Child Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorderv (ADHD) in Same-Sex Parent Families in the United States: Prevalence and Comorbidities

British Journal of Medicine & Medical Research 6(10): 987-998, 2015, Article no. BJMMR.2015.275, ISSN: 2231-061

12 Pages Posted: 2 Feb 2015 Last revised: 10 Feb 2015

See all articles by Donald Sullins

Donald Sullins

The Catholic University of America; The Ruth Institute

Date Written: January 21, 2015

Abstract

Aims: This paper presents the first population data on attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) among children raised by same-sex parents with the aims 1) to test whether residence with same-sex parents is associated with higher ADHD prevalence, and 2) to observe and assess any clinically significant aggravators or comorbidities.

Methodology: Aggregate data for 1997-2013 from the U.S. National Health Interview Survey yielded a representative sample of children from 207,007 households, including 512 with same-sex parents, permitting inferential comparisons.

Results: ADHD was more than twice (OR 2.4, 95% CL 1.6-3.4) as prevalent among children with same-sex parents than in the general population, after controlling for age, sex, ethnicity and parent SES. Comorbidities with general emotional problems and defiance behavior were standard. ADHD risk with same-sex parents was reduced among adopted children (OR 0.54 95% CL .27-1.1), null in the presence of parent psychological distress, and substantially elevated in the presence of stigmatization (OR 7.3 95% CL 1.4-38.1). In same-sex families, children with ADHD were over seven times (OR 7.5 95% CL 1.2-46.8) more likely to suffer stigmatization due to impaired interpersonal coping skills.

Conclusion: Diagnostic intake for ADHD should include parent sexual orientation, and treatment programs should include resources to bolster anti-victimization skills, particularly for children with same-sex parents. Results suggest the presence of shared genetic factors for same-sex attraction and ADHD, though more research is needed to confirm.

Note: SSRN version includes erratum for Table 5. SSRN version includes errata.

Keywords: National health Interview Survey, same-sex parents, ADHD, attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder, stigmatization

JEL Classification: J12, J13

Suggested Citation

Sullins, Donald, Child Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorderv (ADHD) in Same-Sex Parent Families in the United States: Prevalence and Comorbidities (January 21, 2015). British Journal of Medicine & Medical Research 6(10): 987-998, 2015, Article no. BJMMR.2015.275, ISSN: 2231-061, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2558745 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2558745

Donald Sullins (Contact Author)

The Catholic University of America ( email )

116 McMahon Hall
Washington, DC 20064
United States

The Ruth Institute ( email )

4845 Lake Street
Suite 217
Lake Charles, LA 70605
United States

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