The Gay Dads Study

Principle Investigator: Colleen Hoff, PhD

Who we are:

The Gay Dads Study seeks to examine the impact of parenting on the health and wellbeing of gay men with children.

Where we have been:

The Gay Dads Study was a dual site study that was conducted in one phase. Participants were recruited from the San Francisco Bay Area and Salt Lake City Area. 51 gay couples and 15 individuals were recruitment from both sites, with a majority coming from the San Francisco Bay Area. Two sites were utilized in order to compare and contrast differences that may arise from divergent socio-cultural contexts, such as structural support (gay-friendly governmental policy and legislation), cultures of risk (background HIV prevalence), and communities. All participants participated in one face-to-face, in-depth, semi-structured qualitative interview.

Data collection was completed for the Gay Dads Study in February 2011.

Where we are now:

Presently, we are analyzing the qualitative data. Please contact the Principal Investigator or Project Director, Sean Bougher for more information.

Why we are doing this research:

Demographic estimates show that between 2-8 million gay men and lesbian women are parenting children in the U.S., yet little research has examined the strengths of and challenges faced by these families, especially in the case of families headed by gay men.

Because they are a marginalized group, gay men face vulnerabilities such as increased risk of HIV infection, increased substance use, and higher rates mental illness. Given these issues, an important question for public health is, what impact will parenthood have on the health and wellbeing for this community? While parenthood may both positively and negative affect the health and wellbeing of gay men with children, understanding the nuances of this experience is essential to developing interventions and public health practice to support this growing population of families.

What we have discovered so far:

Presently, we are analyzing the qualitative data. Please contact the Principal Investigator or Project Director, Sean Bougher for more information.

Funding:

This study is made possible by a grant from the National Institute of Mental Health, MH 084760.