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Position Statement on Parenting

The American Psychoanalytic Association (APsaA) supports the position that the salient consideration in all decisions about custody and parenting, including conception, the use of new reproductive technologies, child rearing, adoption, and visitation, is the best interest of the child.  Further, APsaA is committed to fostering a social environment in which all children and their families are valued, experience support and recognition, and in which discrimination and prejudice have no place1.

Accumulated evidence suggests the family factors that are important for children’s outcomes and well-being are family processes and the quality of interactions and relationships1.  Evaluation of an individual or family for these parental qualities should be determined without prejudice regarding actual or perceived sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression.  There is no credible evidence that shows that a parent’s sexual orientation or gender identity will adversely affect the development of the child2, 3, 4.

APsaA opposes any discrimination based on actual or perceived sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression, against individuals in regard to their rights as biologic, custodial, foster, or adoptive parents.  Children deserve to know that their relationships with their parents are stable and legally recognized4.

With the adoption of this position statement, APsaA supports research studies that further our understanding of the impact of all types of family relationships on a child's development5.

References:

1.      Short, E., et al.  (2007). Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) Parented Families: A Literature Review prepared for the Australian Psychological Society.

2.      American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatrists.  (2009). Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, or Transgender Parents Policy Statement.

3.      Biblarz, T. & Stacey, J. (2010).  How does the gender of the parents matter?  Journal of Marriage and Family 72:3-22.

4.      Perrin, E. & Committee on Psychosocial Aspects of Child and Family Health.  (2002). Technical Report:  Coparent or Second-Parent Adoption by Same-Sex Parents.  Pediatrics 109:341-344.

5.      Biblarz, T. & Stacey, J. (2010) Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender families. Journal of Marriage and Family 72:480-497. 

Adopted June 2012; this statement replaces APsaA’s May 2002 Position Statement on Gay and Lesbian Parenting.