Pierce: Gays, straights both face 'The Baby Wait'
It's difficult to imagine a reality show with emotions more raw than "The Baby Wait." It's about adoptive parents who have to wait out a 30-day period when the infant's birth mother can reclaim the child and the birth mothers who are making that decision.
You can almost forget that this show is on gay-oriented Logo, and that many of the adoptive couples are gay. Which seems to be a TV trend these days on shows ranging from "Modern Family" to "The New Normal."
"The more that we look at some of the studies that we've done in our audience, the more we see that it's becoming a reflection of society at large," said Brent Zacky, Logo's senior vice president of original programming and development. "In terms of settling down, obviously getting married where possible, and fighting for the ability to be married when you want to be in your home state. And part of that is also having a family and starting a family."
"The Baby Wait" (Tuesday, Nov. 27, 8 p.m., Logo, with repeats throughout the week) follows the same format regardless of the prospective adoptive parents' sexual orientation. "I think what that goes to illustrate is there are certain things that are universal among all people," Zacky said.
Unlike the producers' other shows "Teen Mom" and "16 and Pregnant" this one focuses on both the adoptive parents and the birth mothers (and sometimes fathers). We see the birth mothers as they agonize over whether to reclaim their babies; we see the couples as they agonize over what the birth mothers may decide.
"For me, it was the longest month that I've had to go through," said Genavieve Diggs, a teen mother whose daughter was adopted by Mark Krieger and Paul Siebold. "There were times where I would be sitting in my room crying, looking at ultrasound pictures or looking on my computer at her pictures and [thinking], 'I want her back.' "
But in the end, she decided it would not be the best thing for her daughter.
"That's what basically stopped me from trying to get her back, because I really didn't have any way to take care of her," Diggs said. "I didn't want to raise her on welfare, [housing assistance], food stamps. That wouldn't be fair to her. I wanted her to have the best life she could possibly have."
At the same time, Krieger and Siebold were bonding with a baby they could have lost at any minute. "It is a long time," Krieger said.
Siebold added, "The worst. It's always in the back of your mind, 'What if Gen calls?' "
It's the same for male-female couples what some would call a "traditional" family as they go through "The Baby Wait."
"Remember, for us, this is a traditional family," Siebold said.
Scott D. Pierce covers television for The Salt Lake Tribune. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org; follow him on Twitter @ScottDPierce.