Gay Parenting Essay Research Paper Lesbian and

9 September 2017

Gay Parenting Essay, Research Paper

Lesbian and Gay Parenting


Charlotte J. Patterson

University of Virginia

Like households headed by heterosexual parents, sapphic and cheery parents and their kids are a diverse group ( Martin, 1993 ) .

Unlike heterosexual parents and their kids, nevertheless, sapphic and cheery parents and their kids are frequently capable to

bias because of sexual orientation that turns Judgess, legislators, professionals, and the populace against them, often

ensuing in negative results such as loss of physical detention, limitations on trial, and prohibitions against acceptance

( Falk, 1989 ; Editors of the Harvard Law Review, 1990 ) . As with all socially stigmatized groups, the beliefs held by and large in

society about tribades and cheery work forces are frequently non based in personal experience, but are alternatively culturally transmitted ( Herek,

1991 ) . The intent of this sum-up of research findings on sapphic and cheery parents and their kids is to help psychologists

and other professionals to measure widespread beliefs in the visible radiation of empirical informations and in this manner ameliorate the negative

effects of indefensible bias.

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Because many beliefs about sapphic and cheery parents and their kids are unfastened to empirical trial, psychological research can

measure their truth. Systematic research comparing sapphic and cheery grownups to heterosexual grownups merely began in the late

1950s, and research comparing kids of homosexual and sapphic parents with those of heterosexual parents is of a more recent

vintage. Research on sapphic and cheery grownups began with Evelyn Hooker & # 8217 ; s landmark survey ( 1957 ) and culminated with the

declassification of homosexualism as a mental upset in 1973 ( Gonsiorek, 1991 ) . Case reports on kids of homosexual and sapphic

parents began to look in the psychiatric literature in the early 1970s ( e.g. , Osman, 1972 ; Weeks, Derdeyn, & A ; Langman,

1975 ) and have continued to look ( e.g. , Agbayewa, 1984 ) . Get downing with the pioneering work of Martin and Lyon ( 1972 ) ,

foremost individual and fictionalized descriptions of life in sapphic female parent households have besides become available ( e.g. , Alpert, 1988 ;

Clausen, 1985 ; Jullion, 1985 ; Mager, 1975 ; Perreault, 1975 ; Pollock & A ; Vaughn, 1987 ; Rafkin, 1990 ) . Systematic research on

the kids of sapphic and cheery parents did non, nevertheless, begin to look in major professional diaries until 1978, and most of

the available research has been published more late.

As this sum-up will demo, the consequences of bing research comparing homosexual and sapphic parents to heterosexual parents and

kids of homosexual or sapphic parents to kids of heterosexual parents are quite unvarying: common sterotypes are non supported

by the informations.

Without denying the lucidity of consequences to day of the month, it is of import besides for psychologists and other professionals to be cognizant that

research in this country has presented a assortment of methodological challenges, non all of which have been surmounted in every

survey. As is true in any country of research, inquiries have been raised with respect to trying issues, statistical power, and other

proficient affairs ( e.g. , Belcastro, Gramlich, Nicholson, Price, & A ; Wilson, 1993 ) ; no person survey is wholly unbeatable to such

unfavorable judgment.

One unfavorable judgment of this organic structure of research ( Belcastro et al. , 1993 ) has been that the research lacks external cogency because it may

non be representative of the larger population of sapphic and cheery parents. This unfavorable judgment is non justified, because cipher knows

the existent composing of the full population of sapphic female parents, homosexual male parents, or their kids ( many of whom choose to

stay concealed ) and hence research workers can non possible measure the grade to which peculiar samples do or make non stand for

the population. In the long tally, it is non the consequences obtained from any one specific sample, but the accretion of findings from

many different samples that will be most meaningful.

