Daddy Squared Around The World: Brazil
Daddy Squared: The Gay Dads Podcast looks at gay rights and fatherhood options in Brazil. We talked with Brazilian Senator and gay dad Fabiano Contarato, to get a taste of what it’s like being a gay dad in Brazil, and researched options for Brazilian gay men who want to become dads.
Brazil has a constitution that guarantees equal rights under the law for all Brazilians regardless of background or sexual identity. “But in actuality,” says Senator Fabiano Contarato, “it is a country that unfortunately is racist, sexist, classist and homophobic. Especially in terms of the nuclear families, I would say that in terms of the prejudices that we experience as gay men and other LGBTQIA+ it is our nuclear families that eventually has the most prejudice against our kind.”
“I will say that within Brazilian society, if a gay man is able to gain better position of power, we do end up gaining more rights within society,” The Senator adds.
It wasn’t until 2019 that the Brazilian supreme court gave equal standing status to homophobic attacks at the same plain of race-based attacks. And it wasn’t until 2020 that the federal tribunal in Brazil allowed for LGBTQA people to donate blood. “The rights of LGBTQA people in Brazil were not gained through the normal means of legislation,” says Senator Contarato, “but through the supreme court where we would have to fight for the rights.”
Fabiano Contarato is currently married and has two children through adoption. As the first ever LGBT senator elected, he contributes a lot to the visibility of LGBT people in Brazil in general, and same-sex parents in particular. “Despite all the prejudice I was able to work at the police force and as a law professor,” he says. “I was able to be elected as Senator and have more votes than the current governor.”
Our Guest: Fabiano Contarato
Fabiano Contarato is the first openly LGBT person to be elected for the Brazilian Senate. He was the most voted candidate for the Brazilian Senate in the state of Espírito Santo during the 2018 Brazilian general election, with over one million votes. He’s a Brazilian law professor, a former police chief, he lives with his husband and two adopted children.
Ouça a entrevista completa e não editada com o senador Fabiano Contarato em português. No estúdio em Los Angeles estão pais gays e o casal Yan e Alex, com o tradutor para o português Mario Guevara-Martinez
Adoption for Gay Men in Brazil
Adoption is legal in Brazil following a supreme court decision in 2010. The procedure is relatively simple, and begins with submitting an application for qualifying for adoption at the Children’s and Youth Court of the city where the gay single or couple resides.
They then present an initial petition containing: complete qualification, family data, certified copies of birth or marriage certificate or statement relating to the period of common-law marriage, copies of RG and CPF, proof of income and residence, certificate of physical and mental health, criminal record certificate and civil distribution clearance certificate.
The maximum period for completing the qualification for adoption is 120 days, which can be extended for an equal period.
Surrogacy for Gay Men in Brazil
Commercial surrogacy is not allowed in Brazil, as the Constitution prohibits the commercialization of organs and tissues. However, since there is no specific law expressly prohibiting such a reproductive technique, surrogacy may be performed altruistically.
The Surrogate must be a family member of the first, second, third, or fourth degree of one of the intended parents – and can’t be over 50 years old.
Similarly to the UK – the surrogate has parental rights, and so does her husband – and this is where problems can occur.
As far as going overseas for surrogacy — there’s no problem bring the baby back to Brazil. A birth certificate from the country of birth with both parents written as parents grants both parents legal rights for the child in Brazil as well.
Co-parenting is also stated by courts, and since 2014 it can be given to three people.
Men Having Babies
Understanding the relationship with your surrogate should be, could be, will be–is important. You can find out what the relationship that your surrogate wants by talking to her and being upfront. Before you start it, before you get the medical screening and certainly before you start your journey you have to figure out what’s important to you, what relationship you want and what sort of interaction with your surrogate you want throughout the journey, and when you talk to your potential surrogate see what she wants.
Men Having Babies Webinar: You and Your Surrogate
Gay Icon: Paulo Gustavo
Gustavo was a Brazilian actor, comedian, director, screenwriter, and a TV host. Coming out as gay in adolescence, in 2015, he married dermatologist Thales Bretas. Their twin boys were born via surrogacy in 2019. In May 2021 Gustavo died following complications of COVID-19.