Close this search box.

Defining Marriage, Part I: Same-Sex Marriage Disadvantages Children

This is a four-part series on Defining Marriage, a new booklet from FPIW. 
Here is the series: Part I, Part II, Part III, Part IV.


Ask anyone who supports same-sex marriage this:
“Do you believe that a mother has something unique to give to a child that no father can give,
and that a father has something unique to give a child that no mother can give?”

—Dennis Prager
“Same-Sex Marriage and the Insignificance of Men and Women” 

When a society redefines marriage, it redefines parenting – and that redefinition impacts children profoundly, as well as society at large.

Sadly, the inherent disadvantages that same-sex marriage places on children are often downplayed or even ignored by its proponents. Forgotten is the concept that a father can uniquely love his son or daughter, and that a mother can uniquely love her son or daughter in distinct but critical ways. These unique gifts of love are compromised in gay and lesbian marriages.

Redefining marriage can harm the proper development and maturity of children, argues Katy Faust, co-author of Us Before Them. Faust is a woman who grew up in a lesbian home, but now opposes homosexual marriage. It is true, she says, that “Not all marriages have children.” But it is also true that “Every child has parents.” If you redefine marriage, you redefine parenting; then — ironically, in the name of so-called “compassion” toward adults — you end up harming children. You intentionally remove a natural relationship with a child’s mom or dad. Faust asks:

If you grew up with a relationship with a mom and a dad who loved you, my question is: Which one was optional? Which one did you not need? . . . The answer is neither. For those of you who lost a parent to death, divorce, abandonment, [or] maybe your donor conceived, how’d that go for you? Did you love it? No, because when you lose a mother or father it leaves a primal wound.

“You cannot legislate away a child’s longing for their mom and dad,” says Faust. No woman can replace a father, and no man can replace a mother. Redefining marriage violates the right of every child, Faust argues, since children have a right to a relationship with their biological parents. It is natural for them to ask questions of identity and for them to desire a close relationship with their biological mother and father. Children should not be “cut-and-paste” into same-sex unions. Faust says:

Children have a right to be in a relationship with their mother and father whenever possible. As a society, we shouldn’t normalize a family structure that requires children to lose one or both parents . . . Children have rights. The onus needs to be on adults to conform to the rights of children, rather than children fitting into an adult’s lifestyle. 

But some may ask: “Can’t homosexuals raise children just as well as heterosexuals? Is there really any difference?” Science confirms tradition and common sense. There is a difference, says the unprecedented study by Dr. Mark Regnerus, a sociology professor at the University of Texas at Austin. A summary reads: 

[With a] data set of nearly 3,000 randomly selected American young adults, Dr. Regnerus looked at their lives on 40 measures of social, emotional and relationship outcomes. He found that, when compared with adults raised in married, mother-father families, adults raised by lesbian mothers had negative outcomes in 24 of 40 categories, while adults raised by gay fathers had negative outcomes in 19 categories. Findings such as these do not support claims that there are “no differences” between gay parenting and heterosexual, married parents, said Dr. Regnerus. . . . Instead, “children appear most apt to succeed well as adults when they spend their entire childhood with their married mother and father, and especially when the parents remain married to the present day.” Regnerus wrote.

There is a special type of masculine love that only a man can give to a child; and there is a type of feminine love that only a woman can give to a child. Men and women parent differently. Masculinity and femininity are bestowed and nurtured by love into a child, and such unique love empowers a child’s healthy development. They are equal gifts in value, but different in function. Equal in value does not mean the same in function.

There is, in fact, an unbridgeable difference between men and women. Children need both types of love; they need a mother and a father. Generic, genderless love is not enough. “You cannot legislate away a child’s longing for their mom and dad,” says Faust. No woman can replace a father, and no man can replace a mother. “I needed my father. It’s the emotional food that kids need.”

It is unequivocally true that marriage reaps far more benefits for men, women, and children than same-sex marriages ever could. It’s time once again to normalize marriage as the gold standard for society.

This article is an excerpt from the free booklet Defining Marriage: Why Only One Man and One Woman? 

Additional Resources


Essays & Articles 


Read More