Research in this country has besides been criticized for utilizing ill matched or no control groups in designs that call for such

controls. Particularly noteworthy in this class has been the inclination in some surveies to compare development among kids of

a group of divorced sapphic female parents, many of whom are populating with sapphic spouses, to that among kids of a group of

divorced heterosexual female parents who are non presently populating with heterosexual spouses. It will be of import for future research to

disentangle maternal sexual orientation from maternal position as partnered or unpartnered.

Other unfavorable judgments have been that most surveies have involved comparatively little samples, that there have been insufficiencies in

appraisal processs employed in some surveies, and that the categorization of parents as sapphic, cheery, or straight person has

sometimes been debatable ( e.g. , some adult females classified by research workers as sapphic might be regarded as bisexual by other

perceivers ) . It is important, nevertheless, that even with all the inquiries and/or restrictions that may qualify research in the

country, none of the published research suggests decisions different from those that will be summarized below.

This drumhead consists of four subdivisions. In the first, consequences of research on sapphic and cheery grownups ( and parents ) are summarized.

In the 2nd subdivision, a sum-up of consequences from research comparing kids of sapphic and cheery parents with those of

heterosexual parents or with established norms is presented. The 3rd subdivision summarizes research on heterogeneousness among

sapphic and cheery households with kids. The 4th subdivision provides a brief decision.

A. Lesbian and Gay Parents

One belief that frequently underlies both judicial decision-making in detention judicial proceeding and public policies regulating Foster attention and

acceptance has been the belief that tribades and cheery work forces are non fit to be parents. In peculiar, tribunals have sometimes assumed

that gay work forces and tribades are mentally sick, that tribades are less maternal than heterosexual adult females, and that lesbians & # 8217 ; and gay

work forces & # 8217 ; s relationships with sexual spouses leave small clip for ongoing parent-child interactions ( Editors of the Harvard Law

Review, 1990 ) . Results of research to day of the month hold failed to corroborate any of these beliefs ( Falk, 1989, 1994 ; Patterson, 1994b,

1995b, 1996 ) .

Mental Health of Lesbians and Gay Men

The psychiatric, psychological, and social-work professions do non see homosexual orientation to be a mental upset.

More than 20 old ages ago, the American Psychiatric Association removed “ homosexualism ” from its list of mental upsets,

saying that “ homosexualism per Se implies no damage in judgement, stableness, dependability, or general societal or vocational

capablenesss ” ( American Psychiatric Association, 1980 ) . In 1975, the American Psychological Association took the same

place and urged all mental wellness professionals to assist chase away the stigma of mental unwellness that had long been associated with

homosexual orientation ( American Psychological Association, 1975 ) . The National Association of Social Workers has a similar

policy ( National Association of Social Workers, 1994 ) .

The determination to take homosexual orientation from the list of mental upsets reflects the consequences of extended research,

conducted over three decennaries, demoing that homosexual orientation is non a psychological maladjustment ( Gonsiorek, 1991 ;

Reiss, 1980 ; Hart, Roback, Tittler, Weitz, Walston, & A ; McKee, 1978 ) . The societal and other fortunes in which tribades

and gay work forces live, including exposure to widespread bias and favoritism, frequently cause acute hurt ; but there is no

dependable grounds that homosexual orientation per se impairs psychological operation ( Freedman, 1971 ; Gonsiorek, 1991 ;

Hart et al. , 1978 ; Hooker, 1957 ; Reiss, 1980 ) .

Fitness of Lesbians and Gay Men as Parents

Beliefs that gay and sapphic grownups are non fit parents similarly have no empirical foundation ( Cramer, 1986 ; Falk, 1989 ; Gibbs,

1988 ; Patterson, 1996 ) . Lesbian and heterosexual adult females have non been found to differ markedly either in their overall mental

wellness or in their attacks to child raising ( Kweskin & A ; Cook, 1982 ; Lyons, 1983 ; Miller, Jacobsen, & A ; Bigner, 1981 ;

