Homosexual vs Heterosexual couples: what the statistics say

4 Mar

Today’s article is essentially a re-blogging of an interesting article I found on this site.


“…what’s the reason for opposing this again?” says moveon.org, promoting a video in which gay marriage is defended by Zach Wahls, a man raised by two lesbians:

My first reaction is one of happiness. The fact that this individual came out healthier and happier and seemingly much more normal than most human beings deserves some thanksgiving. After all, his family scenario isn’t the likely scenario within the gay community. First of all, few gay relationships achieve the longevity of heterosexual relationships. Not to say that anybody’s doing great at the “maintaining relationships” thing, but the gay community is doing particularly terribly. Here are the poor, unfaithful straight-people statistics:

National Center for Health Statistics, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (2001)

And here are the poor, unfaithful gay-people statistics:

Source: 2003-2004 Gay/Lesbian Consumer Online Census

Compare and contrast. Granted, this isn’t a direct comparison. I suppose it could be argued “but if gays could marry, they would be more faithful.” But this flies in the face of the whole argument for gay marriage, that marriage isn’t some sacred sacrament, but something (who knows what) that people just “do” when they love each other. To which I only respond with a Barack Obama look: It can either be a institution that by its very nature helps make its partakers be more faithful, or it is an institution that doesn’t actually mean anything and thus should be opened to everyone. It cannot be both. And besides, if homosexuals and lesbians truly desired the same kind of commitment signified by marriage, then one would expect them to take advantage of the opportunity to enter into civil unions or registered partnerships which grant them legal recognition as well as the legal rights of marriage. By and large, they don’t.

U.S. Census Bureau, Married-Couple and Unmarried-Partner Households: 2000, 2; Black, “Demographics,” 141; U.S. Census Bureau Census 2000 Summary File 1; Bayles, “Vermont’s Gay Civil Unions,” 1; Census 2000 Special Reports, 4; Shane, “Many Swedes Say ‘I Don’t,'” 1; “ORL Backgrounder,” 1.

The Netherlands is a pretty good example of what I’m talking about. Same-sex marriage is legalized, and pitifully few get married. Why? Marriage seems to make couples more faithful, right? But then again, this all makes sense given the statistics on gay fidelity:

Laumann, The Social Organization of Sexuality, 216; McWhirter and Mattison, The Male Couple: How Relationships Develop (1984): 252-253; Wiederman, “Extramarital Sex,” 170.

This is not make any judgment. Fidelity is not often expressed as a virtue to beginwith amongst homosexuals, and I also grant that — in my own experience — lesbians have exhibited much greater fidelity, though I cannot find any reliable statistics proving it. No, this is simply to point out that an ideal, “it’s just like the straight folk!” marriage, the one exhibited so eloquently in the video, just isn’t very likely. For instance, partner abuse is much more likely in a gay relationship, especially a lesbian one:

“Extent, Nature, and Consequences of Intimate Partner Violence,” U.S. Department of Justice: Office of Justice Programs, 30.

We now know that “children of married couples are more likely to do well at school, in academic and social terms, than children of cohabiting heterosexual and homosexual couples.” (Sotirios Sarantakos, a sociologist, in the journal Children Australia, came to this conclusion after studying “a sample of 174 primary school children living in three different types of families…58 children of heterosexual cohabiting couples, 58 children of heterosexual married couples and 58 children of homosexual (47 lesbian and 11 gay couples.”)

I don’t point out all this to condemn, only to show that speech given was essentially an emotional appeal based on a singular example. Zach Wahls says there exists no difference between homosexual marriages and heterosexual marriages. Statistics seem to suggest otherwise. Choose now whom you will believe. Given our current level of rationality and thought, I’ve no doubt the video — at over a million views now — will convert many compassionate, well-intentioned young people to the cause. But it is false advertising, and I — though I wish for the sake of the children of gay marriages that I could  – simply don’t buy it.”




