This resource is provided courtesy of the Family Research Council and is used by permission. Visit FRC to learn how you can make a positive difference in the trends and policies impacting the family today.
HOMOSEXUAL PARENTING: PLACING CHILDREN AT RISK
(Part II of III)
by Timothy J. Dailey, Ph. D.

Part 1: Introduction | Problems With Homosexual Parenting Research
Part 2: Harmful Aspects Of The Homosexual Lifestyle
Part 3: A Political Agenda: Redefining Marriage | Children Need A Mom And A Dad

HARMFUL ASPECTS OF THE HOMOSEXUAL LIFESTYLE
The evidence demonstrates incontrovertibly that the homosexual lifestyle is inconsistent with the proper raising of children. Homosexual relationships are characteristically unstable and are fundamentally incapable of providing children the security they need.

Homosexual Promiscuity
Studies indicate that the average male homosexual has hundreds of sex partners in his lifetime, a lifestyle that is difficult for even "committed" homosexuals to break free of and which is not conducive to a healthy and wholesome atmosphere for the raising of children.

~ A. P. Bell and M. S. Weinberg, in their classic study of male and female homosexuality, found that 43 percent of white male homosexuals had sex with five hundred or more partners, with 28 percent having 1,000 or more sex partners. [29]

~ In their study of the sexual profiles of 2,583 older homosexuals published in Journal of Sex Research, Paul Van de Ven et al. found that "the modal range for number of sexual partners ever [of homosexuals] was 101-500." In addition, 10.2 percent to 15.7 percent had between 501 and 1000 partners. A further 10.2 percent to 15.7 percent reported having had more than 1000 lifetime sexual partners. [30]

~ A survey conducted by the homosexual magazine Genre found that 24 percent of the respondents said they had had more than 100 sexual partners in their lifetime. The magazine noted that several respondents suggested including a category of those who had more than 1,000 sexual partners. [31]

~ In his study of male homosexuality in Western Sexuality: Practice and Precept in Past and Present Times, M. Pollak found that "few homosexual relationships last longer than two years, with many men reporting hundreds of lifetime partners." [32]

Promiscuity among Homosexual Couples
Even in those homosexual relationships in which the partners consider themselves to be in a committed relationship, the meaning of "committed" typically means something radically different than in heterosexual marriage.

~ In The Male Couple, authors David P. McWhirter and Andrew M. Mattison report that in a study of 156 males in homosexual relationships lasting from one to thirty-seven years:

Only seven couples have a totally exclusive sexual relationship, and these men all have been together for less than five years. Stated another way, all couples with a relationship lasting more than five years have incorporated some provision for outside sexual activity in their relationships. [33]

Most understood sexual relations outside the relationship to be the norm, and viewed adopting monogamous standards as an act of oppression.

~ In Male and Female Homosexuality, M. Saghir and E. Robins found that the average male homosexual live-in relationship lasts between two and three years. [<34]

~ In their Journal of Sex Research study of the sexual practices of older homosexual men, Paul Van de Ven et al. found that only 2.7 percent of older homosexuals had only one sexual partner in their lifetime. [35]

Comparison of Homosexual 'Couples' and Heterosexual Spouses
Lest anyone suffer the illusion that any equivalency between the sexual practices of homosexual relationships and traditional marriage exists, the statistics regarding sexual fidelity within marriage are revealing:

~ In Sex in America, called by the New York Times "the most important study of American sexual behavior since the Kinsey reports," Robert T. Michael et al. report that 90 percent of wives and 75 percent of husbands claim never to have had extramarital sex. [36]

~ A nationally representative survey of 884 men and 1,288 women published in Journal of Sex Research found that 77 percent of married men and 88 percent of married women had remained faithful to their marriage vows. [37]

~ In The Social Organization of Sexuality: Sexual Practices in the United States, E. O. Laumann et al. conducted a national survey that found that 75 percent of husbands and 85 percent of wives never had sexual relations outside of marriage. [38]

~ A telephone survey conducted for Parade magazine of 1,049 adults selected to represent the demographic characteristics of the United States found that 81 percent of married men and 85 percent of married women reported that they had never violated their marriage vows. [39]

While the rate of fidelity within marriage cited by these studies remains far from ideal, there is a magnum order of difference between the negligible lifetime fidelity rate cited for homosexuals and the 75 to 90 percent cited for married couples. This indicates that even "committed" homosexual relationships display a fundamental incapacity for the faithfulness and commitment that is axiomatic to the institution of marriage.

Unhealthy Aspects of 'Monogamous' Homosexual Relationships
Even those homosexual relationships that are loosely termed "monogamous" do not necessarily result in healthier behavior.

