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Children of Same-Sex Couples Fare as Well as Others

Authors of special article say civil marriage would benefit families headed by same-sex couples

THURSDAY, July 6 (HealthDay News) -- Children raised by same-gender couples fare as well as those raised by heterosexual parents, and their families would be strengthened by the rights, benefits and protections of civil marriage, according to "The Effects of Marriage, Civil Union, and Domestic Partnership Laws on the Health and Well-Being of Children," a special article published in the July issue of Pediatrics.

Jonathan Klein, M.D., of the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry in Rochester, N.Y., and colleagues analyzed more than 25 years of research on gay and lesbian couples and the impact that their sexual orientation had on the children they were raising.

The researchers found no evidence that sexual orientation had an effect on children's emotional, psychosocial or behavioral adjustment, nor on children's gender identity or sexual orientation. They found that growing up in a family with one or more gay parents poses no risk to children.

"Civil marriage can help foster financial and legal security, psychosocial stability, and an augmented sense of societal acceptance and support," the authors conclude. "Legal recognition of a spouse can increase the ability of adult couples to provide and care for one another and fosters a nurturing and secure environment for their children. Children who are raised by civilly married parents benefit from the legal status granted to their parents."

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