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Despite the fact that advances were identified, one still observe the difficulties faced by LGBT people in accessing the health system as a result of prejudicial and discriminatory behavior, often adopted by health professionals. Besides biomedical and epidemiological information on disease prevalence, risk, and vulnerability, it becomes important to know the formulation of public health policies directed to the group, implications of gender issues, the structuring of health services, and performance of professionals, since these make up the factors that directly interfere with access and that guarantee the right to health of the homosexual population [ 6 , 7 ].
Therefore, this study aimed to identify the difficulties associated with homosexuality in access and utilization of health services through the bibliographic survey of scientific literature on the matter. Systematic review, as PRISMA recommendations, that ran through the steps: 1 defining the research question; 2 establishment of goals; 3 demarcation of inclusion and exclusion criteria; 4 defining the information to be extracted from selected articles; 5 analysis of the results; and 6 data discussion and presentation.
The option to choose MeSH 3 or MeSH 4 was due to the similarity of their meanings, thereby enabling the identification of a bigger amount of articles on the theme. For all the databases, the same search strategy was adopted. The collection period occurred from July to May Articles published between and were surveyed. The analysis followed the predetermined eligibility criteria. Two reviewers extracted information from the included studies using a standardized form.
The matrix includes information on authors, year of publication, journal database, description of the study sample, the adopted method and the conclusions obtained. The results of the studies were compared, allowing a comprehensive discussion of this topic. The initial electronic search in the databases resulted in a total of references. The articles were evaluated according to their year of publication and relation to the theme, resulting in an initial exclusion of articles.
The remaining 93 articles were compared against the other inclusion and exclusion criteria.
A total of 14 studies Fig. Summary of publications that addressed accessibility to health and health care services. Axles considered obstacles for access to health services and health care. Developments of Themes. Bidirectional flow implications. The identified studies revealed the main implications of homosexuality towards access to health services: differences in health care between heterosexual and homosexual individuals, particularly for the female homosexual population [ 5 — 10 ]; communication difficulties as a accessibility barrier to the gay population to health services [ 3 ]; prejudicial conduct adopted by health professionals [ 4 , 11 ]; breach of confidentiality during consultations [ 9 ]; disclosure of sexual orientation in health services [ 12 ]; persuit of health services in major conditions situations, because of institutional homophobia [ 1 , 2 ]; internalized homophobia [ 13 ]; aging and homosexual orientation as access barriers [ 14 ]; need for holistic care beyond the sexual issues of the homosexual population [ 8 ]; and higher performance of professional services towards the care of LGBT youth [ 15 ].
These findings are discussed in categories that gather the main conclusions of research.
Accordingly, the main conclusions of the studies were grouped into three axes based on two models usually adopted in research involving sexual minorities regarding health disparities imposed on the group. This model starts from the premise that sexual minorities experience the chronic stress resulting from the suffered social stigmatization, with negative impacts on health [ 16 ]. According to this model, proximal stress processes include internalized homophobia self-directed aversion , and stigma expectation or fear of being rejected in society, with concealment of sexual orientation [ 16 ].
These conditions, found in the conclusions of the studies, may justify the absence of demand for health services. This model recognizes that environmental factors act upon the health determinants of a population [ 17 ]. With regard to homosexual health, the model is useful to conceptualize that the social behavior of the group non-heterosexual orientation affects the environment and, in turn, is affected by it.
This relationship may justify the findings of the studies, where the vocational training in health is grounded on a heteronormative and prejudiced culture, which implies an institutional violence in health services, which can consequently justify the reduction of health care by the LGBT population. In the first category, the challenges for health care to the LGBT population are discussed, which, in part, are associated with sexual practices and lifestyles of the group perceived as deviant from a supposed normal range defined by gender relations, which indicate heterosexuality as dominant pattern of sexual orientation.
The second category explores the discriminatory attitudes on the part of health professionals, when referring to health care for LGBT clients. The last category addresses the behavior of health professionals when caring for sexual minorities, with such behavior being partly influenced by stereotypes, social taboos and myths about non-heterosexual sexual orientation. When these papers are rejected, in the example of homosexuality, rejection behaviors are envisioned as a vicious circle, transmitted from generation to generation, and characterized as homophobia [ 1 ].
