Psychological wellbeing among same-sex attracted and heterosexual parents: Role of connectedness to family and friendship networks

Power, Jennifer, Schofield, Margot J., Farchione, Davide, Perlesz, Amaryll, McNair, Ruth, Brown, Rhonda, Pitts, Marian and Bickerdike, Andrew 2015, Psychological wellbeing among same-sex attracted and heterosexual parents: Role of connectedness to family and friendship networks, Australian and New Zealand journal of family therapy, vol. 36, no. 3, pp. 380-394, doi: 10.1002/anzf.1109.

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Title Psychological wellbeing among same-sex attracted and heterosexual parents: Role of connectedness to family and friendship networks
Author(s) Power, Jennifer
Schofield, Margot J.
Farchione, Davide
Perlesz, Amaryll
McNair, Ruth
Brown, RhondaORCID iD for Brown, Rhonda
Pitts, Marian
Bickerdike, Andrew
Journal name Australian and New Zealand journal of family therapy
Volume number 36
Issue number 3
Start page 380
End page 394
Total pages 15
Publisher Wiley
Place of publication Lane Cove, N.S.W.
Publication date 2015-01-01
ISSN 0814-723X
Keyword(s) Social Sciences
Family Studies
same-sex parents
parental wellbeing
family connectedness
Summary © 2015 Australian Association of Family Therapy. Increasing numbers of lesbian, gay and bisexual (LGB) adults are entering into parenthood. Previous studies indicate many of these parents receive little or no support from their families of origin due to family members' negative attitudes toward homosexuality. This study looks at the extent to which LGB parents report a lower sense of connectedness to family of origin and friendship networks than heterosexual parents and whether this has an impact on psychological wellbeing in either of these groups. Data were derived from two studies of parents: Work, Love, Play, a study of Australian and New Zealand LGB parents (n=324); and the Longitudinal Study of Australian Children, a population-based study of young children and parents (n=6460). Structural equation modelling was used to explore the relationships between: parent sexuality and family/friendship connectedness, family/friendship connectedness and psychological wellbeing, parent sexuality and psychological wellbeing. LGB parents reported feeling less connected to their families of origin but more connected to their friendship groups than heterosexual parents. Counter to previous studies, we found no difference in the psychological wellbeing of LGB parents compared to heterosexual parents when examining the direct effect of sexuality on psychological wellbeing. Clinical implications for counsellors and family therapists are discussed.
Language eng
DOI 10.1002/anzf.1109
Field of Research 1117 Public Health And Health Services
1607 Social Work
1701 Psychology
111099 Nursing not elsewhere classified
Socio Economic Objective 920499 Public Health (excl. Specific Population Health) not elsewhere classified
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Copyright notice ©2015, Wiley
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Document type: Journal Article
Collections: Faculty of Health
School of Nursing and Midwifery
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