Matt Baume: Do All Kids Need A Mom & Dad? [VIDEO]

Matt Baume: “You hear the claim all the time from anti-gay groups: children deserve a mom and a dad. But is it true? What does the science ACTUALLY say about same-sex parents? How do they compare to straight parents? And are they as statistically likely to have embarrassing taste in music?”

  • dr tod

    I agree with Matt. His own mother and dad did a remarkable job with him.

  • oikos

    I had two hetero parents growing up and my husband had a single mother and never knew his father. We both are productive citizens, have jobs, pay taxes, are educated and happy. Kids need love. It is just that simple.

    • JT

      What they always leave out is that the children given up for adoption do have a mother and father. And they give them up for adoption.

      • oikos

        and that many children who no hetero couples will adopt are adopted by loving gay couples.

        • JT

          And many children remain in the system, some because of the obstacles for gay people to adopt (as single parents or couples).

    • Gustav2

      Well, we know you are a mess and your husband must be a saint! So it disproves all their bad studies. 😉

      • oikos

        He is a saint. Thanks Gustav. 🙂

        • Ninja0980

          My husband is also a saint.. compared to me anyway.

    • MarkOH

      We’re the same: My husband had a single mother (and her mother) raise them. I grew up in a “Leave it to Beaver”, traditional hetero household. And, yes, we are both hard working, tax paying individuals. Both went to college, work on neighborhood issues and spoil our nephews and nieces. The love and SECURITY of the home is what is important.

  • bkmn

    One good parent can do a much better job of raising kids than two bad ones.

  • Ninja0980

    Kids need love, simple as that.
    On that note as well, my siblings and I were never spanked and yet we’re all productive citizens, imagine that!

    • MattM

      Don’t tell that to the Christians who throw their kids out of house for being gay.

      • Ninja0980

        My friend’s “parents” did just that.
        Come this December, it will be six years since he last spoke to them.

        • MattM

          He’s much better off without them.

        • GayOldLady

          I’ve seen it many times, Ninja.

          • Ninja0980

            Not as much but more then I would like.
            Seen it with a couple of straight people as well.
            Some parents simply view their kids as property and nothing more.

    • GayOldLady

      You’re lucky. My dad would slap you down if you looked at him wrong.

      • oikos

        We were beaten with a variety of items growing up: yardstick, metal handled fly swatter and hot wheels tracks. 🙂

        • GayOldLady

          I know that!!!! My mother was always reluctant to use her hands, so she would send me out to cut my own switch from the switch tree. My dad on the other hand had no such objection to using his hands. Sometimes even a backhand, which is wicked, especially when you’re 4 feet tall and the backhand is being delivered by a 6 foot tall man.

          • oikos

            I had to cut switches too from the willow tree outside. Nothing hurts the back of your legs quite as much except for the hot wheels tracks. 🙂

          • GayOldLady

            There was no such thing as hot wheels when I was a child. Suppose I’ll never know the pain of being beaten by a hot wheels track. 🙂

          • oikos

            Be glad. I would hide them when I wasn’t playing with them so my father couldn’t find them but then he would just go get the belt.

          • GayOldLady

            Oh, the belt! I still cringe just thinking about it.

        • GayOldLady

          Then when we went to school the good sisters would whip us again. Sometimes paddles with holes in them, sometimes a ruler, sometimes with the rosary strap on their habit. It was never ending.

        • Ninja0980

          And according to the holier then though folks today, it’s the only way to make kids respect their elders.
          What a joke.

          • oikos

            It just made us find better methods for not getting caught doing something wrong, rather than teach us what was right.

          • Ninja0980

            Or worse, taught that hitting was a proper way to get what you want.

        • Gustav2

          Belts.

        • KCMC

          OMG, the Hot Wheels track ridges!!!

          • oikos

            Ouch

      • 2karmanot

        My beloved T, who died last Summer had a father, who smacked him every time T would look at him, like all little kids do to see how ‘Dad’ was doing. Decades later when T had to have an MRI, the frontal lobe damage was evident with images of old scarring. To this day it makes me sick to think of abusive, evil, mentally deranged parents. Having children is such an incredible decision, loving then such a joy and raising them, an incredible art of patience and constancy.

  • bkmn

    If having a mom and dad is so important why aren’t couples that conceive a child automatically married and also divorce should be illegal.

    • MattM

      Because then KKKristians would be held accountable for their actions, instead of deflecting the blame to the LGBT community for “undermining the sanctity of marriage” and “destroying the nuclear family.”