Homophobia can be defined as the rejection, fear or irrational intolerance towards homosexuality [ 7 , 18 ]. Although such studies do not represent the entire population, they are an important indicator of the existence of homophobia, which pervades the daily life of the LGBT population.
Homophobic discourses are present in the conduits and in the minds of health professionals. For some area workers, the LGBT population is a group of sick people, not worthy to formalize marriages and adopt children; by witnessing attitudes of affection between members of the group, the repulsion of these workers was awakened [ 12 ].
Misconduct, constraints, prejudiced connotations or even verbal abuse on the part of professionals in health facilities, generate reduction in attendance and in seeking assistance. These attitudes can be experienced as violent situations sometimes silent and sometimes concrete that may contribute to the deviation of own body care and the health of the LGBT population [ 4 , 6 ]. As a result of this reality, the group has fears revealing their sexual orientation in health services, anticipating the negative impact that such an attitude can generate in the quality of care [ 3 ].
As a result of the non-disclosure, the LGBT population is treated as straight and proves to be dissatisfied with the care received, since, in part, this does not address their real needs or even desires [ 10 ]. The presence of internalized homophobia within the LGBT population also appears to be another aggravation for them not to search for services [ 13 ]. Shame and fear of reprisals after disclosure of sexual orientation have shown association with a set of problems among gay and bisexual men, including depression and anxiety, relationship problems, sexual compulsion, and the use of psychoactive substances [ 19 ].
In general, the existence of internal and external homophobia implies the displacement of the population, in cases of illness, to pharmacies first. The LGBT population turn to health units only when the resolution becomes unsuccessful [ 4 ]. Self-medication allows the appearance of diseases, with consequent search for units and emergency wards, often considered the gateway to the system [ 1 ]. Although most scientific studies have female participants, because historically women seek attendance for health care, knowledge about access to services by the general homosexual population is a key dimension to the formulation of appropriate public policies.
The search for health services for homosexual women compared with heterosexual women reveals a lower frequency in conducting preventive and routine tests, such as preventive examination against cervical and breast cancer [ 2 , 6 , 10 , 11 ]. The reduction in the frequency of performing the Pap smear is justified by homosexual women in the way the examination is conducted, since it can reveal the presence of self-reported physical attributes as masculinized and make it possible to identify a sexuality that may be seen as deviant [ 2 ]. In a study of 19, participants, between hetero- and homosexuals, lesbians had negative experiences in gynecological clinics, encountering inappropriate reactions and rejections from professionals [ 10 ].
Another point that implies the non-procurement of sexual and reproductive health services for gay women is the fact that they do not believe they are at risk of acquiring or being capable of transmitting sexual diseases, since they consider this is only possible in heterosexual relationships and by promiscuity [ 2 ]. Still, gay women have reduced protective factors for breast and ovarian cancer, especially those who do not want or intend to become pregnant [ 10 ]. Comparatively, gay men also have difficulty accessing health services.
A study of 29 participants in Guatemala revealed that gay men have low demand for services and when they seek them their medical needs are unmet as a result of discriminatory attitudes of professionals [ 9 ]. It is noteworthy that the AIDS epidemic has raised the pursuit of this population to these services, making gays more likely to seek preventive care for situations that put them at risk of HIV infection [ 3 , 5 ], as there is a historical and cultural association between male homosexuality and HIV. Information obtained improperly and not making a precocious quest for health care favor the appearance of other problems.
Connection with consumption of alcohol, tobacco and drugs, suicide attempts and depression tendency, arise with high frequency in the LGBT [ 3 — 5 ] population, as well as problems related to sexual and reproductive health. Many homosexuals, by not revealing their sexual orientation and playing a typical role within the genre to which they belong, are more likely to develop psychological disorders [ 20 ], especially young homosexuals, due to the difficulty experienced with social and family acceptance [ 15 , 21 , 22 ].
A survey of LGBT youth in the United States identified the need for greater sensitivity on the part of health professionals, in an attempt to solve the problems of this population [ 15 ]. Young LGBT affirmed the importance of a more comprehensive look at the area of workers on health promotion, brokering conflicts, especially in the family, and the reduction of social homophobia [ 8 ].
Similar data are found in the elderly homosexual population, who experience major challenges and barriers in access to health services, to reveal their sexual orientation. The stigma is associated with the believing that aging and homosexuality raises the risk of social isolation, poor physical and mental health, cognitive impairment, and mortality in the general elderly population [ 14 ].
