Teens and children face many challenges to growing up healthy and well adjusted. They may have school stress or disagreements with friends. There are pressures to succeed, to look a certain way or achieve certain goals. Teens face the added pressures of possible drug and alcohol use, new relationships, and self-esteem. Today, the American Academy of Pediatrics released a statement in support of gay marriage. Why did they do this? Because having two loving parents is associated with better outcomes for children and teens.
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) is the largest pediatric organization in the US with 60,000 members. Their mission is to ensure the health and well-being of children. Children do best when they are wanted and when they have love and support of trusted adults. In our society, marriage offers many advantages that just having a committed relationship does not: financial advantage through tax laws, rights to consent to medical treatment, and health benefits. These benefits would be the same if the marriage is between 2 opposite sex or same sex adults.
Research shows that children benefit from a stable environment, financial stability, good communication with parents, and love and support of trusted adults. Most would agree that marriage between two people who love and are committed to each other is the best environment to raise a family in. Today, the AAP has taken a stand on the debate of marriage equality based on scientific evidence about which environments are healthiest for teens and children to grow.
Our colleague, Dr. Swanson, also posted about this topic on her blog seattlemamadoc today.
In every post we discuss how important parents are for raising healthy teens, but here are a couple of posts that highlight this!