    • Chucktech

      Because those saying that are just christian mouth running and back-door fag hating.

      • Steve Teeter

        The preachers know they can’t preach against divorce and infidelity or they’d lose half their congregation.

  • Cuberly

    Great piece Matt. 🙂

    This is however, one of those issues that make me cringe. Maybe it was where I grew up or the neighborhood I lived in but I never really saw families approximating an ideal. Neglectful parents, overly permissive parents, parents with substance abuse issues, parents in a high conflict relationship. Hell even adultery in a few instances. And that was all from two parent families.

    Half the time I think if a kid can make it through with minimal psychic scarring they got it made. It’s why whenever the religious right starts harping on this I just laugh. Of course religious conservatives are going to think their situations are the ideal. But in my experience there’s a shit ton of denial at work when they buy this line.

    Guess I’m being a negative norman here…..lol…..

    • LonelyLiberal

      I don’t think the tendency is any different in any other locale. Your description fits every socio-economic group I ever saw.

      • Cuberly

        “Successful outcome” seems like a loaded term to me. Subjective even.

        • LonelyLiberal

          I tend to define “successful outcome” as “didn’t raise an ax killer, just a normal person with normal levels of screwed-uppedness.”

          • Cuberly

            Ha! Or didn’t grow up to sell sub sandwiches on TV…yikes!

          • LonelyLiberal

            Even that’s OK as long as they aren’t molesting underage girls. The world needs sub sandwiches, for “many alternatives” levels of “need.”

          • Cuberly

            Ha!

    • oikos

      You are absolutely right. I don’t know of many two parent families that aren’t dysfunctional in some way. There never was an Ozzie and Harriet America.

      • Gustav2

        That’s not true. I grew up in a pure Ozzie and Harriet suburb…because divorced folk had to sell their house and move because they could not afford to stay.

        • Cuberly

          That one early episode of Mad Men where Betty meets the neighborhood divorcee. That look she gave the divorced woman was sooooooooooo accurate. Commence the shunning!

          • Gustav2

            I had a friend in 1964, I was not allowed to play at his house after my parents found out his mother was divorced…and shocker, was a waitress in a supper club to make ends meet.

          • Octavio

            That right there is enough to ensure you’re going to hell, just by association. Next you’ll be telling us he was a Jew!

          • Gustav2

            No. the Jewish one was my lover 13 years later.

          • Cuberly

            Actually, (speaking of stories) When the crazy born again lady next door invited my mother to church, and my mother pleasantly declined the offer. The crazy born again started spreading a rumor in the neighborhood that we where…..(gasp) Jewish!

          • Cuberly

            Kim Davis doesn’t know how good she has it does she.

          • Gustav2

            LOL, I can imagine what my parents would have thought. They really did not associate with any divorced persons (other than their own sons) until they died in the early 2000’s.

          • Cuberly

            My mother just passed last Dec and she was the early version of sheltered Betty Draper to a T, all the way to the end. The way she treated Sally always made me flinch cuz that was my momma…wow.

          • Gustav2

            People laugh when I tell them my mother never went to the grocery without a girdle, hose and high heels. She did stop the hat and gloves in the mid 1960’s. She only wore pants once to go to a freezing football game in Michigan Stadium.

          • Cuberly

            Ha! That was a sign of the times wasn’t it.

          • RoFaWh

            I remember when the era of girdles (Didja hear the one about the woman who was bitten to death by her Playtex Living Bra?) came to an end. My mother happily announced to all and sundry that she was no longer going to wear a girdle. And then she took a deep breath — something a girdle interfered with.

            The Playtex Living Girdle:

            https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/736x/6a/55/0e/6a550e19178e2a6b7abebdd11fabf077.jpg

      • Nic Peterson

        The Ozzie and Harriet America did indeed exist. It existed in the homes and redlined neighborhoods that could afford televisions, memberships to segregated clubs and the luxuary of a stay at home parent.

        That show and others like it were sold as the ‘normal American family’, when in reality the demographic was quite small. But they bought televisions and soap, apparently…

      • Cuberly

        Yeah, and families don’t end. That’s why when a study measures outcomes does that mean that the kids have jobs and are self supporting? I just have a fair number of questions on how they arrive at their conclusions.

      • Ninja0980

        My mom knew that growing up in the 60’s.
        Smart woman she was.

        • oikos

          My parents were born in the 1920’s so had a delusion of the perfect family, which ours certainly was not.

          • Cuberly

            Same here.