Criminalization and stigmatization of homosexuality are important barriers to providing access and utilization of services by health professionals [ 23 ]. This index has a scale of 25 items with a total score of zero to , where values above 50 indicate strong inclination to homophobia. Still, the thematic approach inherent in sexuality that often goes against professional modesty prevents satisfactory health care being directed to the group [ 9 ].
Intervention strategies, such as continuing education, can be adopted to prepare health professionals for non-discriminatory service directed at the LGBT group, granting the right to comprehensive care, as provided in the legislation. Continuing education experiences reveal satisfactory results. In Kenya, a 2-day training of health professionals provided information on men who have sex with men, their sexual risk behaviors, and their health needs. The post-training evaluation, 3 months after this intervention, found a reduction in prejudice attitudes and increased knowledge of these health professionals regarding the particular health of this population [ 25 ].
For both, there is the need to provide, in the training of health professionals, evidence-based clinical information relating to the health care process facing the LGBT population. These requirements are: communication patterns; understanding the relationship between health, illness, and gender issues; sensitive approach to the homosexual patient; and addressing the most common health problems [ 24 ].
It is pertinent to reduce the difficulties of accessibility to health services, as well as violation of confidentiality and discrimination on the part of professionals, by the adoption of these attitudes [ 9 ]. Even health professionals criminalize homosexuality. Instead, they can be encouraged to provide a supportive and safe environment in which sexual minorities can discuss their risk behaviors, sexuality, and health problems [ 23 ]. Vic has been a writer and amateur historian for decades, with a special interest in British history between the wars, and the German occupation of the Channel Islands Vic has an M.
For more information about Vic, head over here. After The Night is a love story set in a British prison in , which examines homophobic prejudices and societal pressures alongside the romantic narrative. The Legend Of Pope Joan is a three part fast-paced pansexual, gender-bending, theological extravaganza set in the 9th Century. More about Rachel Dax. Ellen Dean writes lesbian fiction Beautiful Strangers is an Amazon and Smashwords best-seller and general fiction, non-fiction, short stories and screenplays.
Along with her other writing projects she is working on Beyond Midnight, the sequel to Beautiful Strangers. She is a radio presenter and makes short, funny films. More about Ellen. The Blue Hour marks her first foray into the world of short stories. If you follow the quiet hum of eccentricity, you will usually find her at home in Southwest England, except when she is not.
An avid reader who never judges a book by its cover, Beatrice enjoys exploring and expressing aspects of human sexuality through her own writing. Emma Donoghue is an Irish writer who writes both critically acclaimed non-lesbian fiction Room and award-winning lesbian fiction Sealed Letter. In addition to poems and plays, she has always written for personal pleasure.
Maureen Duffy was born in Worthing, Sussex in More about Maureen, her novels, plays, and poetry can be found on her website. Stella Duffy is a writer and performer and has written numerous plays, novels and short stories. More about Stella Duffy. She attended Keele University and graduated in with a BSc in philosophy and psychology. After graduating, she worked for a while with vulnerable young people until she moved on to deliver training and educational courses.
She is currently in the process of setting up her own speech writing business aptly named, Gift of the Gab. She is currently working on a futuristic, post-apocalyptic series. You can find out more about Amy over at her blog. Sally Edwards hails from Shropshire and specialises in stories that feature disabled characters.
How to Love was her debut — the story of a young disabled lesbian woman, coming of age, living a life of independence, and finding love. You can find out more about Sally on her website. She is currently a fitness instructor, and lives in Motherwell. Writing has been a constant in her life, but only since a move close to the artistic honeypot of Glasgow has it become The Other Job. Suzanne loves the scary presence of an audience, and has read her work at numerous events, including the Edinburgh International Book Festival. So far she has refrained from throwing up in the wings.
Her debut novel is Out Late with Friends and Regrets , and her blog can be found here. She lives in Lancaster, UK with her long suffering partner Ruth. She has a degree in psychology and has worked as a criminal lawyer in London for most of her adult life. Her work in criminal law brought her into contact with some of the most dangerous and some of the most vulnerable people in the capital. Jane is a Bold Strokes author and her website is over here.
