The past several decades have seen increasing controversies over lesbian and gay parenthood. More same-sex couples than ever are becoming parents, building their families while others debate their legal rights pertaining to marriage and parenthood. Against this sociopolitical backdrop, how do same-sex couples transition to parenthood, and what are their experiences as parents? Furthermore, what are the experiences of their children?

Lesbian and Gay Parents and Their Children: Research on the Family Life Cycle provides a comprehensive overview of the research on same-sex parenthood, exploring ways in which lesbian and gay parents resist, accommodate, and transform fundamental notions of gender, parenting, and family. The book takes a family life cycle approach, beginning with research on how same-sex couples meet and build healthy relationships, then describing how and why same-sex couples decide to have children and how they grapple with the changing roles each partner must adopt. Their experiences raising children through young adulthood are explored, including the challenges of interacting with their children's schools and teachers. In the end, the book considers the perspectives of the children themselves—as young adults and adults speak out about their experiences having lesbian or gay parents.

Integrating both qualitative and quantitative research, this book incorporates a range of disciplines, including psychology, sociology, sexuality/gender studies, and human development. It also highlights understudied aspects of same-sex parenting, such as termination of couple relationships.

With practical recommendations in every chapter, this book is an indispensable resource for those who research lesbian and gay mental health and family issues, as well as those who provide services to lesbian and gay parents and parents-to-be.

Table of Contents
  1. Introduction: Lesbian and Gay Parents and Their Children—Research and Contemporary Issues
  2. Partners but Not Parents: Intimate Relationships of Lesbians and Gay Men
  3. From Partners to Parents: The Transition to Parenthood for Lesbians and Gay Men
  4. Lesbians and Gay Men as Parents
  5. Children of Lesbian and Gay Parents: Adjustment and Experiences
  6. Young Adults and Adults With Lesbian and Gay Parents Speak Out
  7. Conclusions and Future Directions



About the Author

Author Bio

Abbie E. Goldberg is an assistant professor in the Department of Psychology at Clark University in Worcester, Massachusetts. She received her PhD in clinical psychology from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst and completed a clinical psychology internship at Yale Medical School.

Her research has examined the transition to parenthood in diverse families, including lesbian-parent families and adoptive-parent families. In particular, her work has focused on how families' relationships and identities change across the transition to parenthood and how gender and sexual orientation figure into individuals' adjustment and experience of parenthood. In addition, she has studied the experiences of adults raised by lesbian, gay, and bisexual parents.

She has received funding from the American Psychological Association, the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, the Williams Institute, the Gay and Lesbian Medical Association, and the Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues.

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