should be allowed to adopt if they feel they are fit for the big bad world of parenthood. I think it doesn’t matter what you are as long as you are happy – especially in the home, the most important thing is happyness and wellbeing. The only drawback to having same-sex parents is teasing the child will more than likely receive in school as a result of their parents choice to be what they are and do what they do. I would like to see more encouragement towards same-sex relationships in the modern world as there is clearly not enough following the anti-gay bias decision to banning same-sex parent adoption.