our community helped us immensely. friends showed up with food and diapers; they babysat and helped us learn how to be great parents to these two amazing children. we made it through many court cases, and faced a system that is not designed to be friendly to two gay men raising traumatized kids. but through all of those obstacles, we were still granted emergency guardianship, then permanent guardianship. every investigator and judge we faced ruled in our favor; everyone agreed that we are a loving, healthy home in which hailey and riley are thriving.
our family now qualifies for adoption. when this stage is complete, our family will be secure forever. we will never have to worry about our guardianship being challenged. we will finally be able to change all of our last names-- hailey will no longer share a name with her birth father, who hasn't even tried to see her since she has been in our care. we will be able to build a healthy relationship with their mother, and she can be in their lives, and ours, in a positive way that enables us to tell them their story in an empowering, clear way.
we are still paying off the legal fees from our first court cases. we simply cannot afford to go into more debt at this time in our lives-- we wouldn't be able to afford the monthly payments. we are asking the community that we love so dearly to help push us over the finish line.
it will cost $1500 for our lawyer to get started on the adoption filing. our lawyer is working at a reduced rate, because she believes in our family, but even at a discount, legal representation is expensive.
a full home study includes mountains of paperwork, including a background check and financial disclosures and personal reference checks. it will cost $2000. we are using a well-respected non-profit, so we know the california courts will accept the investigation as valid.
this total of $3500 can make the difference between us worrying about the stability and security of our little family, and being able to tell the kids that we are their forever home. legal adoption takes the luck out of our family's stability. it means that they are safe and secure with us, even if other people change their minds about what roles they want to play in the kids' lives. our minds will never change-- we are dedicated to them for the rest of our lives. if we are so blessed to raise more than our goal, that money will go towards paying off our existing legal bill.
help us live into our commitment, and say "i do" to completing our adoption.
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