On the edge of the National Mall on Thursday, dozens of moms, dads and kids pose for a group photo framed by the U.S. Capitol. They’re just some of the approximately 700,000 same-sex families across the country, despite laws in some states that make raising children difficult for gay couples. Now, they’ve come to Washington to ask lawmakers to make their lives a little easier. “Today in the United States, there’s kind of a patchwork of state laws,” says Jennifer Chrisler, herself a same-sex parent and executive director of the Family Equality Council, which organized the lobbying day. Chrisler says public policy toward same-sex families is out of sync with reality.