February 29 – the day that power shifts to the lady

29 Feb

According to this BBC article, this prayer  has been written by a female cleric for people planning a leap year day marriage proposal. :

“God of love, please bless N and N as they prepare for the commitment of marriage. May the plans for the wedding not overtake the more important preparation for their lifetime together. Please bless their family and friends as they prepare for this special day and may your blessing be upon them now and always. Amen.”

So I’m wondering, how many of you ladies have mustered the courage to do so, and how many of you gents have received any?

This bbc article helpfully provides a historical background.  Apparently the practice started with St Bridget in the 5th Century, or Queen Margaret of Scotland, depending on who you believe.

The good news is that in Denmark you can do this on 24th February, so not only can you do this every year in that great country, you could also every four years scurry to England five days later for a repeat performance if the first attempt didn’t go so well.

Apparently people are taking this seriously. The daily mail reports here that Loose Women host Lisa Maxwell has today proposed to her partner Paul Jessup. What do you know –  maybe it was Feb 29th on the day Ruthproposed to Boaz in that bible story!

If you’re looking for ideas, this video has some suggestions.

What can a woman tell from a baby’s cry that a man cannot?

25 Feb


In the concluding parts of Albert Mijé’s Homo Child  he raises an interesting question about the biological differences between men and women in responding to a child’s needs.

“What if the baby is taken in by two men, who have no mother’s instinct, and cannot tell if a baby is crying because it is hungry, thirsty or in pain? The baby cannot talk; they give him food when he is in pain; he waits and waits for respite from the pain, cries himself to sleep, wakes and cries again, but there is nothing. Only the mistaken idea that food cures all ills…”

So I ask, is there a biological reason why women are better mothers than men? Where does a mother’s instinct come from, and can it be learnt?

This article published in 2008 in the New York Times suggests that a mother’s response to an infant is hard-wired into her brain, and is therefore a biological response. Do men experience the same feelings? This article published in the Post Gazette in 2010 reports Dr Judith Orloff, an assistant clinical professor of psychiatry at UCLA, as saying that “A mother carries a child for nine months and the bond begins at the moment of conception”. She believes that this initial extended and intimate physical closeness forms the basis for a mother’s intuition. It is reasonable to also believe that this intuition cannot be substituted by any amount of learning or research and so, by definition, is impossible for men to experience.

According to this article on the website Ask Dr Sears,

“Responding to baby’s cries is biologically correct. A mother is biologically programmed to give a nurturant response to her newborn’s cries and not to restrain herself. Fascinating biological changes take place in a mother’s body in response to her infant’s cry. Upon hearing her baby cry, the blood flow to a mother’s breasts increases, accompanied by a biological urge to “pick up and nurse.” The act of breastfeeding itself causes a surge in prolactin , a hormone that we feel forms the biological basis of the term “mother’s intuition.” Oxytocin, the hormone that causes a mother’s milk to letdown, brings feelings of relaxation and pleasure; a pleasant release from the tension built up by the baby’s cry. These feelings help you love your baby. Mothers, listen to the biological cues of your body when your baby cries rather than to advisors who tell you to turn a deaf ear. These biological happenings explain why it’s easy for those advisors to say such a thing. They are not biologically connected to your baby. Nothing happens to their hormones when your baby cries.”

I have reproduced the quote in its entirety so you can see how it links the physical nurturing response of a mother to a biological impulse with a possible psychosocial component. This article by Lauren Lindsay Porter titled “The science of attachment: the biological roots of love”, published on the naturalchild.org website puts a scientific bent to this argument. She draws heavily on the so-called attachment theory (based on the belief that the mother-child bond is the essential and primary force in infant development) to make the case that a mother-baby interaction is crucial to the child’s present and future development into a socially and emotionally healthy adult.

What does all this mean? In Homo child, Albert seems to think that this has made a world of difference, and that a child raised by two men lacks something that only a female mother can provide.

What do you think – can two men raise a child in the same way that a traditional male-female couple can? Is there any real psychological or social disadvantage to the child?

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