This study compared the behavioral adjustment of girls from families headed by single mothers and lesbian couples with their peers from married heterosexual households. The sample included 93 Chinese girls adopted by the three types of families (31 girls in each type of family). The girls in the three types of families were matched on age at adoption, age at assessment, and number of adoptive siblings. The Child Behavior Checklist was used to measure their behavior adjustment (i.e., internalizing problems, externalizing problems, and overall behavioral problems). General linear modeling revealed that children from the three types of families were not statistically different in behavioral adjustment except in the preschool-aged group's internalizing problems and the school-aged group's externalizing problems, wherein children in single-mother households scored lower than their peers from lesbian-couple households. Psychological and social-political implications are discussed.
Click here if you are interested in looking at the Child Behavior Checklist form. Internalizing behaviors include anxious, depressive, and overcontrolled behaviors; externalizing behaviors include aggressive, hyperactive, noncompliant, and undercontrolled behaviors.
Are you surprised by the comparative results? The only statistically significant outcomes are for single-mother households, and those outcomes are worse than for couple households, whether the couples are heterosexual or homosexual. So what accounts for this?
It strikes me as a bit ironic that China disallowed single adoption for fear it would lead to lesbian-couple households. Looks like they should have allowed gay couples to adopt, but disallow singles as singles! (I'm not really serious about that -- one study doesn't tell us much. . . .)
All I've seen is the abstract, but the library is going to get the article for me. I would be interested in people's ideas before I read it. I'll post more after I see the article.