A study published in a pediatrics journal reveal that kids of same-sex parents are no different from those raised by different-sex parents.
For the past few decades same-sex parenting has been the subject of a heated debate among different sectors worldwide. This social issue is once again brought to the fore as advocates of same-sex marriages pushing for marriage equality are gaining steady support.
From a scientific standpoint however, same sex marriage is not tainted at all with controversy. Reliable studies reveal that kids brought up by responsible and mature gay parents are no different from other kids brought up in a conventional set up.
A team of American and Dutch experts initially reviewed close to 200 nuclear families with at least one kid aged 6 until 17 years. Half of these families had same-sex parents (females) while the other half had different-sex parents. The team studied the children’s overall health, emotional well-being, coping mechanisms, and learning abilities. On these four aspects, the team found out that having same-sex parents had no significant negative impact on the children.
The findings were reported in the Journal of the Society for Development and Behavioral Pediatrics.
To date, there are a total of 74 scientific studies on the subject of same-sex parents and their impact on children.
The same-sex parents group was chosen from over 95,000 households who have responded to interviews. The number of respondents coming from the female, same-sex parents group totalled 138, while those from the male, same sex-parents group were a measly 17.
The team had to eliminate families who did not raise their child/children from infancy. Families with divorced parents were also pulled out of the study as this could have impact on the child’s growing up years. As a result, the number of subjects per group dropped down to 95 (female parents) and from 11 (male parents)
Later on, the team decided to eliminate the 11 families with male parents since this number is too low to be considered as subjects. The team has elected to concentrate on studying families with female, same-sex parents versus families with different-sex parents.
Subjects falling under the category of families with different-sex parents were taken from the general U.S. population. Different-sex parents were screened based on age, birth status, educational attainment, and geographic location. Screening procedures for children were based on age, sex, race, and birth status. This was done so that the key variable, the parent’s common sexuality is guaranteed.
The study failed to show any health and developmental disparity among kids of the two groups of subjects. However, it revealed that female, same-sex parents were more stressed out.
Based on earlier research, same-sex parents were found to be more anxious about raising kids in a society that may look down upon homosexual parents. There is added pressure on proving that they are capable of raising healthy, loving kids.
This scientific finding may give same-sex parents some optimism as regards raising their kids. For religious conservatives, one or a thousand studies may do little to shift ideologies.