This Article will explore how LGBT family formation has evolved since the Stonewall Riots. The primary means for LGBT families to build their families, other than traditional intercourse between a man and a woman, were and continue to be through adoption and Assisted Reproductive Technologies (“ART”). In the world of assisted reproduction, typically a lesbian couple or a single woman use donor sperm, either known or unknown, coupled with artificial insemination. Gay men traditionally utilize a traditional or true surrogate (who is genetically related to the child) along with artificial insemination using the sperm of an intended father. As medical technologies in the field of reproduction developed, especially the development of in vitro fertilization (“IVF”) and embryo transfers, more men turned towards assisted reproduction via the use of a gestational carrier along with donor egg, either known or unknown, combined with the sperm of one intended father. This gestational carrier process is less risky than using a true surrogate who is the genetic mother. Additionally, more lesbian couples started to utilize reciprocal IVF whereby one mom contributes her egg, becoming the genetic mom, while the other gestates the embryo formed from that egg along with donor sperm. Overtime, medical advances have opened wider doors for LGBT family formation options.
Colleen M. Quinn,
Riding the Storm Out after the Stonewall Riots: Subsequent Waves of LGBT Rights In Family Formation and Reproduction,
U. Rich. L. Rev.
Available at: https://scholarship.richmond.edu/lawreview/vol54/iss3/4