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3 Things to Know About LGBTQ Parenting in Oregon

Published August 11, 2021
Although studies have shown that children of same-sex and heterosexual parents show now developmental or behavioral differences, LGBTQ parents may wish to find resources and community support to guide them along their parenting journey.

Over the last few decades, the Portland area has developed a national reputation as a queer-friendly city. LGBTQIA+ individuals and couples who have moved to the area often comment on the vibrant community and support systems that make them feel welcome. While recent studies have shown that children of straight couples and LGBTQ couples show no substantial differences, the parenting experience for LGBTQ parents may vary from that of straight parents. Let’s take a closer look at some aspects of the LGBTQ parenting experience in the Portland area.

1. Parental Sexual Orientation Does Not Impact Child Development

Until recently, research on the long-term effects of a parent’s sexual orientation on child development has been lacking. According to a study released by the University of Kentucky, adopted children—whether adopted by same-sex or heterosexual couples—fared the same. The longitudinal study followed nearly 100 adoptive families as they matured from early to middle childhood. The study concluded that there were no differences among same-sex and heterosexual parent types in categories such as behavior problems, stress levels, family relationships, and other factors. While parental sexual orientation had no impact on adoptive children, the level of familial stress was correlated with child development and adjustment.

2. Same-Sex Parents May Face Greater Economic Challenges

According to the UCLA Williams Institute, “there is evidence of some economic disadvantage among LGBT people and same-sex couples raising children.” As many LGBT parents tend to be younger and more racially diverse in comparison to non-LGBT people or individuals in heterosexual partnerships, these factors may impact their economic reality. One estimate found that “the median annual household income of same-sex couples with children under 18 in the home is lower than comparable different-sex couples ($63,900 versus $74,000, respectively.” While these disparities may not be dramatic, they are still statistically significant.

3. Same-Sex Parents in Portland Are Never Alone

While LGBTQ parents may feel overwhelmed and isolated at times, it’s important to recognize that there are resources and support systems in place throughout the Portland community. The website for the city of Portland has an entire page dedicated to LGBTQ+ resources, and a number of LBGTQ parenting groups can be found through a simple web search. Surrogacy and fertility clinics in the Portland area often advertise their services for LGBTQ couples and parents-to-be. Should you find yourself struggling with a divorce or family law issue, there are several attorneys and law firms that are here to support your needs.


If you are struggling with a child custody or family law matter in the Portland area, call Lee Tyler Family Law, P.C. at (503) 233-8868 to discuss your goals with a compassionate family law attorney and mediator today.

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