Gay Belgian Couple Reunite with Son Stranded for Two Years in Ukrainian Orphanage


Laurent Ghilain and Peter Meurrens, a Belgian couple living in Southern France, had been separated from their son Samuel, whom they had through a surrogate, for two years and three months because the Belgian embassy in Kiev refused to issue Samuel a passport due to restrictive surrogacy laws and anti-gay officials in Belgium. Samuel had been living in a Ukrainian orphanage while they fought for his release.

The couple was reunited with their son at the Brussels airport on Saturday.


  1. says

    Two years in a Ukranian orphanage? Holy crap. So much for “what’s best for the children”. Hopefully the little nugget won’t remember much of it as he grows older.

    A long-belated congratulations to the happy family. :)

  2. Den says

    I wish the family every happiness and trust that the poor little child will find real personal human love in his life now.

    As a shallow aside, re; the dad holding the kid. YES I WOULD :)

  3. says

    One of them is French, the other a Belgian.

    An international petition was available for us to ask the Belgian foreign ministry and the European Court of Justice to hear their case.

    I do not know the particulars leading to the resolution of this issue…but as one of the fathers of three adopted boys (ages 19-10) I cannot express my delight at the happy resolution of this deserving couple’s plight!

  4. says


    “We’re going to keep your biological child away from you because you’re gay.”

    Didn’t Belgium sign the UN Declaration of Children’s AND human Rights?

    I mean I can agree with the passport issue getting lost in the system, but at one point in time over 2 years, this had to have reached someone with authority to make the right decision who didn’t because they hate teh gayz or because they’re a closet-case themselves.

  5. JAMES in Toronto says

    They’re all beautiful, together.

    In every photo I’ve seen, the dad holding the child is strong, handsome, stalwart.

    …but “33” in back? He transparently shows every emotion.

    Finally, this time, I like what he’s showing.

  6. Bernadette says

    I can’t believe this. In what times do we live that holding a child captive for two years in an orphanage although the boy has parents that love him and can care for him is legal? I hope the parents sue and I hope the boy doesn’t grow up having abandonment issues. Poor kid. Do you know how awful the orphanages in Ukraine are? It’s wonderful that they’re finally reunited. So many sick and heartless assholes in this world.

  7. John B. says

    This is such a sad story. I wish them well but that poor child is probably screwed up for life, having spent two of her most important formative years without the love, attention, and teaching of her parents–or of any parents. (And if she does have any developmental or emotional problems they will be blamed on her gay dads, certainly not on the circumstances of her first two years of life.) And yet this is what our opponents would have us believe is better: children growing up in foster homes and orphanages, without any parents at all, rather than being adopted by loving same-sex couples.

  8. D.R.H. says

    John, I don’t know about you but I can’t remember the first two years of my life. This is a terribly unfortunate situation for their family but do you really think the kid is “screwed for life”? I’m sure he’ll only ever know what his daddies told him about it.

  9. Barry says

    The gravity of this father’s face as he holds his child safely after their unjust separation is the fleeting stuff of great photojournalism as well as great art. Goya himself could not hae painted a fiercer or more beautiful portrait of wounded outrage and rapt new determination than we see in this man’s eyes.

  10. John says

    Wondeful – and sad- story. Also not surprised that, since looks make the gay world go round, some of the shallow princesses here gave in to there unbearable compulsion to comment on “hotness”.

  11. jp says

    Yes, “John” shame on us – you know all the commenters what just couldn’t bear not to mention how unbelievably photogenic the man is. Oh except you, but of course you did too, didn’t you?

  12. Pup says

    That poor little kid.
    Lucky to have such a hot daddy though.
    I am glad they are all back together.

    Maybe someday I will be united with a hot Ukranian daddy like that!
    One can only hope!

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