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Study's Overwhelming Consensus: The Kids Really Are All Right

Study's Overwhelming Consensus: The Kids Really Are All Right


A study says the sexual orientation of parents 'makes no difference' in their children's development.

Researchers say they have confirmed that children of same-sex parents are not negatively impacted by their parents' relationship, and that these kids "experience 'no difference' on a range of social and behavioral outcomes compared to children of heterosexual or single parents."

Their study, conducted at the University of Colorado at Denver, analyzed the data in thousands of articles by other researchers looking for evidence that children of same-sex parents did not have the same overall outcome as other children.

The team was led by Jimi Adams, an associate professor in the Department of Health and Behavioral Studies at CU Denver's College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, and found that research dating back to 1990 scientifically established that same-sex parenting was in no way harmful to children.

By 2000, Adams found what she called "overwhelming" consensus that having same-sex couples as parents was not detrimental to child-rearing.

Adams' research comes at a time when the U.S. Supreme Court is about to rule on whether the Constitution requires marriage equality. Leading up to the impending decision, courts have been using social science research to shore up arguments for and against legal marriage rights for same-sex couples.

Her study provides timely evidence against the idea that children of same-sex couples suffer disadvantages:

"As same-sex marriage has been debated in courts across the country, there has been the lingering question about the effects of same-sex parenting on children," explained Adams. "I wanted to analyze the research from the past decades to determine if there was consensus amongst researchers about that effect. I found overwhelming evidence that scientists agree that there is not a negative impact to children of same-sex couples."

The study was published this month in Social Science Research.

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