Mucklow & A ; Phelan, 1979 ; Pagelow, 1980 ; Rand, Graham, & A ; Rawlings, 1982 ; Thompson, McCandless, & A ; Strickland, 1971 ) ,

nor have lesbians & # 8217 ; romantic and sexual relationships with other adult females been found to take away from their ability to care for their

kids ( Pagelow, 1980 ) . Recent grounds suggests that sapphic twosomes who are rearing together tend to split family

and household labour comparatively equally ( Hand, 1991 ; Patterson, 1995a ) and to describe

satisfaction with their couple relationships ( Koepke, Hare, & A ; Moran, 1992 ; Patterson, 1995a ) . Research on homosexual male parents has

likewise found no ground to believe them unfit as parents ( Barret & A ; Robinson, 1990 ; Bigner and Bozett, 1990 ; Bozett, 1980,

1989 ) .

B. Children of Lesbian and Gay Parents

In add-on to judicial concerns about homosexual and sapphic parents themselves, tribunals have voiced three major sorts of frights about

effects of sapphic or cheery parents on kids.

The first general concern is that development of sexual individuality will be impaired among kids of sapphic or cheery parents-for

case, that kids brought up by homosexual male parents or sapphic female parents will demo perturbations in gender individuality and/or in gender

function behaviour ( Falk, 1989 ; Hitchens & A ; Kirkpatrick, 1985 ; Kleber, Howell, & A ; Tibbits-Kleber, 1986 ) . It has besides been

suggested that kids brought up by sapphic female parents or homosexual male parents will themselves go cheery or sapphic ( Falk, 1989 ;

Kleber et al. , 1986 ) .

A 2nd class of concerns involves facets of kids & # 8217 ; s personal development other than sexual individuality ( Falk, 1989 ;

Editors of the Harvard Law Review, 1990 ; Kleber et al. , 1986 ) . For illustration, tribunals have expressed frights that kids in the

detention of homosexual or sapphic parents will be more vulnerable to mental dislocation, will exhibit more adjustment troubles and

behaviour jobs, and will be less psychologically healthy than kids turning up in places with heterosexual parents.

A 3rd class of specific frights expressed by the tribunals is that kids of sapphic and cheery parents may see troubles

in societal relationships ( Editors of the Harvard Law Review, 1990 ; Falk, 1989 ; Hitchens & A ; Kirkpatrick, 1985 ) . For illustration,

Judgess have repeatedly expressed concern that kids populating with sapphic female parents may be stigmatized, teased, or otherwise

traumatized by equals. Another common fright is that kids populating with homosexual or sapphic parents may be more likely to be sexually

abused by the parent or by the parent & # 8217 ; s friends or familiarities.

Sexual Identity

Three facets of sexual individuality are considered in the research: gender individuality concerns a individual & # 8217 ; s self-identification as male or

female ; gender-role behaviour concerns the extent to which a individual & # 8217 ; s activities, businesss, and the similar are regarded by the

civilization as masculine, feminine, or both ; sexual orientation refers to a individual & # 8217 ; s pick of sexual spouses & # 8211 ; i.e. , heterosexual,

homosexual, or bisexual ( Money & A ; Earhardt, 1972 ; Stein, 1993 ) . To analyze the possibility that kids in the detention of

sapphic female parents or cheery male parents experience breaks of sexual individuality, research relevant to each of these three major countries of

concern is summarized below.

Gender individuality. In surveies of kids runing in age from 5 to 14, consequences of projective testing and related interview

processs have revealed normal development of gender individuality among kids of sapphic female parents ( Green, 1978 ; Green,

Mandel, Hotvedt, Gray, & A ; Smith, 1986 ; Kirkpatrick, Smith, & A ; Roy, 1981 ) . More direct appraisal techniques to measure

gender individuality have been used by Golombok, Spencer, and Rutter ( 1983 ) with the same consequence ; all kids in this survey

reported that they were happy with their gender, and that they had no wish to be a member of the opposite sex. There was no

grounds in any of the surveies of gender individuality troubles among kids of sapphic female parents. No informations have been reported in

this country for kids of homosexual male parents.

