This coming Tuesday evening, NBC in America and CTV in Canada will premier a television program called, The New Normal. The synopsis is as follows:
These days families come in all forms, including – single dads, single moms, double dads, double moms, etc. It’s 2012 and anything goes! Bryan and David are a Los Angeles couple and they have it all. Well, almost all. With successful careers and a committed, loving partnership, there is one thing that this duo still lacks: a baby. And just when they think the stars will never align, enter Goldie, an extraordinary young woman with a checkered past. A Midwestern waitress and single mother looking to escape her dead-end life and small-minded grandmother, Goldie decides to change everything and move to L.A. with her precocious eight-year-old daughter. Now desperate and broke, but still fertile – Goldie quickly becomes the guys’ surrogate for having a baby of their own and being a family.
The message? It doesn’t matter growing up what kind of parents you have – traditional heterosexual or modern homosexual – everyone will live happily ever-after.
And then came Same Parents, Same Children?, the article published in the July issue of the Social Science Research Journal. It was written by Dr. Mark Regnerus, a sociology professor at the University of Texas. In his research, Dr. Regnerus asked 3,000 young adults who were reared in homes of either straight or gay parents… …to respond to a series of questions regarding their upbringing. This was the first major study of its kind that compares the two experiences not based on the parent’s reply but on the children’s. The differences were startling. Those with two moms or two dads were far more likely to be – mentally depressed, sexually abused, sexually diseased, gender confused, suicidal, unemployed, and in psychotherapy. Needless to say, the report’s been met with severe backlash from the gay community and the LGBT filed an official protest with Texas University. The school in turn entered Professor Regnerus’ campus office and seized his computers, e-mails, and files. Then a group of 18 other sociologists at the university were formed into a review committee. Their findings were passed on to Dr. Alan Price, former assistant director of the Office of Research Integrity for the United States (I did not know that such a government body even existed). And the result? All concluded the same – the good professor had not only met the accepted standard of research but he far exceeded it. Dr. Price even labeled Dr. Regnerus’ process as the now “gold standard” for researchers. But most telling to me was the response of one child of two moms to the report:
When I read Mark Regnerus’ article, I found the first public validation of what I’d been through. All the factors he measured were things I recognized in the lives of people who’d grown up with gay parents. I knew tons of them. We had all been scared of speaking out about how hard things were because we loved our parents and did not want to hurt them. But the notion that there was “no difference” between growing up in a straight household verses a gay household simply didn’t pass the laugh test for me or anyone else I knew in that situation.
Now it’s not my desire to paint all such homes with the same brush, but the report does cause me to think more often than not – two dads, two moms, too sad.