          • Gustav2

            I give mine a bit of a break being teenagers during the Depression, (Mum’s family had it really rough) then early adulthood during THE WAR. They really wanted to Disney the home life.

          • madknits

            Mine too. We were so deep in denial that we were somewhere in Upper Egypt.

    • Octavio

      You jogged my memory. It seems to be a thing with me today. I grew up on ranches and farms. I remember riding my bicycle into town to play with kids my own age. So many scenes of family/spousal abuse. One big memory is of Carma, a girl slightly older than me who was horribly abused by her parents. Her mother discovered her playing with all of the neighborhood kids when she was supposed to be babysitting her one-year-old sister. The mother screamed at Carma through the fence that kept the bitch away from us. Then, in a huff, the mother threw the one-year-old over the fence at Carma. The child’s diaper flew off. Carma was knocked to the ground. The mother marched off. She threw the infant as if it were a football! Such a sweet mormon mother. She would have behaved the same way if adults had been around. Didn’t matter. That family was WAY cray cray. But that’ was the early 1950s.

      • Cuberly

        Yikes! So crazy…damn!

        Religion….well at least for some. wow….I remember when the crazy born again next door neighbor’s violent and super out of control son set fire to their garage. He was constructing an M80 cannon out of an old car muffler. Didn’t go well. Yes, they had cars on blocks in the front yard.

      • Gustav2

        There is a reason more Mormon women were on Valium, etc. at that time….and now.

    • Claude Jacques Bonhomme
      • Cuberly

        Ha! They need to tighten up the holes in their chainmail there.

        • BlueberriesForMe

          “It’s the chainmail you’ve been waiting for. Breathable. Classic. Clanky and scrunchy as ever. Now available at Nordstrom’s and other fine establishments.”

          • Cuberly

            It’s as if I’m only wearing 50 pounds instead of 75.

  • Steve

    The world has plenty of evil, hateful people in it. Many of them are biological parents. The idea that loving and kind same sex parents aren’t better than a pair of hateful, abusive hetro parents is absolute bullshit.

  • clay

    We could supply all children and child-rearing adults enough social supports to make sure that having only one adult per household isn’t a threat to children’s health and education. We could make sure that medical histories are available even to adopted children. I hear places have done that.

    Oh, I forgot: “No new taxes!” “Socialism!”

  • GayOldLady

    I was born into a family with an abusive father, I can say with absolute certainty that an environment where a child is being abused isn’t one conducive to raising happy children. Love is the only thing that matters raising children. The gender of the person providing the loving environment is totally irrelevant.

    • Octavio

      My mother was the youngest of 13 kids. They all had the same abusive father who treated their mother like property — a workhorse. All of those 13 brothers and sisters were so emotionally fucked up, only the boys who died in WWII seemed to have had it the best. Yup. There’s nothing quite like an abusive parent to really screw up a child for life.

  • another_steve

    My guess is that what really motivates our enemies here is the biologically-innate fear of species extinction. All species require that fear, otherwise they eventually go out of business.

    The “fear” is that humans will stop reproducing — and that gets translated in the enemies’ pea-sized brains to “children need mommies and daddies.”

    Combine the innate fear with institutional religion and you end up with a deadly cocktail.

    • bambinoitaliano

      I am starting to question the legitimacy of Darwin’s evolution when we still see some dinosaurs roaming around the earth. I wish devolution happen to these evangelists. May they grow fins and gills and return to the ponds be prays upon by the other predators.

      • another_steve

        Fear not. Evolution of the Human Consciousness is a tireless son-of-a-bitch. On the job 24/7. No holidays. No sick days.

        Homophobia and proscriptions against same-sex behavior are no longer useful to our species. Once, they were. When we lived in caves and huge meat-eating creatures were ever-watching the cave entrances and our average lifespan was 30 or something, opposite-gendered people had to fuck and fuck often. No off-to-the-side nooky between Caveman Joe and Caveman Harry.

        I believe the prohibitions in Hebrew Scripture against male same-sex behavior are rooted in those ancient peoples’ fear of cultural extinction. Jewish men had to fuck exclusively with Jewish women and make Jewish babies, otherwise — given their relatively small numbers and the world’s persecution of them, the Jewish people would go out of business.

        In the fullness of time, homophobia will go away. It will go away because it’s no longer needed or useful to our species.

        All of the above, only a guess.

        • GC

          A parallel thought: tribes and religions that had a rule “be fruitful and multiply, have lots of female-male sex and make lots and lots of babies” might have more kids, and end up getting more market share among the population. All fine when the human population was small and the earth and its resources seemed limitless.