Gender-Role Behavior. A figure of surveies have examined gender-role behaviour among the progeny of sapphic female parents

( Golombok et al. , 1983 ; Gottman, 1990 ; Green, 1978 ; Hoeffer, 1981 ; Kirkpatrick et al. , 1981 ; Patterson, 1994a ) . These

surveies reported that such behaviour among kids of sapphic female parents fell within typical bounds for conventional sex functions. For

case, Kirkpatrick and her co-workers ( 1981 ) found no differences between kids of sapphic versus heterosexual female parents

in plaything penchants, activities, involvements, or occupational picks.

Rees ( 1979 ) administered the Bem Sex Role Inventory ( BSRI ) to 24 striplings, half of whom had divorced sapphic and half

of whom had divorced heterosexual female parents. The BSRI outputs tonss on maleness and muliebrity as independent factors and

an hermaphroditism mark from the ratio of maleness to muliebrity. Children of sapphic and heterosexual female parents did non differ on

maleness or on hermaphroditism, but kids of sapphic female parents reported greater psychological muliebrity than did those of

heterosexual female parents. This consequence would look to run counter to outlooks based on stereotypes of tribades as lacking in

muliebrity, both in their ain demeanour and in their likely influences on kids.

Sexual activity function behaviour of kids was besides assessed by Green and his co-workers ( 1986 ) . In interviews with the kids, no

differences between 56 kids of sapphic and 48 kids of heterosexual female parents were found with regard to favorite

telecasting plans, favourite telecasting characters, or favourite games or playthings. There was some indicant in interviews with

kids themselves that the progeny of sapphic female parents had less sex-typed penchants for activities at school and in their

vicinities than did kids of heterosexual female parents. Consistent with this consequence, sapphic female parents were besides more likely than

heterosexual female parents to describe that their girls frequently participated in bare-knuckle drama or on occasion played with

“ masculine ” playthings such as trucks or guns ; nevertheless, they reported no differences in these countries for boies. Lesbian female parents were

no more or less likely than heterosexual female parents to describe that their kids frequently played with “ feminine ” playthings such as dolls. In

both household types, nevertheless, kids & # 8217 ; s sex-role behaviour was seen as falling within normal bounds.

In drumhead, the research suggests that kids of sapphic female parents develop forms of gender-role behaviour that are much like

those of other kids.

No information are available as yet in this country for kids of homosexual male parents.

Sexual Orientation. A figure of research workers have besides studied a 3rd constituent of sexual individuality: sexual orientation

( Bailey, Bobrow, Wolfe, & A ; Mikach, 1995 ; Bozett, 1980, 1982, 1987, 1989 ; Gottman, 1990 ; Golombok et al. , 1983 ; Green,

1978 ; Huggins, 1989 ; Miller, 1979 ; Paul, 1986 ; Rees, 1979 ) . In all surveies, the great bulk of progeny of both cheery male parents

and sapphic female parents described themselves as heterosexual. Take together, the informations do non propose elevated rates of

homosexualism among the progeny of sapphic or cheery parents. For case, Huggins ( 1989 ) interviewed 36 adolescents, half of

whom were offspring of sapphic female parents and half of heterosexual female parents. No kids of sapphic female parents identified themselves

as sapphic or cheery, but one kid of a heterosexual female parent did ; this difference was non statistically important. In a recent survey,

Bailey and his co-workers ( 1995 ) studied big boies of homosexual male parents and found more than 90 % of the boies to be heterosexual.

Because the heterosexual and nonheterosexual boies did non differ in

the length of clip they had resided with their male parents, the effects of the exposure to the male parents & # 8217 ; sexual orientation on the boies & # 8217 ;

sexual orientation must hold been either really little or nonexistent.

