Mind Candy

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Study reveals kids of lesbian couples have fewer developmental problems

Posted by mandyf on September 12, 2012

A study that lasted 25 years concluded that children raised by lesbians are boring – actually well they said well adjusted. In fact, they found that children raised by lesbians had fewer behavioral problems than those raised by heterosexual couples. The findings are of course already being disputed by several “Family” oriented and religious organizations, but the conclusions are pretty difficult to fault or debate.

The study which will be published in the Journal of Pediatrics tracked 78 lesbian couples that conceived a child via sperm donations. The study kicked off in 1986 and followed the families from the time of insemination through to the time the children turned anywhere from 18-23 years old depending on when they entered the study. Nanette Gartrell headed the study and has fended off all attacks against the findings of the study fairly effectively to this point.

Gartrell used the standard and accepted Child Behavior Checklist to measure depression, anxiety, aggressive behavior, and social competence. The data collected was then compared to children of the same age range from heterosexual couples. Gartrell fully admitted that when beginning the study she expected to find that the children of lesbian couples would rate no different than those of heterosexual couples, and was surprised to see that they do actually develop better.

Children from lesbian households rated higher in academic and social measurements as well as overall social competence. They further showed lower tendencies toward aggressive behavior and breaking rules. There are several theories as to why this may be the case.

The predominant current theory is that lesbian couples tend to be older and more stable socially and financially before starting a family. They also tend to congregate in areas which are more socially liberal, and not by coincidence many of those areas have excellent school systems straight through to the university level. Because lesbian couples tend to be more mature and stable, it is believed they devote more of their time to their children – in part because there are often many hardships faced to have a child at all.

There has also been a connection made in other studies that lesbian couples to a certain degree mirror the matriarchal system of a mother and grandmother raising children when male family figures are absent. Those children often tend to be less aggressive and more respectful, although in more current studies that has been seen as less true

than past decades. Lesbian couples have also been cited as having less need to assert power in the household which has previously been associated with better psychological development in children.

The study also found that the children of lesbian parents do suffer teasing and stigmatization among their peers to some degree, but that is true of any child at some point. It does seem however these children are well equipped to deal with it and move on in a healthy manner. It should also be noted that these finding do not extend to the children of two gay males, no comparable studies on those couples have yet to be conducted.

At this point the loudest opponent of the study has been Wendy Wright of the Concerned Women for America that is a Biblical values organization which argues no tests funded in whole or part by advocacy groups can be legitimate – aside from their own studies or those of upstanding Christian values advocacy groups. Wright said of the study. “It just defies common sense and reality.”  It must also be noted this is the same woman that stated publicly that Planned Parenthood wanted kids to have unwanted/accidental pregnancies so they could get rich performing abortions. Consider that when assessing her value as an objective observer.

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