Davina Kotulski

Day 5 Prop 8 trial update: Our children are well adjusted

Filed By Davina Kotulski | January 15, 2010 1:00 PM | comments

Filed in: Marriage Equality, Politics, Politics
Tags: California, gay marriage, gays and lesbian parents, marriage equality, Michael Lamb, Prop 8, Prop 8 trial, Prop. 8, same-sex marriage

Michael Lamb, PhD discussed the impact of same-sex marriage on children. Lamb is the author of The Role of the Father in Child Development and co-author of Child Care and Its Impact on Young Children (2-5) clip_image002.jpgpublished by the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development.

Lamb, is a professor at the University of Cambridge, England. For seventeen years, he was the head of the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development. Since the 1970s, Lamb has conducted research about children's social and emotional development. He has achieved prestigious awards for his lifetime contributions to psychology.

He has two primary areas of study:

  1. Investigation of sex crimes involving children and interviewing children who are young victims.
  2. Factors that affect children's adjustment and those aspects of children's development that allow them to function effectively in their environment and to interact effectively with society in a well adjusted manner.

He stated that over the past 40 years there are over 100 peer reviewed professional articles on children being raised by gay and lesbian parents.

He has two opinions on same-sex marriage with regard to LGBT people raising children. He stated:

  1. Children raised by gays and lesbians are just as well-adjusted as children raised by heterosexual parents.
  2. The emotional and social adjustment of children raised by gay and lesbian parents would be promoted if their parents could get married.

Lamb says that the consensus of over 40 years of research indicate that there are three broad factors that impact the healthy adjustment of a child.

  1. The quality of relationship with parent or parent figures.
  2. The quality of relationship between the two parents or significant adults.
  3. The environment the child is raised in has adequate economic and social resources.

Lamb states that "a good parent is someone who is committed to, loves the child, is engaged with the child, focuses attention on that child, can read the child's signals, has an understanding of what the child needs, provides the child with stimulation, and provides appropriate guidance for and limits on that child."


Attorney's introduced a quote from President Obama that stated "Statistics show that children who grow up without a father are five times more likely to live in poverty and commit crime, nine times more likely to drop out of schools, twenty times more likely to end up in prison."

Lamb says that "actually the factors that better explain this is not that there is no father, it is that these children grow up in households with more conflict between parents and have fewer economic resources."

According to Lamb, "our research on masculine and feminine parents has made clear that that initial prediction (a child needs a mother and a father as parents) is incorrect. We've come to a new conclusion. What makes a good parent is the same for either a male or a female, a child does not specifically need a mother or a father."

The attorney asks Lamb to read a policy statement from the American Psychological Association in support of marriage equality for same-sex couples and their families. He then reads the names of the following organizations who have also submitted policy statements affirming same-sex marriage.

  • American Psychological Association
  • American Academy of Child Psychology
  • American Pediatric
  • Psychiatric Association
  • Psychoanalytic Association
  • Child Welfare League of America
  • Social Workers
  • North American Council on Adoptable Children


Yesterday, Edmund Egan, PhD. San Francisco's Chief Economist, spoke about the cost of discrimination to the city and county of San Francisco. Egan discussed all the lost revenue in marriage licenses and weddings since Proposition 8 passed and stopped happy couples from saying "I do."

Just a little tease, my new book Love Warriors: The Rise of the Marriage Equality Movement and Why It Will Prevail explores in greater detail the cost of marriage discrimination across the nation.

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Yes exactly.

I often wonder why opponents of marriage equality want my kids to be on food stamps.