She likes to travel and hopes to have travelled the globe before she leaves this world. You can find out more about Neve here at her blog. Jenny Frame is from the small town of Motherwell in Scotland, where she lives with her partner, Lou, and their well loved and very spoiled dog. She has a diverse range of qualifications, including a BA in public management and a diploma in acting and performance. Nowadays, she likes to put her creative energies into writing rather than treading the boards. When not writing or reading, Jenny loves cheering on her local football team, which is not always an easy task!
You can catch up with Jenny over at her blog , or on Facebook. Pauline was born in the beautiful county of Kent and is the eldest of four children. She now lives halfway between the buzzing metropolis of London and the quiet countryside of the Surrey Hills. However she has co-written a musical and a one act play which were performed at her local amateur dramatic society.
In her spare time Pauline indulges her hobbies of walking and photography, but even then her mind is busy creating the stories she hopes you will enjoy reading. Her debut novel is Jess. Kirsty Grant was born in Edinburgh, Scotland, and raised in a little town called Bonnyrigg. Now based in London, she worked in documentary film production before becoming a freelance writer and editor for a range of organizations specializing in human rights and development.
Read more here. Sponsored by the Home Office, she graduated from Teesside University before becoming a Probation Officer, a career cut short when she was injured while on duty.
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During that time she created and developed a number of projects, most notably a feature length film and the pilot episode of a crime series for television based on the characters in her book, the latter as part of a BBC drama development scheme. She lives in Northumberland with her partner, an ex-murder detective. Therefore, her fiction may take a while to get going, but it will get you there in the end and, it can be argued, will result in greater satisfaction. More about Tess and her novels can be found here. She currently lives and writes in Hackney. She lived in Paris for a year and when she moved back to the UK worked as a documentary film editor and also wrote and directed short films.
Her debut Petite Mort was published in and was short listed for the Polari Prize. She writes contemporary stories set in urban, modern England, exploring themes of postcolonial politics, emerging immigrant identities, and gay and lesbian humour. She is now 23, and lives in the West Midlands. Lauren sold the rights to her first novel The Next Together , a Young Adult science fiction romance, when she was Rights have sold in over six territories worldwide, including the USA. She is also the founding editor of the Pankhearst writers collective.
Born and raised in Liverpool, Evangeline now spends most of her time in Austin, TX, writing stories about girls. Sometimes women. Usually her girls love other girls, and often they drive cars — two reasons why she never sells in Saudi Arabia. Evangeline also writes about gender, sexuality, and violence against women. Like Valentina , her characters often seek bloody satisfaction.
Sometimes they find it. You can find out more about Evie at her blog. If you ever get a chance to go to one of her readings, go! She lives an ordinary life, doing ordinary things. You can contact Jackie at omegathirteen ymail. Jody Klaire started writing in and although she had been writing music and lyrics for fifteen years, becoming an author had never been something she aspired to. She aspires for her characters to touch the hearts of the reader. She loves writing, sport, music, art, and teaching herself new subjects.
Anna lives in Leicestershire with her partner Ang. You can find out more about Anna here at her blog. Rebecca S. Lazaro writes about female sexuality, emotional analysis and the psychology of dysfunctional relationships and her debut novel Unravel is available on Amazon. The studies indicate that children raised by lesbian women do not experience adverse outcomes compared with other children.
The same holds for children raised by gay men, but more studies should be done. Visit Source Website Baiocco, R. Lesbian mother families and gay father families in Italy: family functioning, dyadic satisfaction, and child well-being. Sexuality Research and Social Policy, 12 3 , The literature underlines that lesbian mother and gay father families are similar to those with heterosexual parents, regarding family functioning, dyadic satisfaction, and child development.
This paper compares 40 same-sex families and 40 heterosexual parents in the Italian context. In Italy, it is impossible for same-sex couples or single lesbians and gay men to adopt a child, become married, or enter civil partnerships. The participants were administered self-reports, in order to investigate the dyadic relationships, family functioning, and emotional and social adjustment of their children.
Lesbian and gay parents reported higher levels of dyadic adjustment, flexibility, and communication in their family than heterosexual parents. Data from the present study demonstrated that children raised by lesbian and gay parents showed a similar level of emotion regulation and psychological well-being than children raised by heterosexual parents.
In Italy, negative attitudes towards same-sex families persist, and educational programs should be developed to deconstruct stereotypes regarding gay and lesbian parent families. These results have important implications in both clinical and social fields. Visit Source Website Bailey, J. Sexual orientation of adult sons of gay fathers.
