Enter your email address to receive our daily LGBT news roundup

You're free to unsubscribe at any time.

Gay father wins joint custody of children

Post your comment

Comments on this article are now closed.

Reader comments

  1. I would suggest to lesbian couples out there who are interested in having children to go the anonymous donor route to avoid this kind of turmoil.
    I hope this gay father faces the reality that these children do have two mommies, not just a mommy and her “partner”. There is a difference. Best of luck to all involved.

  2. Indeed, this man must be quite a piece of work. Firstly he advertises to help a couple, and then changes his mind and moves to to seek custody over the kids who are already in a supportive two parent environment. Its selfish twats like this man who will ultimately play into the hands of those religious lunatics to “demonstrate” how we have no regard for the welfare of children.

  3. The Father stated in the original advertisement that he wanted some involvement in his childrens lives. The Father should be involved. It’s no different than a divorced family who share custody. So stop acting like the Dad has no rights. He does.

  4. “So stop acting like the Dad has no rights. He does.”

    The right to involvement is not the right to split a family up, as this selfish fool has done, so spare me the poor father bit. This is not a divorce case where they were living together in the first place. He is exercising his “biological right” over the well-being of this children who are in a stable family unit.

  5. Michael Furniss 2 Dec 2010, 3:55pm

    Obviously, the mother and her partner, having got what they wanted, were seeking to renege on the deal they made with the father. I’m glad he had the guts to stick up for his rights.

  6. The judge is talking most sense here. Children are terribly damaged by this sort of conflict over them. The man must accept as a simple reality that the mother’s partner will play a big part in their lives and the women must accept that he too has an important role which he certainly has played financially and practically so far. All three must be responsible and sensitive enough to avoid voicing negative attitudes about the other carers to the children.
    L&G people should think very, very, hard and do as much detailed negotiation as possible before entering into these arrangements.

  7. Were the lesbian couple even together when the woman became pregnant? It does not state this in the artlcle If not then the father should obviously have more rights than the stepmother.

    In their agreement he did say he wanted ‘a little involvement’ in his children’s lives. That’s a much easier promise to make before the children are born and a bond and a relationship has formed between the father and his kids.

    I certainly don’t condemn him for seeking more regular access to his children.

    And for the people calling him ‘selfish’ – well I don’t consider him any more selfish than the lesbian couple.

    Why were they not able to settle this maturely, as adults, in an amicable manner outside of court.

  8. Michael Furniss : “Obviously, the mother and her partner, having got what they wanted, were seeking to renege on the deal they made with the father”

    There is no obviously about it at all, that’s simply speculation, and suspect you’re projecting your on bias here.

    From the fact in this article, the father had every right to see his children, but I agree with Will, he stepped outside this original agreement and broke up what seems to be a family unit, and so I too see this as a selfish act.

    Its also noteworthy that suddenly the form is full of men mostly siding with the father and I would love to hear the opinions of some lesbian parents on this.

  9. I have not read the decision. This appears to be a reasonable decision. Courts should act in the best interests of children and that is the end of the matter. Nor do I understand why men should be treated as a commodity. My personal view is that any agreement that excludes the biological father – and that is what he is whether the mother likes it or not – is unfair and unreasonable to the child. The flip side is that all fathers should be required to support their children.

  10. One further comment. I think these agreements prior to the birth of the child tend to treat the child as a commodity. Having a gay family whether that is made up of two men or two women and their children does not exclude the continued involvement of the biological parent. So my view is rather simple. If you are two men and two women who want children and do not wish the biological parent to be involved, do not have children as such behaviour is not in the best interest of children.

  11. “So my view is rather simple.”

    Unfortunately very simple. While everyone has a biological parent, they are not necessarily in the interest of the children to always have them involved. Maybe you should meet some abused children and see if they accept you simplistic principles that they should be placed with abusive “natural” parents, because that’s always best?

    The problem with simple views is, well, they simple.

  12. >>do not wish the biological parent to be involved, do not have children as such behaviour is not in the best interest of children.<<
    If I could go back in time and remove my father from the equation just after his "function" in getting my baby sister started, I would. He was definitely not in the best interest of the children, let alone most of humanity. I know there are many good fathers out there, but there is no guarantee.

  13. 152 days a year? Straight fathers don’t even get that. Seems a lot that. Fathers for Justice maybe should use this case as a precedent.

  14. Yes, the 152 days surprised me too. I think there may be more to this than we know, therefore I’m not going to speculate on who’s right and wrong. But the interests of the child should alawys be paramount and I object to ANY parent using their child as a weapon to harm the other parent(s).

    RJP is right. Why didn’t they use a donor if they didn’t want a father to be involved? That’s the most onbvious choice, surely? Making another arrangement is more unusual and they must have made a decision to choose that way for whatever reasons.

  15. TheSuburbanBi 3 Dec 2010, 12:17pm

    I just want to interject that the “best interests of the child” language is on the face of it the most sensible and sane approach, but the way that phrase is often weilded works to set parents/adults in the child’s life in opposition to the child. People often speak as if the health, happiness, sanity and stability of the parents are somehow an addendum to the “best interests of the child” or somehow necessarily at odds. That is certainly not the case. I just think that a lot of times the phrase is thrown in to a conversation to make the adults seems like selfish fools for focusing on issues they feel are important for the family overall.

    From what I have read about this specific case, there is tension between the biological father (who only originally wanted limited involvement in the children’s lives) and the biological mother’s partner. It has been said in previous articles that he does not trust the mothers’ partner as a parent and he worked to basically break the mothers up. Pressuring the biological mother to dump her partner, because of his estimation of her worth to the family.

