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prisonchaplain

Children of Heterosexual Parents Do Better Because of Biological Connection

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A new study shows that children of heterosexual parents do better.  It factors out the typical reasons offered (bullying, adoption, etc.), and suggests that the primary factor is a child's biological connection to both parents.  Of course, this is impossible when the couple are same-sex.

 

http://www.christianpost.com/news/another-gay-parenting-study-finds-children-do-best-with-mom-and-dad-will-the-supreme-court-care-133939/

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Well, Donald Paul Sullins is a priest and yes he is also a sociologist but a priest nonetheless who happen to be very involved in anti-gay marriage campaigns, not saying his words are not valuable but I would rather a non-bias source. There have been a few studies with the opposite conclusion.

 

He talks about some of these children having a biological connection with at least one parent of the same sex couples but we have no more information given?. Perhaps previous relationship issues? Divorce? I could see a child negatively affected by these issues and if we compare them against ANY couple (gay or not gay) that did NOT go through separation or divorce, of course they will be seen as having emotional issues but is it because they are raised by gay parents or is it because of previous challenges?. Were the same sex couples in question even married?  How is it that Sullins did not have control over such an important element in a study?

 

The truth of the matter is that so far no one has presented a serious and flawless research methodology about children raised in a household with two homosexual parents and there is a serious and I mean serious lack of scientific data about how these children are doing and how they will turn out to be.

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From what i've read, mixed results from different studies that follow the bias of those involved. However we do know that children thrive best in a loving and supportive family.

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I'm sorry, but the fact that a social scientist is a priest is not a disqualifier for me.  The writing, even of the Christian Post article, was cautious, careful--measured.  He did not fault gay parenting, did not hype numbers, or rely on assumed truths.  His conclusion that biological connection matters is something many cultures take for granted.  In the West we asteem adoptive parents, and for many years we have tried to be objective and neutral about the various forms families take in the public square.  There is not Judeo-Christian triumphalism here.  Simply the acknowledgement that yes, Virginia, a home where both parents are biologically connected to a child tends to work best.  Are their exceptions?  Of course.  Can other family systems work?  No doubt.  So, why the hesitation to accept this study's rather modest finding?  Because he's a priest?  Because he's a traditionalist conerning marriage?  If so, then find me an academic who has no opinion on the subject!  No, I'm afraid that every study will have to judged on the quality of the work--because anyone who's neutral probably isn't very engaged.

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I'm adopted, so I sort of have a dog in the fight. I don't think biological connection matters. In fact, in some ways I think me being adopted makes it "better" (for lack of a more acceptable word, please don't take offense)   than those who are not. After all, my parents choose my sisters and I. 

Edited by MormonGator

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MormonGator, I get you.  However, does it have to be that when studies say that odds favor the traditional biological family that it HAS to mean that adopted families, blended families, or gay-parented families are being maligned?  Each individual and each family has a unique story, with so many factors involved.  You could have a faith-filled family, with two parents biologically connected to the children, of ideal age ranges, from the same culture and community, with 2.2 kids and a dog.  HOWEVER, what if the dad is just a jerk?  That's just one example of what can hinder.  On the other hand, you have kids that grow up in the foster system, after early childhood abuse and molestation.  They may have moved a dozen times, never been in a school more than a year, etc.  Nevertheless, they grow up to achieve greatness and goodness.  Exceptions, examples, provisos, etc. etc. etc.

 

We know all of this.  So, why does a study that says, all else being equal, a kid has the very best odds in a home with both biological parents have to be so controversial?  Like I said earlier, many cultures take this for granted.  We have a study that verifies the humble notion, and right away their are accusations of religious bias, political bias, and concerns about who is being maligned by the implications.

 

Just how do scientists--especial those in the social fields--conduct their work in our hyper-PC environment?

Edited by prisonchaplain

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A new study shows that children of heterosexual parents do better.  It factors out the typical reasons offered (bullying, adoption, etc.), and suggests that the primary factor is a child's biological connection to both parents.  Of course, this is impossible when the couple are same-sex.

