Attitudes of Italian Heterosexual Older Adults Towards Lesbian and Gay Parenting
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Several studies have examined the attitudes of heterosexuals towards lesbian and gay parenting, revealing mostly negative attitudes. Nonetheless, no research studies have examined these attitudes specifically among elderly adults. Two hundred eighty older heterosexuals adults ranged from 65 to 87 years old (women: M = 74.2, SD = 6.0; male M = 73.9, SD = 6.1) completed measures evaluating their knowledge of the existence of lesbian and gay parents, their attitudes towards lesbian and gay parenting and expected child outcomes, and opinions regarding legalization and recognition of lesbian and gay parents. As we expected, age was a relevant predictor of negative attitudes towards lesbian and gay parenting: older elders had a stronger prejudice than the others. Data revealed that the more positive evaluation was for the heterosexual and lesbian parents while the more negative evaluation was for the gay male parents. Regression analyses showed that a negative attitude towards lesbian and gay parents was predicted by older age, right-wing conservatism, and internalized sexual stigma. The expected effects on child outcomes were predicted only by the dimensions of sexual stigma.
KeywordsOlder adults Sexual stigma Lesbian parents Gay parents Sexual orientation
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