The Right of the Lesbian and Gay Community to Produce and Raise Children

The Right of the Lesbian and Gay Community to Produce and Raise Children  

Shouldn’t all kind and loving human beings have the right to experience the joy of raising children? Studies done by the American Society of Reproductive Medicine have found that the ‘development, adjustment, and well-being’ of children with gay or lesbian parents does not significantly differ from children who have heterosexual parents. Yet, there are still many who believe that the LGBT community should be denied IVF treatments. Some IVF treatment facilities actually deny gay and lesbian couples the right to go through treatment or use the services of an Egg Donor or Surrogate.

The United States is seeing a growing trend in “unconventional” families. Unmarried couples are adopting or having children coitally without feeling the need to be legally bound. As stated above, many in the LGBT community are adopting or having children through IVF methods and single women and men are seeking IVF options or adoption to become parents without having a partner. According to ASRM 41% of all United States births in 2009 were to unmarried women and an estimated 6 to 14 million children are being raised by at least one gay or lesbian parent.

If gay, lesbian, single, and unmarried United States’ citizens are legally allowed to be foster parents in all states and are allowed to adopt in the majority of states why are many denied the right to use IVF treatments? Because of the possible psychological or social problems these children could experience? According to the American Psychological Association there is no data that supports the theory that children raised by a single parent, unmarried couple, or gay or lesbian couple would be at a greater risk for psychological or social problems. Research done by ASRM also suggests that the gender identity, gender-role behavior, and sexual orientation develops in very similar ways in children raised by gay or lesbian parents as they do in children raised by heterosexual parents.

California is helping to open the door for the LGBT community to gain more access to IVF treatments. In 2008 a case was brought before the California Supreme Court regarding a lesbian patient who was refused the right to be treated at a particular IVF clinic because of the IVF physician’s religious views. The court ruled that this refusal to treat was a violation of state law.

“Unconventional families” are becoming the norm in the United States and should be viewed and treated in the same way as “traditional families”. IVF clinics across the nation should support diversity in all forms and not refuse patients based on their sexuality or martial status.