          Even for people who accept the authority of the biblical dictum, the full command is “Be fruitful and multiply; and fill the earth, and subdue it.” With the planet groaning under the demands of 7,263,737,000+ people and counting, we can say “mission accomplished”!

          • another_steve

            “…and end up getting more market share among the population.”

            Good point. Over and above the mere “survival” element, there might be the instinct to multiply and by so doing increase, as you put it, your group’s “market share.”

            The “tribal instinct” may be stronger than we think it is.

            Could be that racial and ethnic bigotry are biological mandates designed to protect the integrity of your individual gene pool.

      • Steve Teeter

        The term is degeneration. That makes them degenerates.

    • 2karmanot

      “the biologically-innate fear of species extinction” In other words, the absolute fact of extinction known as death. That’s probably why death cults like Christianity are so powerful.

      • Chucktech

        That is the long and short of why death cults like Christianity are so powerful.

      • another_steve

        Absolutely, 2karmanot. Astute observation imo.

        Much (not all) of institutional religion is centered around combating the fear of death. Among the Judeo-Christian religions, Judaism, interestingly enough, is not so centered on that. Jews are generally not obsessed with the “afterlife,” as so many Christians and Muslims are.

        There are lots of exceptions, but that’s the general case, I think.

        • GC

          That’s my understanding as well. Religious Jews obey God as they understand it because it’s the right thing to do. They’re supposed to be a “holy people” and a “light to the nations”. (Yet Judaism doesn’t insist on everyone becoming Jewish. “The righteous of all nations” are also seen as worthy.)

          • another_steve

            I don’t know of any branch or sect of Judaism that actively proselytizes or seeks out converts. Judaism accepts converts but doesn’t seek them out.

            That’s my understanding. If anyone reading here knows otherwise, I’d be interested in hearing about it.

  • bambinoitaliano

    It takes a village to raise a kid. Many parents can barely supply the income needed to raise kids let alone the time to spend actually raising the kids. Even those who live in a traditional setting with a stay home parent is barely sufficient. And then we venture into couples that just going through the motions of having kids with no intention or commitment of being parents. and they are plenty of them. Huge majority of them are heterosexual couples. If the society is facing a crisis of raising children it certainly did not come from the gay parents. People wanting children for many selfish reasons. It’s like children wanting puppies and lack the commitment and responsibilities to actually looking after the puppies once they have them. Children need love, attention and commitment. If nothing else, these evangelists prove against heterosexual couples being the choice of good parenting. Life would be so easy if all it takes to raise a kid is keep talking about jesus and the buble. Do we need to cite example from the duggar, palin, judge moore, huckabee , kim davis and the bunch of others fine example of christianists who are suppose to be the good parents?

    • Ninja0980

      Indeed that is the problem with many of the kids today.
      The parents simply aren’t around enough to raise them.
      And yet according to some, all the kids need is jeebus and some spanking and it’ll go back to the good old days.

    • Gustav2

      And don’t forget, Christianists support liar Crisis Pregnancy and Women’s Centers that don’t even discuss contraception. Now supported with state monies in Ohio.

    • Cuberly

      “And then we venture into couples that just going through the motions of having kids with no intention or commitment of being parents.”

      (cough)…Palins….(cough)….

    • Steve Teeter

      Dan Savage’s son was given up for adoption by a young street kid punk teenager who was smart enough to realize she had no business trying to raise a child. (The father had vanished.) It was a wrench for her to give that baby up, but she knew it was best for all, and she chose Dan and Terry as the couple she wanted to raise her child. So far as I know, they’ve done a great job, and the kid is now a normal teenager.

  • Patrick Thomas

    Here’s the question we should all ask anyone who spreads this malicious trope: “Even if kids are better off in mom/dad households – though science says that’s not necessarily true – how does denying marriage equality increase the number of kids growing up in said households?” I love watching them squirm.

    • Chucktech

      They do the christian lie-pivot and say those homo marriages enable said homos to put children into homo households instead of good christianist mommy/daddy homes.

      • Patrick Thomas

        But, of course, they are wrong, because denying marriage equality doesn’t stop us from having/adopting children!

    • Even if we accept that their ideal family is the best one, what happens to the millions of children for whom that is not a possibility. the ones where one parent died. Or who are abused and abandoned.

      Molly Ivans once said that everyone making or commenting on family policy ought to spend a day observing family court. If they can make it through the day. It’s a parade of families that are worse than the worst of what we see on tv. Most people just aren’t aware of how bad things are for far too many people right in their own zip code. The ideal family doesn’t need much int he way of laws. They do fine. it’s the rest that we need laws and policy to protect.