Other Aspects of Personal Development

Surveies of other facets of personal development among kids of homosexual and sapphic parents have assessed a wide array of

features. Among these have been separation-individuation ( Steckel, 1985, 1987 ) , psychiatric ratings ( Golombok et

al. , 1983 ; Kirkpatrick et al. , 1981 ) , appraisals of behaviour jobs ( Flaks, Ficher, Masterpasqua and Joseph, 1995 ;


all right et al. , 1983 ; Patterson, 1994a ) , personality ( Gottman, 1990 ) , self-concept ( Gottman, 1990 ; Huggins, 1989 ;

Patterson, 1994a ; Puryear, 1983 ) , locus of control ( Puryear, 1983 ; Rees, 1979 ) , moral judgement ( Rees, 1979 ) , and

intelligence ( Green et al. , 1986 ) . Research has shown that concerns about troubles in personal development in these countries

among kids of sapphic female parents are indefensible. As was the instance for sexual individuality, surveies of these other facets of

personal development have revealed no major differences between kids of sapphic versus heterosexual female parents. One

statistically important difference in self-concept emerged in Patterson & # 8217 ; s ( 1994a ) survey: kids of sapphic female parents reported

greater symptoms of emphasis but besides a greater overall sense of wellbeing than did kids in a comparing group of

heterosexual households. The responses of both groups were, nevertheless, within a normal scope ( Patterson, 1994a ) . Overall, the

belief that kids of homosexual and sapphic parents suffer shortages in personal development has no empirical foundation.

Social Relationships

Surveies measuring possible differences between kids of homosexual and sapphic versus heterosexual parents have sometimes

included appraisals of kids & # 8217 ; s societal relationships. The most common focal point of attending has been on equal dealingss, but

some information on kids & # 8217 ; s relationships with grownups has besides been collected. Research findings that reference the likeliness of

sexual maltreatment are besides summarized in this subdivision.

Research on equal dealingss among kids of sapphic female parents has been reported by Golombok and her co-workers ( 1983 ) ,

Green ( 1978 ) , and by Green and his co-workers ( 1986 ) . Reports by both parents and kids suggest normal development of

equal relationships. For illustration, as would be expected, most school-aged kids reported same-sex best friends and

preponderantly same-sex equal groups ( Golombok et al. , 1983 ; Green, 1978 ) . The quality of kids & # 8217 ; s peer dealingss was

described, on norm, in positive footings by research workers ( Golombok et al. , 1983 ) every bit good as by sapphic female parents and their

kids ( Green et al. , 1986 ) .

No information on the kids of homosexual male parents have been reported in this country.

Surveies of relationships with grownups among the progeny of sapphic and cheery parents have besides yielded a by and large positive image

( Golombok et al. , 1983 ; Harris & A ; Turner, 1985/86 ; Kirkpatrick et al. , 1981 ) . For illustration, Golombok and her co-workers

( 1983 ) found that kids of divorced sapphic female parents were more likely to hold had recent contact with their male parents than were

kids of divorced heterosexual female parents. Another survey, nevertheless, found no differences in this respect ( Kirkpatrick et al. ,

1981 ) . Harris and Turner ( 1985/86 ) studied the progeny of homosexual male parents every bit good as those of sapphic female parents ; parent-child

relationships were described in positive footings by parents in their sample. One important difference between sapphic and homosexual

parents, on the one manus, and heterosexual parents, on the other, was that heterosexual parents were more likely to state that

their kids & # 8217 ; s visits with the other parent presented jobs for them ( Harris & A ; Turner, 1985/86 ) .

In the Golombok et Al. ( 1983 ) survey, kids & # 8217 ; s contacts with big friends of their sapphic female parents were besides assessed. All of

the kids were reported to hold contact with big friends of their female parents, and the bulk of sapphic female parents reported that

their grownup friends were a mixture of homosexual and heterosexual grownups.

