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Jillian Michaels Adopts Haitian Girl, Partner Has Baby Boy

By Edward Tan, JD on May 24, 2012 | Last updated on March 21, 2019

Jillian Michaels recently adopted a 2-year-old girl, Lukensia, from Haiti.

The former "Biggest Loser" trainer and her partner, Heidi Rhoades, welcomed Lukensia only days after Rhoades gave birth to a boy on May 3. Michaels hasn't answered emails or done much of anything else other than care for her children, The Star-Ledger reports.

While Michaels and Rhoades were able to adopt a child, the road to becoming parents isn't always easy for same-sex couples.

Though gays and lesbians have likely adopted children throughout ages, their orientation might not always have been known. As time has progress, attitudes toward homosexual couples have begun to soften around the world.

However, even so, today there many social workers and adoption organizations still struggling with the notion of gay adoptive parents. That's surprising considering some estimate there are 20,000 children discharged annually from foster care without ever being adopted.

As far as the adoption procedure itself goes, the requirements aren't very strenuous. Typically, any single adult or couple may adopt a child. Many states don't have requirements beyond being a certain age. But some also require prospective parents to maintain residency in the state for generally about a year before they're eligible to adopt.

Data on children of same-sex couples is sparse. But it's estimated that in 1976, there were around 300,000 to 500,000 homosexual biological parents. In 1990, it was estimated that 6 to 14 million children had a homosexual parent.

While there's a growing amount of research on the fitness of gay and lesbian parents, much of the data is contradictory. This is likely due to bias as many of the studies are conducted by various political and religious groups.

Fortunately for Lukensia, her adoptive parents seem to only want the best for her and her new brother. "I want to be really present and enjoy all the nuances of their growth and development," Jillian Michaels said.

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