Developmental Psychology, 31 1 , The sexual development of children of gay and lesbian parents is interesting for both scientific and social reasons. The present study is the largest to date to focus on the sexual orientation of adult sons of gay men. From advertisements in gay publications, 55 gay or bisexual men were recruited who reported on 82 sons at least 17 yrs of age.
Furthermore, gay and heterosexual sons did not differ on potentially relevant variables such as the length of time they had lived with their fathers. Visit Source Website Biblarz, T. How does the gender of parents matter? Journal of Marriage and Family, 72 1 , Claims that children need both a mother and father presume that women and men parent differently in ways crucial to development but generally rely on studies that conflate gender with other family structure variables. We analyze findings from studies with designs that mitigate these problems by comparing two-parent families with same or different sex coparents and single-mother and single-father families.
Strengths typically associated with married mother-father families appear to the same extent in families with 2 mothers and potentially in those with 2 fathers. Average differences favor women over men, but parenting skills are not dichotomous or exclusive. Visit Source Website Bos, H. Planned gay father families in kinship arrangements. The gay fathers in this study all became parents while in same-sex relationships.
They donated sperm to lesbian couples and then shared the child-rearing with them in kinship arrangements. It was also examined whether aspects that are related specifically to gay fathers i. Data were collected by means of questionnaires filled in by the fathers. However, gay fathers felt less competent in their child-rearing role than heterosexual fathers. We assessed whether associations among family relationships, parenting stress, and child outcomes were different in the 2 household types. Methods: Parental and child characteristics were matched for 95 female same-sex parent and 95 different-sex parent households with children 6 to 17 years old.
One parent per household was interviewed by telephone. Multivariate analyses of variance and multiple linear regressions were conducted. Results: No differences were observed between household types on family relationships or any child outcomes. No significant interactions between household type and family relationships or household type and parenting stress were found for any child outcomes. Conclusion: Children with female same-sex parents and different-sex parents demonstrated no differences in outcomes, despite female same-sex parents reporting more parenting stress.
Future studies may reveal the sources of this parenting stress.
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Sex Roles, 62 , This study compared gender identity, anticipated future heterosexual romantic involvement, and psychosocial adjustment of children in lesbian and heterosexual families; it was furthermore assessed whether associations between these aspects differed between family types. Data were obtained in the Netherlands from children in 63 lesbian families and 68 heterosexual families. All children were between 8 and 12 years old. Children in lesbian families felt less parental pressure to conform to gender stereotypes, were less likely to experience their own gender as superior and were more likely to be uncertain about future heterosexual romantic involvement.
No differences were found on psychosocial adjustment. Gender typicality, gender contentedness and anticipated future heterosexual romantic involvement were significant predictors of psychosocial adjustment in both family types. Lesbian families and family functioning: an overview. Patient Education and Counseling, 59 3 , In the research on lesbian families two phases were identified. To begin with, systematic studies on lesbian families focused on lesbian families with children who were born in a previous heterosexual relationship.
More recently, studies included lesbian families whose children were born to the lesbian couple planned lesbian families. This paper presents and discusses major finding of the reviewed articles. However, it is the stigma of lesbianism that makes the family situation of lesbian families different.
Child adjustment and parenting in planned lesbian-parent families. American Journal of Orthopsychiatry, 77 1 , One hundred planned lesbian-parent families i.
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Questionnaires, observations, and a diary of activities were used to collect the data. The results show that especially lesbian social mothers i. Child adjustment is not associated with family type lesbian-parent families vs. Adolescents in lesbian families: DSM-oriented scale scores and stigmatization.
National Longitudinal Lesbian Family Study. In comparison with the scores of an age-matched normative sample, no significant differences in scores were found. Within the NLLFS sample, adolescents who reported stigmatization scored higher on affective, anxiety, and conduct problems. Although overall psychological functioning of the NLLFS adolescents fell within the healthy range, stigmatization had a negative impact on the well-being of some adolescents. Lesbian and heterosexual two-parent families: adolescent-parent relationship quality and adolescent well-being.
Journal of Child and Family Studies, 23 2 , The adolescents average age 16 years were matched on demographic characteristics age, gender, educational level, country of birth, parental birth country with a sample from a large school-based survey, and data were collected by means of adolescent self-reports. Analyses indicated that adolescents in both family types had positive relationships with their parents, which were favorably associated with psychological well-being.
