Health behaviors and outcomes of parents in same-sex couples: An exploratory study
Research exploring health behaviors and outcomes among sexual minorities has yet to include same-sex parents, who face additional stressors associated with parenthood. This exploratory study investigates self-reported health behaviors (regular exercise, sleep, and alcohol use) and outcomes (chronic health conditions, depression, and overall health) among 141 parents in same-sex couples (N = 83 families) with adopted school-age children. Several predictors were investigated, including parent gender, number of children, parenting stress, marital status, and internalized homophobia (IH), controlling for education, income, and work hours. Findings showed that parenting stress and IH were most commonly associated (p < .05) with health behaviors and outcomes, but functioned differently in women and men. Women with high stress had greater odds of exercising ≥3 days a week, but women with high IH had lower odds of exercising that much; vice versa in men. Additional findings among men were greater odds of depression than women; and, men with low IH more often slept < 7 h a week and reported greater alcohol intake than those with high IH. Among parents generally, those with multiple children and those who were unmarried had lower odds of exercising ≥3 days a week, while those with high stress had greater odds of depression and of a chronic health condition. This study highlights the many areas requiring further research in the field of same-sex parent health.
Psychology of Sexual Orientation and Gender Diversity
Goldberg, Abbie E.; Smith, Juli Anna Z.; McCormick, Nora M.; and Overstreet, Nicole M., "Health behaviors and outcomes of parents in same-sex couples: An exploratory study" (2019). Psychology. 325.