A nearly 25-year study concluded that children raised in lesbian households were psychologically well-adjusted and had fewer behavioral problems than their peers.
"This study shows that the 17-year-old adolescents who have been reared by lesbian families are psychologically happy and high functioning," said Dr. Nanette Gartrell, a Williams distinguished scholar at the UCLA School of Law. Restrictions of child custody and reproductive technologies based on sexual orientation are not justified, she said.
Children from lesbian families rated higher in social, academic and total competence. They also showed lower rates in social, rule-breaking, aggressive problem behavior.
The involvement of mothers may be a contributing factor, in addition to the fact that the pregnancies were planned, Gartrell said.
The children "didn't arrive by accident," she said. "The mothers were older... they were waiting for an opportunity to have children and age brings maturity and better parenting."
This also could have occurred because "growing up in households with less power assertion and more parental involvement has been shown to be associated with healthier psychological adjustment," Gartrell wrote in the study.