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Good news for children from lesbian and gay families

Contrary to commonly expressed fears and concerns about the problems experienced by children of same-sex parents, findings of a new study indicate that these children experience higher levels of general health and family cohesion than those from traditional families.

The study was conducted at the University of Melbourne in Australia. Researchers surveyed 315 same-sex parents of 500 children. About 80% of the children had female parents and 18% had male parents. The children raised by same-sex parents scored approximately 6% higher than those from traditional families on general health and family cohesion. These children also scored higher on measures of temperament and mood, mental health, and self-esteem.

However, the researchers noted that social stigma was a challenge for approximately two-thirds of the children, who reported experiencing some form of stigma related to their parents’ sexual orientation.

It was also interesting to note that the same-sex couples in the study were more likely to share childcare and work responsibilities than those in heterosexual relationships.  According to lead researcher, Dr. Simon Crouch, sharing childcare and work responsibilities “appears to be contributing to a more harmonious household and having a positive impact on child health.”

Read more about LGBT parenthood here and here. 

Read the American Society of Reproductive Medicine’s fact sheet on how to talk to kids about same sex parenthood here.

Read more about the study here.

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