On the assessments of psychological adjustment and substance use, family type was significantly associated only with self-esteem and conduct problems: Adolescents with lesbian mothers had higher levels of self-esteem and lower levels of conduct problems than their counterparts in heterosexual-parent families. Overall, the findings indicate that adolescents from intact two-mother lesbian families are comparable to those in a matched comparison group with intact mother—father families.
The few differences found on psychological well-being favored the adolescents in lesbian two-mother families. Journal of Lesbian Studies, 12 4 , The study assessed the influence of protective factors on the psychological adjustment of children who had experienced homophobia and whose mothers were participants in a longitudinal study of planned lesbian families. Data were collected as part of the National Longitudinal Lesbian Family Study by interviewing the children and having the mothers complete questionnaires.
No significant differences were found in the psychological adjustment of children in the present study and their age-matched peers in a U. Homophobia had a negative impact on the well-being of children who experienced it. K, van Gelderen, L. Adolescents of the U. National longitudinal lesbian family study: male role models, gender role traits and psychological adjustment. Half of the adolescents had male role models; those with and those without male role models had similar scores on the feminine and masculine scales of the Bem Sex Role Inventory, as well as on the trait subscales of the State-Trait Personality Inventory anxiety, anger, depression, and curiosity and the Child Behavior Checklist internalizing, externalizing, and total problem behavior.
A positive association was found between feminine gender role traits and curiosity, and a negative correlation between this trait and internalizing problem behavior; these associations were independent of the gender of the adolescents and the presence of male role models. In sum, the absence of male role models did not adversely affect the psychological adjustment of adolescents reared by lesbian mothers. Visit Source Website Brewaeys, A. Donor insemination: child development and family functioning in lesbian mother families. Human Reproduction, 12 6 , Findings are presented of a comparative study investigating the family relationships and the emotional and gender development of children raised in lesbian mother families.
A total of 30 lesbian mother families with year old children created as a result of donor insemination DI were compared with 38 heterosexual families with a DI child and with 30 heterosexual families who had a naturally conceived child. A variety of assessment measures, including a standardized interview and questionnaires from the parents and psychological testing of the child were used to collect the data. The quality of the interaction between the social mother and the child in lesbian families was superior to that between the father and the child in both groups of heterosexual families.
These results indicate that child and family development in lesbian mother families is similar to that of heterosexual families. Lesbian motherhood: the impact on child development and family functioning. The wide variety of lesbian families who became visible during the past 20 years gave rise to important practical and theoretical questions. Up to now society has treated lesbian mothers differently with regard to a number of child-issues.
In the past, divorcing lesbian mothers were often denied child custody because of their sexual orientation and the majority of fertility centers still refuse lesbian couples in their donor insemination programs. The present article reviews whether there is any theoretical and empirical evidence for the most widespread assumptions on which such decisions have been based.
A number of psychological theories, such as psychoanalytic theory, social and cognitive learning theory and attachment theory are discussed with regard to the two most salient features of lesbian families; the absence of a father and the homosexual orientation of the mother. Most of these studies involved children of divorced lesbian mothers who spent their early years in a heterosexual household. More recently, however, studies were sporadically carried out among children who were raised from birth in a lesbian relationship.
As early childhood experiences are believed to have an important impact on future development, the study of these newly created families provides a challenge for existing psychological theories. Although many important research questions have yet to be addressed, the results of all reviewed studies were unanimous; none of the investigations could identify an adverse effect of lesbian motherhood on child development.
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Visit Source Website Chan, R. Psychosocial adjustment among children conceived via donor insemination by lesbian and heterosexual mothers. Child Development, 69 2 , This study examined the relations among family structure e. The 80 participating families, all of whom had conceived children using the resources of a single sperm bank, included 55 families headed by lesbian and 25 families headed by heterosexual parents.
Fifty families were headed by couples and 30 by single parents. Participating children averaged 7 years of age. Results showed that children were developing in normal fashion, and that their adjustment was unrelated to structural variables such as parental sexual orientation or the number of parents in the household. These results held true for teacher reports as well as for parent reports. Parents who were experiencing higher levels of parenting stress, higher levels of interparental conflict, and lower levels of love for each other had children who exhibited more behavior problems.