 

http://www.christianpost.com/news/another-gay-parenting-study-finds-children-do-best-with-mom-and-dad-will-the-supreme-court-care-133939/

ya pretty much. and no the supreme court will not care enough. and so far no one study has really come to be accepted as definitive by both parties.

Edited by Blackmarch

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MormonGator, I get you.  However, does it have to be that when studies say that odds favor the traditional biological family that it HAS to mean that adopted families, blended families, or gay-parented families are being maligned?  Each individual and each family has a unique story, with so many factors involved.  You could have a faith-filled family, with two parents biologically connected to the children, of ideal age ranges, from the same culture and community, with 2.2 kids and a dog.  HOWEVER, what if the dad is just a jerk?  That's just one example of what can hinder.  On the other hand, you have kids that grow up in the foster system, after early childhood abuse and molestation.  They may have moved a dozen times, never been in a school more than a year, etc.  Nevertheless, they grow up to achieve greatness and goodness.  Exceptions, examples, provisos, etc. etc. etc.

 

We know all of this.  So, why does a study that says, all else being equal, a kid has the very best odds in a home with both biological parents have to be so controversial?  Like I said earlier, many cultures take this for granted.  We have a study that verifies the humble notion, and right away their are accusations of religious bias, political bias, and concerns about who is being maligned by the implications.

 

Just how do scientists--especial those in the social fields--conduct their work in our hyper-PC environment?

Oh, I totally get what you are saying as well, and I agree with you. Unless the research is blatantly PC, it's not going to be broadcast. People are too chicken to buck the system. 

 

That said, I will admit to being a bit apprehensive when people think gay adoptions shouldn't occur. I understand what they are saying, but adoption in general really is a beautiful thing. 

Edited by MormonGator

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I was listening to some continuing education lectures relating to family law done by child therapists, and was amused how after two hours of detailed arguments that parent time schedules for divorced parents must give kids plenty of face time with both parents because moms and dads each bring unique and irreplaceable traits to the parenting table; there was a very strong thirty-second disclaimer about how this has nothing--nothing!!!--to do with the implications of gay child-rearing.

On a good day, I'd say these guys have no idea what they're talking about. On a more cynical day, I'd venture to guess that these guys know darned well that the data leads inexorably to the conclusion that kids generally do best with a mother and a father; but also understand that to "connect the dots" in this manner in today's professional/political climate would be the end of their careers. Academics gotta eat, just like the rest of us.

Edited by Just_A_Guy

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That said, I will admit to being a bit apprehensive when people think gay adoptions shouldn't occur. I understand what they are saying, but adoption in general really is a beautiful thing. 

 

And this is my #1 reason for opposing gay marriage in the secular arena.  People always say... it doesn't hurt anybody!  Well... if you can prove beyond reasonable doubt that it doesn't hurt children... or you can guarantee that gay marriage is not going to lead to children...  then I'll believe you that it doesn't hurt anybody.

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There are studies that point to opposing conclusions. It's not that I proclaim every study each on either side as biased and bad science. Just that with the current data set it's inconclusive. (Largely due to the politics around the issue no doubt)

If I had to make a personal decision, I would support a traditional family upbringing. Except, if the environment is not loving and caring, abusive etc.., in which case living with Uncle Sam, The Grandparents, or an Adoptive family might be better.

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There are studies that point to opposing conclusions. It's not that I proclaim every study each on either side as biased and bad science. Just that with the current data set it's inconclusive. (Largely due to the politics around the issue no doubt)

 

 

I was going to challenge you to produce these studies, but decided to do the work myself.  So, here is the top-billing google result:  http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-2336889/Gay-parents-healthier-children-better-self-esteem.html

 

Basically, it argues that children in Australia, raised in gay-parented families, are 6% better in terms of physical health and family cohesion.

 

Let's assume that the facts are true.  Why?  The researchers guessed that gay parents are better communicators, and their children pick this up.  As for physical health, it could be as simple as income levels (my guess, not the researchers').

