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Same-Sex Parenting: Does it Impact Child Development

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Carly Rubenfeld

on 20 November 2014

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Transcript of Same-Sex Parenting: Does it Impact Child Development

Carly Rubenfeld
Nova Southeastern University

Same Sex Parenting: Does it Impact
Child Development?

Adoption Rights for Same Sex Couples
Alternatives to Adaption
Family Models
Statistics & Numbers
Direct and Indirect Effects on Children
Issues in Same Sex Parenting
U.S. Census Bureau
Discussion Questions
Issues Faced in Same Sex Parenting
Discussion Questions
1. What are your reactions to this video?

2. How important do you think it is to address to a child that
their family is "different?" i.e. two moms, two dads, etc?

3. Is there a nuclear family model anymore?

4. Knowing the attachment theories, do you think children raised by same sex couples will have issues with attachment?

5. Has the media helped or hindered the rights same sex couples have today?

6. if a child is claimed as non-related, are they more likely to experience lower levels of parental support and is the relationship more likely to dissolve compared to households in which partner’s children are claimed as the householder’s own children?

7. Are there enough resources for same sex couples compared to opposite couples, and vice versa?

8. How can we prevent stigma about same sex parenting?

9. Why do you think same sex parenting is under reported?

10. As future clinical psychologists, why is it important for us to know the impact of same sex parenting?

Adoption Rights for LGBT Couples in the U.S.
"1976 – American Psychological Association declared that the sex, gender identity, or sexual or orientation of natural, or prospective adoptive or foster parents should not be the sole or primary variable considered in custody or placement cases
1979 – Family Pride Coalition was founded to advance the well-being of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender parents and their families through mutual parenting support, collaboration and public advocacy
Mid-1980’s – National Center for Lesbian Rights pioneers second-parent adoption legal strategy
1986 – The Arizona Court of Appeals upheld the denial of an adoption petition brought by a bisexual man, on the ground that ‘he testified that it was possible that he at some future time would have some type of homosexual relationship with another man.
1987 – New Hampshire issued a statute banning LGBT adoption.
1992 – New York courts allow adoption by gay partner (Adoption of Evan).
1993 – Maureen Brodoff and Ellen Wade win second-parent adoption case
1995 – Florida Supreme Court upheld the constitutionality of Florida’s ban on gay adoption"
Adoption Rights for LGBT Couples in the U.S.
Family Models
"1996 – Delaware permits single-parent gay adoption (source:
1997 – New Jersey becomes first state to expressly authorize joint adoption by gay couples.
1999 – New Hampshire repealed statute banning LGBT adoption. (source:
2001 – Delaware permits second-parent adoption by gay family (source:
2005 – U.S. Supreme Court refuses to hear appeal of federal appeals court
decision upholding Florida’s ban on adoption by lesbians and gay men (Lofton v.
2006 – Catholic Charities ended their adoption work, not wanting to comply with
the anti-discrimination laws of Massachusetts
2007 – Maine Law Court Ok’s joint adoption by two unmarried adults"