Visit Source Website Crouch, S. Parent-reported measures of child health and wellbeing in same-sex parent families: a cross-sectional survey. BMC Public Health, 14 , Background: It has been suggested that children with same-sex attracted parents score well in psychosocial aspects of their health, however questions remain about the impact of stigma on these children. Research to date has focused on lesbian parents and has been limited by small sample sizes.
This study aims to describe the physical, mental and social wellbeing of Australian children with same-sex attracted parents, and the impact that stigma has on them. Methods: A cross-sectional survey, the Australian Study of Child Health in Same-Sex Families, was distributed in to a convenience sample of parents from Australia who self-identified as same-sex attracted and had children aged years. Parent-reported, multidimensional measures of child health and wellbeing and the relationship to perceived stigma were measured. Perceived stigma is negatively associated with mental health.
Through improved awareness of stigma these findings play an important role in health policy, improving child health outcomes. Visit Source Website Crowl, A. A meta-analysis of developmental outcomes for children of same-sex and heterosexual parents. While there has been a recent upsurge in the number of studies related to children raised by gay and lesbian parents, the literature in this area continues to be small and wrought with limitations. This study presents a meta-analysis of the existing research and focuses on the developmental outcomes and quality of parent-child relationships among children raised by gay and lesbian parents.
A total of 19 studies were used for this analysis and included both child and parent outcome measures addressing six areas. Analyses revealed statistically significant effect size differences between groups for one of the six outcomes: parent-child relationship. Results confirm previous studies in this current body of literature, suggesting that children raised by same-sex parents fare equally well to children raised by heterosexual parents. The authors discuss findings with respect to the implications for practitioners in schools.
Visit Source Website Erich, S. A comparative analysis of adoptive family functioning with gay, lesbian, and heterosexual parents and their children. The objectives of this comparative study were to examine adoptive family functioning with a sample of gay, lesbian, and heterosexual adoptive parents and their children. Furthermore, a regression analysis suggested the following variables were associated with higher levels of family functioning: adoptive parents who were previously foster parents and children who had more previous placements prior to adoption.
Lower family functioning was associated with children adopted through CPS; with children who had mental health diagnoses, learning disorders, or other handicapping conditions; and with children who were in a higher grade in school. The results of this comparative study of adoptive families support the need for more methodologically rigorous research that includes gay and lesbian adoptive parents along with heterosexual parents. An empirical analysis of factors affecting adolescent attachment in adoptive families with homosexual and straight parents. Children and Youth Services Review, 31 3 , This study was principally interested in factors affecting adolescent attachment including parent sexual orientation, adolescent and parent life satisfaction, and parent level of relationship satisfaction with their adopted child as well as other key parent, child and adoption characteristics.
The results suggest that higher level of adopted adolescent attachment to parents is not related to adoptive parent sexual orientation. Adolescent life satisfaction, like level of attachment is an indicator of youth well-being. This variable was found to have a significant relationship with parent level of relationship satisfaction with their adopted child.
Implications for policy, practice, education and further research are discussed. Visit Source Website Falk, P. Lesbian mothers: Psychosocial assumptions in family law. American Psychologist, 44 6 , Courts often have assumed that lesbian women are emotionally unstable or unable to assume a maternal role. They also often have assumed that their children are likely to be emotionally harmed, subject to molestation, impaired in gender role development, or themselves homosexual. None of these assumptions is supported by extant research and theory.
Visit Source Website Farr, R. Parenting and child development in adoptive families: does parental sexual orientation matter? Applied Developmental Science, 14 3 , Parents and teachers reported that, on average, children were developing in typical ways. Implications for understanding the role of gender and sexual orientation in parenting, as well as for legal and policy debates, are discussed. Child Development, 84 4 , Coparenting is associated with child behavior in families with heterosexual parents, but less is known about coparenting among lesbian- and gay-parent families.
Lesbian and gay couples reported sharing child care, whereas heterosexual couples reported specialization i. Observations confirmed this pattern—lesbian and gay parents participated more equally than heterosexual parents during family interaction. Lesbian couples showed the most supportive and least undermining behavior, whereas gay couples showed the least supportive behavior, and heterosexual couples the most undermining behavior. Overall, supportive coparenting was associated with better child adjustment. Does parental sexual orientation matter? A longitudinal follow-up of adoptive families with school-age children.
