On the Resolution of Drama and Being a Legal Quasi-Parental Figure

Well the drama has resolved itself much more quickly than I expected.

Here's the backstory that I didn't post earlier:

Kristin applied to the only Master's of Social Work program in the state. They rejected her, even though her credentials are IMPRESSIVE. So, back in April she marched right into the program's head honcho's office and demanded to know why they had rejected her -- especially since they had admitted several people that Kristin had TRAINED and were much less qualified than she is.

Well, the guy admitted that Kristin's application hadn't even been scored. No one had even considered it! He looked through it right then and agreed that it was a very impressive application, and he couldn't see anything that could have been done better, and no, he couldn't say why she hadn't been admitted or why the application hadn't been scored. So does he correct all this by admitting her right then? No. He places her on the waiting list. And not even in the #1 slot. No. He ERASES someone else from the #10 spot and sticks Kristin there. And then tells her that she'll probably get in and he might be able to tell her in July.

Well, in order to advance in her career, Kristin needs this degree. And this is the only program in the state. So Kristin went into this guy's office every other week all summer long to let him see her face, and to stress to this person that she would REALLY like in the program. All summer long it's been evasion, put-offs, and conflicting information. Finally the Director told her to just show up on the first day of school and someone was bound to have a nervous breakdown and she could take that spot. Lovely plan, don't you think?

So yesterday was the first day of school. Orientation. And Kristin decided to be bold and take the man up on his suggestion. This is where the drama comes in. IF they decided to take her then we would be staying put, but if -- after EVERYTHING -- they still didn't let her in she was going to be applying to schools out of the state and we were going to get the hell out of dodge.

They accepted her. She started classes today. She even got a scholarship out of the deal.

So we're staying here.

The other variable in our drama and moving decision was our co-guardianship application. Our hearing was this morning. Now, we were nervous. Every lesbian couple with kids (who didn't outright adopt from another state) we know has paid a certain lawyer a great deal of money to take care of their co-guardianship petitions. This particular lawyer is very good, and very well respected in our community. I'm not saying she's a bad woman. But I have a very strong suspicion of the motives of most of the lawyers in our community -- particularly the lawyers who make a damn fine living off the LGBT population's lack of protected status in Utah. Also, she wouldn't do guardianship for us unless we let her re-do all our wills, Powers of Attorney, parenting agreements, and so on. All for a fee, of course. We didn't want to pay several thousand dollars to re-do our documents just to get her help with our co-guardianship application. Finally, in talking with our friends, it seems that this lawyer is very fear-based. She is VERY leery about known donors and some friends of ours who used a known donor let her convince them to push him out of their lives. That decision has backfired in a very troubling way and now they're regretting the decision to abandon him. We don't like to live that way. We certainly refuse to treat our donor like that. So we decided to go this route alone. It felt a bit like whistling in the dark.

Our hearing was this morning. My parents and our good friend, Jen, came with us. When our turn came Kristin and Julia and I approached the bench. I was prepared to answer questions about why I would want guardianship. Kristin was prepared to answer questions about why she wanted to share guardianship. We had copies of our donor contract in case the natural father came up. My parents and Jen were there to vouch for my character, our intentions, and/or the stability of our family if need be.

Nothing like that was necessary. The judge looked at us, asked Kristin if she consented, and then granted our petition. He didn't even bang a gavel! It was all just a bit anti-climactic. He moved on to the next case and we all filed out of the courtroom, took pictures in front of the big doors (I'll post the pic later), and headed off for breakfast. Kristin and I will go back to the courthouse later this afternoon and pick up our guardianship letters and it'll be a done deal. I even cried a bit, but not till I was back in the car. Two little drops was I was waiting on a red light.

Needless to say, if the guardianship hadn't been granted then we might have re-thought our decision to remain here while Kristin finishes her degree and supervised hours.

So, I am now a legal quasi-parent! Hip hip Hooray!!! I can put Julia on my health insurance and create a flex spending account for her childcare!

