Adult Children of Gay Fathers: Parent–Child Relationship Quality and Mental Health

Samantha L. Tornello, Charlotte J. Patterson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


According to family systems theory, parent–child relationships are an important aspect of individual wellbeing. This study explored associations among parental disclosure, parent–child relationships, and wellbeing among 84 adult children with gay fathers. We explored associations between the adult children’s wellbeing and the children’s ages at sexual orientation disclosure, geographic distance, relationship quality, and closeness with their fathers. We found that when parental disclosure had occurred earlier in the adult child’s life, participants reported feeling closer to fathers in adulthood. Those who reported closer relationships with their fathers reported greater wellbeing. Using a stepwise regression, we found that adult children’s reports of closeness with fathers were the best predictors of adult children’s wellbeing.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1152-1166
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Homosexuality
Issue number9
StatePublished - Jul 29 2018

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Gender Studies
  • Social Psychology
  • Education
  • General Psychology


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