Monday, November 5, 2012

Study on lesbian parenting reveals longitudinal awesomeness

Essentially, lesbian parents are either self-selectingly awesome due to heightened psychosocial and cultural sensitivity, the intentionality of the conception process for same-sex couples, etc. -- or they're just awesome because they're awesome. 

"The Williams Institute at UCLA tracked 78 children with lesbian mothers over a period of 26 years. The study, entitled "Adolescents with Lesbian Mothers Describe Their Own Lives," found that 17-year-olds with two mothers tended to have higher GPAs, strong family bonds, and considered their mothers to be good role models."
From the publication itself, Adolescents with Lesbian Mothers
Abstract: "Empirical research on the everyday life experiences of adolescents reared by lesbian mothers is limited. The current study gathered self-report descriptive data from 78 adolescents enrolled in the largest, longest-running, prospective longitudinal study of planned lesbian families, with a 93% retention rate to date. Results revealed that the 17-year-old adolescents were academically successful in supportive school environments. They had active social networks and close family bonds. Nearly all considered their mothers good role models. The adolescents rated their overall wellbeing an average of 8.14 on a 10-point-maximum scale.
From the discussion: "Future research is needed to determine whether the themes identified in the current study generalize to representative samples of adolescents in same-sex parent families. To determine whether the successful outcomes... are a reflection of lesbian parenting per se, or simply good or highly motivated parenting, comparing the cohort with a matched group of adolescents conceived by donor insemination in heterosexual-parent families would be illuminating (Golombok & Badger, 2010).  
If the findings of the present investigation are supported by other cross-sectional and longitudinal data, the factors that promote successful outcomes in these types of families warrant further exploration. For example, are same-sex parents, due to concerns about the impact of their marginalized status on their offspring, more willing to seek professional guidance for their families at times of difficulty?"

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