Welcome to Para-Kin. What’s this all about, you might ask? It’s about gaps in the English language.
It was quite by accident that we stumbled into this word dilemma. A few years back, my partner and I went to the ER at a local hospital. On the intake form, he was given three choices as to who had accompanied him. His choices were “acquaintance,” “friend” or “spouse.” None of those applied and as a typical man, he checked “friend.” I realized, at that moment, that I had no standing to make decisions for him. Without a “living will,” his elderly mother would have to make decisions on her son’s behalf. So short of carrying around a Medical Power and a Durable Power of Attorney, what did I need and what do I want.
Those of us in committed yet non traditional relationships need acknowledgment that we are in fact, family, with all the obligations and responsibilities that make up the word… In other words….
We Need One More Check Box on the Hospital Intake Form! (along with every other Federal/State/Local form where marital status is a question)
So rather than words of disconnect, let’s support words of inclusion.
If you are a p-spouse, p-wife or p-husband, go tell the world.
If you are proud to be a p-dad, a p-son or you have that special p-mom, go tell the world.
This Website is for all of us, all who want and deserve to be included as family.
About Debra Chernick, Esq.
Debra L. Chernick, Esq. is the founder of Para-kin.com and may be contacted through this website about usage of the term “para” pertaining to family relationships. She encourages families to utilize the para-kin terms in their everyday speech in order to reflect the changing family in today’s world.
Debra is an attorney licensed in the State of Connecticut since 1982 and in the State of Rhode Island since 1983. Her active law practice frequently serves clients in the areas of family law, mediation, probate and real estate.
Principal: General Counsel to the Law Firm of Sayer Regan & Thayer with offices in Wakefield and Newport, RI
Past President: Washington County Bar Association, Washington County, RI
Board of Delegates: Rhode Island Bar Association
Licensed Mediator: State of Rhode Island
South County Museum Board member
University of Connecticut, Juris Doctorate 1982
Brandeis University, Bachelor of Arts (cum laude) 1976
Contact Debra here.