Lesbians and gay men can face significant challenges as they seek to create and maintain families that include children but in most cases they overcome these challenges with considerable success, new research funded by the Families Commission has found.
The paper “We’re a family”: A study of how lesbians and gay men are creating and maintaining family in New Zealand by Alexandra Gunn and Nicola Surtees from the University of Canterbury, was supported by the Commission’s “Blue Skies” research grant scheme. Twenty interviews were conducted with parents from 19 families. The majority of interviews were with lesbian mothers either parenting as single women or as couples. Two of these couples were also parenting with single gay men. One interview was with a gay male couple.
The authors found that there were different challenges facing gay and lesbian parents depending upon whether they were using assisted reproduction, or whether they were bringing children into a family from a previous heterosexual relationship.