Concerns that kids of homosexual or sapphic parents are more likely than kids of heterosexual parents to be sexually abused

hold besides been addressed. Consequences of work in this country reveal that the great bulk of grownups who perpetrate sexual maltreatment are

male ; sexual maltreatment of kids by grownup adult females is highly rare ( Finkelhor & A ; Russell, 1984 ; Jones & A ; MacFarlane, 1980 ;

Sarafino, 1979 ) . Furthermore, the overpowering bulk of child sexual maltreatment instances involve an grownup male mistreating a immature

female ( Jenny, Roesler, & A ; Poyer, 1994 ; Jones & A ; MacFarlane, 1980 ) . Available grounds reveals that gay work forces are no more

probably than heterosexual work forces to commit child sexual maltreatment ( Groth & A ; Birnbaum, 1978 ; Jenny et al. , 1994 ; Sarafino, 1979 ) .

Fears that kids in detention of homosexual or sapphic parents might be at heightened hazard for sexual maltreatment are therefore without footing in the

research literature.


Overall, so, consequences of research to day of the month suggest that kids of sapphic and cheery parents have normal relationships with equals

and that their relationships with grownups of both sexes are besides satisfactory. The image of sapphic female parents & # 8217 ; kids that emerges

from consequences of bing research is therefore one of general battle in societal life with equals, with male parents, and with female parents & # 8217 ; grownup

friends & # 8211 ; both male and female, both heterosexual and homosexual. Studies in this country to day of the month are few, and the informations emerging

from them are unelaborated. On the footing of bing research findings, nevertheless, frights about kids of tribades and homosexuals work forces being

sexually abused by grownups, ostracized by equals, or isolated in single-sex sapphic or cheery communities are baseless.

C. Diversity Among Gay and Lesbian Families

Despite the enormous diverseness evident within homosexual and sapphic communities, research on differences among sapphic and homosexual

households with kids is every bit yet rather thin. One peculiarly of import sort of heterogeneousness involves the fortunes of

kids & # 8217 ; s birth or acceptance. Some work forces and adult females have had kids in the context of heterosexual relationships that split up

after one or both parents assumed sapphic or cheery individualities. Much of the bing research on sapphic female parents, homosexual male parents, and

their kids was initiated to turn to concerns that arose for such households in the context of kid detention differences, and it was

frequently designed at least in portion to analyze the veracity of common stereotypes that have been voiced in legal proceedings. A

turning figure of work forces and adult females have besides had kids after presuming sapphic or cheery individualities. Recently, a little organic structure of

research ( e.g. , Flaks, et al. , 1995 ; McCandlish, 1987 ; Patterson, 1994a, 1995a ; Steckel, 1987 ) has begun to turn to issues

relevant to households of this type. Parents and kids in these two sorts of households are likely to hold experiences that differ from

one another in many respects.

Many issues ( for illustration, residential versus nonresidential parenting ) have yet to be addressed straight by research. In this

subdivision, research findings on the impact of parental psychological and relationship position and on the influence of other emphasiss

and supports are described. One dimension of difference among cheery and sapphic households concerns whether or non the custodial

parent is involved in a twosome relationship, and if so what deductions this may hold for kids. Pagelow ( 1980 ) , Kirkpatrick

et Al. ( 1981 ) , and Golombok et Al. ( 1983 ) all reported that, in their samples, divorced sapphic female parents were more likely than

divorced heterosexual female parents to be populating with a romantic spouse ; nevertheless, none of these research workers examined connexions

between this variable and kids & # 8217 ; s accommodation or development in sapphic female parent households.

Huggins ( 1989 ) reported that self-pride among girls of sapphic female parents whose sapphic spouses lived with them was

higher than that among girls of sapphic female parents who did non populate with a spouse. Because of the little sample size and

absence of statistical trials, this determination should be seen as implicative instead than conclusive. On the footing of feelings from her

ain work, Kirkpatrick has besides stated her position that “ contrary to the frights expressed in tribunal, kids in families that

included the female parent & # 8217 ; s sapphic lover had a richer, more unfastened and stable household life ” than did those in individual parent sapphic female parent

families ( Kirkpatrick, 1987, p. 204 ) .

