Daddy Squared Around the World: South Africa
Daddy Squared: The Gay Dads Podcast looks at fatherhood options for gay men in South Africa. We talked with South African Power Couple Andrew and Brent (who are responsible for the first ever Primetime gay kiss on South African TV) about parenting options and rights for gay men in South Africa.
South Africa was pretty much at the forefront of human rights for the LGBTQI+ community. During the apartheid era, homosexuality was a crime and that was written into the law until 1994. Because of the African National Congress (ANC), the freedom fighters, and people who had really fought for democracy, equality, and human rights, they have passed laws that made homosexuality legal and shortly after also brought same-sex marriage to the South African constitution in 1996.
Daddy Squared: The Gay Dads Podcast returns for season 4, Around the World, to capture gay dads options and rights in a post-pandemic world. In each episode, Alex and Yan, a married couple and fathers of five-year-old twins, talk with gay dads from a different country, discussing equal rights and options for gay men.
By 2002 the Constitutional Court gave the right for same sex couples to adopt, and that was written into the Children’s Act in 2005. So adoption is legal for gay men in South Africa, surrogacy is legal too, and there’s no difference in the application process whether you are two dads or a mom and a dad. And in Andrew’s case, even marrying a woman and having kids with her is legal 🙂
Andrew and Brent have been co-parenting their two children with his former wife.
“I don’t believe that I would ever have imagined that I’d meet someone with children already,” Brent says. “I didn’t think that it’d be part of my life’s journey, but when I met Andrew the first night we went on a date, I knew he was the one, I knew that this was the guy for me and yes, we spoke about the fact that he had kids on that first date. He was very upfront about the fact that he had kids, and I didn’t let it disturb me, because I thought, I like this guy, I think that this relationship can go somewhere, maybe kids can be a bonus. Maybe having kids around can actually add value to my life.”
Adoption in South Africa
South Africa the only country in Africa to allow LGBT adoptions. There are approximately 1.8 million adoptive children in the country so if you want to start a family through adoption you would follow these steps:
- Orientation session where all the details are explained
- Fill out the application form and send it to the agency
- Set up a personal profile
- Apply for a police clearance certificate
- Undergo psychometric testing
- An interview with a social worker
- An interview with a panel of social workers
- Home visit
- Final Approval
- Wait for “the call” that matches you with a baby
Surrogacy in South Africa
In a country with high unemployment and high poverty rates it’s so easy to exploit the legality of surrogacy. The law is there to protect against that, and to have surrogacy in the country in the most ethical way possible.
Surrogacy in South Africa is highly protective of surrogates – surrogates are not allowed to get paid, and every surrogacy journey has to have a valid agreement that is approved by the court. There are a number of formal requirements when a woman considers becoming a surrogate in South Africa. The surrogate and her husband/partner must firstly be domiciled in South Africa. Read more about the South African requirements/laws on surrogacy
Many of the gay men who go through surrogacy in South Africa do use a surrogate who has some form of connection to them, whether she is a friend or a distant relative. “Of the four people that I spoke to, and this obviously not statistically valid, all four of the surrogates were personal friends of the gay couples,” Andrew says on Daddy Squared.
Our Guests: Andrew Ross and Brent Lindeque
Power Couple Andrew and Brent have been together for 13 years, and best known in South Africa from the TV reality show My Kitchen Rules. Brent is a journalist, best known for his GoodThingsGuy.com website, reaching over two million visitors a month, and his Cliffcentral show. He first made a splash in 2014 when he created the RAK initiative, aimed at giving back and helping those in need, which became a global phenomenon.
An entrepreneur, thought leader, and MD for two agencies, and a former musicals actor, Andrew works around the world in the fields of sponsorship, brand activation, experiential marketing and social media.
Related: Forget About New Year’s Resolutions: This Year We’re Setting Intentions! (Brent Lineque)
Gay Dads in South Africa: Related Articles and News
- The Journey of Surrogacy: 2 Dads and a Lad (JacarandaFM, October 5, 2021)
- Single fathers can now legally register a child born through surrogacy in SA (2021)
- Single father of baby born via surrogacy wants to be allowed to register daughter’s birth (2021)
- A court has refused to approve a surrogacy agreement between a gay couple and a woman – because one of the men is still in the closet (2017)
Men Having Babies
MHB has developed a framework for ethical surrogacy principles, protocols and best practices for intended parents.
Gay Icons from South Africa
Evita Bezuidenhout (Pieter-Dirk Uys)
Evita Bezuidenhout is a fictitious Afrikaner drag queen created by Pieter-Dirk Uys in the 1980s, using satire to overcome apartheid censorship and criticize the state. The character was imagined as the wife of an apartheid cabinet minister, she became the South African ambassador in the fictitious black homeland republic of Bapetikosweti. She interviewed Nelson Mandela on national television in 1994, addressed parliament in 1999 and is now a member of the ruling ANC. She has her own political party, Evita’s People’s Party, which focuses on voter education. Pieter-Dirk Uys regards her as his premier clown in the struggle against fear, racism and political correctness and says: ‘Just because she doesn’t exist doesn’t mean she’s not real’