      • Cuberly

        I’m wondering if all these “studies” are attempting to measure the wrong things.

        • The studies show just what you would think. Children do well when they have loving, engaged parents or guardians and they don’t do so well when they don’t. Nothing earth-shattering there.

          • Cuberly

            Well of course if your parents care, and are actively involved in your wellbeing and growth yeah. No brainer. Chances are kids will have a better start in life.

            But, I could parse the shit out of their demographic choices. What criteria are used to select the various populations they want to study..etc…I could go on and on.

          • A good study in a peer reviewed journal will lay out the methodology. If you are going to read such things also read any response in the literature. (https://scholar.google.com/ allows you to find articles and books that cite other articles and books.) If someone find flaws in the methodology or if repeating the study yields substantially different results, you will find those published as well. The Regnerus study, for example was so flawed that it’s hard to imagine how it got published in the first place. But it did, and has been widely debunked since then. Anyway, there are standards for methodology and small scale studies usually note that further study is required, even though media reports (especially on tv) don’t always make that clear, the study itself most certainly will.

          • GC

            I still love how Judge Bernard Friedman corrected our punctuation there: it’s the Regnerus study (with quotes).

  • JVB

    My father passed away when I was 8 or 9. So my Mom raised me a single parent and I turned out none for the worse. I do remember she was pressured by certain relatives to remarry.

  • robirob

    Children need stability, healthy food, a roof over their head, and proper education as a foundation from where they can develop some critical thinking skill. These requirements can be provided by anyone (gay couple, straight couple, or single parent) if the financial means and love are there.

  • billbear1961
    • Max_1

      billbear, your love of the classics is a real turn on… just sayin’.

      Every New Years this is aired, I watch it… It is so magical and dreamy, and as a dancer, I’ve often dreamed of dancing in Vienna. Thanks for sharing.

  • There are a lot of people out there who are far better off that their birth parents put them up for adoption and they were raised by people who not only wanted to be parents but had to get the approval from social workers. Yes, that doesn’t work out so often but given the number of children abused and neglected by parents, that number pales in comparison. This is quite obvious to anyone who bothers living in the real world rather than a fantasy.

  • Steverino

    Of course the meme “all children need to be raised by a mom and a dad” is just another red herring to distract from the fundamental rightness of marriage equality, but it is always nice to see this bullshit debunked.

  • Rex

    Children need love and stability.
    Just like I do.
    Daddy?

    • Claude Jacques Bonhomme

      I think there are several candidates on this here blog. 😏

  • BostonDotTom

    Kids needs parents that love them and are involved in their lives. That’s it.

  • Six Pins Delores

    I disagree. Matts two heterosexual parents, despite ALL of that they had going against raised an amazingly awesome talented brilliant individual!

  • Silver Badger

    All kids have never had a mom and dad. It sounds nice, but it does not happen. Do you simply euthanize those children who lose a parent to divorce of death? Or, heaven forbid, do we kill the single parent who has never married?

  • Bj Lincoln

    My mom raised 4 kids and we are not too messed up. It was better when it was just her. I raised my bio son alone and at 12, my adopted son. They turned out great. They think because I was openly gay, it made them better humans. They is welcoming and understanding to everyone. Both are atheists.
    If you put your kids before you and love them with everything your heart has, they will turn out just fine. I knew it was my only shot and I was determined to do the best I could. If you can’t do that, you should not have kids. I worked with abused kids from str8 homes with a mom and dad, kids in foster homes because mom and dad were so bad and horror stories of what happened over the long weekend. One kid spent 3 days locked in the trunk of a car. I knew I could do a better job alone then their parents. Thanks Matt for putting the info out there. I am going to pass this along.

  • anne marie in philly

    I had 2 abusive str8 parents; I am lucky to be alive.

    my niece had a mom (my younger sister) only (niece’s dad split and never returned); my niece is a well-adjusted str8 married woman who adopted a child last year.

    fuck the h8ers!

  • ColdDesert

    My father’s mother passed away when he was 8 years old, he was raised by his single father (who worked six day weeks as a factory foreman) and his oldest sister. All seven kids grew up well-adjusted and they all seem just fine to me.

  • JCF

    Kids need at least ONE good parent (and no terrible ones). Two GOOD parents are better than one.

  • Disqusdmnj

    My wife and I have a 13 y/o son who often wishes he had *no* parents… does that sway the argument any? 😉