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Study says children of lesbians may do better than peers

A recent study of children in lesbian families indicates that these kids have strong self-esteem, confidence, and achieve academically. Measures in the research also show children with lesbian parents rarely develop behavioral problems – such as rule-breaking and aggression. This is the first research of its kind, studying only planned lesbian families – or households in which the mothers identified themselves as lesbian at the time of artificial insemination. Data was collected from 154 women in 84 families who underwent artificial insemination to start a family.

The study is published in Pediatrics by researchers Nanette Gartrell, a professor of psychiatry at University of California, San Francisco, and Henry Bos, a behavioral scientist at University of Amsterdam.

TIME reports: “We simply expected to find no difference in psychological adjustment between adolescents reared in lesbian families and the normative sample of age-matched controls,” says Gartrell. “I was surprised to find that on some measures we found higher levels of [psychological] competency and lower levels of behavioral problems. It wasn’t something I anticipated.”