A study released out of Melbourne University in Australia found that children raised by same sex couples are healthier and enjoy a better sense of well-being than their peers. This study, called the biggest of its type so far, sought to “describe the physical, mental and social well-being” of children raised by gay and lesbian parents. It also sought to understand “the impact that stigma has on them.” In terms of family cohesion and general health, children of gay parents scored 6% higher than their heterosexual counterparts. Researchers also found that in terms of behavior, self-esteem and mental health, gay parent’s children were about the same as those raised by hetero parents.
Speaking on CNBC, Dr. Simon Crouch said, “It appears that same-sex parent families get along well and this has a positive impact on health.” Crouch is from the Jack Brockhoff Child Health and Wellbeing Program, Centre for Health Equity at the University of Melbourne. Crouch thinks the focus gay parents have on skill building rather than on traditional gender roles may account for the conclusion of the survey. Certainly, a more accepting and less discriminatory attitude in Australian society, as in other Western societies, may also play a role.
“So what this means is that people take on roles that are suited to their skill sets rather than falling into those gender stereotypes,” Crouch said. “What this leads to is a more harmonious family unit and therefore feeding on to better health and wellbeing.”
315 parents and 500 children participated in this study. Previous research has also found that children raised by same-sex couples grew up healthy with a solid sense of well-being. In fact, an earlier report out by the Williams Institute found that children raised by lesbian couples had higher self-esteem and less disciplinary problems. Another study conducted in 2012 entitled “Adolescents with Lesbian Mothers Describe Their Own Lives,” found that those teens raised by two moms maintained good GPAs. They also have strong bonds to their moms.
Dr. M. Mirza – lgbt health wellness .com – 2014