Jake Aschmutat and Jim O'Malley are interested in having kids soon. But as they've begun to explore their prospects, they've faced some tough questions from family members: will the kids really be all right being raised by day dads?
"My boyfriend and I have been discussing having children after we get married in the not-so-distant future," Jake wrote to us via Facebook. "My parents are concerned about our future child not having a parental figure of the other gender in the child's life. They believe that the child's development will suffer, if he/she is not adequately exposed to parental figures of both genders. Do you have any resources that discuss this issue? I've only heard in passing of 'studies' that show that children of gay parents don't actually suffer their development."
We all know in our guts that LGBTQ people can raise happy and health kids. But what does the research actually say?
To find out, we sent Jake's inquiry to one of our GWK experts, James Guay, an LGBTQ-positive licensed marriage and family therapist. He says this concern is one he hears a lot from friends and family member of LGBTQ couples considering fatherhood. So, will not having a mom and a dad affect Jake and Jim's future child?
"The short answer, as you might imagine, is no!" James says in his video response. "What's most important... is coming from a loving, caring, stable household. That's regardless of family structure, regardless of gender or sexual orientation of the parents."
Science, James continues, backs up this claim. He points to a recent article put out by the American Sociological Association.
"They provided a really concise evaluation about what research says over the past decades in the U.S." James says. "There is clear consensus that children that come from same-sex parent households fare just as well as from different sex household on a variety of different measures including: physiological wellbeing, academic achievement, sexual activity, substance abuse, early sexual activity, social development."
"Rest assured," James concludes. "It's all good." Keep us posted, Jake and Jim!
Have a question you want one of our experts to answer as part of our Ask An Expert advice column? Send an email with your question to firstname.lastname@example.org with “Ask An Expert" in the subject line!