Approximately 4.3% of adults in the United States identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or queer (LGBTQ) – meaning there are 10.7 million LGBTQ adults in the U.S. (Romero 2017; Gallup Poll 2017). And, as we mentioned in a recent blog post, same-sex adoption is on the rise. In 2020, 19 percent of same-sex couples raising children have at least one adopted child – up from just 8 percent in 2000 (Good Housekeeping). This got us thinking about same-sex adoption by the numbers.
Same-Sex Adoption Statistics
There are more than 547,000 married same-sex couples in the U.S. (Romero 2017; Gallup Poll 2017).
Over 1.2 million LGBTQ people are in same-sex relationships. (Gallup Poll 2015). Given that this figure is from 2015, before nationwide marriage equality, this number could now be much different.
Six to 14 million children have an LGBTQ parent (ACLU).
More than 111,000 same-sex couples are raising an estimated 170,000 children (biological, step, or adopted) (Gates 2013).
Mississippi, Wyoming, Alaska, Idaho, and Montana are those with the highest proportion of LGBT parents raising children (biological, adopted or stepchildren) (Gates 2013).
19 percent of same-sex couples raising children have at least one adopted child – up from just 8 percent in 2000 (Good Housekeeping).
Among LGBTQ adults under 50 years old and living alone, or with a spouse or partner, 48% of women and 20% of men are raising a child (Gates 2013).
Same-sex couples are six times more likely to foster children, and at least 4 times more likely to adopt (Gates 2013).
Approximately 2,600 same-sex couples are raising an estimated 3,400 foster children in the U.S. (Gates 2013).
An estimated 16,000 same-sex couples are raising more than 22,000 adopted children in the U.S. (Gates 2013).
An estimated two million LGBT people are interested in adopting (Gates 2007).
LGBT adoptive parents are more likely to adopt transracially (Gates 2013).
Adopted children of LGBT couples are generally more self-aware, tolerant and accepting of others (Considering Adoption).
Less than one-fifth of adoption agencies are actively attempting to recruit LGBT adoptive parents (Considering Adoption).
The median age of same-sex adoptive parents is 42 (Gates 2013).
Adoption Makes Family is LGBTQ Friendly – Focussing on Family Regardless of Parents’ Sexual Orientation
“Gay and lesbian couples looking to adopt face unique challenges and deep-seated prejudices that continue to exist in some agencies and individuals,” says Kate Bayless, Parents.com, “even as private and government organizations are making strides to ensure that adoption policies are fair.” You see, not all adoption agencies are comfortable working with same-sex couples. In fact, less than one-fifth of adoption agencies actively attempt to recruit LGBTQ adoptive parents. So, it’s important to do your research and find an agency that shares your values and will support you and your partner.
If you are a same-sex couple interested in starting the adoption process, please give Adoption Makes Family a call. We are a a non-profit (501-C3) licensed adoption agency based in Maryland that works with couples of all races, genders, and sexual orientations. Our goal is for all of our families to be happy and for the child to be raised in a loving environment. Our adoption counselors are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for your convenience.
24-Hour Hotline 410-683-2100
If you have any questions, you can contact us by phone at 410-683-2100, by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or use our online contact form.
- Andrew R. Flores, Jody L. Herman, Gary J. Gates, and Taylor N. T. Brown, How Many Adults Identity As Transgender in the United States? (Los Angeles, CA: Williams Institute, UCLA School of Law, 2016), at https://williamsinstitute.law.ucla.edu/wp-content/uploads/How-Many-Adults-Identify-as-Transgenderin-the-United-States.pdf
- Adam P. Romero, 1.1 Million LGBT Adults are Married to Someone of the Same Sex at the Two-Year Anniversary of Obergefell v. Hodges (Los Angeles, CA: Williams Institute, UCLA School of Law, 2017), at https://williamsinstitute.law.ucla.edu/wp-content/uploads/Obergefell-2-Year-Marriages.pdf
- Gary J. Gates, Marriage and Family: LGBT Individuals and Same-Sex Couples, The Future of Children, 25(2):67–87 (Princeton: Brookings, Fall 2015), at http://www.princeton.edu/futureofchildren/publications/docs/MarriageandFamily.pdf
- Gary J. Gates, Demographics of Married and Unmarried Same-Sex Couples: Analyses of the 2013 American Community Survey (Los Angeles, CA: Williams Institute, UCLA School of Law, 2015), at https://williamsinstitute.law.ucla.edu/wp-content/uploads/Demographics-Same-Sex-Couples-ACS2013- March-2015.pdf
- Gary J. Gates and Frank Newport, Gallup Poll: An Estimated 780,000 Americans in Same-Sex Marriages (April 24, 2014), at http://www.gallup.com/poll/182837/estimated-780-000-americans-sexmarriages.aspx
- Gary J. Gates, LGB Families and Relationships: Analyses of the 2013 National Health Interview Survey (Los Angeles, CA: Williams Institute, UCLA School of Law, 2014), at http://williamsinstitute.law.ucla.edu/wpcontent/uploads/lgb-families-nhis-sep-2014.pdf
- Gary J. Gates, LGBT Parenting in the United States (Los Angeles, CA: Williams Institute, UCLA School of Law, 2013), at http://williamsinstitute.law.ucla.edu/wp-content/uploads/LGBT-Parenting.pdf
- Jeffery M. Jones, Gallup Poll: In U.S., 10.2% of LGBT Adults Now Married to Same-Sex Spouse (June 22, 2017), at http://www.gallup.com/poll/212702/lgbt-adults-married-sexspouse.aspx?g_source=Social+Issues&g_medium=newsf