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“Everything I lived through in my life led me to Mia”: Gay man in Argentina shares his story of fatherhood

As I stood outside listening to the words, “You have been chosen,” total shock overtook me. At no other moment in my life had I felt that much joy. “Do you want to meet Mia,” they asked. I yelled, “Yes,” and rushed back to the hospital.

  • 10 months ago
  • June 17, 2023
5 min read
Pablo Fracchia always wanted to be a father, but feared he may never get the chance. When the Equal Marriage Law passed in 2010 in Argentina, he signed up to adopt and met his precious daughter Mia. Pablo Fracchia always wanted to be a father, but feared he may never get the chance. When the Equal Marriage Law passed in 2010 in Argentina, he signed up to adopt and met his precious daughter Mia. | Photo courtesy of Pablo Fracchia
INTERVIEW SUBJECT
Pablo Fracchia is a volunteer firefighter, activist, and member of the Red Cross. In 2016, he traveled to Lebanon for two months as part of a humanitarian mission with the Cascos Blancos organization. He worked with Syrian refugees during the war. As soon as he turned 14, he knew he wanted to dedicate his life to helping others. He took part in the fight to pass the Equal Marriage Law, prompting him to think of fatherhood more seriously. At the age of 30, he adopted Mia.
BACKGROUND INFROMATION
According to the Human Rights Campaign, 34 countries have legalized gay marriage. Countries that appear to be on the verge of enacting laws include the Czech Republic, India, Japan, Philippines, and Thailand. In many other countries around the world, according to the Council on Foreign Relations, criminalize homosexuality. Some even impose a death penalty. Statista provides a worldwide map of government regulation of adoption by LGBTQ+ individuals and couples.

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina – In the 1990s, most people in my community saw being gay as shameful, a source of ridicule. I battled guilt as a teenager for being this way, keeping the truth hidden for a long time. Family spoke fondly of my kindness and said, “You will make a great father one day,” but I did not believe it could ever happen.

At 14, I found my destiny to help others. I began working at the Volunteer Fire Department and the Red Cross. While coming out as gay proved difficult, it also offered the opportunity to pour that volunteerism into LGBTQ+ organizations. A motivation stirred within me, to make a mark on the world.

Together, we saw to it that the Equal Marriage Law passed in Argentina. With adoption finally a possibility, once again, I envisioned being a father. Determined to start a family, I launched the process to adopt a child. When Mia came into my life, it felt like a miracle.

Read more stories from Argentina at Orato World Media

Finally realizing my dream of fatherhood 

I waited around for some time, hoping a partner would appear in my life to adopt a child with. The time never came, and I grew tired. Being a father meant everything to me, so I decided to forge forward on my own.

I researched the process relentlessly and consulted with friends who worked in the justice system. I needed to know more about single parent adoption. At night, I read endless forms and imagined moving forward, but fear held me back. When the courage finally came, I filled out the paperwork and dropped it off at Family Court, on top of a tower of other forms.

The moment I left the building, the tears began to flow down my face. After so many, long years, I finally did it. I sat through interviews with an agent who told me adopting an older child could quicken the process. I accepted that and waited for a call. A few months later, a voice on the other side of the phone spoke the words I waited to hear. A young baby girl living in a hospital needed a home.

A surge of emotion swept through my being and tears flooded my face. “I’m finally going to be a father,” my mind shouted. I traveled to the hospital for the official meeting, full of anticipation. The officials sat me down and explained the situation. This 18-month-old baby girl was already a survivor. She endured intestinal problems which nearly took her life. She lived in the hospital for a year and a half as she healed. The moment I heard her story I felt an urgency to be there for her. 

As soon as I saw Mia I knew, I would love her for as long as I lived 

I sat in the room with the agent at the hospital, answering all of the interview questions; but when I left, my confidence waned. I worried it might not happen. Fifteen minutes later, the phone rang. As I stood outside listening to the words, “You have been chosen,” total shock overtook me. At no other moment in my life had I felt that much joy. “Do you want to meet Mia,” they asked. I yelled, “Yes,” and rushed back to the hospital.

I opened the office door and saw Mia, in the arms of the nurse, and my eyes welled up with tears. I kept saying, “You are so beautiful,” over and over again. While Mia could not yet walk or talk, she guided me every step of the way. Being so young and frail, they needed to keep her at the hospital a little while longer. Every single day after work, I rushed to her side.

Pablo working for the Red Cross | Photo courtesy of Pablo Fracchia

On my third visit, they allowed me to go see her at the baby playground – a place in the hospital where she played with the other children. As I walked down the hall toward her, Mia heard my footsteps. She poked her head out to see who it was. When Mia saw me coming, a huge smile formed on her beautiful face. She dropped everything and crawled towards me. At that moment, it became clear: we chose each other.

Right then and there, in that hospital hallway, she fulfilled my dream. I still feel overwhelming joy whenever I think back on our first meeting. Today, I live happily with my precious daughter Mia in our wonderful home. It feels like it was meant to be. Everything I lived through in my life, led me to Mia. For that, I am eternally grateful. 

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Translations provided by Orato World Media are intended to result in the end translated document being understandable in the end language. Although every effort is made to ensure our translations are accurate we cannot guarantee the translation will be without errors.

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