Adolescents with Same Sex Parents: Does it Make a Difference?
Jesse A. Raley.
Objective: There are estimated to be between 6 and 14 million homosexual parents in the U.S. It is likely that
therapists will encounter families with same sex parents in their work. The question of whether the parents’ sexual orientation
has any effect on their children is an important one for society and is often an issue in custody determinations.
Methods: This article reviews the relevant research and gives recommendations for therapists working with same sex parents
and their adolescent children.
Conclusions: The current scientific literature supports a lack of detrimental effect of parents’ sexual orientation on their
adolescent children. However, there are multiple limitations to this literature. Most data is taken from three longitudinal
studies and focusses on families with lesbian mothers. More research is needed on families with gay fathers, and more
emphasis should be placed on the direct assessment of adolescents.
Keywords: Homosexual, same sex, parents, lesbian, sexual orientation.
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