Living a lie

By Ruth Limkin

When we deny what we know to be true, we create problems.

When we claim what we know to be a lie as being the truth, we create a whole new set of problems.

When the government is complicit with us in doing so, we start to construct an imaginary world which is both insecure and inherently implausible.

We have done just this in the state of Queensland, and we are just starting to hear whispers of the pain we are causing.

It’s been one year since a child was born, to a surrogate mother, and handed over to a same-sex male couple. In a highly controversial, and rushed political debate in February 2010, the Queensland government voted to ‘allow the legal parentage of the child to be transferred from the birth mother to the intending parents’.

The two men are listed on the birth certificate as the legal parents. The surrogate mother, who used her own egg, is not listed.

And she has had nothing but heartache and regret every day since she handed over the child.

She recently spoke out, saying, “I never thought having a child and giving him away would make me feel like this. I regret everything, I don’t regret [the baby] Connor, I regret the decision very much, I just wish I’d never done it.”

The situation has caused tension between the birth mother and the two male parents, who had been friends.

Said one male parent, Matt, “We went into this just wanting to be parents and not having a third parent.”

The other male parent, Bentley, said he “still pinches himself each day now that his dream of having a child had finally been realised. Sometimes you’d get to a point where you think you’re not going to have kids because how can two men have kids?”

That’s just the point.

No matter how lovely two men may be, they can’t have kids.

There always has to be a man and a woman to make a baby. For the government to create and allow a situation where legal documentation lists two men on the birth certificate is denying truth, and giving a lie legal standing.

This is not responsible governing, and it is most certainly not protecting and advancing the rights of children. It is treating children as objects to be given away, at the whim of adults who want something….. and demand the right to have it.

Changing legal parentage to two people of the same sex, and on an official government document, denies the child the opportunity to ever know their biological parent, forcing them to live with the lie that their ‘parents’ and their government conspired in.

We are failing our children when we do not even legally acknowledge who their biological parents really are.

Shame on us.