Diverse LGBTQ Parents with Adolescent Children: Identity, Discrimination, Family Relationships, and Health Outcomes

Grants and Contracts Details


The numbers of lesbian, gay, heterosexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) parent families are increasing in the United States (Gates, 2017; Goldberg & Conron, 2018). LGBTQ parents disproportionately are racial-ethnic minorities, economically disadvantaged, and residing in the South, Midwest, and Mountain West, as compared to heterosexual parents and LGBTQ adults without children (LGBT Demographic Data Interactive, 2019; Gates, 2013). Available research on LGBTQ populations, however, involves predominantly White samples of relatively high socioeconomic status (SES) from coastal and urban areas (Fish & Russell, 2018). Health disparities resulting from poverty and discrimination are well-documented (Conron, Goldberg, & Halpern, 2018; Hatzenbuehler, 2014). Thus, research that addresses the unique experiences of racially and economically diverse LGBTQ parent families is imperative. Meyer’s (2010) minority stress theory underscores the importance of intersectionality (Crenshaw, 1989) to examine the consequences of multiple minority statuses, stigma, and discrimination. Thus, it is imperative to attend to how LGBTQ parent families contend with inequalities related to discrimination and SES, and what their associations are with family relationships and individual health (mental and physical). With support from the Dudley Grant, I propose to use a rigorous mixed-method design framed by minority stress and intersectionality theories to study a racially, socioeconomically, and geographically diverse LGBTQ parent family sample (N = 300), including interview, survey, and observational data about discrimination, coping, family functioning, and overall adjustment. Consistent with SPSSI’s mission to “generate, disseminate, and apply social science knowledge to address the problems of society”, findings have the potential to make theoretical and empirical contributions, as well as inform policy and practice, by yielding a more comprehensive understanding of the experiences of LGBTQ parent families with multiple marginalized identities. As such, researchers and professionals may be able to improve outcomes, reduce inequalities, and more realistically address the needs of this growing demographic group.
Effective start/end date7/26/211/1/25


  • Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues: $25,000.00


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