Prior to publication in these journals, these studies were required to go through a rigorous peer-review process, and as a result, they constitute the type of research that members of the respective professions consider reliable.
The body of research on same-sex families is consistent with standards in the relevant fields and produces reliable conclusions." Gartrell and Bos note that the study's limitations included utilizing a non-random sample, and the lesbian group and control group were not matched for race or area of residence.
Many lesbian and gay parents are not open about their sexual orientation due to real fears of discrimination, homophobia, and threats of losing custody of their children.
LGBT parenting refers to lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people raising one or more children as parents or foster care parents.
This includes: children raised by same-sex couples (same-sex parenting), children raised by single LGBT parents, and children raised by an opposite-sex couple where at least one partner is LGBT.
The widespread pattern of children being raised from infancy in two-parent gay or lesbian homes is relatively recent.
Studies of LGBT parenting have sometimes suffered from small and/or non-random samples and inability to implement all possible controls, due to the small LGBT parenting population and to cultural and social obstacles to identifying as an LGBT parent.
Most research to date has been conducted on white lesbian mothers who are comparatively educated, mature, and reside in relatively progressive urban centers, most often in California or the Northeastern states." The overall methodological sophistication and quality of studies in this domain have increased over the years, as would be expected for any new area of empirical inquiry.
More recent research has reported data from probability and community-based convenience samples, has used more rigorous assessment techniques, and has been published in highly respected and widely cited developmental psychology journals, including Child Development and Developmental Psychology.
The studies specific to same-sex parenting were published in leading journals in the field of child and adolescent development, such as Child Development, published by the Society for Research in Child Development, Developmental Psychology, published by the American Psychological Association, and The Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, the flagship peer-review journals in the field of child development.
Most of the studies appeared in these (or similar) rigorously peer-reviewed and highly selective journals, whose standards represent expert consensus on generally accepted social scientific standards for research on child and adolescent development.
Data are increasingly available from prospective studies.