Intergenerational Transfer of Parental Sexual Orientation and Other Myths
4 Iɴᴛ’ʟ. J. Jᴜʀɪs. Fᴀᴍ. 267 (2013).
167 Pages Posted: 15 Aug 2018
Date Written: 2013
Are same-sex parents more likely to raise lesbian, gay, or bisexual (LGB) children than are heterosexual parents? Since 1991, the answers from social science theory and the answers suggested by much social science research have been in the affirmative: namely, to predict that same-sex parents would be more likely to raise LGB children. Nevertheless, it appears that most scholars have rejected this conclusion and have cast their support in favor of a "no difference" hypothesis, interpreting research as proving that LGB parents are not more likely to raise LGB children. This article provides more than 170 quotes from more than 150 sources by more than 160 scholars and authors who have assumed the truth of the "no difference" hypothesis. However, an assessment of social science research reveals that the children of nonheterosexual parents have been more likely to grow up to engage in same-sex sexual behaviors, or to identify as nonheterosexual, than children raised by heterosexual parents.
This article examines other correlates of homosexuality. Research indicates that homosexuals are more likely to abuse drugs, use tobacco, contract sexually transmitted infections, report poorer mental health, report higher rates of considering suicide, and to have been sexually abused as children compared to heterosexuals. Research may suggest that homosexuals have shorter lifespans and may be more likely to sexually abuse children, but these results are more ambiguous. Minority stress theory is insufficient to account for all of these discrepancies between heterosexuals and nonheterosexuals. Alternatives to sexual-minority stress theory are proposed. The dangers of science-driven more by politics than empirical evidence are discussed with special reference to challenges facing judicial authorities as they wrestle with the question of how to interpret social science results accurately in cases involving homosexuality, gay marriage, or same-sex parenting.
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