The Consequences of Failing to Recognize Same Sex Couples in Family Law- Part Two- Siblings left behind.
If you are new to the series click here for Part One.
Shortly after Carrie and Laura confirmed the pregnancy, Laura got a phone call from Child Protective Services. They had a newborn baby who tested positive for methamphetamine.
The baby’s Father, one of Laura’s employees, told the caseworker that Laura should take care of the baby. Child Protective Services visited the home of Laura and Carrie, did a “home study,” and approved Laura as the best placement for the child.
Laura and Carrie talked; they were not sure whether to accept this brand new infant who was going through drug withdrawals. In nine months, if everything went well, they would have another newborn in their house. Unsure if Carrie would be able to carry their baby to term, given her history of miscarriages, they decided this may be their only chance for having a baby together. They accepted baby Samantha and she was dropped off with a package of diapers and a bottle.
Together Laura and Carrie took care of baby Samantha. They were up all night rocking, singing and doing whatever they could to comfort the drug-addicted baby. Eventually, the withdrawals passed and Laura adopted baby Samantha. Meanwhile, Carrie’s pregnancy progressed to term and baby Alexander was born.
Now, the women had two babies; a newborn and nine-month-old Samantha. The nursery had two cribs, the kitchen had two high chairs, and the stroller was a double.
The babies grew up together and were inseparable. When it came time for Samantha to move to the “two’s” room at day care, Alexander cried and stared into the next room. The day care eventually relented and put the two together.
After Carrie’s parents came and moved her out of Laura’s house, Samantha cried for her brother every day.
She placed a stuffed animal in his car seat and he became her imaginary friend. She had not only lost one of her mothers, she had lost her brother. The same is true for baby Alexander and there is nothing that Laura can do to change that.
After Alexander was born, the women went to see an adoption attorney to finalize Samantha’s adoption with Laura as her mother. They asked the adoption attorney how they could be sure that if something happened to one of them, the other would be designated the primary parent for Alexander and Samantha. They executed a con-joint parenting agreement.
It gave Laura the right to make health care, educational, and all the day to day decisions for the care and custody of Alexander.
However, this power of attorney has since been revoked, and Carrie as the sole custodial parent has cut off all contact between Laura, Samantha and Alexander.