~ The journal AIDS reported that men involved in relationships engaged in anal intercourse and oral-anal intercourse with greater frequency than did those without a steady partner. [40] Anal intercourse has been linked with a host of bacterial and parasitical sexually transmitted diseases, including AIDS.

~ The exclusivity of the relationship did not diminish the incidence of unhealthy sexual acts, which are commonplace among homosexuals. An English study published in the same issue of AIDS concurred, finding that most "unsafe" sex acts among homosexuals occur in steady relationships. [41]

Of paramount concern are the effects of such a lifestyle upon children. Brad Hayton writes:

Homosexuals ... model a poor view of marriage to children. They are taught by example and belief that marital relationships are transitory and mostly sexual in nature. Sexual relationships are primarily for pleasure rather than procreation. And they are taught that monogamy in a marriage is not the norm [and] should be discouraged if one wants a good 'marital' relationship. [42]

Violence in Lesbian and Homosexual Relationships
~ A study in the Journal of Interpersonal Violence examined conflict and violence in lesbian relationships. The researchers found that 90 percent of the lesbians surveyed had been recipients of one or more acts of verbal aggression from their intimate partners during the year prior to this study, with 31 percent reporting one or more incidents of physical abuse. [43]

~ In a survey of 1,099 lesbians, the Journal of Social Service Research found that "slightly more than half of the [lesbians] reported that they had been abused by a female lover/partner. The most frequently indicated forms of abuse were verbal/emotional/psychological abuse and combined physical-psychological abuse." [44]

~ In their book Men Who Beat the Men Who Love Them: Battered Gay Men and Domestic Violence, D. Island and P. Letellier postulate that "the incidence of domestic violence among gay men is nearly double that in the heterosexual population." [45]

Rate of Intimate Partner Violence within Marriage
A little-reported fact is that homosexual and lesbian relationships are far more violent than are traditional married households:

~ The Bureau of Justice Statistics (U.S. Department of Justice) reports that married women in traditional families experience the lowest rate of violence compared with women in other types of relationships. [46]

~ A report by the Medical Institute for Sexual Health concurred:

It should be noted that most studies of family violence do not differentiate between married and unmarried partner status. Studies that do make these distinctions have found that marriage relationships tend to have the least intimate partner violence when compared to cohabiting or dating relationships. [47]

High Incidence of Mental Health Problems among Homosexuals and Lesbians
A national survey of lesbians published in the Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology found that 75 percent of the nearly two-thousand respondents had pursued psychological counseling of some kind, many for treatment of long-term depression or sadness:

Among the sample as a whole, there was a distressingly high prevalence of life events and behaviors related to mental health problems. Thirty-seven percent had been physically abused and 32 percent had been raped or sexually attacked. Nineteen percent had been involved in incestuous relationships while growing up. Almost one-third used tobacco on a daily basis and about 30 percent drank alcohol more than once a week; 6 percent drank daily. One in five smoked marijuana more than once a month. Twenty-one percent of the sample had thoughts about suicide sometimes or often and 18 percent had actually tried to kill themselves. ... More than half had felt too nervous to accomplish ordinary activities at some time during the past year and over one-third had been depressed. [48]

Substance Abuse among Lesbians
A study published in Nursing Research found that lesbians are three times more likely to abuse alcohol and to suffer from other compulsive behaviors:

Like most problem drinkers, 32 (91 percent) of the participants had abused other drugs as well as alcohol, and many reported compulsive difficulties with food (34 percent), codependency (29 percent), sex (11 percent), and money (6 percent). Forty-six percent had been heavy drinkers with frequent drunkenness. [49]

Greater Risk for Suicide
~ A study of twins that examined the relationship between homosexuality and suicide, published in the Archives of General Psychiatry, found that homosexuals with same-sex partners were at greater risk for overall mental health problems, and were 6.5 times more likely than their twins to have attempted suicide. The higher rate was not attributable to mental health or substance abuse disorders. [50]

~ Another study published simultaneously in Archives of General Psychiatry followed 1007 individuals from birth. Those classified as gay, lesbian, or bisexual were significantly more likely to have had mental health problems. Significantly, in his comments in the same issue of the journal, D. Bailey cautioned against various speculative explanations of the results, such as the view that "widespread prejudice against homosexual people causes them to be unhappy or worse, mentally ill." [51]

Reduced Life Span
Another factor contributing to the instability of male homosexual households, which raises the possibility of major disruption for children raised in such households, is the significantly reduced life expectancy of male homosexuals. A study published in the International Journal of Epidemiology on the mortality rates of homosexuals concluded:

In a major Canadian centre, life expectancy at age twenty for gay and bisexual men is eight to twenty years less than for all men. If the same pattern of mortality were to continue, we estimate that nearly half of gay and bisexual men currently aged twenty years will not reach their sixty-fifth birthday. Under even the most liberal assumptions, gay and bisexual men in this urban centre are now experiencing a life expectancy similar to that experienced by all men in Canada in the year 1871. [52]

Concern about children placed in homosexual households who are orphaned because of the destructive homosexual lifestyle is well founded. In 1990, Wayne Tardiff and his partner, Allan Yoder, were the first homosexuals permitted to become adoptive parents in the state of New Jersey. Tardiff died in 1992 at age forty-four; Yoder died a few months later, leaving an orphaned five-year-old. [53]

Sexual Identity Confusion
The claim that homosexual households do not "recruit" children into the homosexual lifestyle is refuted by the growing evidence that children raised in such households are more likely to engage in sexual experimentation and in homosexual behavior.

~ Studies indicate that 0.3 percent of adult females report having practiced homosexual behavior in the past year, 0.4 percent have practiced homosexual behavior in the last five years, and 3 percent have ever practiced homosexual behavior in their lifetime. [54] A study in Developmental Psychology found that 12 percent of the children of lesbians became active lesbians themselves, a rate which is at least four times the base rate of lesbianism in the adult female population. [55]

~ Numerous studies indicate that while nearly 5 percent of males report having had a homosexual experience sometime in their lives, the number of exclusive homosexuals is considerably less: Between 1 and 2 percent of males report exclusive homosexual behavior over a several-year period. [56] However, J. M. Bailey et al. found that 9 percent of the adult sons of homosexual fathers were homosexual in their adult sexual behavior: "The rate of homosexuality in the sons (9 percent) is several times higher than that suggested by the population-based surveys and is consistent with a degree of father-to-son transmission." [57]

~ Even though they attempted to argue otherwise, Golombok and Tasker's study revealed in its results section a clear connection between being raised in a lesbian family and homosexuality: "With respect to actual involvement in same-gender sexual relationships, there was a significant difference between groups. ... None of the children from heterosexual families had experienced a lesbian or gay relationship." By contrast, five (29 percent) of the seventeen daughters and one (13 percent) of the eight sons in homosexual families reported having at least one same-sex relationship. [58]

~ These findings have most recently been confirmed in a study appearing in the American Sociological Review. Authors Judith Stacey and Timothy J. Biblarz alluded to the "political incorrectness" of their finding of higher rates of homosexuality among children raised in homosexual households: "We recognize the political dangers of pointing out that recent studies indicate that a higher proportion of children of lesbigay parents are themselves apt to engage in homosexual activity."

~ Stacy and Biblarz also reported "some fascinating findings on the number of sexual partners children report," that:

The adolescent and young adult girls raised by lesbian mothers appear to have been more sexually adventurous and less chaste. ... In other words, once again, children (especially girls) raised by lesbians appear to depart from traditional gender-based norms, while children raised by heterosexual mothers appear to conform to them. [59]

Incest in Homosexual Parent Families
A study in Adolescence found:

A disproportionate percentage - 29 percent - of the adult children of homosexual parents had been specifically subjected to sexual molestation by that homosexual parent, compared to only 0.6 percent of adult children of heterosexual parents having reported sexual relations with their parent. ... Having a homosexual parent(s) appears to increase the risk of incest with a parent by a factor of about 50. [60]

(Click here to continue to Part 3 of 3.)

END NOTES

29. A. P. Bell and M. S. Weinberg, Homosexualities: A Study of Diversity Among Men and Women (New York: Simon and Schuster, 1978), pp. 308, 309; See alsoA. P. Bell, M. S. Weinberg, and S. K. Hammersmith, Sexual Preference (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1981).

30. Paul Van de Ven et al., "A Comparative Demographic and Sexual Profile of Older Homosexually Active Men," Journal of Sex Research 34 (1997): 354.

31. "Sex Survey Results," Genre (October 1996), quoted in "Survey Finds 40 percent of Gay Men Have Had More Than 40 Sex Partners," Lambda Report, January 1998, p. 20.

32. M. Pollak, "Male Homosexuality," in Western Sexuality: Practice and Precept in Past and Present Times, ed. P. Aries and A. Bejin, translated by Anthony Forster (New York, NY: B. Blackwell, 1985), pp. 40-61, cited by Joseph Nicolosi in Reparative Therapy of Male Homosexuality (Northvale, New Jersey: Jason Aronson Inc., 1991), pp. 124, 125.

33. David P. McWhirter and Andrew M. Mattison, The Male Couple: How Relationships Develop (Englewood Cliffs: Prentice-Hall, 1984), pp. 252, 253.