Issues related to division of household and family labour have besides been studied. In households headed by sapphic twosomes, Patterson

( 1995a ) found that, although female parents did non differ in their reported engagement in family and household decision-making undertakings,

biological female parents reported more clip spent in kid attention and nonbiological female parents reported more clip spent in paid

employment. In households where female parents reported sharing kid attention responsibilities comparatively equally between themselves, parents were

more satisfied and kids were better adjusted. Therefore, equal sharing of kid attention responsibilities was associated with more

advantageous results both for parents and for kids in this survey.

Another facet of diverseness among cheery and sapphic households relates to the psychological position and wellbeing of the parent.

Research on parent-child dealingss in heterosexual households has systematically revealed that kids & # 8217 ; s accommodation is frequently related to

indices of maternal mental wellness. One might therefore expect factors that enhance mental wellness among sapphic female parents or homosexual

male parents besides to profit their kids. Lott-Whitehead and Tully ( 1993 ) reported considerable variableness in the sums of emphasis

described by sapphic female parents, but did non depict beginnings of emphasis nor their dealingss to child accommodation. Rand, Graham, and

Rawlings ( 1982 ) found that sapphic female parents & # 8217 ; sense of psychological wellbeing was associated with their grade of openness

about their sapphic individuality with employers, ex-husbands, and kids ; female parents who felt more able to unwrap their tribade

individuality were more likely to show a positive sense of wellbeing. Unfortunately, no information about the dealingss of these

findings to adjustment or development among kids of these adult females has been reported to day of the month.

Another country of great diverseness among households with a homosexual or sapphic parent concerns the grade to which a parent & # 8217 ; s homosexual or

sapphic individuality is accepted by other important people in a kid & # 8217 ; s life. Huggins ( 1989 ) found a inclination for kids whose

male parents were rejecting of maternal sapphic individualities to describe lower self-pride than those whose male parents were impersonal or

positive. Due to little sample size and absence of significance trials, this determination should be regarded as preliminary and

suggestive instead than unequivocal. Huggins & # 8217 ; ( 1989 ) determination does, nevertheless, raise inquiries about the extent to which reactions of

of import grownups in a kid & # 8217 ; s environment can act upon responses to find of a parent & # 8217 ; s homosexual or sapphic individuality.

Effectss of the age at which kids learn of parental homosexualism have besides been a subject of survey. Paul ( 1986 ) found that

offspring who were told of parental homosexual, sapphic, or bisexual individuality either in childhood or in late adolescence found the intelligence

easier to get by with than those who foremost learned of it during early to middle adolescence. Huggins ( 1989 ) besides reported that

those who learned of maternal sapphism in childhood had higher self-esteem than did those who were non informed of it until

they were striplings. From a clinical position, it is widely agreed that early adolescence is a peculiarly hard clip for

kids to larn that a male parent is cheery or that a female parent is sapphic ( Bozett, 1980 ; Pennington, 1987 ; Schulenberg, 1985 ) .

Some research workers have besides raised inquiries about the possible function of peer support in assisting kids to cover with issues

raised by holding a homosexual or sapphic parent. Lewis ( 1980 ) was the first to propose that kids & # 8217 ; s silence on the subject of parental

sexual orientation with equals and siblings might add to their feelings of isolation from other kids. All of the 11 striplings

studied by O & # 8217 ; Connell ( 1993 ) reported exercising selectivity about when they disclosed information about their female parents & # 8217 ; sapphic

individualities. Paul ( 1986 ) found that 29 % of his immature grownup respondents had ne’er known anyone else with a homosexual, sapphic, or

bisexual parent, proposing that the possibility of isolation is really existent for some immature people. Potentially

negative effects of any such isolation have non, nevertheless, been uncovered in research to day of the month. Lewis ( 1980 ) suggested that

kids would profit from support groups dwelling of other kids of homosexual or sapphic parents, and immature people interviewed

by O & # 8217 ; Connell ( 1993 ) agreed, but systematic ratings of such groups have non been reported.