AND we may have found a way to adopt our children WITHOUT moving out of state. That would be the best thing. I hate the thought of leaving my family. But more on that later (or not, depending on how shady it is).

Next steps in our plan to Have it All -- get pregnant, get into a distance MLIS program, get more of my writing published, investigate semi-shady legal loophole, get Kristin through school, continue to save to start our co-housing community (not necessarily in that order).

Posted by Trista @ 11:59 AM

Read or Post a Comment

Congrats to Kristen on the master's program. And congrats on the semi-legal, not-quite-a-"real"-parent status (you know I mean that tounge-in-cheek, you're very much "real"). T's name change was about as anti-climactic.

Posted by Blogger Blondie @ 1:02 PM #

Oh yeah!!! Congratulations you guys! That is so cool that Kristin got in. Way to be persistant. Also happy co- gaurdianship to you. I knew you wouldn't have a problem. Sorry we couldn't be there to support you guys, but I was thinking about you at 8:30. I really hope you guys can find a way to stay in Utah. I know it ain't great here, but we love you guys. We look forward to our Friday nights with ya. As our kids get older there is so much fun to be had together.

Posted by Anonymous Anonymous @ 1:11 PM #

Hooray for HAVING IT ALL! And many, many CONGRATS to both of you for some momentous milestones!!!!!!!!! YAY! YAY!
(Please overlook my disgusting overuse of the exclamation points, but I turly felt they were warranted.)

Posted by Blogger Brooke @ 2:01 PM #

That is such wonderfully good news! I am so very happy for you all around.

Posted by Blogger K. @ 2:36 PM #

Yikes! What a lot of drama!!!

Congratulations to both of you, and way to go that Kristin stood up for herself and made the grad program happen.

Posted by Anonymous Liza @ 2:46 PM #

Damn this was a fine day!
So thrilled that K was accepted AND that they are giving some finaincial help. They should pay the whole she-bang for the way that they gave her the runaround.

& loud, booming, HURRAH for the great day in court. I am glad that it was anti-climatic.

You are certainly ready to have it ALL, girl.

So happy for you!

Posted by Blogger Calliope @ 2:54 PM #

What a great day! Congrats to both of you it is so very well deserved.

Posted by Anonymous benji @ 3:21 PM #


What a fantastic day! Congrats to both of you!

Posted by Blogger art-sweet @ 5:35 PM #

Well, I'm very happy for Kristin, and for the three of you as a family, but a part of me was hoping you have to move here, you know, to MY state and attend MY MLIS program. Oh well, one can dream can't one? :o)

Posted by Blogger hd @ 6:57 PM #

Yay!!!!! I am giving you all mental hugs right now. Don't they feel soft?

Posted by Blogger Lauri @ 11:00 PM #

Congratulations! I'm very happy that the judge so sensibly felt no need to question your family. How exciting that you're thinking of an MLIS - I must have missed that in your earlier posts or maybe you didn't mention it. I finished one a couple of years ago and enjoyed every second of it. I'd recommend my school but they don't have a distance program.

Posted by Anonymous Anne at reflexiveverb @ 12:06 AM #

WOW! Congrats to both of you!

Posted by Blogger Sarah and BB @ 12:36 AM #

What wonderful, and utterly momentous news. Congrats to you all on two such big steps forward.

Posted by Blogger Tamsin @ 6:34 AM #

Fantastic news for you guys on both fronts, congrats!!

Posted by Anonymous Amy @ 7:01 AM #

Wonderful! Congrats to Kristin. And there really are few things as wonderful as a totally not momentous day in court, especially when you have worried and worried about it. We have a good story like that but I don't like to share it online for fear of exposing loopholes. But I know that relief feeling well. Congratulations all of you!

Posted by Anonymous bri @ 7:58 AM #

Phew, Phew and MAZAL TOV!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by Blogger Shelli @ 9:03 AM #

What good news!

Posted by Blogger Faith @ 9:31 AM #

YAY!!!!!!! Congratulations on the co-guardianship achievement!!!

That is great news!!!!!!

Posted by Blogger Sublime @ 10:26 AM #
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