Developmental Psychology, 53 2 , Controversy continues to surround parenting by lesbian and gay LG adults and outcomes for their children. As sexual minority parents increasingly adopt children, longitudinal research about child development, parenting, and family relationships is crucial for informing such debates. From the framework of family stress theory, it was expected that longitudinal outcomes for school-age children adopted in infancy could be distinct among those with same-sex versus other-sex parents N!
Similar findings were hypothesized in terms of parent adjustment, couple relationships, and family functioning in comparing same-sex and other-sex parent families. Results indicated that adjustment among children, parents, and couples, as well as family functioning, were not different on the basis of parental sexual orientation lesbian, gay, or heterosexual when children were school-age. These findings are consistent with and extend previous literature about families headed by LG parents, particularly those that have adopted children.
The results have implications for advancing supportive policies, practices, and laws related to adoption and parenting by sexual minority adults. Visit Source Website Fedewa, A. Parent practices and home-school partnerships: a differential effect for children with same-sex coupled parents?
Parents can profoundly influence the long-term academic success of their children. Unfortunately, same-sex parents often feel disconnected and unwelcome in schools. In order to extend the research supporting parent practices and strong family-school collaboration, the present study used the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study-Kindergarten Cohort ECLS-K data set to examine the following: 1 How same-sex families compare to heterosexual families with respect to the parental practices of helping and communicating; 2 How home-school partnerships compare across same-sex and heterosexual families; and 3 Whether a strong home-school partnership is more important for the academic achievement and social adjustment of children with same-sex parents given the societal context in which these children are embedded.
Results indicated that same-sex and heterosexual parents did not differ with respect to their parent practices or home-school partnerships. Further, home-school partnerships were not differentially important for children with same-sex parents. Visit Source Website Flaks, D. Compared 15 lesbian couples and the 3- to 9-yr-old children born to them through donor insemination with 15 matched, heterosexual-parent families. Results revealed no significant differences between the 2 groups of children, who also compared favorably with the standardization samples for the instruments used.
In addition, no significant differences were found between dyadic adjustment of lesbian and heterosexual couples. Only in the area of parenting did the 2 groups of couples differ; lesbian couples exhibited more parenting awareness skills than did heterosexual couples. The implications of these findings are discussed.
Visit Source Website Fulcher, M. Contact with grandparents among children conceived via donor insemination by lesbian and heterosexual mothers. Parenting, 2 1 , This study compared the networks of extended family and friendship relationships of children conceived via donor insemination with lesbian versus heterosexual parents. Eighty families participated; 55 of the families were headed by lesbians parents and 25 were headed by heterosexual parents. Most children had regular contact with grandparents, other relatives, and adult nonrelatives outside their immediate households, and there were no differences in this regard as a function of parental sexual orientation.
Bother children of lesbian and heterosexual parents had more frequent contact with the parents of their biological mother than with the parents of their father or other mother. Contrary to negative stereotypes, children of lesbian mothers were described as having regular contact with grandparents.
Regardless of parental sexual orientation, children were described as being in more frequent contact with grandparents to whom they were biologically linked. Research on children of lesbian parents has suggested that such children are developing well, but questions have been raised about their gender development. Participants were 66 preschool children and their parents from the East Coast of the United States. Thirty-three families were headed by lesbian and 33 by heterosexual couples. Parents who divided paid and unpaid labor more unequally had children whose occupational aspirations were also more traditional.
Visit Source Website Gartrell, N. National longitudinal lesbian family study: sexual orientation, sexual behavior, and sexual risk exposure. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 40 6 , Data for the current report were gathered through online questionnaires completed by 78 adolescent offspring 39 girls and 39 boys.
The adolescents were asked if they had ever been abused and, if so, to specify by whom and the type of abuse verbal, emotional, physical, or sexual. They were also asked to specify their sexual identity on the Kinsey scale, between exclusively heterosexual and exclusively homosexual.
Lifetime sexual behavior was assessed through questions about heterosexual and same-sex contact, age of first sexual experience, contraception use, and pregnancy. The results revealed that there were no reports of physical or sexual victimization by a parent or other caregiver. Regarding sexual orientation, When compared with age- and gender-matched adolescents of the National Survey of Family Growth, the study offspring were significantly older at the time of their first heterosexual contact, and the daughters of lesbian mothers were significantly more likely to have had same-sex contact.