Just in time for Father’s Day, some serious questioning of Dad’s value to the family unit! According to a study published in Pediatrics, It seems that children of lesbian couples may be better adjusted socially and psychologically than children of male-female couples.
Predictably, there has been a great deal of speculation about why, and what this might mean: Could the traditional male role in child-rearing be less uniquely valuable than we’ve been led to believe?
Actually, the take-away of the study isn’t that lesbians are good Daddies. It’s that two Mommies adds up to more of the kind of parenting that helps kids deal psychologically.
I’m not quite sure what to think about this (aside from a wee twinge of guilt about my heterosexuality and how my children will suffer as a result). It seems like there might be more to the story than we’re seeing; were these children being observed by researchers, or were parents reporting? Is this about parenting style? Planned pregnancies? What was the spectrum of issues examined? Are there other areas where a father’s maleness offers advantages?
Mostly I just feel a little bad for Dads who might be reading this (on the eve of their big day, no less) and feeling inadequate. Finding your way as a Dad is not an easy task. Pregnancy can be a particularly alienating time, since the whole thing’s going on inside your body and there’s nothing the Dad can do but sit back and twiddle his thumbs.
So I would suggest you do not share these findings with your Baby-Daddy-To-Be. He’s probably feeling insecure enough.
photo: Christopher Edwards/flickr