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Monday, June 11, 2012

Circling the Wagons When the Data is Contrary to the Narrative

The Daily Mail had this article on a study of children of same sex couples:
A new study claiming that children raised by same-sex couples are more likely to have social, psychological and physical problems as adults, has sparked criticism from child psychiatrists.

The research, conducted by the University of Texas at Austin, reported that those whose parents entered into a same-sex relationship at some point during their childhood, fared worse as adults.

But experts say the data is flawed because it is based on experiences 10-20 years ago, and a child raised by a same-sex couple now would have a different experience.

The study, which was published on Sunday in the journal Social Science Research, looked at nearly 3,000 Americans aged between 18-39.

Of that number, 163 said that their mother had been in a same-sex relationship and 73 revealed that their father had done the same.

Those children were found to be more likely to require welfare benefits, have a history of depression, be less educated and report sexual abuse. 
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But Dr Jenna Saul, a Wisconsin-based child and adolescent psychiatrist, said: 'This study doesn't really have anything to do with same-sex families of today.'

As the study looked at people who were raised during a time when same-sex unions were not as widely accepted as they are today, the study could be labeled a snapshot of a time that has passed.

Dr Saul added: 'I'd be interested in seeing this study redone in 20 years with the more intact same-sex families we see now.'
The article never explains what exactly is supposed to have changed in the last 10 to 20 years that would have resulted in less sexual abuse, more education, or any of the other indicia of a poor outcome. Sounds more like hopeful thinking by the detractors rather than anything solid at which they can point.

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