34. M. Saghir and E. Robins, Male and Female Homosexuality (Baltimore: Williams and Wilkins, 1973), p. 225; L. A. Peplau and H. Amaro, "Understanding Lesbian Relationships," in Homosexuality: Social, Psychological, and Biological Issues, ed. J. Weinrich and W. Paul (Beverly Hills: Sage, 1982).

35. Van de Ven et al., "A Comparative Demographic and Sexual Profile," p. 354.

36. Robert T. Michael et al., Sex in America: A Definitive Survey (Boston:Little, Brown and Company, 1994).

37. Michael W. Wiederman, "Extramarital Sex: Prevalence and Correlates in a National Survey," Journal of Sex Research 34 (1997): 170. 38. E. O. Laumann et al., The Social Organization of Sexuality: Sexual Practices in the United States (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1994 ), p. 217.

39. M. Clements, "Sex in America Today: A New National Survey Reveals How our Attitudes are Changing," Parade, August 7, 1994, pp. 4-6.

40. A.P.M. Coxon et al., "Sex Role Separation in Diaries of Homosexual Men," AIDS (July 1993): 877-882.

41. G. J. Hart et al., "Risk Behaviour, Anti-HIV and Anti-Hepatitis B Core Prevalence in Clinic and Non-clinic Samples of Gay Men in England, 1991-1992," AIDS (July 1993):863-869, cited in "Homosexual Marriage: The Next Demand," Position Analysis paper by Colorado for Family Values, May 1994.

42. Bradley P. Hayton, "To Marry or Not: The Legalization of Marriage and Adoption of Homosexual Couples," (Newport Beach: The Pacific Policy Institute, 1993), p. 9.

43. Lettie L. Lockhart et al., "Letting out the Secret: Violence in Lesbian Relationships," Journal of Interpersonal Violence 9 (1994): 469-492.

44. Gwat Yong Lie and Sabrina Gentlewarrier, "Intimate Violence in Lesbian Relationships: Discussion of Survey Findings and Practice Implications," Journal of Social Service Research 15 (1991): 41-59.

45. D. Island and P. Letellier, Men Who Beat the Men Who Love Them: Battered Gay Men and Domestic Violence (New York: Haworth Press, 1991), p. 14.

46. "Violence Between Intimates," Bureau of Justice Statistics Selected Findings, November 1994, p. 2.

47. Health Implications Associated With Homosexuality (Austin: The Medical Institute for Sexual Health, 1999), p. 79.

48. J. Bradford et al., "National Lesbian Health Care Survey: Implications for Mental Health Care," Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology 62 (1994): 239, cited in Health Implications Associated with Homosexuality, p. 81.

49. Joanne Hall, "Lesbians Recovering from Alcoholic Problems: An Ethnographic Study of Health Care Expectations," Nursing Research 43 (1994): 238-244.

50. R. Herrell et al., "A Co-twin Study in Adult Men," Archives of General Psychiatry 56 (1999): 867-874.

51. D. Fergusson et al., "Is Sexual Orientation Related to Mental Health Problems and Suicidality in Young People?" Archives of General Psychiatry 56 (October 1999).

52. Robert S. Hogg et al., "Modeling the Impact of HIV Disease on Mortality in Gay and Bisexual Men," International Journal of Epidemiology 26 (1997): 657.

53. Obituaries, The Washington Blade, July 16, 1992.

54. A. M. Johnson et al., "Sexual Lifestyles and HIV Risk," Nature 360 (1992): 410-412; R. Turner, "Landmark French and British Studies Examine Sexual Behavior, including Multiple Partners, Homosexuality," Family Planning Perspectives 25 (1993):91, 92.

55. F. Tasker and S. Golombok, "Adults Raised as Children in Lesbian Families," p. 213.

56. ACSF Investigators, "AIDS and Sexual Behavior in France," Nature 360 (1992): 407-409; J. M. Bailey et al., "Sexual Orientation of Adult Sons of Gay Fathers," Developmental Psychology 31 (1995): 124-129; J. O. G. Billy et al., "The Sexual Behavior of Men in the United States," Family Planning Perspectives 25 (1993): 52-60; A. M. Johnson et al., "Sexual Lifestyles and HIV Risk," Nature 360 (1992): 410-412.

57. J. M. Bailey et al., "Sexual Orientation of Adult Sons of Gay Fathers," pp. 127, 128.

58. Tasker and Golombok, "Do Parents Influence the Sexual Orientation?" p. 7.

59. Judith Stacey and Timothy J. Biblarz, "(How) Does the Sexual Orientation of Parents Matter," American Sociological Review 66 (2001): 174, 179.

60. P. Cameron and K. Cameron, "Homosexual Parents," Adolescence 31 (1996): 772.