Parental Sexual Orientation Has No Effect on Child Development

The debate on gay marriage has been an issue for decades, but has regained a spotlight within the past year as the topic was taken to the Supreme Court.  During the debate in front of the Supreme Court, an issue was addressed, that could not be discussed, which is whether or not gay and lesbian marriages or unions provide as healthy of an outcome for child development, as heterosexual couples and what, if any, developmental risks do children face reared by same sex partners.  Neither attorney could debate on this topic due to lack of knowledge about it.

The following research, conducted in 2010, provides results that the most vital component to healthy child development is a secure child-caregiver attachment, regardless of the caregiver’s sexual orientation.  The most negative impacting components on child development, regardless of caregiver sexual orientation are, parenting stress, parenting approaches, and couple relationship adjustment.

The research consisted of 27 lesbian, 29 gay, and 50 heterosexual couples that used parents and teacher evaluations to report on the child’s development.  In the future, more research with larger samples that vary in economic, educational, and family dynamics are needed.  Also, longitudinal studies will help demonstrate the long-term impact at all developmental stages.  These are a few factors to take into consideration with future research on the topic.

*Written by GA Ashley Notestine


Farr, R.H., Forssell, S. L., & Patterson, C. J. (2010). Parenting and child development in adoptive families: Does parental sexual orientation matter? Applied Developmental Science. 14, 164–178.

Read the article here.



Posted on May 7, 2013, in Biological Psychology, Community, Emerging Trends in Psychology, Psychological Concepts and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

Share Your Thoughts

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: