“Second Generation” Voices: Queer Youth with Lesbian/Bisexual Mothers

  • Katherine A. KuvalankaEmail author
  • Abbie E. Goldberg
Empirical Research


Research on the experiences of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) youth with LGBTQ parents is absent in the social science literature. The present qualitative, exploratory study utilized a social constructionist and queer theoretical lens through which to explore the sexual/gender identity formation and disclosure experiences of 18 LGBTQ young adults with lesbian/bisexual mothers. Findings suggest that LGBTQ parents may have a uniquely positive influence on their LGBTQ children in regard to their sexual and gender identity development. However, some participants reported perceiving societal scrutiny related to their mothers’ lesbian/bisexual identities and, thus, felt pressure to be heterosexual and gender-conforming. Furthermore, some participants did not necessarily utilize or view their lesbian/bisexual mothers as sources of support in relation to their own sexual/gender identity formation. While much more research is needed that examines the experiences of LGBTQ children with LGBTQ parents, this study represents a first step in addressing the existing literature gap.


Coming out LGBTQ parents LGBTQ youth Qualitative research Queer identity Social constructionist 



Both authors would like to thank their participants for sharing their personal stories. The first author would also like to thank the American Psychological Foundation for the Roy Scrivner Memorial Research Grant that supported data collection for her original study.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Family Studies and Social WorkMiami UniversityOxfordUSA
  2. 2.Department of PsychologyClark UniversityWorcesterUSA

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