 

BOTH of these surveys could be true.  It could be that children of biological parenting fare better emotionally, and that children of gay parents fare somewhat better physically, and in terms of family cohesion.  These results are not contradictory, nor do they cancel one another out.

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BOTH of these surveys could be true.  It could be that children of biological parenting fare better emotionally, and that children of gay parents fare somewhat better physically, and in terms of family cohesion.  These results are not contradictory, nor do they cancel one another out.

Luckily i'm not too argumentative about this topic, or maybe it's just not argumentative today ;P

I'll go with that, sounds good :D

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This is the best analysis I've seen on this topic to date.  It isn't perfect, but it uses appropriate statistical methodology and I'll trust that it shows the best representation of the nuances of the available data.

 

It also opens a few more questions for me that I think, when answered, would make a definitive case either for or against same sex marriage.  Yes, that's right...this study could be the genesis of the strongest case for same sex marriage we've had yet.

 

My first question is about why parental psychological stress isn't included in the model.  In the univariable descriptions, the psychological burden of same sex parents tended to be higher.  Why?  Does the parental stress carry over to the children?  We've seen studies about children and daycare and found that children who were in daycare and had parents who wanted to work fared just as well as children at home with a parent that did not want to work.  Conversely, children at home with parents who wanted to work fared just as poorly as children in daycare with parents that wanted to be home.  The moral of the story was that happy parents raise happy children.  This should be addressed in the research in question.

 

My second question would be: do these trends hold constant over time?  The survey in question has been in place since 1957, and the current analysis only uses from 1997 to 2013.  I think it would be interesting to take data from 1985 to 2013 and look at how the risk changes in either 5 year or 10 year increments.  If the risk is declining with time, it could suggest a number of possible scenarios, such as destigmatization reducing the psychological strain.

 

And my third curiosity deals with the variability of these estimates.  It's huge.  The confidence interval for the risk ratio associated with same sex parenting over two biological parents goes from 1.01 to 2.2.  That's the kind of interval I see in studies with about 60 subjects, and this claims 84,000.  This usually means that there is enormous variability within the groups.  My guess is that this would go back to the cumulative stress burden within the families.

 

One more question I would want to see addressed: how do children of biological parents compare to children of same sex parents who adopted in early infancy?  Particularly among same sex couples with no history of divorce.  Does allowing people to express themselves as they wish early in life result in better parenting.  It's really another take on happy parents, happy children.  I am interested in this because while the risk of same sex parented children is dramatically different than the risk of biologically parented children, the distinction gets a lot less clear when you compare to opposite sex step parents, single parents, and opposite sex cohabitating couples.  

 

This really is quality research.  But it still leaves a lot of questions unanswered.  The answers to those questions, I suspect, will make the best objective case either for or against same sex marriage, and I'm really not sure how it will play out.

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Truth and reality.  Truth--sex outside of heterosexual marriage is sin.  People of faith want to encourage their communities towards godly morality, even if that society is not officially tied to a religion.  So we oppose same-sex marriage, adoption, and we gravitate to studies that bolster our view of God's order.

 

Reality.  No, the Supreme Court will not consider these kinds of studies.  We're past that.  So we, who hold to traditional values, must demonstrate the superiority of God's ways by raising our own children, and by loving our own spouses in a way that makes our case obvious.  As a contemporary Christian song puts it, we need to "Live out loud!"

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Just a note - even though almost everybody knows my opinion.  I believe very strongly that those that propose change are under the obligation to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the change will not disrupt important and necessary elements of our society.  I do not believe for a second that those skeptical of change are under obligation to prove anything.   I am much more skeptical when proponents of change insist that they are under no obligation to verify change or have any responsibility the change.  That is a very big red flag to me that the change has not been proven at all; even to any small degree by the proponents and that their arguments are all based in unfounded prejudices and that even silly not thought out well skepticism is justified.  The burden of proof is on those that insist in making a change to a (for the most part) stable system. 

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