Is there an adoption registration for disowned gay youth?
April 4, 2015 11:07 AM   Subscribe

I would totally be willing to take in a kid who has been disowned by his/her parents for being LBTG. Is there somewhere I could register for that? Note: I am legally married cisgender woman with three young children of my own. Not being gay myself, there should be no legal obstacles in that regard. I'm just trying to connect with a disowned population.
posted by wwartorff to Human Relations (6 answers total) 28 users marked this as a favorite
Are you willing to become a foster parent? You could seek placement of LGBT youth.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 11:10 AM on April 4, 2015 [8 favorites]

You could also look at places like the Ali Forney Center that provide housing for homeless LGBT youth. They will have social service workers that you could connect with.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 11:37 AM on April 4, 2015

You could also look into doing volunteer work at some kind of homeless services organization. From what I have read (and seen), LGBT youth being disowned leads to a higher incidence of homelessness among this population. That might not lead to a young person moving in with you per se, but it might let you provide support to such individuals.

Incidentally, a parenting website I used to run led to me being contacted by an LGBT youth who was in great need of support. I was not looking for anything like that, but did what I could to be supportive for the months the relationship lasted. So there are probably any number of ways to make that connection.
posted by Michele in California at 1:02 PM on April 4, 2015 [1 favorite]

I'm a foster parent and I was not ready to take on a teenager, but if I told my agency I was open to a queer teen they'd have a kid in my apartment tomorrow. Possibly even today.

The process of becoming a foster parent might make your head explode. But it is worth doing. If you're willing to foster a queer teen, there are probably 20 in a group home looking for a forever home right now.
posted by amandabee at 1:24 PM on April 4, 2015 [11 favorites]

Trans Housing Network is a site where people can post if they "need couch" or "have couch." There are folks there looking for both long-term and short-term living options. I don't see many under-18s (I follow their Tumblr feed) but I see lots of young adults in the 18-22 range needing places to stay.

Some cities have programs that place lgbt youth. Some friends of mine have hosted teens through Minneapolis's GLBT Host Home Program. I'm not familiar with programs in other cities but the program in Mpls or health centers and community centers that focus on LGBT issues, like the Mazzoni Center in Philadelphia, might be able to give you contact information for programs that might exist in your area.

Our family (also with three kids!) currently has a housemate who is a 20-year-old trans person who was expelled from college after a mental health crisis last fall. They have been cut off by their family and would have been homeless if we hadn't connected. Over the past six years or so, we've housed people four times, from 90 days to 18 months, and they have always come to us by word of mouth. We connected with our current housemate because they are on the other end of a friend-of-a-friend-of-a-friend chain and the knowledge that they needed a place to stay propagated from one end while the knowledge that we offer free housing to people in need propagated from the other end. There is a really huge need for this kind of thing among college-age youth, who are at a prime age for getting out of the family bubble, discovering new things about themselves, and getting cut off. If you don't want to go through becoming foster parents (though that is a great option), our experience suggests that generally just putting the word out that you are open to this will eventually bear fruit. Somebody in your extended network will hear of someone in need and will hook you up. Another option is to get in touch with LGBT offices or student groups at nearby colleges and tell them of your availability.
posted by not that girl at 3:26 PM on April 4, 2015 [17 favorites]

This is a great thing to do, and it's true that LGBTQ teens are a very high risk category for homelessness, suicide, and mental disorders.

There are many ways to help. To become a foster parent, you will need to be licensed by the state.

LGBTQ kids need positive support in their lives, so you should consider becoming a mentor. Kids who have mentors, someone with whom they meet usually weekly and hang out with for at least one year are statistically less likely to become at risk.

Contact the Queer Nebraska Youth Network. They can help you become a mentor.
posted by kinetic at 4:53 AM on April 5, 2015

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