How pregnancy can be made more difficult by maternity care’s notions of ‘normal’

The Conversation, October 8, 2019 10.04pm AEDT

Maternity records in the UK have spaces only for the expectant mother and the baby’s father. This inflexibility can cause difficulties for the pregnant person, their partner, and their unborn baby if they do not fit into these boxes.

Over the last decade there has been a significant increase in the number of people conceiving outside of the traditional model of a heterosexual couple, so this affects an increasing number of parents.

Research shows that problems occur when heteronormativity – the perception that heterosexuality is the normal, default, or preferred sexual orientation – is communicated either overtly or subtly in the way healthcare staff treat patients, the way leaflets are worded, or the assumptions made in the way administration systems are designed.

Religious refusal laws harm sexual minority mental health, study finds

ScienceDaily, 23 May 2018.

A new study led by a Boston University School of Public Health (BUSPH) researcher has found that state laws permitting the denial of services to same-sex couples because of religious or moral beliefs harm the mental health of sexual minority adults in those states.

The study, published in JAMA Psychiatry, found these laws were associated with a 46 percent increase in the proportion of sexual minority adults experiencing mental distress.

Discrimination, not same-sex parents, harms children: report

Children raised in same-sex families develop as their peers in families with heterosexual parents do, a group of senior pediatricians and adolescent health experts says.

And the group has called on the medical community to debunk “damaging misrepresentations” of the evidence being used by the “no” campaign in the postal vote on same-sex marriage, saying the real public health risk comes from discrimination.