Patterson, University of Virginia, American Psychological Association, 2005)
"In 1976, there were an estimated 300,000 to 500,000 gay and lesbian biological parents; as of 1990, an estimated 6 to 14 million children have a gay or lesbian parent. And, between 8 and 10 million children are being raised in gay and lesbian households. The US Department of Health and Human Services, Adoption and Foster Care Analysis Reporting System (AFCARS), estimated in 1999 there were approximately 547,000 children in foster care in the United States, of which 117,000 are legally free and therefore eligible for adoption. But, in 1997, there were qualified adoptive families (including single parents) available for only twenty percent of these children. It is also estimated that approximately ten percent of the U.S. population-or 25 million individuals-are homosexual."(NAIC - National Adoption Information Clearinghouse, April 2000).
But the social workers have their own reservations; they may contemplate about the raising of these children The child's thinking; about his/her own self, and their parents, when they compare themselves with children of heterosexual parentage, Will they be embarrassed because they have two mothers or two fathers, or because their single mother dates women or their unmarried father has a boyfriend Will their friends tease them Will they also be homosexual like their parents as compared to children raised by heterosexual parents Lastly what effect will it have on the adulthood of a child raised by homosexual parents relative to heterosexual parents (NAIC - National Adoption Information Clearinghouse, April 2000).
In the same article by NAIC "Courts have expressed concern that children raised by gay and lesbian parents may have difficulties with their personal and psychological development, self-esteem, and social and peer relationships. Because of this concern, researchers have focused on children's development in gay and lesbian families. Thus the studies conclude that children of gay or lesbian parents are no different than their counterparts raised by heterosexual parents. In "Children of Lesbian and Gay Parents," a 1992 article in Child Development, Charlotte Patterson states, "Despite dire predictions about children based on well-known theories of psychosocial development, and despite the accumulation of a substantial body of research investigating these issues, not a single study has found children of gay or lesbian parents to be disadvantaged in any significant respect relative to children of heterosexual parents." (NAIC - National Adoption Information Clearinghouse, April 2000).
An event that occurs in the life of one family member affects others in the family as well. Study of the parent-child relationship reminds us of the intimate interconnections between the lives of parents and adult children, throughout the entire duration of their relationship. They are consociates, with contingent life career. Children count on a period of strength - almost invulnerability - in their parents up to old age, whereas parents