In drumhead, research on diverseness among households with homosexual and sapphic parents and on the possible effects of such diverseness on

kids is merely get downing ( Martin 1989 ; Patterson, 1992, 1995b ) Existing informations on kids of sapphic female parents suggest that

kids may do better when female parents are in good psychological wellness and life with a sapphic spouse with whom they portion

kid attention. Children may happen it easier to cover with issues raised by holding sapphic or cheery parents if they learn of parental sexual

orientation during childhood instead than during adolescence. Existing informations besides suggest the value of a supportive surroundings, in which

parental sexual orientation is accepted by other important grownups and in which kids have contact with equals in similar

fortunes. The bing informations are, nevertheless, still really thin, and any decisions must be seen as probationary.

It is clear, nevertheless, that bing research provides no footing for believing that kids & # 8217 ; s best involvements are served by household

struggle or secretiveness about a parent & # 8217 ; s homosexual or sapphic individuality, or by demands that a sapphic or cheery parent maintain a family

separate from that of a same-sex spouse.

D. Conclusion

In drumhead, there is no grounds to propose that tribades and cheery work forces are unfit to be parents or that psychosocial development

among kids of cheery work forces or tribades is compromised in any respect relation to that among offspring of heterosexual parents.

Not a individual survey has found kids of homosexual or sapphic parents to be disadvantaged in any important regard relation to kids

of heterosexual parents. Indeed, the grounds to day of the month suggests that place environments provided by homosexual and sapphic parents are

every bit likely as those provided by heterosexual parents to back up and enable kids & # 8217 ; s psychosocial growing.

It should be acknowledged that research on sapphic and cheery parents and their kids is still really new and

comparatively scarce. Less is known about kids of homosexual male parents than about kids of sapphic female parents. Little is known about

development of the progeny of homosexual or sapphic parents during adolescence or maturity. Beginnings of heterogeneousness have yet to

be consistently investigated. Longitudinal surveies that follow sapphic and cheery households over clip are severely needed.


I wish to thank Clinton Anderson, Natalie Eldridge, Patricia Falk, Mary Henning-Stout, Larry Kurdek, April Martin, Bianca

Buffalo bill Murphy, Vera Paster, and Roy Scrivner for their helpful remarks on an earlier bill of exchange of this manuscript.


The commendations in this annotated bibliography come from a figure of beginnings: from the original APA publication Lesbian

Parents and Their Children, from a PsycLit hunt on homosexual and sapphic parenting from the old ages 1987-1993, and from

recommendations made by our expert referees. We recognize that this bibliography is non all inclusive. The literature on

sapphic and cheery parenting is quickly spread outing, and we may hold missed some resources. Furthermore, there are a figure of

doctorial thesiss on homosexual and sapphic parenting. We have non included thesiss or some of the stuff that is written

straight for sapphic and cheery parents themselves. While chiefly pulling upon psychological science, we did include some commendations from

jurisprudence, psychopathology, and societal work publications.

The annotated bibliography is divided into four subdivisions. The first subdivision focuses on empirical psychological surveies. The

2nd subdivision contains book chapters and articles from the periodical literature. The 3rd subdivision contains books. And the

bibliography concludes with a subdivision that lists extra resources and organisations.

This bibliography was compiled by Bianca Cody Murphy and Lourdes Rodr & # 237 ; guez-Nogu & # 233 ; s with the aid of Mary Ballou,

Edward J. Dunne, Susan Iasenza, Steven James, Linda Jones, Ena Vazquez Nuttall, Gary Ross Reynolds, and William


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Last Updated January 12, 1997

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