    There’s never been any evidence the woman is harmful or dangerous to the children, but his dislike and distrust of her appears to be what has driven this entire situation. He therefore started to take a larger role than he originally said he would, in teh children’s lives, in order to offset what he perceived to be the negative influence of the mother’s partner.

    That is why the biological mother has made the statements she has about him needing to realise that her partner is not going anywhere and he cannot push her out of the picture.

    Again, just what I have culled from other articles and this one.

  16. Previous guidance I’ve read cites that since April 2009 if two mothers conceive through artificial means, then in effect, they are the two parents. The child then can have access to the father at the age of 18. Logically, how does this ruling fit in with this newest trend / legislation, set by the Embryology Act 2008? Truth be told, it doesn’t fit. I suspect this ruling has a lot to do with the judicial process siding the usual rhetoric traditional right wing rubbish that having a father involved is better for the children’s upbringing. Also once again proves that lesbian couples are indeed at odds with a sexist society, where the father has demanded court action because his income probably exceeds the lesbian couple’s, and he can afford to take such action. That final remark is speculative, but worth stating! Finally lesbian couples, thanks to the Embryology Act, many diverse solicitors and LGBT groups, are far more informed about their choices post-2008. This case should be a lesson learnt to all prospective LGBT parents out there!

  17. “the usual rhetoric traditional right wing rubbish that having a father involved is better for the children’s upbringing.”

    While i accept that the right wing press babble on about having a father involved is better for a child’s upbringing, it’s also worth pointing out that having a father involved in a child’s upbringing isn’t automatically bad for a child as some people imply.

    ” Also once again proves that lesbian couples are indeed at odds with a sexist society, where the father has demanded court action because his income probably exceeds the lesbian couple’s, and he can afford to take such action. ”
    As for the nonsense that this case proves that lesbian couples are at odds with sexist society – I have never heard such rubbish. It is proven beyond all reasonable doubt that when it comes to child custody it is men who are at odds with a sexist society – a society which automatically assumes that a child is better off with its mother.

    Ever heard of the group Fathers 4 Justice? They don’t exist because the system is fair. They exist because the courts and society makes it extremelly difficult for fathers to maintain contact with their children. For every deadbeat dad out there, I reckon there are 3 very interested fathers who want more contact with their children but they can’t because their ex-wives or partners simply don’t want the inconvenience of their continued presence in theis lives.

    “That final remark is speculative,”

    Indeed. Perhaps the mother’s partner is a drug abusing, alcoholic. That also is speculation.

  18. “it’s also worth pointing out that having a father involved in a child’s upbringing isn’t automatically bad for a child as some people imply”

    It’s also worth pointing out that having a father involved in a child’s upbringing isn’t automatically good either.

    But this case is about an individual splitting up a family unit for his on benefit, where the is no evidence of maltreatment on behalf of the parents. This is not about divorce. It is not about abused children. It is about a man who changed him mind and reneged on an agreement, and did everything he could to successfully deprive his children of the stable family, and two parents, they were used to for 50% of the year.

    Its sounds to me David that you are not able to see this situation from an objective position, but a biased one considering you keep going on about ex-wives and divorce when it is utterly irrelevant to this particular situation.

  19. @RJP, The gentleman had advertised in order to find a suitable mother, because he wanted to be a father with the arrangement of shared custody. The mother responded to the very same ad. Neither parties were looking for a simple donor or surrogate. They both walked into the arrangement knowing that both parties would be playing an active role in the child’s life. There is no reason why both biological parents cannot be Mum and Dad and their partners seen as the step parents.

  20. A share of 15x days a year is not “little involvement.” The’ man had a change of heart and the judges ruled in his favor accordingly. Truth is, joint custody is generally hard and unfair for kids of divorced couples. Needless to say, Joint custody among an established couple and a donor is horrendous and could significantly undermine the stability of an already stable family.

  21. PumpkinPie 4 Dec 2010, 8:50pm

    A share of 15x days a year is not “little involvement.” The’ man had a change of heart and the judges ruled in his favor accordingly. Truth is, joint custody is generally hard and unfair for kids of divorced couples. Needless to say, Joint custody among an established couple and a donor is horrendous and could significantly undermine the stability of an already stable family.

    Very much agree with this. The biological father says he wants “a little involvement” (how are so many people missing this bit?), the mothers bring the children up through the pre-school years, then the biological father all of a sudden decides that, actually, he wants the full joint custody arrangement.

    The judge’s ruling made no sense. It’s far too extreme.

  22. Succubus Evaligan 27 Feb 2011, 7:12am

    I think it was totally unfair to lesbian mothers.
    Both women are married, were a couple.

    We all know how the case was over, if the same situation was between a heterosexual couple and a heterosexual sperm donor.
    This gay man, just go to harass and create conflicts within a lesbian family already established.
    It is quite clear that this man is an egoist.

    Also, what does the word ‘donor’?
    donor [dictionary]
    n
    1. a person who makes a donation
    2. (Medicine) Med any person who voluntarily gives blood, skin, a kidney etc., for use in the treatment of another person
    3. (Law) Law
    a. a person who makes a gift of property
    b. a person who bestows upon another a power of appointment over property.

    The mother was nine months pregnant, breast-feeding experiment and the children grew up next to their mothers.
    But this man has privileges just for being gay.

    In short, a gay man who donates sperm can harass and try to take away your children.
    A lesbian has to use an anonymous donor (in other words

These comments are un-moderated and do not necessarily represent the views of PinkNews.co.uk. If you believe that a comment is inappropriate or libellous, please contact us.

Top commenters this week

Latest stories

See all