On the Wednesday, September 27, episode of Teen Mom: The Next Chapter, Briana, 29, asked her sister, Brittany DeJesus, 31, whether she would consider adopting Stella amid Briana’s ongoing coparenting drama with Stella’s dad, Luis Hernandez. (Earlier in the episode, Briana recalled having to pick up Stella from a daddy-daughter dance after she started crying upon Luis’ arrival.)
“As you guys know, Luis hasn’t really been around,” Briana explained to Brittany and their mom, Roxanne DeJesus. “There’s a thing where, like, a close relative can adopt Stella. So I was wondering if Brittany would be able to do that for me.”
Roxanne encouraged Briana to give Luis more of a chance, but Brittany immediately agreed to the plan.“Since the day [Briana] even had kids, she always said if something happened to her I was going to take care of the kids,” Brittany responded. “Obviously, you didn’t even have to ask me. I could’ve woken up tomorrow and you would’ve been like, ‘You’re a mother and I would’ve been like, ‘OK.’ That’s a f—king given.”
Brittany’s nieces — Briana also shares 12-year-old daughter Nova with ex Devoin Austin — are “spiritually, emotionally, the closest thing” she has to her own children, Brittany added.
When explaining the situation to her attorneys, however, Briana’s plan got shut down.
“I’d like to talk about if there’s a possibility my sister can adopt Stella and also try to remove Luis’ parental rights,” she told her lawyers. “Luis — he’s not consistent, he doesn’t come around, he can go months without even checking on Stella. It’s just a frustrating situation.”
One of the lawyers talked the MTV personality through the concept of “second parent adoption,” which is typically when another family member — not a married couple — steps in to adopt the child. “But the courts have put the brakes on that, so sitting here today, we don’t think that’s a viable option for you,” he told Briana, who wiped away tears.
“We don’t necessarily want to put you down a path that’s not going to be helpful for Stella,” he elaborated after Briana confirmed the best thing she could do for her younger daughter right now is to leave things as they are — no matter how difficult it is for her to watch Stella have an estranged relationship with her dad.
Teen Mom: The Next Chapter airs Wednesdays at 8 p.m. ET on MTV.