Dr. Mark Regnerus’ July 2012 publication of a study on the outcomes of young adults who report parental same-sex relationship behavior raised a considerable ruckus. Though reactions were often heated, the truth about what the study says lies somewhere between what its most ardent supporters and harshest critics think. In this talk Dr. Regnerus explains how the New Family Structures Study differs from previous studies of similar subject matter—and the errors in prior studies that this study compensates for. He discusses his analyses and interpretations of it, legitimate possible meanings of the findings, the most common criticisms that have been raised, and offers new commentary about how household dynamics are associated with youth and young-adult outcomes. In the end, household dynamics are influential for children—for a long time—and parental sexual decision-making matters.
Providing comments on the study are Dr. Ana Samuel, who reflects upon the public debate over the NFSS, offering advice upon how the lessons learned at the national level can help guide our personal conversations with peers; and Dr. Robert Lopez, who provides insights based on his experience and his study of same-sex friendship in cultural and literary history.