AAMFT Therapy Topics. (n.d.). Retrieved September 26, 2014,
from http://www.aamft.org/imis15/aamft/Content/Consumer_Updates/Same-sex_Parents_and_Their_Children.aspx
Children of same-sex parents healthier: Study. (n.d.).
Retrieved September 26, 2014, from http://www.cnbc.com/id/101814983#.
Endendijk, J., Groeneveld, M., Berkel, S., Hallers-Haalboom, E., Mesman, J.,
& Bakermans-Kranenburg, M. (2014). Gender Stereotypes in the Family Context: Mothers, Fathers, and Siblings. Sex Roles, 577-590.
Family. (n.d.). Retrieved September 26, 2014, from
Fauser, B., Devoey, P., Diedrich, K., Bonduelle, M.,
Delemarre-van de Waal, H., Estella, C., ... Wells, D. (n.d.). Health outcomes of children born after IVF/ICSI: A review of current expert opinion and literature. Reproductive BioMedicine Online, 28, 162-182.
Retrieved from http://www.rbmojournal.com/article/S1472-6483(13)00539-7/pdf
Gestational Surrogacy. (n.d.). Retrieved September 26, 2014,
from http://intendedparents.com/Gestational_Surrogacy.asp
In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) Costs, Transfer and More. (n.d.).
Retrieved October 1, 2014, from http://americanpregnancy.org/infertility/in-vitro-fertilization/
Meezan, W., & Rauch, J. (2005.). Gay Marriage, Same-Sex Parenting, and America’s
Children. The Future of Children.
Nuclear family. (n.d.). Retrieved September 26, 2014,
O'Connell, M., & Lofquist, D. (2009). Counting Same-sex Couples:
Official Estimates and Unofficial Guesses. Retrieved September 26, 2014, from https://www.census.gov/hhes/samesex/files/counting-paper.pdf
Partial Timeline of Adoption Rights for LGBT People. (n.d.).
Retrieved October 1, 2014, from https://www.glad.org/30years/pdfs/adoptiontimeline.pdf
Power, J., Brown, R., Schofield, M., Pitts, M., McNair, R., Perlesz, A., & Rickerdike, A.
(2014). Social connectedness among lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender parents living in metropolitan and regional and rural areas of Australia and New Zealand. Journal of Community Psychology, 7, 871-889. Retrieved September 26, 2014.
Same sex couple households. (2011, September 1). Retrieved October 2, 2014,
from http://www.census.gov/prod/2011pubs/acsbr10-03.pdf
Who May Adopt, Be Adopted, or Place a Child for Adoption?
(n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.childwelfare.gov/systemwide/laws_policies/statutes/parties.pdf
Families with parents who are
married to the opposite-sex;
unmarried opposite-sex;
same-sex unmarried;
same-sex with a spouse
Single Parents (LGBT or straight)
Divorced Parents (LGBT or straight)
Group parenting/co-parenting
Other i.e. grandparents, aunts, uncles, godparents

U.S. Census Bureau
Fertility & Family Statistics Branch
Demographics of Same-Sex Couple Households with Children
Results focus on comparing unmarried same sex couples with children and with married opposite sex couples with children
Same-sex couple with only adopted or only step children have significantly higher average of household income than both married opposite-sex and unmarried - sex households
Same-sex couples do not differ significantly from married opposite-sex couples in terms of education, employment, home ownership, and residential stability (O'Connell, M., & Lofquist, D., 2009.)

Direct and Indirect Effects on Children
Cognitive Development
Gender Role Behavior
Gender Identity
Sexual Orientation
Social and Emotional Development
Quality of Parent Child Relationship
Same as though faced by opposite sex parents such as, time management, setting limits, teaching open and honest communication, healthy conflict resolution, and monitoring of child’s peer network and extracurricular activities.
On the other hand there are issues specific to same sex parents such as societal stigma towards gay and lesbian families (Meezan, W., & Rauch, J. (2005).
Studies show that children raised by same sex parents score the same on temperament and mood, behavior, mental health, emotional role and self-esteem as children with opposite set parents
There is no significant difference between raising children as a same sex couple or opposite sex couple (Power, J., Brown, R., Schofield, M., Pitts, M., McNair, R., Perlesz, A., & Rickerdike, A., 2014).
Family defined by Merriam Webster's Dictionary as:
"a) a group of people who are related to each other
b) person's children"
Nuclear Family defined by Merriam Webster's Dictionary:
"the part of a family that includes only the father, mother, and children"

Alternatives to Adaption
Sperm Donors
In-vitro-fertilization (IVF)
IVF is the process of fertilization by manually combining an egg and sperm in a laboratory dish, and then transferring the embryo to the uterus.
Gestational Surrogacy
when a woman, surrogate mother, carries and delivers a child that is not genetically related to her.
Review of study by BCJM Fauser and colleagues
Adoption for Same Sex Couples Today
State by state issue, most states allow the adoption of children by same sex couples or LGBT individuals
Florida, Mississippi,
Connecticut, and Utah on the fence
However, in some foreign countries, the government does not permit LGBT individuals or same sex couples to adopt
Statistics & Numbers
16% of same sex couple children in the household: 10% male-male, 22% female-female
"Out of 594,000 same sex couples households, 115000 reported having children" (United States Census Burea, 2011, p. 2)
Full transcript